Vulgarity?

Vulgarity

Feb 9th at 3:03 am by sirkowskiBill Donohue, Catholic League president.

“Name for me a book publishing company in this country, particularly in New York, which would allow you to publish a book which would tell the truth about the gay death style.” [MSNBC’s Scarborough Country, 2/27/04]

“The gay community has yet to apologize to straight people for all the damage that they have done.” [MSNBC’s Scarborough Country, 4/11/05]

Addressing former Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) in a press release, Donohue said: “[W]hy didn’t you just smack the clergyman in the face? After all, most 15-year-old teenage boys wouldn’t allow themselves to be molested. So why did you?” [10/4/06]

“I’m saying if a Catholic votes for Kerry because they support him on abortion rights, that is to cooperate in evil.” [MSNBC’s Hardball, 10/21/04]

“We’ve already won. Who really cares what Hollywood thinks? All these hacks come out there. Hollywood is controlled by secular Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular. It’s not a secret, OK? And I’m not afraid to say it. … Hollywood likes anal sex. They like to see the public square without nativity scenes. I like families. I like children. They like abortions. I believe in traditional values and restraint. They believe in libertinism. We have nothing in common. But you know what? The culture war has been ongoing for a long time. Their side has lost.” [MSNBC’s Scarborough Country, 12/8/04]

“Well, look, there are people in Hollywood, not all of them, but there are some people who are nothing more than harlots. They will do anything for the buck. They wouldn’t care. If you asked them to sodomize their own mother in a movie, they would do so, and they would do it with a smile on their face.” [MSNBC’s Scarborough Country, 2/9/06]

“If someone tells me that there’s a statue of Martin Luther King with an erection receiving oral sex, I don’t need to see it.”

Fuck…

I have not come to defend William A. Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Right.  He is no friend of mine, and, frankly, he is something of an embarrassment.  The question that concerns me is the point of Sirkowski’s criticism.  Who does William A. Donohue represent?  Who takes William A. Donohue seriously?

What is it about these statements that Sirkowski find objectionable?  Why?  Does Sirkowski understand, appreciate, or deal with the underlying arguments, the philosophical grounding of William A. Donohue’s position?  Don’t misunderstand me: it is not that William A. Donohue is above criticism, or isn’t wrong in what he says, or that Sirkowski isn’t right in this instance to point out what a colossal ass the man is; it is that Sirkowski provides no evidence of his own coming to terms with the statements made by William A. Donohue.

Sirkowski, of course, as a writer on The Liberal Avenger, preaches to the converted; he is providing a common ground, a touchstone if you will, that like minded individuals can access on a daily basis, giving them comfort that there are other who think like them.  Like the call and response of an evangelical church service, Sirkowski does not need to explain where his criticism lay; Sirkowski does not need to deal with the ideological, philosophical, or value judgments that make his criticism possible.

Sirkowski is also providing an opportunity for readers to feel an emotional response so that they can remember why it is that William A. Donohue, as a representative of the “Conservative Right”, is subject to criticism.  As public opinion research shows, people can’t always explain in intellectual terms the differences between Liberal and Conservatives; most people need a heuristic, like affect, to help them make differentiations.  Conservatives, for people like Sirkowski, are hateful, warmongering, bigoted rubes.  Whether this has anything to do with Conservatives (whatever that means), Republicans, Catholics, or any particular self-identified Conservative is altogether beside the point.

The conceit, of course, is that if you find William A. Donohue’s statements objectionable, then you will then feel good things towards those who oppose him (Liberals), and bad things about those who “support” or are at least associated with his position.  You will feel this affect without having to engage in any intellectual activity, let alone develop a coherent picture of the differences between liberal and conservative ideology.

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