Pope Francis gave hope to millions of progressives worldwide, including the LGBT community and our allies, that the Roman Catholic Church would change into the religious institution it is supposed to be: one focused on helping the poor, the needy, the sick, and the elderly, and spreading the message of God’s love across the world; in short, what America’s Catholics expect of their Church. But in reality, little has changed, at least here at home in the U.S.
The vast majority of America’s Catholics support same-sex marriage and the civil rights of LGBT people — even at a rate higher than the average American. They also do not see same-sex relations as sin.
YetÂ Cardinal Timothy Dolan (image, top,) who is the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the Archbishop of New York — making him the highest-ranking Catholic in America — has worked to distance himself from the LGBT community, and made it clear how incredibly uncomfortable he is with LGBT people and embracing us as part of his flock.
Dolan yesterday appeared on his weekly Tuesday Sirius radio show, telling tales and stories, laughing, and joking with comedian Jim Gaffigan. It was certainly a heartwarming show.
But the Cardinal knew he had to say something about the dramatic increase in anti-LGBT hate crimes in New York City — his home — this month and this year.
Because he had said absolutely nothing, even after the hate crime murder of Mark Carson, a gay man shot to death literally for being gay.
The New Civil Rights Movement and other LGBT activists, including Scott Wooledge of Memeographs and Joseph Amodeo via the Huffington Post, have been asking why the nation’s number one Catholic had been uninterested in denouncing the violence against LGBT people.
So yesterday, at the very end of his radio show, Cardinal Dolan mustered the courage to make mention of the violence.
â€œYou look at even the violence in our own city with some homosexuals who have recently been beaten and killed,â€ Dolan said. â€œI mean thatâ€™s just awful, that flies in the face of divine justice. Every human life deserves dignity and respect, right? Anytime life is attacked we all suffer.â€
Dolan said the very least he could have, just so he could be on the record as “denouncing” anti-gay violence given the nine incidents of anti-gay violence in NYC this month alone.
Hardly a denunciation. It took up all of 19 seconds.
And then the Cardinal launched into comments about Memorial Day.
Compare Cardinal Dolan’s “thatâ€™s just awful” that “some homosexuals…have recently been beaten and killed” comment with that of one of the nation’s leading anti-gay professionals.
â€œWe condemn in the strongest possible way the murder of a gay man in New York by a killer who apparently hurled anti-gay insults at him moments before the killing,â€ National Organization For Marriage president Brain Brownâ€™s statement last week reads, posted to NOMâ€™s blog days after the shooting-death murder of Mark Carson. Brown added:
This senseless act cannot be condoned in America or anywhere, and we urge that the perpetrator be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Our heart goes out to the family of the victim, and we hold them in our prayers. While this killing appears to have no connection to the current debate about redefining marriage, there is no room for violence toward any American â€” whether they support traditional marriage or not. No person should be subjected to violence because they are gay or lesbian or because they believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. There is no place for violence, period.
Last summer, when the Family Research Council was attacked by a lone gunman who put a bullet in the arm of the FRC’s security guard, within hours more than two dozen LGBT organizations rushed to condemn publicly, and in writing, the violence.
So, Cardinal Dolan’s tepid and offhand remarks, as much as they are appreciated as an important first step, and far from sufficient.
If Dolan truly wishes to condemn hate-motivated violence against the LGBT members of his church, and against all LGBT people, he will have to say more than “thatâ€™s just awful,” and he’ll have to stop issuing directives to his Bishops telling them to preach against same-sex marriage and LGBT relationships too.
Earlier this month, Dolan through his USCCB issued a directive to be shared with all Catholics, calling the Prop 8 and DOMA same-sex marriage cases before the Supreme Court the â€œ’Roe v. Wade’ of marriage.”
And he called on all Catholics to “pray, fast, and sacrifice” so the Court would not grant civil rights to loving same-sex couples.
Dolan cares about the family, and families, but not those of same-sex couples. He is a supporter of immigration reform, but not of including protections for families headed by LGBT people.
In fact, in his directive, Dolan stated that “redefining marriage serves no oneâ€™s rights, least of all those of children.”
