The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench


Maureen Dowd’s sister act

posted by jmcgee

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd has evidently been sharpening her stiletto, to take another stab at the Church, but the point is really pretty dull. In every sense.

There is so much wrong with her latest column, I don’t even know where to begin, so I’ll let you all take a look and have at it.

A snip:

dowd-ts-190.jpg(Pro-life Rep. Bart) Stupak got in hot holy water when he told Fox News, “When I’m drafting right-to-life language, I don’t call up nuns.” He followed that with more scorn for sisters, telling Chris Matthews that the nuns were not influential because they rarely try to influence — which makes no sense — and because “they’re not the recognized spokesperson for the Catholic Church.” He listens to the bishops, he said, and antiabortion groups.

We might have to bang Bart’s head into a blackboard a few times before he realizes that in a moral tug-of-war between the sisters and the bishops, you have to go with the gals.

The nuns are giving the Democrats cover. As Bob Casey, an abortion opponent who helped negotiate the abortion language in the Senate bill, observed, quoting Scripture: “They care for ‘the least, the last and the lost.’ And they know health care.”

On Friday, Tim Ryan, an antiabortion Democrat from Ohio, took to the House floor to say he had been influenced by the nuns to vote for the bill.

“You say this is pro-abortion,” he said to Republicans, and yet “you have 59,000 Catholic nuns from across the country endorsing this bill, 600 Catholic hospitals, 1,400 Catholic nursing homes endorsing this bill.”

For decades, the nuns did the bidding of the priests, cleaned up their messes, and watched as their male superiors let a perverted stain spread over the entire church, a stain that has now even reached the Holy See. It seemed that the nuns were strangely silent, either because they suspected but had no proof — the “Doubt” syndrome — or because they had no one to tell but male bosses protecting one another in that repugnant and hypocritical old-boys’ network.

Their goodness was rewarded with a stunning slap from the ├╝ber-conservative Pope Benedict XVI. The Vatican is conducting two inquisitions into the “quality of life” of American nuns, trying to knock any independence or modernity out of them.

The witch hunt has sparked the nuns to have a voice at last. Vulnerable children were not protected by the male hierarchy of the church, which treated sexual abuse as a failure of character rather than a crime. The men were so arrogant it never occurred to them that they should be accountable to the secular world. In their warped thinking, it was better to let children suffer than to call the authorities, embarrass the church and risk diminished power.

Now the bishops think that it’s better to deprive poor people of good health care than to let the church look like it’s going soft on abortion.

Read the rest at the link.



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Dana MacKenzie

posted March 20, 2010 at 11:32 pm


I wish I could say that this column was interesting, provocative, convincing, thoughtful, articulate, erudite, well-written. But honestly, she’s been ringing this one-note bell for so long that I guess I am deaf to the wisdom of Maureen Dowd. She still writes like a 14 year old who is gunning to be named editor of the high school newspaper, and is pulling her gum between her fingers while she’s scribbling in her PowerPuff Grrrls Notebook, dotting her i’s with circles and telling her mother to shut up.



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Eka

posted March 20, 2010 at 11:52 pm


Dana, I wish that I could critique as effectively as you…but since I am not nearly as clever, all I can say to Ms. Dowd is … yawn!



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Howard

posted March 21, 2010 at 2:04 am


Maureen Dowd can often be obnoxious but I think she’s right on with this piece. Stupak’s comments regarding the nun’s testimony were condescending, as the Church hierarchy has been and often is condescending to women, women’s issues, and their own parishioners of both genders. The language in the Senate version of the bill is sufficient to prevent public funding of abortion. The health care bill which will cover another 30 million Americans who currently do not have health care should not be held hostage to the holier-than-thou attitude of Stupak or the Biships.



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Steve

posted March 21, 2010 at 2:47 am


Extremely well stated, Howard. Couldn’t agree more.



