Thanks to the New York Times, I now know that there is an art exhibit somewhere in the city that compares the late John Cardinal O’Connor to a condom and calls him a scumbag. It’s called “Act Up New York: Activism, Art, and the AIDS Crisis, 1987-1993” and the exhibit ends today at White Columns. The piece of art in question shows the face of the late Cardinal next to a tan-colored prophylactic, with the text “Know Your Scumbags” next to both of them.
Archbishop Timothy Dolan is pissed, and rightly so. But he’s taking on the New York Times, which I think is the wrong move. While the Times article does show the piece of art in question in its leading photograph, the article which it is in makes no mention of it. Given the Times’ supposed history of anti-Catholic bias, it’s not surprising that Dolan would rail against the Times, but he really should not be shooting the messenger in this case. Dolan instead should call into question the exhibit itself, and how there is no one speaking out against it, when surely everyone would if it had been something or someone else on that placard.
Dolan is right about this, however — there seems to be a double standard between Catholicism and other religions. If there were a prominent rabbi on that placard, it would have been denounced as anti-Semitic. An imam? Lumped in as part of the current “Islamophobia” trend. Hell, if there were a black person on there, it could be seen as racist. (At the very least, you’ll have Rev. Al Sharpton breathing down your ass.) But Catholics are acceptable targets for this, aren’t they? Because they’re the only ones who are this outspoken against contraceptives and abortion (not true), and this viewpoint is utterly stupid, right?
I guess the point Dolan is trying to make is, why is no one saying anything about this? Look at the mosque controversy. As soon as the plans were made public, people shouted out in complete outrage and terror against the mosque. Something offended them, and they wanted it removed. Here? In this case? Nothing. Why? Is Catholicism just that indefensible and therefore easily pushed around in its beliefs?
OK, we get it, we have our opinions about it and you have yours, but the fact that Catholicism is such an easy target about this topic is kinda alarming to me. That, and the fact that they used a DEAD cardinal in the exhibit. Can’t even respect the dead, can they?