WE DIDN’T TAKE THE BAIT

Catalyst September Issue 1999

As the reputation of the Catholic League grows, so, too, do attempts to bait us. Two recent examples are worth noting.

In a review of Spike Lee’s movie, “Summer of Sam” (based on the story of the New York killer, Son of Sam), film critic John Anderson described elements of the movie that seemed to promote a negative stereotype of Catholics, especially Italian-American Catholics. He also went a step further and wondered out loud where the Catholic League was in all of this.

“It’s interesting that William Donohue, the Catholic League and their punching bags at Disney are all doing backflips over the theology comedy ‘Dogma’ and no one has uttered a word about the Catholic-baiting and ethnic bias of ‘Summer of Sam’….Maybe they will.”

With that, Tamara Collins of the Catholic League went to see the movie on opening day. And while she didn’t like much of what she saw, her bottom-line conclusion was that Anderson was more guilty of baiting the Catholic League than the film was of baiting Catholics. So we said nothing.

We did say something about “Detroit Rock City” (see p. 4), but what we did not do was to take the bait of ABC radio and provide a sound-bite why we didn’t like it. That would have been used to promote the vomit-laden film to quirky types who like this kind of fare. So again we said nothing.


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Written by Bill