As one who debates for living, I find it increasingly difficult to find an honest adversary. It used to be that I was able to engage my opponent in a verbal duel where facts and logic determined the outcome, but this seldom happens anymore. That’s because so many debaters really don’t want to debate the issue at hand: they prefer to spin the argument to such an extent that it literally leaves them living in a state of denial.
Take the Christmas wars. We could fill this entire issue of Catalyst with nothing but examples of the war on Christmas that took place in 2005. (We also could have filled this issue with nothing but “In the News” entries—we were cited in hundreds of stories all over the world, and I appeared on radio and TV in Britain, Brazil and Germany.) Yet for all the evidence that an assault on Christmas raged from coast to coast, the standard line promoted by secularists was that there never was a war on Christmas.
So what do the secularists say when presented with evidence to the contrary? They typically laugh if off, saying that the examples cited constitute nothing but anecdotal evidence. Or they say that everywhere they went they saw wreaths, green and red lights, snowmen, etc. For them, this is Christmas. That’s why they would prefer to see Rudolph in the public square, and not baby Jesus. Jesus makes them uncomfortable.
Pope Benedict XVI released the Vatican document on homosexuals in the priesthood, and immediately we were told that he was wrong to single out homosexuals as a problem because there is no direct link between homosexuality and pedophilia. This is true, but it has nothing to do with the issue: we never had a pedophilia crisis in the Catholic Church—it’s been a homosexual crisis all along. To wit: 81 percent of the victims of priestly sexual abuse are males and almost as many are postpubescent. This means that the molesters typically have been homosexuals, not pedophiles.
Even more absurd is the contention—now frequently expressed by those living in denial—that many of those who molested adolescent males were heterosexuals. Their reasoning goes like this: for decades, straight priests, having had access to altar boys, but not girls, had no other choice but to have sex with teenage boys.
Now I spent four years in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam war, and never did I know of a single case where a heterosexual male was even tempted to have sex with another male—never mind engage in homosexual behavior—simply because access to women was limited. But according to the illogic of the Vatican’s critics, there must have been guys hitting on guys all the time. It’s just that I never noticed it.
Perhaps there is no issue where more spin and denial are more evident than abortion. As Kate O’Beirne nicely documents in her new book, Women Who Make the World Worse, those who make the case for abortion-on-demand are fundamentally dishonest. From the lies about the number of so-called back-alley abortions that allegedly took place prior to 1973, to the lies about partial-birth abortion today, the radical feminists have been spinning a web of lies for over 30 years.
Nothing upsets radical feminists more than to face the likes of O’Beirne in a debate. Which explains why they avoid her. As courageous as she is brilliant, Kate O’Beirne is every feminist’s nightmare: they do not want to deal with a woman who is armed with the facts and not reluctant to confront them. And they really resent it that she is attractive, to boot.
“Contrary to popular belief, Hollywood not only believes in God, Hollywood loves God.” To prove this dribble, which was written by Joanna Connors of Religion News Service in the Los Angeles Times just before Christmas, the author says The Chronicles of Narniais only the latest in a long line of religious movies to come out of Hollywood. Connors cites the works of Cecile B. DeMille and D.W. Griffith, and the films E.T., Shane, The Matrix, the Star Wars series and The Passion of the Christ.
But as Brent Bozell’s NewsBusters.com website shows, most of these movies are decades old (E.T. appeared in 1982 and Shane debuted in 1953). By citing The Matrix and Star Wars, Connors has to “stretch her premise” to make her case. As for The Passion, perhaps Connors didn’t notice that no one in Hollywood wanted to touch Mel’s film, which is why he had to do it himself. NewsBusters concludes, “Hollywood loves God? Connors might want to get in touch with the Catholic League.”
So this is the world we live in. Spinning into denial is now commonplace. Facts and logic can never prove these people wrong—they are too ensconced in their comfort zone of ideological bliss to ever worry about such trifling matters ever again.