Catholic League president Bill Donohue weighs in on the flap over Glenn Beck’s comment that people should leave their church if it is promoting “social justice”:

Glenn Beck has been slammed all week for his flip remark, and some have accused him of being anti-Christian. Let’s examine what he said.

Beck said that “social justice” and “economic justice” are “code words.” Of course they are: they are code for economic redistribution. “Pro-life” is also a code word—it means anti-abortion. For the record, the Catholic Church embraces both a social justice and pro-life position. It is pro-union, believes in universal health care, promotes a “preferential option for the poor,” and is opposed to abortion, assisted suicide and embryonic stem cell research.

Many are hammering Beck for saying, “Am I advising people to leave their church? Yes!” A closer read of what he said shows he followed that quip with, “If I am going to Jeremiah Wright’s church. If you have a priest that is pushing social justice, go find another parish.”

Beck didn’t say Christians should abandon their religion. He recommended shopping around to find a more conservative parish if one is dissatisfied with hearing left-wing sermons. Nothing new about that. In the Catholic Church, there are priests who are stridently left-wing and stridently right-wing; many parishioners shop accordingly. Protestants shop by leaving one denomination for another. And so on.

Some of those who have criticized Beck have done so in a sincere way. Others are just phonies. Just yesterday, we dealt with an issue which is far more serious than a sarcastic remark—we called out a radical feminist leader for branding pro-life Catholic congressman Bart Stupak “un-American.” And the day before we protested news stories accusing the bishops of “polluting” the health care debate. But we heard nothing from the social justice crowd about these matters. Wonder why.

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