If there’s one thing most people can agree upon, it is that marriage strengthens families and provides safety and security for children — regardless of their parents’ gender(s).
Just a few weeks ago, Cardinal Dolan, or his representatives,Â used the NYPD to prohibit from Sunday worship services gay Catholics by barring their entry into NYCâ€™s St. Patrickâ€™s Cathedral, the iconic home of the Roman Catholic Church in New York.
Their hands were dirty.
Cardinal Dolan had written a blog post demanding LGBT Catholics wash their hands — presumably of our bad behaviors, like entering into loving same-sex relationships and marriages — and Dolan refused to allow a small group of LGBT Catholics and their allies entrance into St. pats with their “dirty hands,” unless they washed them first.
In March, Cardinal DolanÂ said the Catholic Church wants â€œhappinessâ€ for same-sex couples but same-sex married couples are entitled only to â€œfriendshipâ€ and not â€œsexual love.â€
Last year,Â Dolan attacked same-sex marriage equality and abortion in his closing prayer while an invited guest at the Democratic National Convention.
Cardinal Dolan has been actively engaged in opposing the civil rights of LGBT people. It’s time for him to see us as human beings, and God’s children first.
Michelangelo Signorile invited me to speak on his SiriusXM OutQ radio show this afternoon, and he wondered why with a change at the top — with Pope Francis focusing publicly on the more traditional role of the Church as a savior for the sick, the poor, the needy, the elderly — if Cardinal Dolan is “freelancing” and acting on his own.
Signorile, a veteran journalist who has served the LGBT community for years, wondered why Dolan issued the directive to “pray, fast, and sacrifice” in the hopes of a Supreme Court upholding Prop 8 and DOMA.
Who knows what the Catholic Church is thinking. But we do know what the vast majority of America’s Catholics are thinking, and it looks nothing like what Cardinal Dolan is.
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‘A Bunch of New Yorkers in Addition to George Soros’: Greg Abbott Accused of Antisemitism
Texas GOP Governor Greg Abbott is facing a challenging re-election fight against Beto O’Rourke, the popular and charismatic former U.S,. Congressman and Democratic presidential candidate who is now his party’s gubernatorial nominee.
Texas voters have had to face mismanagement of the state’s electric grid, with hundreds of Texans dying in winter after the snowstorm that sent Senator Ted Cruz to Cancun, the horrific elementary school mass shooting in Uvalde, and Abbott spending millions of taxpayer dollars on anti-immigrant programs, including bussing migrants to Democratic-controlled cities like Washington, D.C. and New York City. Not to mention his support of the vigilante abortion ban and a “Don’t Say Gay” bill, his failed promise to end rape, and the fact that Texas leads the nation in mass shootings.
But none of that has stopped the 64-year old from doubling down on his conservative bonafides.
On Wednesday over at Fox News, Abbott engaged in what many are calling some old-fashioned antisemitism.
“We will explain to our fellow Texans that the Beto campaign is being aided by a bunch of New Yorkers in addition to George Soros, and that will do nothing but harm his campaign,” Abbott told Fox News host Harris Faulkner.
Greg Abbott: “We will explain to our fellow Texans that the Beto campaign is being aided by a bunch of New Yorkers in addition to George Soros, and that will do nothing but harm his campaign.” pic.twitter.com/23O6TtLwTO
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) August 10, 2022
George Soros, who is Jewish, is a Democratic philanthropist and one of the liberals most-hated by the right, in large part because he funds left wing causes.
He also donated $1 million to help elect O’Rourke governor.
Two weeks ago polls showed O’Rourke gaining ground, striking with five points of his entrenched Texas Republican rival.
And now Abbott is being blasted for what many are calling antisemitism over his Soros statement.
“In this context, ‘New Yorkers’ and ‘George Soros’ are both signifiers for the alleged Jewish elite who supposedly control the world. Abbott is peddling antisemitic conspiracy theory rhetoric,” says writer and human rights activist Leah McElrath.
