In response to a complaint by the Catholic League, eBay, the most famous Internet auction site, has withdrawn an offensive item from its marketplace. On September 20, the Catholic League learned that eBay had listed a “Virgin Mary Immaculate Conception Condom” on its website. On the condom is a picture of the Virgin Mary holding baby Jesus; the tagline reads, “If you conceive, its [sic] a miracle.” On the back of the condom is a picture of Pope John Paul II. “It also includes inside the flap,” says the description of the condom, “instructios [sic] on how to put on the condom (drawings!) showing a certain someone on a cross with a woody and a glove….”
Catholic League president William Donohue commented on eBay’s decision to withdraw the offensive item today:
“The Catholic League commends eBay for acting so quickly and so responsibly. There are literally thousands of items on the eBay website, making it difficult to screen every item posted for auction. That is what our director of communications, Patrick Scully, was told yesterday by an eBay official, and we believe him.
“We know that eBay has a record of withdrawing items that are racist and anti-Semitic. This explains why we sought parity and asked that the ‘Virgin Mary Immaculate Conception Condom’ be removed. We are pleased that eBay treated us so fairly.
“That someone would produce and sell an item like this shows how sick some people are. Just as disturbing is the fact that some other sicko had already offered $8 for it. He, in turn, was outbid by another madman who offered $11.50. But now the Catholic League has spoiled all their fun. We await charges that we are engaged in an Inquisition.”