Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

The gay intimidation campaign reaches toward the Pope

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Dec 17, 2012

In his annual message for the World Day of Peace—a statement of nearly 3,600 words—Pope Benedict XVI devotes one sentence to the campaign to redefine marriage. And what happens? Thousands of headlines announce that the Pope has condemned same-sex marriage as a threat to world peace.

This spectacular over-reaction to a tangential remark is, as the director of the Vatican press office observed, “lacking in decent composure and sense of proportion: it consists in shouting, not in reasoning; it is intended to intimidate those who want to support this view freely in the public arena.”

All too true. But here’s another factor. By focusing obsessively on the issue of same-sex marriage, the mass media obscured the remainder of the papal message. People who might have profited from the Pope’s insights have heard nothing about what he wrote, apart from that one sentence. The main thrust of the message is nearly lost.

Just last week, as the controversy over the papal message began, Roger Scruton wrote in the London Times about the singular success that gay activists have achieved in demonizing their opponents:

If we ask ourselves how it is that the advocacy of gay marriage has become an orthodoxy to which all our political leaders subscribe, we must surely acknowledge that intimidation has some part to play in the matter. Express the slightest hesitation on this score and someone will accuse you of “homophobia”, while others will organise to ensure that, even if nothing else is known about your views, this at least will be notorious.

Isn’t that precisely what has happened to the Pope’s message? A few months ago Ross Douthat commented on the same phenomenon in the New York Times. The gay-rights movement has advanced because of changes in public opinion, he conceded.

But it has also advanced, and will probably continue to advance, through social pressure, ideological enforcement, and legal restriction. Indeed, the very language of the movement is explicitly designed to exert this kind of pressure: By redefining yesterday’s consensus view of marriage as “bigotry,” and expanding the term “homophobia” to cover support for that older consensus as well as personal discomfort with/animus toward gays.

Douthat linked to stories about the gay-activist web site that advertised the names and addresses of California residents who signed a petition to stop same-sex marriage, thus making them candidates for reprisals; the successful campaign to close down Catholic adoption agencies in Illinois because they would not cater to same-sex couples; and, most ominously, the attempt to ruin the academic career of Mark Regnerus, a sociologist who dared to question the studies that have been used to claim that children flourish in homosexual households.

Regnerus has survived the fraudulent attempt to censure him for “scholarly misconduct.” But his standing in the academic world has unquestionably been damaged—only a brave conference organizer would invite him to deliver a paper on any topic today—and younger scholars who might be considering research on homosexuality have seen what could happen to them if they go ahead with their plans.

And now the campaign of intimidation has reached the Pope. The next time the Holy Father prepares a statement, and uses the argument on same-sex marriage to illustrate a point, Vatican officials will read the draft and ask him: “Your Holiness, do you really need to include this sentence? Do you want to run the risk that no one will ever notice the rest of the statement?” Even if that argument for caution is ultimately rejected, the fact that it will be raised—as surely it will—illustrates how successful gay activists have been in restricting public discussion.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our August expenses ($15,080 to go):
$35,000.00 $19,919.98
43% 57%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: meor2day8658 - Dec. 29, 2012 8:24 AM ET USA

    To many of us have let the homosexual agenda hold us hostage. We can not cower in fear that there will be verbal bullying & demonizing towards those who oppose their dark agenda. We have God's Truth, they do not. Would the apostles have edited a line out of their evangelizing for fear of offending someone?

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

An Appointment that Francis Should Withdraw 14 hours ago
A new approach to Vatican appointments? 16 hours ago
The rising, dangerous influence of 'transgender' ideology August 27
Does the EU flag evoke the patronage of the Virgin Mary? August 27
The diocese as corporate sponsor August 27

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
‘A real via crucis’: Pope Francis, patriarch plead on behalf of Iraq’s Christians CWN - August 8
Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Christians in flight as Islamic State advances CWN - August 8