Saturday, May 22, 2010

Lesbians Stand Back, Atheists Step This Way

According to the Boston Globe,
Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley, commenting for the first time on a Hingham Catholic school’s decision to revoke admission of the 8-year-old son of a lesbian couple, said yesterday that “the good of the child’’ must be the church’s primary concern and recalled that he once invited the daughter of a brothel manager to attend a Catholic school.
A cardinal boasts he once found a place for a child of a prostitute in a Catholic Church.

Be still, my heart. And ears, will you survive the roar of acclamation for this spectacularly selfless act on the part of Mother Church?!

And why is Cardinal O’Malley committing the sin of pride and letting us in on this bit of his personal history? To demonstrate that, when the negative of rejecting the child of lesbians is cancelled out by admitting the child of a prostitute, the church is even? Maybe even ahead in the morality department?

I know being insensitive to anything but the reputation of the church gives you the kind of head the mitre was designed for. But do they now require prefrontal lobotomies? Does this O’Malley really think the world believes he’s acting in the best interests of the child here? And does doing the obviously right thing in one instance allow you to do a wrong thing elsewhere? What is this, like selling indulgences?

And could somebody pull this guy aside and whisper in his ear that perhaps it might not hurt to hold off on declarations about “best interests of a child,” until the dust has settled. (And a few more of the abuse cases.)

On another front in this battle, one might also want to try to persuade the lesbian parents of this child that they should consider a school where children actually do come first. Or not. I understand that lots of Protestants, Jews and non-believers (there are overlapping categories here) send their kids to catholic schools these days because with our public schools being roundly neglected they are often the best schools in the area. I rather imagine if I were faced with that decision, I’d take a good catholic school education for my child over a bad public one if I could afford it. Countless thousands have met the challenge of surviving the mind melt and come out with better math and science and literacy skills than they would have in schools with lower academic standards.

I don’t know how many non-catholics this school takes in. Or even if this child is a non-catholic! My understanding is that doesn’t matter to the school.

All wise-assing aside, I can imagine what O’Malley must be thinking – when you take in the child of a prostitute, you can at least get the prostitute to admit sin. When you take in the child of loving lesbians, your guilting vibes bounce off.

So it’s not hypocrisy as you first thought, right? It’s because the child is living in a home which refuses to recognize the error of its ways.

Kind of like the homes of Protestants and Jews and atheists, come to think of it.

Damn. Just when I thought I had figured it all out.

1 comment:

Dwight said...

You were in fine form when you wrote this one, Alan. One of your best!