Connect with us

Gay Catholic Leaders Weigh In On Use Of NYPD To Bar Gay Catholics From St. Pat’s Cathedral

Published

on

New Yorkers and Catholics around the nation are responding to the use on Sunday of the New York Police Department to bar gay and allied Catholics from entering New York City’s historic St. Patrick’s Cathedral. St. Pat’s is the home of the Archbishop of New York and the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who represents the Vatican in America.

READ: Cardinal Dolan Uses NYPD To Bar Gay Catholics From Sunday Worship In St. Patrick’s Cathedral

Ten Catholics, responding to Cardinal Dolan’s April 25 blog post, “All Are Welcome!,” which tells gay people who wish to participate in the Catholic faith, you must first “wash your hands!,” rubbed charcoal on their hands, and before they even approached the hallowed cathedral, were headed off by eight police officers and told if they attempted entry into St. Patrick’s Cathedral, they would be barred — and arrested.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s director of communications reportedly issued a statement yesterday that Dolan was “on a pilgrimage to Lourdes, France,” on Sunday, implying he had nothing to do with the arrest threats by NYPD officers, although it is hard to believe that the Cardinal doesn’t have access to email or a telephone.

The event, labeled by organizer Joseph Amodeo as a “vigil,” did not result in any arrests, nor were the activists disruptive or intent on being so. They merely wanted to make a quiet statement, no louder than the wearing of a lapel button, in response to the leader of the Catholic Church in America’s patriarchal and offensive statement that gay people are unclean and must “wash their hands” before their church will recognize their right to be at the table.

“For Cardinal Dolan to imply that LGBT people are tainted with ‘dirty hands’ is for him to utterly fail to understand God’s creation,” Ross Murray, GLAAD’s Director of News and Faith Initiatives noted shortly after Sunday’s vigil. “There is no dress code to experience the love of God. Threatening worshipers with arrest displays no grace nor pastoral care. The action clearly tells LGBT people that they are not welcome. For someone who wants to ‘do better’ at reaching out to LGBT people, Dolan is failing miserably.”

GLAAD certainly isn’t the only one who thinks Cardinal Dolan is failing.

“I applaud faithful Catholics for confronting Cardinal Dolan on his duplicitous public stands regarding social justice for God’s LGBT children,” Phil Attey, former executive director of Catholics for Equality told The New Civil Rights Movement in an email conversation:

On Easter Sunday, Cardinal Dolan went on several Sunday morning political programs, advancing the idea that he and the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) must “forge a new relationship with the LGBT community.” But it’s clear from his subsequent public statements about LGBT Catholics that he had no such intentions.

Kudos to Joseph Amodeo and faithful Catholics in New York for publicly calling Cardinal Dolan on his lies. Jesus stands with them and all who stand up for social justice and for honesty.

Timmian Massie, an adjunct professor of religious studies at Marist College, told The New Civil Rights Movement also via an email conversation that the “security detail at St. Patrick’s Cathedral used the fear of arrest to stop a call for social justice, something the Catholic Church used to care about more that it apparently does now.”

“However, that response really showed the fear the Church hierarchy has in allowing members to use their gifts of intelligence, rational thinking and free will to expose the hypocrisy of the Cardinal’s statement that in the Catholic Church, ‘All are welcome.’ Obviously, LGBTQ Catholics are not welcome because the hierarchy, not necessarily its members, want LGBTQ people to be less than who we are,” says Massie, who studied theology at the North American College in Vatican City and the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and taught a course in Rome on the Vatican.

“The Church does not actively and continually discriminate against any other group in its membership. The protesters had planned to receive Communion on the tongue, not in their hands, as a sign of respect for Catholic belief that the Eucharist is the Body of Christ. I have seen many people with ‘dirty hands’ approach a priest or Eucharistic Minister for Communion, but never be turned away.

“What the Cardinal and his staff at St. Patrick’s don’t realize is that they helped this small group of less than a dozen faithful LGBTQ Catholics and allies gain even more attention for the cause of equality than if they had simply allowed them to enter the cathedral in silence. In reality, the group’s witness was effective and not a failure, though being turned away at the door of one’s spiritual home may have caused pain for those involved. Jesus, who pointed out the hypocrisy of religious leaders of his day, would have approved of this simple act undertaken by people who wish nothing more than to be treated as equals in the eyes of the men who lead the Church. I believe the LGBTQ community is already seen as equal in the eyes of God.”

On Sunday evening, GLAAD noted that “Nicholas Coppola also participated in the witness.” GLAAD’s Ross Murray writes:

Coppola is the man who was stripped of all his parish duties after marrying his husband. Coppola presented 18,600 signatures with GLAAD to his bishop, asking him to be reinstated, which the bishop returned by mail with a cover letter that read simply, “FROM YOUR FAITHFUL ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP.” Coppola now has a Change.org petition, asking to meet and dine with Cardinal Dolan. So far that petition has over 22,000 signatures.

Cardinal Dolan has yet to reply.

Joseph Ward III, Director of Believe Out Loud, an online network that empowers Christians to work for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality, told The New Civil Rights Movement via email, “Nobody should ever be denied entry into God’s house on the basis of their gender identity or sexual orientation. These Catholics sent a powerful message that they and all LGBT people are wonderfully made in the image of God, and should be treated with dignity.”

