People for the American Way will gather with a small band of anti-free speech protesters on October 13 to oppose the First Amendment rights of the thousands of Catholics, Protestants, Jews and Muslims who will stage a demonstration against hate speech that evening. The anti-hate speech rally, orchestrated against the blasphemous and obscene play, “Corpus Christi,” is being organized by the Catholic League and will occur on October 13 on 55th Street and 6th Avenue.
It is the league’s position that the play should not be censored by the government but that the producers of the play should have canceled it in the name of common decency.
Catholic League president William Donohue addressed this issue today:
“If the Catholic League’s protest of ‘Corpus Christi’ has accomplished anything, it has exposed the real agenda of People for the American Way: it is a voice for intolerance. Ever since the Catholic League began exercising its First Amendment right to object to this play, People for the American Way has opposed our right to free speech while defending the hate speech of playwright Terrence McNally. Thus, People for the Fascist Way would be a more accurate title for the organization.
“The reason why Barbara Handman, vice president of ‘People,’ is leading the charge against the First Amendment is because she delights in exhibitions that assault the sensibilities of Catholics. She once told me that the Andres Serrano display of a crucifix submerged in a jar of urine was ‘glorious’ and ‘reverential.’ Given this mind-set, it is not surprising that she loves the idea of a Christ-like figure having sex with the apostles. But her enthusiasm for indecency is one thing, it is quite another when her debased appetite descends to gag speech.”