Thursday, December 29, 2011

Are gay activists the new neo-nazis?

Some people seem to think so.

Unfortunately for 'them' they may be right.  On Christmas I watched The Sound of Music on television - again.  One of the characters in the film, a local man from Salzburg (Herr Zeller, the Gauleiter) who obviously sided with the Nazis and intended to force Captain Von Trapp to do so as well, interrupted a conversation during the party scene just before intermission.  He was rude and very brusque, spewing Nazi propaganda in an effort to refute, rebuke and silence the pro-Austrian conversation.  (The character acted like that throughout the film.) 

I must admit his behavior reminded me of how some 'gay activists' can respond to those who oppose legalizing same sex marriage and other hot button politicized issues wherein homosexuals demand not simply tolerance and acceptance, but societal approval.  More than one Catholic blogger refers to such activists as 'brownshirts' - inferring Nazi-like tactics - hence the title of my post.  Very often, the coercive comments I read from gay protesters on such blogs certainly lend credence to the theory.

Naturally that label is troubling to gay activists who sincerely believe they are fighting a civil rights war for equality, something liberal politicians and their minions seem to agree with.  Thus the Roman Catholic Church is more and more regarded as the enemy and real menace to society.  Especially since Cardinal George recently suggested the tactics employed by gay activists may be heading in a similar direction towards how the KKK tyrannized the Church in the early part of the 20th century.  "You don't want the gay liberation movement to morph into something like the Ku Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism," he said.   As usual, his words were taken out of context and sound more sinister than he intended - but that is how it goes in media when soundbites become the main story.

The Cardinal further defends his statement:
That dispute was resolved last week, but the cardinal’s KKK comparison – and his new explanation of those comments – have kept the controversy boiling.

“Organizers (of the pride parade) invited an obvious comparison to other groups who have historically attempted to stifle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church,” the cardinal said in a statement issued Tuesday. “One such organization is the Ku Klux Klan which, well into the 1940s, paraded through American cities not only to interfere with Catholic worship but also to demonstrate that Catholics stand outside of the American consensus. It is not a precedent anyone should want to emulate.” - Chicago Tribune

I definitely do agree with the Cardinal. 

Going forward.

The fight for gay rights is going to become more heated in 2012 - especially in Minnesota as we approach election time and the marriage amendment comes up for a vote.  I think I read someplace that in New Hampshire efforts are underway to repeal the law permitting same sex marriage.  These issues volley back and forth - as we've seen in California especially.  Likewise Republican presidential candidates have pledged to overturn the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell.   There are big issues and not so big issues.  I'm against same sex marriage and homosexual acts, but who serves in the military doesn't happen to be an issue for me. 

The problem for Catholics, as I see it, is the lack of clear, consistent teaching on the issue of homosexuality.  To be sure, the teaching is there and it is spelled out in no uncertain terms.  There are documents to prove it.  Nevertheless, in practical terms there is a lot of leeway given when it comes to observance. 

For instance, homosexual acts are sinful, but the orientation itself - though disordered (disorders are normal for fallen man) is not sinful.  "Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency toward an intrinsic moral evil; and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder." CDF Letter, no.3

It's getting to be like a witch hunt.

Therefore men with homosexual inclination who have renounced homosexual acts and have accepted Church teaching continue to identify as gay - hence they refer to themselves as "gay Catholics".  Likewise, so do their actively "gay Catholic" counterparts who do not accept Church teaching on sexuality and marriage, yet attempt to live as faithful Catholics, frequent the sacraments, maybe attend Dignity and adopt kids and send them to Catholic school.  Straight people are especially confused about this situation.  What to do?  I don't know - it seems to me ridiculous to have to go around constantly repeating, "I live a chaste life and accept Church teaching and I'm against gay marriage."

I found an interesting comment on a Fr. Z post about an openly gay ex-priest EMHC at a parish:
Speculae says:
There are a few issues here that are of concern. The first is of course the fact that this man is an ex-priest, as stated within Redemptionis Sacramentum, he should not be involved in any liturgical activity that may confuse the faithful as to his standing with regard to his priesthood.

The second is that he is an EMHC…and I just can’t abide them.

But the third is a concern for a wholly different reason. As to being “openly gay”… do you mean that he has simply said that he is a homosexual, or do you mean that he is actively homosexual. I get the impression from the comments here that the very fact of his being a homosexual is a problem in itself. If the Church is to reach out to active homosexuals we have to accept that that is what they are and support them in living a chaste life…this honesty is vital if we are to have authentic relationships with each other as members of the Body of Christ. We can’t teach that homosexuals must give up their sexual lives and then demand also that they pretend to be something that they are not once they come into the Church. We cannot claim that we offer the Truth and then once people accept it ask them to live a lie.

