the sound of clashing clichés

By Diogenes (articles ) | Mar 02, 2004

Having raised the subject of contemporary cinema, Fox New's Chris Wallace asked USCCB President Bishop Wilton Gregory about ... what else? Here is Gregory's reply:

The Catholic Church has worked very, very hard, especially under the pontificate of Pope John Paul II, to make sure that we do not fall victims to anti-Semitism.

Whoops, wrong piece of anodyne episcopal boilerplate! In the conventional terms of discourse, at least, the Semites who are gassed and burned because of their race are the victims of anti-Semitism, and the folks who visit these evils upon them are its perpetrators. Or are we to imagine that anti-Semites themselves are "victims" of the bigotries they embrace, such that the Jews interned at Treblinka were the victims of victims of anti-Semitism? Or does Gregory mean what he actually says, viz., that the Pope is taking precautions to make sure Catholics aren't swept up by mistake in a forthcoming pogrom?

So if there is the hint of anti-Semitism within the movie -- and I don't know because I haven't seen it -- it certainly runs counter to what we as Catholics believe should be our position in the public arena.

Our position in the public arena?

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  • Posted by: - Mar. 08, 2004 1:56 PM ET USA

    The Catholic position in the public Roman arenas was to be fed to the Lions' of the Empire.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 02, 2004 1:25 PM ET USA

    What a hilarious quote! Every once in a while the mask slips, and we get a glimpse of the face underneath without makeup. Liberals, not just liberal bishops, habitually present themselves as being "victims" of their own bad behavior. One thinks of Bill Clinton.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 02, 2004 12:12 PM ET USA

    I hate to be uncharitable, but has anyone else noticed the disturbing prescence of Democratic intimates of the Clintonistas everytime Wilton "work with me here" Gregory convenes a Commission on the Status of Hanging Chads -- Panetta, Bennett? I'm shocked, simply shocked, that they didn't bring in Ken Starr to help them out.

  • Posted by: Fr. William - Mar. 02, 2004 11:56 AM ET USA

    Bp. Gregory, please come Home. Thank God, some bishops support "The Passioin of the Christ," (e.g. Morlino, Chaput). The movie has no anti-Semitism. Many Jews in the movie, including Pharisees, cried out for Jesus... crying along the Way of the Cross, for Jesus. Simon, a hero in the movie, is a Jew. Mary is a Jew. Peter, a Jew. Jesus, a Jew. The film is a great Catholic pictorial meditation on the Passion of Jesus Christ. The film is deeply Eucharisitic and Marian. Thanks, Mel Gibson.

  • Posted by: extremeCatholic - Mar. 02, 2004 10:31 AM ET USA

    That's what you get from being a politician wanna -be rather than a Jesus-focused evangelist. Why do these bishops leave the heavy lifting to Mel Gibson, James Dobson, Jerry Falwell, etc?