Catholic League president William Donohue responded today to a column by Frank Rich that is posted on the New York Times website and will appear in Sunday’s paper:

“Frank Rich quotes me as saying that ‘Hollywood is controlled by secular Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular.’  He fails to mention that in the same segment of the MSNBC show where I made this remark, I also said, ‘You have got secular Jews.  You have got embittered ex-Catholics, including a lot of ex-Catholic priests who hate the Catholic Church, wacko Protestants in the same group….’  Nor did he mention that I later said, ‘there are secularists from every ethnic and religious stock,’ and that when people talk about Hollywood, they are ‘talking mostly about secular Jews.’

“Now consider what the New York Times said in an article about ‘The Passion’ on June 24: ‘Significantly, in the movie industry, which tends to be liberal and secular in outlook, as well as disproportionately Jewish, few people interviewed about ‘Passion’ said they had actually seen the movie.’  Hollywood observer Tom O’Neil even said that the movie is suffering from ‘the Jewish problem,’ by which he meant that Jews who vet films for the Oscars aren’t happy about the movie’s script.  And what about Frank Rich?  He says that when the term ‘entertainment elite’ is invoked by Mel’s defenders, they are referring to a group that ‘just happens to be Jewish.’  And it is he who has said that ‘Jews have had no shortage of clout in show business from day one.’

“Frank Rich has been blasting me for years for my attacks on anti-Catholicism.  Whether it is my objections to a play that portrays Jesus having sex with the apostles, or my complaints about a dung-stained portrait of Our Blessed Mother, count on Rich to damn me for protesting the bigotry while he defends the offending work.  As for Mel’s epic film, Rich characteristically dubbed it ‘a porn movie.’

“Jews who know me know that I have long fought anti-Semitism.  They also know that I will not be intimidated by Frank Rich.”

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