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Wondering

posted March 21, 2010 at 6:19 am


And the nuns wonder why the Apostolic Visitation was ordered. LOL As for Maureen, what happened in her life to make her so condescending and miserable?



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Your Name

posted March 21, 2010 at 10:25 am


Great question Wondering. My theory (general not specific to MoDo) on “what happneded to make so MANY, especially the elite, condescending and miserable is none other than the loss of faith, especially Catholics who have the opportunity for sacramental confession.
I’ll even go a step further, and say that much of the “rage and anger” in this country is abortion guilt (including men). Without the powerful sacrament of confession, that pent up guilt and anger has to go somewhere. Of course, the “therapists” have come about to replace confession, albeit have failed miserably.
I’m convinced it was/is part of the hate spew against Sarah Palin, and is always part of the hate spew when the “Big bad Catholic Church” speaks out, as the guilty only want things like “abortion bad” to simple go away.
I’m not accusing MoDo of abortion guilt specifically (have no idea if she’s had an abortion). I’m only saying that she always seems to be the “voice” of the guilty when it comes to abortion issues.
On the other hand, Nancy Pelosi is the mother of 5, and it blows my mind how SHE can keep the abortion fight going, but then, little is more powerful than power itself, especially in this country of useful idots and sellouts.
America needs sacramental confession
p.s. Dana great post!



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Klaire

posted March 21, 2010 at 10:25 am


above post mine
Klaire



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Frank

posted March 21, 2010 at 10:36 am


This post is dedicated to Klaire.
Howard’s right. Nun’s actually do charitable work. The male hierarchy who are good for nothing other than pimping children, justifying Nazism, and self-righteous posing need to remember it’s the nuns who provide them cover and who prevent the rest of humanity from taking up torches and pitchforks to deal with the monsters in the hierarchy.



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Reaganite in NYC

posted March 21, 2010 at 11:23 am


Most nuns don’t actually work in hospitals, but a lot of priests do. In fact, it is more likely that the sick in hospitals will encounter a priest than they will a nun. I visit a lot of people in hospitals here in the NYC area and I run across a lot of priests and deacons who do outstanding work. Only once have I encountered a nun.
Maureen Dowd hasn’t a clue what ACTUALLY occurs in the Catholic world of today. She draws on stale stereotypes from her childhood in the 1930s and 1940s.
Deacon Greg, you seem like an intelligent person. Why waste your time — and ours — with the likes of the very troubled Maureen Dowd?



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Terry

posted March 21, 2010 at 12:44 pm


Read Dowd this a.m. About time someone spoke about what the nuns had to say. The truth is very difficult for the Bishops to deal with. Their claims that they are interested in anything other than their survival is suspect. After years of cover up of financial mismangament,sexual deviations,and sundry errors their standing is low in the eyes of the layman. They will need to work very hard to re-gain any respect.
They even cannot acknowledge the right of the nuns to speak publicly and let along disagree with them.



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Nora

posted March 21, 2010 at 1:30 pm


I’m with Howard, Steve, Frank and Terry — Dowd hit the nail on the head with this piece. Nicely done, Maureen…



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Bryan Healy

posted March 21, 2010 at 1:45 pm


The amount of naivety in the comments section here is unbelievable.
If anyone had been reading Deacon Greg’s blog recently, or actually read up on it themselves, they would see that only sixty (yes, 6-0) nuns signed a letter in support of this healthcare reform.
Meanwhile, the entire body of the 10,000-strong Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious penned a letter supporting the bishops in their opposition against the healthcare reform.
Would anyone like to guess which nuns are recruiting new vocations and which aren’t?
Bryan



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pagansister

posted March 21, 2010 at 2:47 pm


As I wrote previously on another post…my admiration for the women in the RCC has doubled! Dowd was just bringing up some really good points, IMO. Thanks for posting this, Deacon.



