Dear Gordon Gee

Dear Gordon Gee,

I understand you are still under fire for referring to Catholics as “those damn Catholics.” The Huffington Post, in particular, is indignant that you did not apologize sooner. The Huffington Post is, of course, full of shit, and thus, in contrast to that constantly feigned indignation which exists for the sole purpose of garnering pageviews, I would like to extend my whole-hearted gratitude for your reference to Catholics as “those damn Catholics.”

I live in a world — and you have the misfortune of doing the same — that insults and abuses religion with kindness. The press — bless them — is consistently about the task of subsuming Catholicism into a sphere where the only homage due to its beautiful bulk is a vague and vapid politeness. The religious must be called the right names, referred to in unoffensive tones, and treated with all the dignity of an over-sensitive middle-schooler with trumped-up body-image issues and an affinity for running to the teacher with the alarm-bell whine of “he called me a name.” The irony here is unbearable, for the same Huffington Post that so lovingly defends Catholicism in regards to name-calling simultaneously promotes her substantial destruction by advocating for government policies that would force Catholics in the pharmaceutical and medical sphere to disobey the edicts of their conscience and the Church who is their salvation.

News is never news. It arrives already whored out to a particular ideology. The Catholic Church is defended insofar as it is viewed in the ideological manner of the news station. In the case of The Huffington Post, it is to be defended insofar as it represents a part of a pluralistic society, as an object of acceptance and tolerance. As a religion making absolute, ethical demands on the human person, it is to be destroyed. In the case of conservative media, the objects of defense and the destruction are shifted, but the principle remains the same. As goes the news, so goes our culture. Religion is rarely confronted, rarely even rejected, so busy are we subsuming it into pre-existing ideological schemata.

You said “those damn Catholics,” and I thought it was hilarious. By well-worded opposition, your restored my Church to the only place that matters, that of a sign that shall be contradicted, an offense and an indecency. The response demanded by the Church is neither politeness nor respect but an infinite decision of either/or — conversion or rejection. The Church is either damned or divine, but she sure as hell is neither respectable, tolerable, nor part-of-a-diverse-pluralistic-society-in-which-we-should-all-just-get-along. I laughed at your remark because I was ennobled by your remark, reminded of my infinite separateness from this godawful, abysmal excuse for a culture. I’m under no illusions that you have any fondness for the Catholic Church, but nevertheless, your insult sounded an awful lot like love, their compliments a terrible lot like hate.

I hope your retirement goes swimmingly, and with all due respect — you twice-damned Mormon — I refuse your apology.

Yours Truly.

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  • Edward Carlin

    Hilarious! I love it.

  • Halcyon

    Reminds me of what Dorothy Sayers said:

    “Let us, in heaven’s name, drag out the divine drama from under the
    dreadful accumulation of slipshod thinking and trashy sentiment heaped
    upon it, and set it on an open stage to startle the world into some sort
    of vigorous reaction.”

    We are meant to be a great and stern rebuke to the world, especially the madness of the modern world. If the world treats us with kid-gloves it’s because they think we have (or ought to have) no strong meat about us.

  • Gloria Laudes

    Marc, with a talent of this caliber, you are a young man going places. (I’m “old” and therefore have the right to call you “young.”) Brilliant stuff.

    • Barfly_Kokhba

      She’s right, Marc. I’m also older than you, and I know from personal experience that you will be offered many pleasant, all-expenses-paid, guided tours of All the Kingdoms of the World as your writing career advances. For your service to God, of course.

      And may the Almighty help you if you say no.

  • Artur Sebastian Rosman

    I had some similar thoughts about the proud place of Catholicism in the long history of American prejudice. In retrospect it seems the article by Jenkins I attached to the post was probably playing too much within the American game with the strategy it proposed.

    Feel free to take a look:

    • GoodCatholicGirl

      While I agree that Catholics do have to listen to a good deal of hate speech from the media, I don’t think we are the only religious group that is maligned. People seem to think it’s OK to bash Islam, as if “Muslim” is another way to say “terrorist”. If you’re going to bash any religion, bash Satanism!

      • Artur Sebastian Rosman

        While I acknowledge your observation I want to concentrate upon anti-Catholic sentiment. There’s something wrong with a situation where the topic is always changed to what other groups are undergoing. Why can’t we discuss anti-Catholicism on its own? Is there some sort of taboo against it?

  • Mr. Kruse

    Yes! One can easily identify that this post-modernist approach to religion (its good insofar as it reaffirms my views, is inoffensive, and largely impotent) is very often applied to Jesus. He’s good when he’s a wise sandle-wearing hippy that taught people that we should all just love each other and vile when he’s the demanding authority figure who established an organized religion. He’s great in Mark 12:31, but rejected in Matthew 10:34. I often get frustrated with people today that feel they can bend Christ into a guy that would never challenge them. He is either the eternal Son of God who established His church on Earth in absolute truth OOOOOOOOR he’s a fraud that should be despised for his lies and deceit! As you point out, His bride is no different.

  • Paul Hughes

    Cf. The Ball and The Cross, by GK Chesterton

    • evan macian

      “Sir,” he said, “talk about the principle of love as much as you like. You seem to me colder than a lump of stone; but I am willing to believe that you may at some time have loved a cat, or a dog, or a child. When you were a baby, I suppose you loved your mother. Talk about love, then, till the world is sick of the word. But don’t you talk about Christianity. Don’t you dare to say one word, white or black, about it. Christianity is, as far as you are concerned, a horrible mystery. Keep clear of it, keep silent upon it, as you would upon an abomination. It is a thing that has made men slay and torture each other; and you will never know why. It is a thing that has made men do evil that good might come; and you will never understand the evil, let alone the good. Christianity is a thing that could only make you vomit, till you are other than you are. I would not justify it to you even if I could. Hate it, in God’s name, as Turnbull does, who is a man. It is a monstrous thing, for which men die. And if you will stand here and talk about love for another ten minutes it is very probable that you will see a man die for it.”

