Some of the critics of Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich have gone beyond Catholic bashing.
Garry Wills is so excited he sees Santorum as a modern-day Torquemada, a man who “equates contraception with the guillotine.” That this lunacy appeared on the blog site of the New York Review of Books speaks volumes. On examiner.com, Michael Hughes compares Santorum to the Taliban, arguing he wants “a Christian form of Sharia law.” Mark Morford at sfgate.com says Santorum reminds him of a molester, someone who is trying to save “the dying Catholic church.”
Larry Doyle at Huffington Post went beyond the candidate to slam all Catholics for participating “in a barbaric ritual…a ‘mass’ in which a black-robed cleric casts a spell over some bread and wine…[resulting] in a cannibalistic reverie.” Sexpert Dan Savage said that when Newt Gingrich was married to his second wife, he was “still f***ing the consecrated host out of his ‘devout Catholic’ mistress.”
The Catholicism of these candidates only explains some of the hatred. John Cassidy in The New Yorker says that Santorum “with his seven kids” (which he notes first and foremost) is radically different from the magazine’s readership. He is right: those for whom abortion is the most precious right can’t figure Santorum out. Neither can Ivan Strenski at religiondispatches.com. While he says photos of Santorum and his daughter who suffers from Trisomy 18 “touched his heart,” he also wonders, “Why would one choose, in effect, to take the risk of bringing a doomed child into the world?”
These people may be threatened by Catholicism, but what gives them the chills are babies. And they really flip over couples like the Santorums and the Palins who don’t abort their disabled children.