Finally, the words of Joseph Amodeo, the event’s organizer, via his Facebook page yesterday:

I want to thank everyone who has reached out to me over the past 24 hours; your support means a lot. To be honest, I’m still trying to digest and understand how we were treated at St. Patrick’s Cathedral yesterday. There is one thing that I am sure of, the Holy Spirit was with us. The prayers, embraces, and tears that we shared were a powerful expression of the feelings we all had standing in front of the Cathedral. Pax et bonum.

 

Image by Gay Marriage USA

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

COMMENTARY

Trump An ‘Enemy of the Constitution’ Declares Nicolle Wallace, Blasting Call to ‘Terminate’ Nation’s Founding Document

Published

on

MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace slammed Donald Trump as an “enemy of the Constitution” on Monday after the ex-president, over the weekend, called for the U.S. Constitution to be terminated.

Trump demanded “the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution,” in light of his most recent – and false – claim the 2020 presidential election was stolen.

That was Saturday, on his Truth Social account.

On Monday, Trump denied having ever said it, despite the post still being up.

Wallace characterized Trump’s call to terminate the Constitution “an extraordinary statement even by the standards of a failed wannabe autocrat who plotted a coup against his own government and recently dined with white supremacists.”

READ MORE: ‘Venom’: Experts Shocked as Gorsuch Angrily Accuses Colorado of Forcing Anti-LGBTQ Baker Into ‘Re-Education Program’

“The disgraced ex-president made his contempt for our democracy as clear as ever, when he called for the United States Constitution to be ‘terminated.'”

Quoting The Washington Post, Wallace said: “Trump’s message on his Truth Social platform reiterated the baseless claims he has made since 2020, that the election was stolen, but he went further by suggesting that the country abandon one of its founding documents.”

She also played a clip of Republican Congressman Dave Joyce of Ohio from Sunday’s ABC News.

Rep. Joyce in the clip twists and turns but ultimately admits that if Trump is the GOP nominee for president in 2024 he will vote for him.

READ MORE: Anti-LGBTQ Slurs on Twitter Up Over 800% as Musk Allows Thousands of Previously Banned Users Back: Reports

“Well, again, it’s early I think there’s gonna be a lot of people in the primary I think at the end of the day, you will have — wherever the Republicans tend to pick up I will fall in behind because that’s –”

ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos interjected, asking,”Even if it’s Donald Trump, as he’s called for suspending the Constitution?”

“Again, I think it’s gonna be a big field. I don’t think Donald Trump’s gonna clear out the field like he did in 2016.”

“I will support whoever the Republican nominee is,” Joyce added.

“And I don’t don’t think that at this point he will be able to get there because I think there’s a lot of other good quality candidates out there.”

“He says a lot of things,” Joyce continued, refusing to denounce Trump.

“Let’s not speed past that moment,” Wallace urged. “This is exactly how Trump happened. All the Republicans in Washington and around the country said, [Trump] ‘says all sorts of stupid you know what. Dorsn’t mean he’s going to do it.'”

“He did all of it, all of it. And then some,” she chastised.

Watch below or at this link.

Continue Reading

'REGURGITATING RIGHT WING TALKING POINTS'

‘Venom’: Experts Shocked as Gorsuch Angrily Accuses Colorado of Forcing Anti-LGBTQ Baker Into ‘Re-Education Program’

Published

on

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch appeared angry and even hostile at several points throughout Monday’s oral arguments in a case brought by a Colorado right-wing evangelical Christian website designer who is suing the state because she wants to be able to discriminate against same-sex couples who are getting married.

The case, 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis, promises to be one of the most important of the term, and arguments extended more than two hours.

During one of the more heated moments, conservative Justice Gorsuch attacked Colorado Solicitor General Eric Olson, claiming the state forced an infamous anti-LGBTQ baker who also went before the Supreme Court, winning his 2018 case in a very narrow ruling, into a “re-education program.”

RELATED: ‘What the Hell, Sam’: Justice Alito Slammed for Making ‘Joke’ About Black Children in KKK Costumes

Jack Phillips, a business owner who refused to bake cakes for same-sex weddings, citing his religious beliefs, was required to attend a class so he could become familiar with Colorado anti-discrimination law.

The Supreme Court’s ruling at the time called it, “additional remedial measures, including ‘comprehensive staff training on the Public Accommodations section'” of Colorado’s anti-discrimination law.

Justice Gorsuch instead called it a “re-education program,” and slammed the state’s Solicitor General, Eric Olson, with it on Monday.

“Mr. Phillips did go through a re-education training program, pursuant to Colorado law, did he not, Mr. Olson?” Gorsuch asked the solicitor general.

“He went through a process that ensured he was familiar –” Olson responded, before Gorsuch cut him off.

“It was a re-education program, right?” the justice blared.

“It was not a ‘re-education program,'” Olson replied, holding his ground.

“What do you call it?” Gorsuch, dissatisfied, pressed.

“It was a process to make sure he was familiar with Colorado law,” Olson explained.

