Defending The Catholic Faith, But Not The Pope. A Conversation With Mary The Catholic Graduate Student

Mary is a Catholic friend of mine. She was recently a graduate student in theology at a prestigious Catholic school. Previously we debated the Church’s attempt to have its schools and charities be exempted from laws requiring that they provide health plans that cover contraception. That was a vigorous three part debate: “Should Catholic Employers [Read More...]

Catholic Icons For Super Heroes?

I enjoy super heroes on a mythic level, so in principle I was open to this idea and thought it an interesting prospect. But Igor Scalisi Palminteri’s art presenting super heroes in Catholic hagiographic poses and dress highlights that it is not only the distinctively Christian imagery I like so much in normal Catholic iconography, it’s the [Read More...]

CNN's Credulous Reporting on Catholicism

I’m watching CNN right now and cannot believe how thoroughly this report dispenses with all standards of journalistic evidence and detachment in presenting dubious miracle claims as straight facts with reasonable, undisputed evidence behind them. The first part of the report, which I wish I could find but CNN hasn’t seemed to put anywhere online [Read More...]

Colbert Takes On His Church's Demands For Exemptions From Health Care Law

The Colbert Report Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,Video Archive Colbert’s remark about Bishop Bucks struck me as eerily like a comment on Camels With Hammers from someone named Lyra the week before: [Read more...]

The Vagina Ideologues

It was nice to see Jon Stewart finally have a chance to weigh in on last week’s absurd push from the Catholic Church to win the exemption from the law requiring employers to provide health insurance that covers contraception: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Get More: Daily Show Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,The [Read More...]

The Catholic Church Wants Women Pregnant Against Their Wills

Before this week, I never thought particularly hard about the way the Catholic Church wants to enforce its policies against contraception. I think my default assumption was that they wanted Catholics to assent to such policies freely and without coercion, as matters of shared belief and conscience. The thought actually never crossed my mind that [Read More...]

Religious Privilege and Grievance-Based Catholic Identity Politics on Full Display

In a column last week, Melinda Henneberger criticized the Obama administration’s refusal to exempt the Catholic Church from requirements it provide for its employees health insurance which would cover birth control at organizations it runs which have secular functions. The column is an extraordinary exemplification of religious entitlement, identity politics, and anti-secular, anti-democratic demands for [Read More...]

"What Are The Limits of Church Authority In the Public Sphere?"

This is part 2 of a debate with Roman Catholic theology graduate student named Mary. In part 1, we introduced and began to debate the topic of whether or not universities, hospitals, and social agencies run by the Catholic Church should be exempted from laws requiring employers to provide their employees health insurance that covers [Read More...]

"Should Catholic Employers Be Exempted From Paying For Health Insurance Covering Contraception?"

If you were reading Camels With Hammers regularly before we made the move to Freethought Blogs, you would have frequently been treated to the long, insightful, and vigorously argued comments of my friend Mary. Mary is a Roman Catholic and is politically liberal in many (but not all) respects. We met when I was a [Read More...]


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