He has been charged with offenses and found innocent. He has broken no law. He is the subject of unsubstantiated accusations. Most of his accusers remain anonymous. He has triggered several investigations of himself seeking exoneration. Why, then, has he angered so many people? Largely because he believes in marriage between a man and a woman. Make no mistake about it: if Nienstedt were perceived to be a friend of gay marriage, the campaign against him would not be happening.
Now the Star Tribune has jumped on the bandwagon. The editors know they are fishing in foreign waters. “We’ve been hesitant to make this call until now for two reasons. We consider it presumptuous for a secular news organization to advise a church about internal matters. And just two years ago, the Star Tribune Editorial Board and Nienstedt openly quarreled about the ballot question that would have constitutionally banned same-sex marriage in this state.”
The Star Tribune is twice right: it is presumptuous of a secular newspaper to busy itself in the internal affairs of any religious institution. If it were reversed, if Archbishop Nienstedt called for an editorial board member of the Star Tribune to step down, the word “presumptuous” would not be chosen: a word such as “obscene” would roll off their lips. And as indicated, it is simply impossible to understand this attempt to steamroll Nienstedt absent his embrace of marriage, properly understood. So it is hardly suprising that this newspaper would now choose to pile on.
This marks a low point for the Star Tribune. Quite frankly, its credibility is shot. But I would bet my last dollar that in the upcoming months it will run a great story, perhaps more than one, on some nun or priest who tilts their way. That’s the way these people work.
Contact D.J. Tice at the editorial board: firstname.lastname@example.org