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Reaganite in NYC

posted March 21, 2010 at 3:12 pm


Bryan Healy: “Meanwhile, the entire body of the 10,000-strong Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious penned a letter supporting the bishops in their opposition against the healthcare reform.”
Thanks for posting this, Bryan Healy. I googled this group and, sure enough, their statement in opposition to Obamacare is right there on their website.
Deacon Gregg, have you reported on this — or given as much play to this as the statements by the Leadership Conference of Women Religious or by Sister Carol Keehan of the Catholic Health Association?
If not, why not?



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Chris Sullivan

posted March 21, 2010 at 3:13 pm


I think Dowd expresses herself rather crudely but she’s correct on the healthcare bill, the nuns, and the sex abuse.
God Bless



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Klaire

posted March 21, 2010 at 3:46 pm


Wanted to ad to Bryan’s post that the “nun story” was also 3 MONTHS OLD. Desperate?
http://www.firstthings.com/blogs/theanchoress/2010/03/17/ap-rehashes-old-news-to-help-obamacare/
Just shows once again, the “DEVIL is in the details”, just like those pesky ignored FACTS, which do NO ONE any favors who chose to ignore them.



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Wondering

posted March 21, 2010 at 4:20 pm


First of all, nuns are not spokespeople for the Church. The Bishops are –whether you like it or not. Dowd is just your typical malcontent Catholic who never got past sixth grade in thinking–maybe a nun slapped her? If things are so bad in the RCC, there are many other places one can go.



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Terry

posted March 21, 2010 at 7:42 pm


“Dowd is just your typical malcontent Catholic who never got past sixth grade in thinking” What does that mean? Christ message is simple, love God with your whole heart and soul, love your neighbor as yourself. It us who make it complex. Could it be a Catholic still struggles loving themselves which makes it tough to love the neighbor? Example: the Bishops attitude to their neighbors need for health care? Bishops being the spokesmen for the Church? There going to have to do alot to regain respect from that sixth grade thinker and even more from the PH.D crowd. Right now they can shout and few will hear them.



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pagansister

posted March 21, 2010 at 8:25 pm


Yes, Wondering, supposedly the nuns HAD no say….however they HAVE made themselves known in this debate….breaking a history of silence. They did not sit on the hands during this debate. The Bishops have just lost their battle….the bill has passsed. I’m suggesting that the Bishops may have to do a little back peddling. The Bishops will have their hands full now…their power is getting less, with any luck. The current situation with the way they’ve handled all the child abuse charges is a perfect example of how well they do things.



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Deacon Anthony

posted March 23, 2010 at 1:27 am


The hand of Satan can fit in the latex glove of the abortionist as it does the poison pen of the columnist.



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Klaire

posted March 23, 2010 at 6:31 am


Newsflash to pagansister:
Allow me to quote Mother Theresa: “We are not called to be successful, only faithful.”
It’s also telling that you (and many others), can’t grasp the difference between “power” and “shepard.”
All said, more telling that you call this a “win.” Open the bible sometime and you will easily find who wins the grand finale. Hint: not your side, sorry!



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Franklin Jennings

posted March 23, 2010 at 10:03 am


WooHoo!!!
All C atholic Nuns take on the mean old sexless bishops!!!
Wait…
You mean those 60 or so baby boomers over there in pantsuits and sensible shoes?
I should have known ya’ll were getting my hopes up when a fine upstanding muslim like Chris Sullivan thought Dowd was spot on in anything.
I feel so cheated…



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pagansister

posted March 23, 2010 at 12:36 pm


Klaire:
Have read the Bible…spent many years as a Christian, before I realized it wasn’t for me. It is a book written by men, (I know, divinely inspired etc., riiiiight) and it is just like any other book. It is entertaining…sex, violence, incest, rape, war, some great love poems, some good advice, etc. Good for a read when one is in the mood, but not my guide for life. I’m not worried about winning. I already have. I live for now, in this world, not trying to please some being I can’t see.



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