Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Being played for a fool: Cardinal Dolan and the parade

When I read Cardinal Dolan’s explanation for his decision to remain as the Grand Marshall of the first NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade to include open gays marching under a gay rights banner, all I could think was, “Is the Cardinal really that naive?”  Because, yes, the Church differentiates between people who are same-sex attracted but who do not act on that attraction, and people who live in open gay and lesbian relationships or have entered a gay “marriage” with another person, because these sorts of relationships, an overwhelming majority of the time, involve grave sins against the Sixth Commandment, a single one of which, under the usual conditions, can potentially lead to eternal damnation in the fires of Hell--but people who march under gay rights banners in parades usually involve the second group, not the first.

Kevin O’Brien has had a similar thought:
In a stunning display of naivete, Cardinal Dolan, who presides over a Church that in modern times has gone queer over banners at Mass, is utterly clueless about the meaning of queer banners in a public secular parade.
But that's not my point.  We know our bishops are either clueless or cowardly or complicit in all kinds of garbage.  So this is to be expected: that Cardinal Dolan does not even see that the promotion of "gay identity" is promotion of a "gay agenda".  Any idiot knows that.  This has not been an argument against "gays" marching in the St. Patrick's Day parade, as they have done covertly for years.  It's not an argument about the question of loving the sinner but hating the sin.  It's an argument about civic life in the public square and the forced celebration of sin, which is what the gay pride banners are pushing, as anybody but a bishop can easily understand.
Kevin goes on to talk about the insulting, folksy way Cardinal Dolan delivers his message, but I think that when the message is bad it doesn’t really matter how it was delivered--sort of like the joke about the diner who complains that his food was terrible, “...and such small portions!”  But I think we can agree to disagree about that.

Because the real problem here is that Cardinal Dolan, whether willingly or not, is being played for a fool.  Anybody who doesn’t think that the media coverage of the parade will include lots of shots of Dolan and various Catholic trappings juxtaposed against pictures of lesbians kissing and gay men embracing each other, and an interview or two with a lesbian, her “wife,” and the kids they paid some guy to donate sperm to manufacture about how wonderful and inclusive and tolerant it all is, is quite frankly just kidding himself.

And the next time a Catholic employee anywhere in the State of New York turns down a request (e.g., demand) to attend a “wedding" shower for a couple of guys, or even the “wedding” itself, he’s going to be told that his freedom of religion no longer applies.  “Why, Cardinal Dolan in the NYC Archdiocese has no trouble at all with gay marriage or gay married people,” the HR person is likely to exclaim.  “So how can you use your religion as a reason not to attend Bill and Ted’s special event?  If you refuse to go you are creating a hostile environment, and we can’t have that."


Kevin O'Brien said...

Erin, I've written an open letter to Cardinal Dolan, taking his logic to its logical conclusion. If marching under a GAY IRISH banner only indicates orientation and not approval, then may those of us who are oriented toward, say, adultery be able to march under an IRISH ADULTERERS banner?

Kevin Tierney said...

Or maybe we have to consider the unpleasant possibility that His Eminence knows exactly what he is doing, he is not the fool, and that these are conscious choices.

Too many events have happened in Dolan's history to suggest naivete or a fool. There's something else at work here.

No, it's not him being a heretic, modernist, or whatever you want to say. Plain and simple, Dolan is a careerist. All of his controversial decisions from the Sheen dustup, to his role in the abuse scandals, to Holy Innocents, to now the parade have been about what's best for the bottom line.... his bottom line What advances his profile is what is best for business.

I think the damage done by carerrism is a lot more serious than that done by heretics and modernists, who normally only destroy their own souls.

John InEastTX said...

And the next time a Catholic employee anywhere in the State of New York turns down a request (e.g., demand) to attend a “wedding" shower for a couple of guys, or even the “wedding” itself, he’s going to be told that his freedom of religion no longer applies.

Does that happen a lot?

Maybe its just me, but not once in my working life has anyone invited me to attend their wedding or wedding shower.

Red Cardigan said...

Actually, John, they used to hold showers in the office where I worked! I think many places do this.

John InEastTX said...

Different worlds - in the last twenty-five plus years of my working life I've worked in computerized industrial sensor recording software, print shops, industrial manufacturing, and most recently at a university police station.

Not once, to my recollection, was there ever a wedding shower at work.

Kind of an amusing thought though, "Hey Ralph, park the forklift. Carlos, put up the cutting torch. Rest of you guys, shut down your machines. Time for Frank's wedding shower. Wash your hands first, you slobs - you're gonna get grease and metal shavings all over the presents."

Elizabeth said...

Your boss can demand that you attend a wedding?

Red Cardigan said...