If by “openly gay” it is meant that he is having sexual relations with someone (or more), then of course there is a problem and he must not be allowed to function as an EMHC. - WDTPRS
It is a rather good comment, making needed distinctions - however, how does one know which type of 'openly gay' person is acting?  Why do we have to know?  Within that post and comments, people brought up the fact they have gay organists at church.  (My parish does too - how do I know?  I don't really, except he looks/dresses, walks/talks, like a girl.  Do I care?  No.  And I have no idea if he is active or not.)  In the recent past there have been news stories concerning openly gay organists and other church workers being fired from their positions.  I don't understand that.  Frequently in large city parishes, organists are hired help - just like a janitor - only with status.

"Labeling limits and disrespects people. "

But I digress.  I for one, as I've made clear numerous times, whole heartedly accept and embrace* what the Church teaches regarding identity:
"Today, the Church... refuses to consider the person as a "heterosexual "or a "homosexual," and insists that every person has a fundamental identity: the creature of God, and by grace, His child and heir to eternal life." CDF, no.16

The Church won't put a label on anyone. To say someone is "gay" or "lesbian" or a "homosexual" is to define a whole person by just one aspect. It can lock up a person's identity and block further emotional growth. That's just the sort of labeling which gives rise to prejudice and discrimination. The Church stands against any behavior it calls immoral, but always teaches support and respect for the person. Labeling limits and disrespects people. - Source
Nevertheless, there are other sources of confusion which can compromise acceptance of Church teaching, or at least call it into question.  This is seen most clearly in the prohibition of homosexuals from Holy Orders and/or the religious life.  It is technically forbidden, although if a candidate lives a chaste life for 3 years or so they seem to be able to be received.  I'm not saying that it is wrong or right, it is up to the competent authorities to make such decisions.  I hate to bring this aspect up, but it seems the most convenient one to point out what appears to be a double standard at least in principle. 

For instance, without naming names, I know there are prominent priests who are active in the Church who happen to have very gay pasts - and there are those who continue to identify as gay - at least semi-privately, and some - in this archdiocese - are pastors.  That is something I don't get.  They seem to  'cling' to that identity when in fact it is objectively disordered, although it seems to me it  would be better to "strive to lay aside every encumbrance of sin that clings to us."  [Hebrews 12: 1]  To be sure, I annoy many ssa people when I say such things.  I can't control what they think of me any more than I can control how they live.

That said - I'm not going to knock myself out campaigning for the marriage amendment.  I'll pray and let people know I'm not a believer in same sex marriage, and I'll vote to pass the amendment, but that is about it.  I'm not afraid to 'stand outside the American consensus' - that is where Christ is, as St. Paul tells us:  "Let us go to him outside the camp, bearing the insult he bore. For here we have no lasting city; we are seeking one which is to come." [Hebrews 13: 13-14]

Works for me.

*embrace:  It is one thing to accept Church teaching, to actually embrace it can take awhile for some people.  Everything is possible with God.  For those who can't accept Church teaching, I wish you well, I'm not your judge.


  1. Excellent post. The way I see it, it's not my job to change my orientation (if that were even possible). That's the job of the Holy Spirit. MY job is to be open to His grace and Will and if He effects changes within my soul and psyche, praise God! If He wills that I should suffer still longer and not withdraw the thorn, praise God! I'm so thankful for the Church and Her teaching on this. It has taken years to just even *start* understanding Her teaching, but through God's gift of Understanding (which I think is only given and possible if one is willing to admit that they might be wrong and Jesus' Church is right) and faithful prayer, chastity is possible. This is true for any virtue. I want to be a Saint. It won't happen following my base urges and those that approve of them.

  2. It was a stupid, hurtful thing to say, and the comparison is not apt. I'm glad he clarified, but he didn't by much. I expect more from Cardinal George.

  3. It's really sad that a religion has to resort to calling those who campaign for equality and diversity to Nazis, who were of course for the opposite of equality and diversity.

    BTW, Fascist movements in 20th Century Europe were very much Roman Catholic movements, from Spain to Portugal to Austria to Italy. Hitler even died as a Catholic in good standing, and his birthday was celebrated from the pulpit in Catholic churches across Germany until the very end. You can't deny this, nor can you deny the RCC's complicit role in anti-semitism over the centuries from the Spanish Inquisition to the Crusades to passion plays.

  4. Not to mention this post is incredibly insulting to all the LGBT people who died in the gas chambers of the holocaust. They were persecuted along with the Jews, you know.

