Oh how ridiculous! Getting a lecture on the Catholic Church from Maureen Dowd is a recipe for misrepresentation. She even managed to leave out the Inquisition and the Crusades - probably edited for length.
Would be different if she actually went out and talked to the people involved and reported some facts instead of casting all the stereotypes interspersed with a few quotes from people already in opposition to the church.
Didn’t the article state she is a product of Catholic school?
I have to agree. This op-ed piece doesn’t present any new information and indulges some rather shallow generalizations. Its far from Dowd’s best work, and it really isn’t news.
Here is Fr Z’s take on Ms Dowd’s screed.
Shortly after she won her Pulitzer, the free weekly alternative paper, New York Press printed an article that analyzed Dowd’s columns and concluded that Dowd appears to do little reporting and tends to “dumb down” her subject matter by viewing it through the lens of pop culture. A 2002 article in The Weekly Standard, explored Dowd’s alleged narcissism and tendency to reduce “political phenomena … to caricatures of the personalities involved.”
In 2003, Dowd was accused by James Taranto, of the Wall Street Journal, of being intentionally misleading—inserting ellipses, for instance, to change a quotation’s intended meaning. This resulted in a new common word “dowdification” to accurately quote but only enough to change the original meaning of the statement.
Let’s all heaad over to the NY Times to comment on Ms Dowd’s article – or you can just hit the “recommend” button on the comments you agree with.
Maureen Dowd has a winner, this week’s most emailed opinion column from the NY Times, her attack on the Catholic Church called “The Nuns’ Story.”
*In 2004, the cardinal who would become Pope Benedict XVI wrote a Vatican document urging women to be submissive partners, resisting any adversarial roles with men and cultivating “feminine values” like “listening, welcoming, humility, faithfulness, praise and waiting.
Nuns need to be even more sepia-toned for the über-conservative pope, who was christened “God’s Rottweiler” for his enforcement of orthodoxy. Once a conscripted member of the Hitler Youth, Benedict pardoned a schismatic bishop who claimed that there was no Nazi gas chamber. He also argued on a trip to Africa that distributing condoms could make the AIDS crisis worse.*
At another point in the article she takes another shot at the Church over condom distribution: “Maybe the church shouldn’t be so obdurate on condoms.”
There are so many things wrong with the article I can only choose two to respond to. The first relates to the Pope’s comments on condoms and AIDS that Dwight G. Duncan, a professor at Southern New England School Of Law, addressed in column titled Piling On The Pope.
The second is reading selections from *The Vindication of Humanae Vitae *by Mary Eberstadt – which if you never read on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of Pope Paul VI’s encyclical you should review. Together the two pieces more than refute the musings of the divine Miss Dowd.
Problem is that even Sean Hannity who describes himself to viewers as a “good” and “devout” Catholic – one who happens to believe, as he has also said on the air, that “contraception is good.”
So while the encyclical has been thoroughly vindicated, Catholics can’t seem to get the message. Good luck trying to comment on or refute this week’s most emailed opinion column from the NY Times IF YOU DON’T KNOW THIS EITHER…Feel free to copy and paste the stuff you liked – there is a lot of it…I’m sure Maureen will love it.
You can find it all here:
Good reading and God Bless
An excellent piece on Dowd’s article in America (yes, the Jesuit magazine)
A few choice bits:
Oh, of course, misogyny must be the reason for these investigations, not the aforementioned “dwindling” numbers. Nor does she note that there have been apostolic visitations of conservative women’s religious orders as well, most famously, the 2000 visitation of Mother Angelica’s order. Nor does she note that there was a similar visitation of seminaries just a couple of years ago. But, why seek the complicated truth when misogyny is so close at hand and it explains so much.
Dowd sees anti-female bias at work everywhere, especially on the subject of the ordination of women.
Ms. Dowd suffers from the misperception that the Church has said it won’t ordain women. That would indeed be an objectionable claim, and one with a prima facie suspicion of misogyny. But, the Church does not say it won’t ordain women; it says it can’t ordain women. The idea that something can’t be done is foreign to liberated, early twenty-first century Americans.
I have long been puzzled by the fact that the Times gives such prominence to Ms. Dowd. Her columns almost always have the snide, “I know more than you,” parochialism that haunts Manhattan alongside an astonishing ignorance. She called me once about a Catholic question, not to verify anything in her column which clearly is not fact-checked very well but about her boyfriend’s television drama. She spoke with that excessive familiarity that famous people sometimes use with the rest of us, as if her fame was such that she would not dream of thinking it was not a high honor to be speaking with her on the phone, and that such an honor as she was bestowing warranted her speaking to me as I would only with a familiar. It was creepy. And, so was her column yesterday. It is not that she is wrong, it is that she is so contentedly wrong, so confident in her ignorance, so comprehensively prejudiced against the Church. Why doesn’t she just become a Protestant and have done with it? If you heard her rant on the street, you would give her a dollar and hope she doesn’t spend it on booze. Reading her rant in the Times, you can just flip the page.
Those are choice! Thanks for sharing. I have prompty updated my post on Dowd.
i stand by Pope Benedict XVI.