CATHOLICS, MUSLIMS AND JEWS: DISPARATE TREATMENT ON INTERNAL MATTERS
Catalyst November Issue 2005
There is a vast difference between the way our society treats the internal matters of the Catholic Church and the way it treats other religions.
For example, what were once regarded as internal matters for Catholics to resolve are now being treated as public matters. So it is that everyone, regardless of religious affiliation, is now opining on the wisdom of celibacy and gays in the priesthood. Such gossip can be read in newspaper editorials and opinion pieces in magazines; it can also be heard on talk radio and TV. But when it comes to other religions, especially Muslims and Jews, a different rule applies.
For example, Ramadan began October 4, yet no survey was taken asking John Q. Public whether he approved of the Ramadan practice of abstaining from sex during daylight. Moreover, there were no talking heads on TV or radio who ridiculed Muslims for their “sexual hang-ups.”
Two Jewish holidays were observed in October as well. Yet there were no op-eds, and no roundtable discussions questioning the rationality of celebrating Rosh Hashanah or the rituals attendant to Yom Kippur.
Recently, the New York City Fire Department hired its second Muslim chaplain. The imam, Intikab Habib, does not believe that Muslim men bombed the Twin Towers; he thinks it was a conspiracy. Those firefighters who learned about this travesty and complained to their superiors were initially rebuffed on the grounds that this was a Muslim issue. Fortunately, when the public became aware of this incredible hire, the imam was forced to resign. This was never really just a Muslim issue, though there were some city authorities who tried to cast it that way.
Last year, an Orthodox rabbi in New York, performing a religious ritual, sucked the blood from the penis of three baby boys after they were circumcised. In doing so, he transmitted herpes to all of them, and one of them died. Initially sued by city authorities, the lawsuit was recently withdrawn and the Department of Health announced it will not make its medical investigation public. This is considered a Jewish issue.
Commenting on the disparate treatment afforded the three religions, Bill Donohue told the press, “It’s time Catholics told the meddlers to mind their own business.”