Cardinal Dolan and Catholic ‘Photophobia’

Many of our conservative Roman Catholic friends are quite upset over the fact that New York’s Timothy Cardinal Dolan will be hosting both of the major-party presidential candidates at a charity fundraiser in a couple of months. I agree with our own Kathryn Lopez that Dolan is right to do this, but I would like to discuss some points about it.

First of all, while I condemn all the bloggers and comboxers who fling words like “Herod” at Obama (and “Judas” at Dolan), I don’t think their batpoop-crazy rhetoric should be considered a dispositive case against their basic point. We should remember that, in our politically poisonous time, just about every point of view will be defended by a lot of people who are unhinged. For every person who calls Obama “Herod,” etc., there is at least one equal and opposite person who carried a sign three years ago calling our last president “BusHitler.” So that’s not decisive. (I don’t know who’s going to win this election — I give the slightest of edges to Romney — but one thing I’m sure of is that the guy we elect in November is going to be treated to the same level of vilification by his opponents for the next four years. We can pray that this will change some day; it would be foolish to expect that it will change soon.)

Second, let me address the most legitimate point made by the dissenters. The following is a quote from a comboxer at the blogsite of the Catholic archdiocese of New York. Ignore his stupid comment about the “Anti-Christ,” and focus on the basic point “Kevin Doran” is making:

Kevin Doran says: “Let’s see if I get this straight. We (the laity) are asked to pray and fast for two weeks but the Cardinal and his friends drink cocktails and have dinner with this representative of the Anti-Christ. Call me when you get your act together!!!!” [More]


Michael Potemra/National Review