    • shackra sislock

      I really will love to read Chesterton in spanish! :’)

  • Walker Greene

    Celibate child rapers…that’s a sign of contradiction.

    • fuckwalkergreene

      I’m not Catholic, but you’re a fucking idiot.

      • John (not McCain)

        And you are a pedophile enabler.

    • Ron Van Wegen

      ‘Celibate’ means ‘not married’.
      I think what you meant to say was,
      “‘Continent’ (or perhaps ‘chaste’) child rapers…that’s a sign of contradiction.”
      However, what you said was still bigoted, mean and plain nasty.
      You’re welcome!

    • James H, London

      Proof, or you’re an arsehole.

      • J. Bauer

        Why don’t we have a rational discussion including the rates or numbers (if you will) of “child rapers” among the protestant clergy, or the Jewish, or for that matter, married men in general. Not that this is in any way an excuse, but you will find that they are lower among the Catholic clergy. This is a sickness particular to our time in western culture, because our “culture” if one can even call it that, has bee utterly polluted. When we will finally turn our attention to the “polluters” of our society and truly return to Christ, then we will see some change. For now, the hypocrisy of feigning concern for “the children” out of one side of our mouth, while a wholesale slaughter of “the children” goes on under our noses will surely be our undoing.

        • David Simon

          You’re missing the point: the tragedy is the rape, but the scandal is that the rapists were systematically sheltered. The relative percentages of rapists, while interesting data in their own right, are not the source of the outrage.

          • JoFro

            You should hear about the public education system and the way it systematically shelters molesters!

          • David Simon

            Are you seriously trying the “But everyone else does it” defense? What makes you think I don’t also condemn other instances of rape collusion?

            And if you want to talk about “the public education system”, please give some specifics. Otherwise I’m left guessing what country you’re even talking about.

  • Isabella Rose

    Some really interesting points. Yes, it is tiresome to be treated like people truly care, only to find out that inside they are secretly frothing at the mouth just to destroy everything you hold dear.

    It is better to know where people stand, than to be left guessing. I have experienced that enough in my own life with “nice” people who lead you to believe they are on your side, only to find out the truth in the end.

    God bless you!

  • Tony

    Well said Marc, I agree. I was just thinking the same line of thought the other day with the oh-so-intellectual question that modern ‘christians’ ask when they say “Are Catholics Christian?” Indeed, it shouldnt be offensive, but rather we should kind of embrace it knowing that we’re miles apart from their nonsense.

  • Sam

    oh good, I’m glad I’m not the only to laugh when he said that- and that last line is golden

  • Dixie Grit

    Love this.

  • Clare

    “Who would not prefer to be lustily damned than to be halfheartedly blessed?” -E. J. Pratt

  • Ron Turner

    The SEC still stands for Surely Everlasting Corruption.

  • The Other Weirdo

    I miss the days when the Catholic Church was truly relevant, when it burnt witches, exorcised demons, launched world-wide crusades, forced girls to slave in laundries and stole Jewish children. Today, it seems a shadow of its former self, limited as it is these days to sheltering child abusers, passive-aggressively killing women and whining about government medicare regulations while simultaneously receiving massive tax breaks, ignoring Christ’s commanded to render unto Caeser and letting dried up old men dictate to the world how, when and with whom the world is to have sex with.

    • asa2222

      Sounds like you just finished your first Richard Dawkins book. How does it feel to know everything about everything?

      • The Other Weirdo

        Makes me feel great. In fact, it makes me feel like a Christian who claims to know everything about the universe because he read an opinion piece in a 2000+ year old book written by people so ignorant they thought wizards actually existed.

        • asa2222

          Do Christians claim to know everything about the universe? I thought that was scientists.

          • The Other Weirdo

            Bad religious people: “I am so blessed.” “God smote Haiti because of… (random reason here)” “Jesus died for your sins and if you refuse to believe y’all gonna burn in hell.” “The world is 6000 years old.” “The world will end on the following date.” “God cares about condom use in Africa.”

            Good religious people: “No man knows the day or the hour.”

            Bad scientists: “Everything that can be invented has been invented.”

            Good scientists: “Hmm, well, I don’t how that works, but let’s try and find out.”

          • David Simon

            Yeah, you show those darn physicists and their rigorously careful exploration of nature! Far better to claim revelation from ancient myths and dreams.

          • William

            Yep, because physicists cannot be religious…

          • David Simon

            Sure they can, but the good ones leave it out of their work. Some physicists will of course pay lip service to their religion, but only after using the same naturalistic methods as everybody else to actually get results.

    • Vision_From_Afar

      :quietly files that one away for future use:

  • carmen

    DAMN that was fcking win

  • Ron Turner

    Please don’t feed the troll.

  • Angela

    I’m beaming and trying not to laugh out loud in this coffee shop. Well done, sir, well done.

  • Pofarmer

    “reminded of my infinite separateness from this godawful, abysmal excuse for a culture.”

    Might I entreat you to then leave it?

    • JoFro

      We get genocides in Darfur because Catholics are smug about not being part of the current culture? Wow!

      • Pofarmer

        No, because they are so self assured they are better than everybody else and hold the “real truth.”

  • emd04

    Sounds good to me. :)

  • Divvy2012

    This article is a thing of beauty. Yes. Just – yes.