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The Catholic bishops and employment non-discrimination - running scared

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We have a third column from Michael Sean Winters of National Catholic Reporter about gay marriage and the USCCB stance on same-sex marriage. That was supposed to be it until the USCCB had four committee chairs release a statement about the possible Employee Non-Discrimination Act and its immediate extension to federal contractors. You can read MSW's column at

The bishops seem to be running scared - although I doubt the Catholic Charities agencies they are proporting to represent are - such agencies are the most gay friendly of any employer. (Note well, fear is what leads to most sin - not just the icky personal sins but the more serious ones against others).

No outside goverenment will ever requre the Church to officiate (not peform) a same-sex marriage. That pressure will come from within the Church from family members and gay-friendly (and gay) priests. As far as cutting a deal with the USCCB - the Obama administration should not even take their calls. They have no idea about how the right to privacy relates to this case or the legitimacy of said right - which is not about confidentiality - is about people being left alone by the government (and by extension the Church and employers) about their personal decision - with the government now being called upon to protect privacy rights from employers.

The question also comes up of the Church's motives. It claims to be protecting its right to hold its doctrines - however as I have long said, the Church recognizes civil marriages of its employees all the time - or marriages which are not Catholic or Christian - when dispensing benefits to spouses. What we are seeing here is not moral objection, but homophobia and probably coalition politics.

It is truly pathetic that the Church FAQ talks about the question of orientation vs. acts because Lawrence v. Texas essentially said that the acts are protected from public scrutiny. EDNA is simply taking that governmental protection into the workplace - even if the employer is the Church (in a non-ministerial setting of course - althought with estimates that half of priests are gay - the Church's stand would be funny if it were not so tragic. This shows what I have been saying for a long time, USCCB staff on this issue and all things sexual seems to be as Republican as it is Catholic - as are some of the bishops. Pews to Francis - HELP!



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