“When they say ‘Soros’ and ‘New Yorkers,’ they mean Jews,” notes freelance writer Henry Schulman. “It’s an old dog whistle and a code all the Trump-humping Nazis and their sympathizers understand. So add a new adjective besides ‘fascist’ in front of Abbott’s name. It’s ‘anti-Semitic fascist.'”
Others were even more direct.
“Just say Jews you coward,” tweeted a columnist for The Forward, Alex גדעון בן װעלװל.
“‘The bespectacled, bagel-eating, gefilte fish-slurping, globalist intelligentsia from the Upper West Side’ is what he’s trying to say, although the specifics of who that is maddeningly unclear,” mocked Aki Pertiz, an intel and national security expert. “Also, doesn’t Soros live in NY state? Why single him out hmmmmm.”
Former Chicago Tribune editor Mark Jacob explains: “Right-wing code is pretty simple. ‘New York’ and ‘Soros’ = Jewish. ‘Chicago’ = Black people.”
Former Governor of Vermont, DNC Chair, and 2004 presidential nominee Howard Dean blasted Abbott, comparing him to the Hungarian dictator and, some say, fascist.
“Abbott has become just another GOP whack job. He sounds like victor Orban,” Dean wrote.
‘Same Answer’: Trump Sat Across From the NY Attorney General and Pleaded the Fifth to Each Question For About 5 Hours
Donald Trump arrived at the New York Attorney General’s Office early Wednesday morning, around 9 AM. At 10:04 AM posted to his Truth Social account was a lengthy statement that says, “under the advice of my counsel and for all of the above reasons, I declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen.”
Trump was finally forced to appear after a subpoena ordering him to give a deposition on January 7 in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ investigation into his real estate pricing practices. Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen told Congress in 2019 his former boss would increase what he claimed his properties are worth when attempting to arrange credit and decrease their value for tax purposes.
The Guardian’s Hugo Lowell reported Trump “departed 28 Liberty at 3:20pm slumped in a black Secret Service SUV and peered out of the rear window as his motorcade crawled out of an underground garage past onlookers.”
At 3:42 PM Trump posted: “Just leaving the Attorney General’s Office – A very professional meeting.”
The New York Times reports “Trump and James sat across from each other for hours as he said ‘same answer’ again and again.”
Trump “read a statement into the record in which he called the inquiry a continuation of ‘the greatest witch hunt in the history of our country’ and accused Ms. James of having ‘openly campaigned on a policy of destroying me.'”
That statement is similar to the one posted to his Truth Social account.
Trump’s attorney, Ronald P. Fischetti, “said that over the course of about four hours, with several breaks, Mr. Trump answered only one question, about his name, toward the beginning of the interview.”
That statement Trump posted Wednesday morning attempted to merge the FBI’s Monday raid on his Mar-a-Lago home with his appearance for sworn testimony in a very different case.
Dem Congressman Posts Horrific Audio of Violent Death Threat Against Him and His Family by Caller Praising ‘Trump 2024’
Democratic U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California on Wednesday posted audio of a violent death threat against him and his family. The Congressman is married and the couple have three children. The speaker in the audio also calls for “all Democrats” to be killed, and ends with a call for “Trump 2024.”
Swalwell is a popular target for the right. He is a former candidate for president, a very visible member of the Democratic Party, and is the Co-Chair of the House Democratic Steering Committee.
The audio is profane and gruesome. In it, a male voice can be heard hoping for decapitations of the Congressman, his wife, and their children. The language is graphic.
READ MORE: House Republicans Visited Trump After FBI Raid to Urge Him to Announce Run for President
The voice also references President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, using horrifically racist slurs, along with Back Lives Matter, immigrants, and Democrats in general.
It also attacks the state of California and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, and then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.
It ends with a repeated call of “Trump 2024!”
The audio is nearly two minutes long but appears to have been edited, with at least the beginning cut off.
“LISTEN to this death threat against my children,” Swalwell urges. “Since the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago, Trump, McCarthy, and MAGA Republicans are stoking violent rhetoric against lawmakers and law enforcement. Someone is going to get killed.”
In 2019 Swalwell also posted a death threat he received. Fox News’ Tomi Lahren mocked him on social media.
NCRM has opted to not embed the audio but it can be heard here.
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