Monday, November 9, 2009

Anti-Catholicism: Alive and Well in the New Yorker

I'm not surprised that an Anti-Catholic cartoon showed up in the New Yorker magazine. I'm not a subscriber, but have read the New Yorker from time to time - and have several books of cartoons from the publication.

Not being surprised isn't the same as thinking it's okay, though. Instead of spending time on a rant, though, I'll pass along some excerpts from a blog I ran into today - together with the recommendation that you follow the link and read the original:
"The New Yorker, the magazine of urbane Americans, proves once again that anti-Catholicism still lurks in U.S. society. This time it's in an article by the playwright Paul Rudnick, who seems to get his kicks by bashing religion. It is bizarre that someone who uses his literary skills to decry prejudice and stereotyping of gays opts to indulge his own prejudice against another group, Catholics. Catholics in the United States have had to fight such ignorance for more than 200 years (It came over with the Pilgrims). Rudnick's recent rap on Catholics comes in snide remarks about religious sisters in 'Fun With Nuns,' in the July 20 issue of the New Yorker.

"Apparently the editors, who even are heralding the essay on the New Yorker Web site, don't find any problem with Rudnick's gratuitous slam: 'Nuns can be dictatorial, sexually repressed, and scary—and therefore entertaining.' Nor did they bother to edit out a remark about which nuns should be 'f…able.' A comment on a discussion at Disney about 'Catholic teaching on vows of silence, poverty, and chastity' suggests editors at the New Yorker ignore inaccuracy as well as prejudice and poor taste.

"Historian Arthur Schlesinger Sr. once noted that anti-Catholicism 'the deepest-held bias in the history of the American people.' Anti-Catholicism also has been called the 'anti-Semitism of the liberal.'...

"Last week, the USA Today Faith & Reason blog was rampant with anti-Catholic comments in response to Pope Benedict XVI's ground-breaking encyclical on the economy 'Caritas in Veritate' ('Charity in truth'). ... Yet more than a week later, mindless souls hiding behind the blog's anonymity can still be read asking if you spell pope with 'one or two 'o's,' advising the pope to do something that's unprintable here and ought to be unprintable in a family newspaper's blog, remarking that 'someone needs to give the pope his meds' and opining that 'the pope is disgusting and sickening,' adding for good measure, 'Catholic is DISGUSTING.' Even more slurs and canards to be found on the Website, including 'I guess the Vatican is finally going public with its plot to control the world.' "
"Anti-Catholicism Makes Cartoon of New Yorker"
USCCB Media Blog (July 15, 2009) [emphasis mine]
The New Yorker isn't alone, in being none-too-securely attached to the real world. A post I wrote, in another blog, detailed breaks with reality in the self-described 'America's newspaper of record.' ("The New York Times, Insularity, and Assumptions," Another War-on-Terror Blog (October 21, 2008))

At the rate they're going, sooner or later the New Yorker will do an exposé on "The Black Pope and His Jesuit Ruling Priests of Baal." I'm not making that title up. (November 12, 2008)

I don't know that we should be too hard on the editors and staff of the New Yorker, though. Like the people at The New York Times, they're city folks - and don't get out of their little world all that much.

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I block a few of the more obvious dubious advertisers.

For example: psychic anything, numerology, mediums, and related practices are on the no-no list for Catholics. It has to do with the Church's stand on divination. I try to block those ads.

Sometime regrettable advertisements get through, anyway.

Bottom line? What that service displays reflects the local culture's norms, - not Catholic teaching.