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defenders of the faith

By Diogenes (bio - articles ) | Mar 15, 2006

In an op-ed in today's Globe, Boston College's theology department rallies to the defense of Catholic teaching with a well-reasoned demolition of the Human Rights Campaign's attack on the Church's adoption policy:

In psychology, "projection" occurs when someone attributes to others his own unpleasant beliefs or motivations. It is projection, for instance, when a liar assumes that everyone he deals with is dishonest, or when a man tempted by adultery accuses his spouse of planning to deceive him. Projection occurs in the public arena as well, as when supporters of racial preferences label "racist" those who believe the law

A fresh example of projection arrived the other day by way of a news release from the Human Rights Campaign, one of the nation's largest gay and lesbian political organizations.

On March 10, Catholic Charities of Boston had announced that it was being forced to shut down its highly regarded adoption services, since it could not in good conscience comply with the government's demand that it place children for adoption with homosexual couples. Caught between the rock of Catholic teaching, which regards such adoptions as "gravely immoral," and Massachusetts regulations, which bar adoption agencies from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation, the Boston Archdiocese had hoped to obtain a waiver on religious-freedom grounds. But when legislative leaders refused to consider the request, the archdiocese was left with no option but to end a ministry it had been performing for a century.

Whereupon the Human Rights Campaign issued its news release. It was headlined "Boston Catholic Charities Puts Ugly Political Agenda Before Child Welfare," and a more perfect illustration of psychological projection would be hard to imagine.

Sorry -- did I mention BC's theologians? My mistake. The author was Jeff Jacoby, the Globe's conservative Jewish columnist.

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  • Posted by: RC - Mar. 16, 2006 3:00 AM ET USA

    Well, Diogenes, are you going to give the dean of BC's law school credit for his op-ed yesterday? http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2006/03/14/state_putting_church_out_of_adoption_business/

  • Posted by: Pseudodionysius - Mar. 15, 2006 8:14 PM ET USA

    I resent that remark: many of us have simpering episcopates in our diocese.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 15, 2006 3:10 PM ET USA

    The main problem here, aside from the pathetic simps in Boston's hierarchy, is the fact that the Church cannot provide an alternative to so-called crisis pregnancies. Before it could help women through the situation and help place the children or at least care for them. Now what can it do? Put the child in an orphanage it can never leave? Outsource to more orthodox communities? Act as a referral center to other religious and secular orphanages who don't share our "moral hang-ups?"

  • Posted by: - Mar. 15, 2006 1:49 PM ET USA

    I knew it was too good to be true - but I kept hoping. More people outside the Catholic Church believe you have to believe a set of things to be Catholic than the members do. Is Mr. Jacoby available to be a catechist - we could use him.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 15, 2006 11:50 AM ET USA

    It's more irony and hypocrisy than projection, but the Church long ago lost all credibility when talking about saving children from grave evils. Look for a lengthy explanation cum apology from Cardinal O'Malley to follow shortly, along with the usual public prostrations. The only good I can see coming from this is the growing sense that people are getting fed up with homosexual intolerance.

  • Posted by: Vincit omnia amor - Mar. 15, 2006 11:32 AM ET USA

    ah, ha! no wonder it's sounds so Catholic!

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