Yesterday, New York City Police arrested a man and a woman for having sex in St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Also arrested was Paul Mercurio; he provided a detailed description of the sex act on the “Opie and Anthony” radio show. The WNEW radio show (an Infinity Broadcasting outlet) offers a prize to the couple having sex in the riskiest location in New York. The cathedral was packed with parishioners because August 15 is a holy day of obligation for Catholics—the Feast of the Assumption.
Catholic League president William Donohue explained the league’s response to this incident:
“We are filing a formal complaint with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asking that Infinity Broadcasting Operations, Inc. be fined and that the license of WNEW be revoked. On June 7, 2002, the FCC fined Infinity Broadcasting Operations $21,000 for airing three patently indecent ‘Opie and Anthony’ shows. That this show would strike again—so soon after being fined—demonstrates an incredible arrogance and pattern of irresponsibility. This explains why we are asking for the revocation of the WNEW license.
“It could be argued that this offense meets the requirements of a hate crime. But the Catholic League has long objected to the politicized nature of this statute and therefore will not seek it as a remedy. What we will do, however, is press our case before the FCC seeking the maximum penalties for this assault on human decency. Not only was a crime committed—this stunt was a textbook case of how obscenity and blasphemy track each other. It also speaks volumes about the moral delinquency of WNEW officials.“