WaPo 'On Faith' Page Lobs Bomb: 'Impeach the Pope'

The Washington Post's On Faith website loves to post liberal writers who thumb their noses at traditional religion. Take liberal professor Robert McElvaine and his blog, "Impeach the Pope." He was so upset at Pope Benedict's remarks on Islam, his resistance to ordaining women, and his lifting an excommunication of a Holocaust denier, he exclaimed:

I am a Catholic and the idea that such a man is God's spokesperson on earth is absurd to me.There are, of course, no provisions in the hierarchical institution set up, not by Jesus but by men who hijacked his name and in many cases perverted his teachings, for impeaching a pope and removing him from office. But there ought to be.

This betrays a serious refusal to accept the concept of papal infallibility, that the Pope's declarations on faith and morals are guided by the Holy Spirit to avoid error. There's a word for people who do not recognize the Pope as an authority: they're called Protestants.But this inflammatory article may be simply a ploy to sell books:

As I detail in my latest book, "Grand Theft Jesus: The Hijacking of Religion in America" (Crown), the cardinal sin of the Catholic Church -- a literally deadly sin, if ever there was one -- is its opposition to birth control. Far from being, as the Church contends, part of its moral doctrine, this policy is, plainly, the immoral doctrine of the Church. The use of condoms is a pro-life position.Why does the Church persist in such a manifestly immoral doctrine? One suspects that it must be the usual twisted thinking about sex and women. The Church's opposition to birth control is largely an outgrowth of its all-male composition and those males' attempts to degrade women's physical powers by asserting that women and the intercourse into which they supposedly tempt men are necessary evils ("It is well for a man not to touch a woman," Paul instructed the Christians of Corinth), the only purpose of which is procreation.

Actually, the verse McIlvaine cites (from 1 Corinthians 7) is not an anti-female passage. It says "A wife does not have authority over her own body, but rather her husband, and similarly a husband does not have authority over his own body, but rather his wife." That sounds like a rather modern vision of gender equality.Rather than argue convincingly from the Scriptures or church history, McIlvaine simply imagines a male chauvinist conspiracy against the sexual powers of womanhood. This position opposing artificial contraceptives isn't a novelty. It's been the Church's position for centuries. It's every other Christian faction over the last century that's dropped its opposition. There's a simple word for Chrisitians who believe their church should define artificial contraception as acceptable: Protestants. But McIlvaine wasn't done in attacking that woman-haters club known as the Catholic Church:

Misogyny may not be "the Church's one foundation," but it is a major part of the base on which it was constructed.It should be obvious that the sin in an over-populated world is not attempting to control birth, but attempting to control birth control.And now for the pope to go so far as to indicate that condom use worsens the spread of AIDS -- there's an outrage that tops Madoff and AIG!Let's start a movement within the Catholic Church to impeach Pope Benedict XVI and remove him from office. While we're at it, let's replace him with a woman.He reversed the excommunication of a Holocaust denier. Will he excommunicate me for pointing out that he is a misogyny denier?If this be heresy, make the most of it.
Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis