Feminist hackette Janice Kennedy has a piece in today's Ottawa Citizen in which she extols Elton John for his recent remarks on organized religion. Sir Elton says that organized religion promotes hatred and spite against gay people, and that it ought to be banned. Ms. Kennedy concedes early on that this is 'simplistic' and then devotes the remainder of her article to an even more simplistic and erroneous justification of Elton John's remarks.
As the typical disaffected feminist was-once-a-Catholic that she is, she uses the standard devices they always use:
First, she claims to be Catholic, when in reality all her writing demonstrates that she long ago abandoned Catholicism. This is done to provide credibility to underpin the rest of her article. The reader is invited to believe that this is one of the Church's own writing about the Church, so she must know what she's on about.
Second, she trots out the tired old criticisms of too much money, too much architecture, too many paintings, and so forth. Hate to break it to Janice, but knocking down St. Peter's Basilica isn't going to feed anyone. Much as she hates tradition, beauty, art and architecture, tearing it down isn't going to do any good, because she and her ilk have nothing to put in its place.
Third, she lambasts Pope Benedict for daring to re-introduce the Latin Mass. Shouldn't such things be a cultural choice she asks? This is where her ignorance comes most to the fore, because if she had in fact set foot in a Catholic church much in the last 40 years, she'd know that the Latin Mass has been all but outlawed since Vatican II, and that all the Pope has suggested is that it be made easier for priests and congregations who wish to celebrate in Latin to do so.
Kennedy lauds the renegade nun Joanna Manning, who is one of the leading lights of the feminist theological movement developing their own new religion. You like Manning's theology, that's fine, but don't pretend that it's Catholic or even Christian, because it's not. You want to embrace it, that's fine with me, but you can do it somewhere else, because you're leaving Catholicism behind when you do. Wanting to hang on to the bits of Catholicism you like - your church building, the money, the nice priest around the corner, while rejecting the foundations of the faith is simply hypocrisy of the first order.
Finally, the whole basis of the article. Pope Benedict is a nasty, evil man, because he has dared to speak up for the 'traditional' family - this apparently is the homophobia Elton John has such a hard time with. The traditional family, says Kennedy, is not reality for many people, so the Church should get over itself and abandon this most fundamental teaching of Christianity. Hmmm... let's try this argument in other areas. I think most people would agree it would be ideal if everyone on the planet had enough food to eat. Is this reality? Not at all. But if we follow Ms. Kennedy's reasoning, we shouldn't be pursuing this ideal, because it's not real. She says that we should just change our moral beliefs and our pursuit of the ideal to match reality - which would mean no pursuing an end to hunger, no abolition of landmines, no <insert your favorite social cause here>
Is it reality that many children are born and raised in circumstances far from the ideal of two loving parents who want and are able to meet all of their physical, emotional and spiritual needs? Of course. Does that make the ideal not the ideal? No. Does it make Pope Benedict a bad man when he holds up that ideal, as he is required to do by his position as the inheritor of two thousand years of teaching and doctrine? Only in the twisted minds of Kennedy and her ilk.
Just because something is reality doesn't mean it's right.
Kennedy should quit pretending to be Catholic and go off to pursue her socialist humanist Utopia with Sir Elton by her side.