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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 6/22/12

Channeling Mel Gibson: Bill Donohue's War Against All Things Non-Catholic Is Heating Up ...Against Jews.

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Maybe he was drunk at the time.

"Jews Had Better Not Make Enemies Of Their Catholic Friends Since They Have So Few Of Them"

One pope shedding tears at the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem did nothing to eradicate anti-Semitism in staunch pro-Catholic circles: the latest exchange of emails between Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League and  Philadelphia Rabbi Arthur Waskow of the Shalom Center indicate an animosity worthy of Mel Gibson.*

Called " The Rottweiler's Rottweiler " (in reference to his defense of Benedict XVI and his own problems due to scandal and cover-ups), the orthodox apologist Donohue  has always had a reputation for goading people and groups into a fight. In fact,  Donohue is such a staunch defender of the Catholic Church, he has turned offense into an art form: he has taken on progressive Catholic nuns ("totally lost their moorings"), the pay-away-the-lay controversy ("a severance package"), President Obama (  "He is now taking the culture war to the boiling point and he will pay.") and gay marriage (" I want the law to discriminate against all alternative lifestyles, against gays and unions."). While protecting the Catholic Church against defamation, he has been known to use the same tactic against other groups.

Now he has taken on Jews as enemies of Catholicism.   

It all started when  Waskow, a Reformed Jewish rabbi, criticized the Vatican in a Huffington Post op-ed piece entitled Bishops Attack Religious Freedom; Vatican Attacks Nuns. Hitting primarily on the subject of contraception, Waskow accused the Catholic Church of "attacking the religious freedom of millions of American women and the religious freedom of American nuns" on the matter of  contraception. A rough email exchange ensued, with the indignant Donohue stating that "Jews had better not make enemies of their Catholic friends since they have so few of them." He then attributed the statement to former New York mayor Ed Koch. 

Koch has denied saying anything of the sort. Donohue then attacked the character of Waskow:

"Waskow is a man full of hate," he said, calling Waskow's op-ed "the kind of thing I'd expect from Bill Maher, not from a rabbi." 

The exchange brought about a bit of irony as well: Donohue portrayed the recent Hasidic (ultra Orthodox) scandal of child abuse as an "epidemic" that Waskow (a Reformed rabbi, not Hasidic) should take care of by  "following the Catholic Church's reforms in dealing with clerical abuse." Rabbi Waskow obviously restrained himself from correcting Donohue on his generalization of rabbis and - most notably - any comeback about cover-ups and pay-offs, the latter being a subject which Donohue has yet to fully address (see When Sex With Altar Boys Was Profitable )

The odd connection to Mel Gibson's anti-Semitic sentiments comes in Donohue's defense of the Gibson's movie, "The Passion of the Christ":

[ wikipedia ] 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. That's why they hate this movie. It's about Jesus Christ, and it's about truth. It's about the  Messiah .

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Rev. Dan Vojir is has been writing/blogging on religion and politics for the better part of ten years. A former radio talk show host (Strictly Books éČ" Talk America Radio Network) and book publisher, Dan has connected with some of the most (more...)
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