Demand, maybe not, Elizabeth. But here’s how it works in some corporate offices: people get invited to their co-workers’ weddings etc., and most of the time they accept, but maybe they have a conflict or something, no big deal. But say somebody who usually goes to coworkers’ weddings doesn’t go to the wedding of the two lesbians in her dept. And the woman who didn’t go is a devout Catholic or an evangelical Christian. Suddenly the lesbians complain that their coworker didn’t come to their wedding because they are lesbians...and pretty soon the whole thing has escalated to a conversation with HR, a mandatory “diversity” training session, and a reminder that creating a hostile work environment will get you fired.

My husband actually had to explain to his coworkers when we got married that we could not follow the usual company practice (!) of taping a copy of our invitation to a breakroom door and expecting dozens of his co-workers to show up, and that no rudeness or unkindness was intended. The small Catholic church where we were married wouldn’t have accommodated them all, and they were shocked to find out that a Catholic wedding is an hour-long religious ceremony, too, not just a ten minute wedding followed by a huge party. Ah, the South...

Red Cardigan said...

John: that made me smile. :) But in corporate America the expectation that you will celebrate your coworkers’ “life events” is not all that uncommon.

psieve2 said...

Catholic Radio on Sirius XM really needs to cut his show. I don't trust these bouncy, hot shot preachers, anymore. They get too big for their britches and want to be liked. They remind me of when I was cool for a couple years. I don't trust myself, either. Why I post comments, I don't know. I should trust myself less and be like Mary, who just absorbed stuff that was said and done, except for absorbing evil. She never did that. Maybe we regret not saying something and feel we make it up here or on Facebook.

John InEastTX said...

>John: that made me smile. :)

I'm glad!

>But in corporate America the expectation that you will celebrate your coworkers’ “life events” is not all that uncommon.

Yikes - that sounds absolutely awful.

I've followed a policy throughout my working life that has served me well - say 'morning' at eight, say 'see ya' at five, and stay out of my co-worker's personal lives.

The reason for this is (as you no doubt know) having to listen to someone's life drama at work is both boring and a waste of time.

Of course it helps that at work I'm this guy:

Red Cardigan said...

John, I’ve actually seen a couple of episodes of that show. :)

But, yes, I think a lot of Christians’ concerns about how much they’re going to have to pretend to celebrate gay weddings etc. comes from this pressure to do so at work. It’s sort of the way at many companies you MUST give to United Way or your name will go down as being the obstacle to your department’s goal of “100% giving.” A person could be routinely giving 50% of his income to other charities and working only as a prelude to heading off to a seminary to spend the rest of his life as a missionary priest in a foreign country, but he’ll be docked at work for failing to give to United Way, even if the “docking” is strictly unofficial. Unofficial, but real, and having (for some people) career impact.

The Sicilian Woman said...

John, you have a healthy attitude about keeping work and business separate. It's the best approach for saving yourself from drama when work friendships go wrong, though it's not foolproof.

I've found, having worked in the private and public sectors, and in organizations in regions of the US thousands of miles away from each other, that usually there is a social element to the workplace that extends to celebrating life events, and it's not limited to female involvement. When my ex-husband and I were together, we were invited to the wedding of a female co-worker of his, too.

What Erin's suggested is going to happen, especially when offense is now a grave sin. There are weddings, and then there are gay weddings, and anything associated with homosexuals has to be celebrated and gushed over as the most wonderful thing Eh-VER! It will be noticed when someone does not acknowledge or contribute to the Event of the Year. Simple silence won't be ignored. It will be investigated and "dealt with," as they say.

Cardinal Dolan is, sadly for us faithful Catholics, a very public figure in the Church, and the consummate politician. What he's done is going to be seen as the approval of homosexual acts that it is. You know there was at least one pro-life group - a group that does follow Catholic doctrine - that wanted to march, and was denied. Why hasn't he championed them?

John InEastTX said...

Well TSW, as a not-very-social creature, I have to reiterate that an office environment where one is expected to show any interest beyond the most perfunctory in one's co-workers life events sounds absolutely awful.

If you guys want to create a corporate culture in which being totally indifferent to one's co-workers life events is acceptable and not a career detriment, please let me know and I'll do my best to help.

Siarlys Jenkins said...

It’s sort of the way at many companies you MUST give to United Way or your name will go down as being the obstacle to your department’s goal of “100% giving.”

I've never had that put up in my face, but if I did, I have always been prepared to say "I don't approve of United Way." That may sound Cosimanian, but after the shocked exclamations die down... I don't want some unelected board deciding who my donation will go to, and how much. Maybe there is a worthy cause that isn't even admitted to United Way that I want to support... or maybe I think the outfit whose allocation was reduced is one I want to give more to.

No doubt this sort of pressure will crop up over gay weddings, but if it does, and if I don't want to attend, I may say my life is full and I wish you the best but I can barely find time for the weddings of close family. Or I might say I don't approve of gay weddings.