  5. I think it's insulting to the Brown Shirts who were gay.

  6. Reality Check - if you had read more Catholic blogs than this one, you would know the Nazi reference is hyperbole, although it does indeed relate to the Nazi Brownshirts idea and their tactics. The Brownshirts had a reputation for being gay - remember the Night of the Longknives? Of course you don't.

    You also do not know that I am speaking to an issue other bloggers who frequent this site would know about - as it concerns a term Mark Shea may have originated and other bloggers have noted and commented upon as regards the harrassment they receive whenever discussing Church teaching regarding people with SSA.

    That said, this post is not at all insulting to gay people who died during the holocaust.

  7. DB: I like what you wrote:

    "The way I see it, it's not my job to change my orientation (if that were even possible). That's the job of the Holy Spirit."

  8. Reality Check - Read this:

    and follow the links in the post.

    If you don't know how to do it - copy and paste the address into your browser and you can read it.

  9. Commenter at 2:59 - You said:

    "BTW, Fascist movements in 20th Century Europe were very much Roman Catholic movements, from Spain to Portugal to Austria to Italy. Hitler even died as a Catholic in good standing, and his birthday was celebrated from the pulpit in Catholic churches across Germany until the very end. You can't deny this, nor can you deny the RCC's complicit role in anti-semitism over the centuries from the Spanish Inquisition to the Crusades to passion plays."

    You are nuts.

  10. @Terry

    The poster was me for some reason my handle got garbled.

    Was Hitler ever excommunicated, or not? Didn't Franco have the full-throated support of the Catholic Church in Spain? Can't the same be said for the Fascists in Croatia?

    And didn't the Catholic Church teach for centuries that Jews were responsible for killing Jesus?

  11. RC - lack if excommunication means nothing. Hitler was not going around claiming to be Catholic. In any event, he probably automatically excommunicated himself at some point. The man clearly hated Christianity, and especially the Catholic Church. That is evident in his writings, and in laws from Nazi Germany restricting the influence of the Church, especially on children.

    As for the others, please make an attempt at understanding what fascism was, what the alternatives existing at the time were, and what was going on in this countries. The most important thing to remember is that Naziism is not tge sane as fascism. Fascism need not be racist, and certainly not anti-Semitic (Mussolini pissed off Hitler because he wouldn't hand over the Jews). And while it is true that the Church was involved in the fascist regimes of Austria, Spain, and Portugal, the Italian fascists were outright hostile to the Church. As far as the Croatian Ustashe are concerned, you need to make a distinction between the stupid acts of local bishops and clergy and the position of the universal Church. Many high-ranking clergy became Protestant in the 1500s, does that make the Church Protestant?

    And besides, what exactly is it about the Franco regime and the others that was so bad? I'm not saying they were good - I'm just trying to avoid the tautology "they were bad because they were fascists".

    As for the gays killed in the Holocaust - I'd like to see the numbers. This was not a genocide on the sce of what was done to the Jews. And there were also thousands of Catholic priests an religious killed. Some have been canonized saints.

    Pius XI wrote and encyclical condemning Naziism in tge 1930s. Only history hacks can even make such a dumb assertion as Hitler was a Catholic in good standing, or the canard that Pius XII helped him, based on one distorted book by one idiot.

  12. That encyclical remains the only one written in any language but Latin.
    It was written in GERMAN and expressly ordered to be read from every pulpit in a Catholic Church.

  13. The only man to ever die in a holocaust was Jesus Christ.

    We must storm Heaven with our prayers on behalf of those that do not know, love, or serve God.

    The Third Reich had Jews in positions of authority within it.

    The Third Reich killed many people because they were Jews.

    The Third Reich had many homosexuals within it.

    The Third Reich killed many people because they were homosexual.

    That's how the Devil operates.


  14. Thanks Mercury - you are my resident historian.

  15. Pablo - I don't know what you mean by "Jews in high places" - I think that's pushing it.

    Anyway, the number of homosexuals killed in the holocaust was about 15,000. Now, killing 15,000 people is always evil, but compared to the numbers of other social groups the Nazis didn't like, it's relatively "normal", even "small". Probably other "anti-socials" like shoplifters, vagabonds, homeless people, etc. suffered the same fate in about the same numbers. The mentally retarded were far more likely to be killed than homosexuals.

    In any event, if that's the game you want to play, Christian clergy, especially Catholics and Orthodox, were a major target of the Nazis - thousands were killed, and they were systematically targeted all over Eastern Europe and the Netherlands.

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  17. αντίΧριστός8:29 PM

    You're a christian. The Bible says christians will be persecuted, mocked and ridiculed. That's what you chose when you became a christian. That's what you get for your choice.

    Don't want to be persecuted? Don't be a christian!


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