The anti-Catholic canard

by Tom Roberts

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Even with Catholics in commanding positions of power and influence in the culture, there are some loud voices among us who want to keep the sinister, anti-Catholic plot alive. They make their living off such fearsome conjecture, and there’s always a blog or a comment or a conspiracy theory available to keep their faxes humming.

So it was a pleasure (as it always is) to come across the calm and considered wisdom of noted historian Dr. Martin Marty in his Sightings column yesterday.

He was musing on the appointment of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court and how “remarkable” it would be to have a sixth Catholic judge on the bench. (We’ll allow the aforementioned blogs and faxers to conduct the internecine battle over just how Catholic one must be to be Catholic and whether Sotomayor meets their standards.)

Writes Marty: "If mainline Protestants, who make up one-fifth of the populace, and evangelical Protestants, who make up at least a third, want to make a point of being anti-Catholic and showing it by commenting on this appointment, they surely are stealthy attackers. Mainline Protestants turned 'ecumenical' two-score years ago, as they and most Catholics became buddies. Evangelical Protestants, who decades ago called the Pope the Antichrist foretold in the Book of Revelation, now link with his successors on selected social issues which are in contention. Were it not for professional Catholic defense organizations which are ready to pop up to represent their interests on cable TV, we would find that Catholics and non-Catholics pick and choose whom and what they will support or reject in public life."

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