Catholic League president Bill Donohue discusses what happened last night on “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell,” the new MSNBC show:
Larry O’Donnell took some legitimate jabs at Republican candidates in this fall’s election, citing them for making what he labeled as “stupid comparisons” between being gay and being an alcoholic or obese. Bill Maher agreed, but couldn’t help but take the opportunity to once again attack homosexual priests, painting them all as molesters.
In an apparent Freudian slip, Maher said “we really can’t resist [talking about gays in the Catholic Church] if it’s all around us.” He should have personalized it: he can’t talk about gays without talking about priests. “You know,” he continued, “that’s how the Catholic Church talks about it. You know, ‘our priests are not sinning, they’re just giving into temptation when they’re molesting children and going gay and stuff like that.'”
Maher is correct to imply that most of the molesting priests have been homosexuals: eight in ten have been. But he is wrong to imply that most gay priests have been molesters. Moreover, the Catholic Church has never sanctioned such behavior. Indeed, one of the reasons why this problem has been checked in the Catholic Church—no institution, secular or religious, has a better record these days—is precisely because homosexual candidates for the priesthood are screened very carefully.
Maher needs to get up to date. He should instead focus on the rampant sexual abuse that occurs in the public schools, and the central role the teachers unions play in fighting necessary reforms.
Contact O’Donnell’s executive producer: email@example.com and ask him to have Larry press Maher on this issue next time around.