|Anti-Catholic Political Cartoon|
Harper's Weekly, September 30, 1871
(MRC) - Having completely skipped the Church fighting for religious liberty, ABC and NBC seemed to delight in reporting every salacious detail of the Vatican leaks. On Tuesday's NBC Today, correspondent Michelle Kosinski touted a nickname in Rome for the incident: "Here they're calling it 'Vatileaks.'" During a report on Sunday's Today, correspondent Duncan Golestani remarked that the whole affair was "like something from a Hollywood movie," followed by a clip of the conspiratorial anti-Catholic film Angels & Demons...THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: I'll go ahead and say what others are afraid to. ABC and NBC are anti-Catholic bigots! Yes, I said it, I mean it, and I don't say it lightly. Their activities are the textbook definition of bigotry. They have wilfully ignored the one story that makes the Church look good -- fighting for religous liberty in America -- which also happens to be one of the biggest stories in the 21st century, and in exchange overly reported every story they can find to embarrass the Church or make it look bad.
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It's really very simple actually. The Vatileaks story is not that big of a story at all. It doesn't threaten the papacy. The Vatican is not falling to pieces. No, there is no chaos inside the walls of the city-state. This is a simple police investigation to find out who has been leaking sensitive documents. We have the pope's butler, who allegedly was a mole, and now the latest is three more suspects are under scrutiny. The whole thing seems to centre around Cardinal Bertone, not the pope, and it would appear that Cardinal Bertone was the intended target of scandal by the Vatileakers, namely because they didn't like his management style. That's pretty much it, as far as we know, and that is literally a summary of ALL the information we know so far. For the press to report this as some kind of "crisis" is itself a scandal, not of the Vatican, but of the press.
I'm afraid ABC and NBC are the epitome of the anti-Catholic problem in the American press. Some are worse than others, and as it stands now, ABC and NBC are the worst of all. Now there are two kinds of anti-Catholic bigotry in the United States, and these I will describe as "traditional" and "modernist."
Traditional anti-Catholicism is what we know from history and it's usually based in Protestant prejudices. These usually circle around ridiculous accusations such as the pope being the Antichrist, Catholics worshipping Mary, and the Church secretly plotting to undermine the Gospel of Jesus Christ through a system of earned salvation and simultaneously take over the world.
Modernist anti-Catholicism is based more in modern liberal (post-enlightenment) thought. The idea is that the Catholic religion is archaic and backward. Therefore the only good Catholic is a bad Catholic, meaning a person who may still identify as Catholic, but doesn't really practice the moral and social teachings of the Church in any meaningful way. A perfect example of this is former Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who would serve as the little darling of modernist anti-Catholics. The former Speaker identifies herself as a "practising ardent Catholic." However, she believes abortion is a right, gays should get married, and the Church should sit back and shut up! This is the perfect example of what modernist anti-Catholics want and expect. People who actually believe in the Church's teaching, try to follow it, and advocate for it, are considered archaic, backward and possibly dangerous! Thus, the only good Catholic is a bad Catholic. It is this very mindset that permeates the entire American news media, but would appear to be most recently concentrated in ABC and NBC. Their network coverage of the Church in recent weeks is demonstratively unfair and biased. They know it. We know it. They know we know it, and they obviously don't care.
Anti-Catholcism has a long history in the American press, as the above cartoon shows. It's something U.S. Catholics ought to be getting used to by now. It's been going on for about 150 years or so. The motivations have changed, but the results have not. ABC and NBC now join the ranks of Harper's Weekly as the most anti-Catholic media outlets in the United States. Bravo! Good job! It's such a distinguished club.