Monday, April 9, 2007

LA Times, Cardinal Mahoney, and the Catholic League

The Catholic News Agency is reporting on the response of Bill Donahue to the LA Times' criticism of Cardinal Mahony.

The Cardinal-Archbishop of Los Angeles recently spoke out against proposed legislation that would allow doctor-assisted suicide in the state of California. He also criticized Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, a Catholic, for supporting the bill.

Los Angeles Times writer George Skelton criticized the Cardinal in his April 5 column. In it, he referred to the Catholic Church as “looking like an ugly old political attack dog.” He also accused the Cardinal of violating the American separation of church and state and called for “a bill to reexamine the tax-exempt status of church property.” ...

He noted how an editorial in the Los Angeles Times on March 2, 2006, commended Cardinal Mahony for “reinforcing the right of religious leaders to speak out on the moral ramifications of political issues.” The issue that Cardinal Mahony addressed then was immigration.

“So how can it logically be that Cardinal Mahony is now all of a sudden violating the Constitution when he addresses doctor-assisted suicide?” Donohue wondered.

How indeed? That the same writer would compliment religious leaders speaking out on moral issues when they agree, but would happily invoke the separation of Church and State when they disagree is indicative of the political nature of such newspapers.

And I can say that the difference might be that Cardinal Mahony called out a Catholic politician by name this time. This is not, however, what separation of Church and State entails, and also should not be surprising, as Sacramentum Caritas calls for Eucharistic Consistency in public office. It is surprising, though, and refreshing that the Cardinal is willing to say this.

I applaud him and his office. I hope he can keep up the good fight.


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