“Some might be excused for calling that a ‘re-education program,’” Gorsuch snapped.

“I strongly disagree, Justice Gorsuch,” Olson said, defending the law.

Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, who provided the clip above, warns: “It does not bode well for the future of civil rights law that Gorsuch believes a state imposes ‘reeducation training’ on employers when it reminds them how to comply with nondiscrimination rules.”

RELATED: 5 Things You Need to Know About the Supreme Court Ruling in the Gay Wedding Cake Case

“Astounding that Gorsuch, A Supreme Court Justice,” tweeted Adam Cohen of Attorneys for Good Government, “Refers to Colorado giving courses on following civil rights law, As ‘reeducation training.'”

“Like being taught not to discriminate against LGBTQ is the same as being sent to a gulag for protesting communism in the Soviet Union,” he added.

Professor Elizabeth Sepper of the University of Texas at Austin School of Law says, “Justice Gorsuch describes education about antidiscrimination law and compliance as a REEDUCATION PROGRAM. This is beyond offensive. It was a central and SOFT tool of many civil rights movements and was essential to targeting market discrimination.”

Columbia Law School’s Elizabeth Reiner Platt, the Director of The Law, Rights, and Religion Project responded, “OMG Gorsuch repeatedly insists that a training on civil rights law is a ‘reeducation program.’ Good grief.”

Attorney Andrew L. Seidel, Vice President of Strategic Communications for Americans United for Separation of Church and State tweeted, “WHOA. Gorsuch asks a very hostile question about sending the bakery to ‘a re-education program.’ He spits the phrase with venom and repeats it several times. He’s regurgitating right wing talking points.”

Continue Reading

'INAPPROPRIATE'

‘What the Hell, Sam’: Justice Alito Slammed for Making ‘Joke’ About Black Children in KKK Costumes

Published

on

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday in one of the most important cases of the term, a case that will determine if the nation’s highest court will or will not allow a person citing their personal religious beliefs to openly discriminate in the marketplace against same-sex couples.

In likely the most salient and important hypothetical example, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson described in great detail a photographer wanting to re-create scenes from 1940’s Christmases with Santa Clauses and children, in sepia tones, and making them historically accurate.

She asked the attorney representing the right-wing Christian website designer who does not want to have to provide her product to same-sex couples, if under her legal theory the hypothetical photographer would have to create photos of a white Santa with Black children.

Kristen Waggoner, the Alliance Defending Freedom‘s attorney arguing in favor of anti-LGBTQ discrimination, was forced to admit that the photographer would be able to say they would not take photos of Black children with a white Santa.

RELATED: Listen Live: SCOTUS Hears Christian Right Religion vs. LGBTQ Civil Rights Challenge

Later, Justice Samuel Alito, one of the Court’s most far-right jurists, decided to use Justice Jackson’s hypothetical analogy to make a point, and he did so by mockingly joking about Black children wearing KKK costumes.

“Justice Jackson’s example of that, the Santa in the mall who doesn’t want his picture taken with Black children,” Justice Alito began, getting the basics of the analogy incorrect.

“So if there’s a Black Santa at the other end of the mall, and he doesn’t want to have his picture taken with a child who is dressed up in a Ku Klux Klan outfit, now does that Black Santa have to do that?”

Colorado Solicitor General Eric Olson replied, “No, because Klu Klux Klan outfits are not protected characteristics under public accommodation laws.”

READ MORE: ‘Anathema to the Soul of Our Nation’: Trump Pilloried for Demanding ‘Termination’ of the US Constitution

“And presumably,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor interjected, “that would be the same Ku Klux Klan outfit regardless whether if the child was Black or white or any other characteristic.”

That’s when Alito decided to make a “joke,” while thousands of Americans were listening to the Court’s live proceedings.

“You do see a lot of Black children in Ku Klux Klan outfits all the time,” he said, presumably sarcastically.

He then laughed, and some viewers in the gallery joined with him.

Many on social media were outraged and offended.

“He is so inappropriate today. And offensive,” said Sherrilyn Ifill, the former President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF). “The Black kids in KuKluxKlan outfits? Not funny. Is this the highest Court of the most powerful country in the world? Good grief.”

Minutes later, NYU School of Law Professor of Law Melissa Murray weighed in, saying, “I’m going to need Justice Alito to stop joking about seeing ‘Black children in Ku Klux Klan costumes.'”

“Seriously, what am I listening to?” she asked, to which Ifill replied, “Just awful.”

“The joke about Black kids in KuKluxKlan outfits?” Ifill also lamented. “No Justice Alito, these ‘jokes’ are so inappropriate, no matter how many in the courtroom chuckle mindlessly.”

Columbia University Professor of Law Katherine Franke tweeted, “Justice Alito is resorting to KKK jokes. Ha ha ha. As if what’s at stake here is funny, and isn’t taking place in a context in which LGBTQ people feel like we have a target on our backs. And, ahem – Klan jokes aren’t funny under any context.”

The Rewire News Group tweeted, in all caps, “I knew Alito wouldn’t be able to resist bringing up the Ku Klux Klan,” and then: “What the hell, Sam.”

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.