For 25 years or so, I’ve followed the work of a group that cites and denounces anti-Catholic bigotry, but lately I’ve begun to wonder if they aren’t making matters worse by broadcasting the material they condemn to audiences that might never have been exposed to it otherwise.
It seems to me that their recent, ongoing coverage of the latest Jon Stewart Daily Show outrage (a salaciously irreverent photograph flashed on the screen behind the supercilious ass as he mocked the Church’s stand on chastity) has disseminated the travesty far beyond his original small audience and compounded the offense. For weeks I received emails from this group with a female anatomical term in the subject line, each one an update on their continuing campaign to pry an apology out of Stewart by communicating his offense to still more groups of previously unaware people.
At best, it seemed juvenile: Ew! This is so gross! Come see!
At worst, it was positively subversive, using the subterfuge of criticism to magnify the outrage and scandalize the sensibilities of people who don’t even know who Jon Stewart is.
(Ironically, the obscene image, construed properly, could actually remind a wayward Christian of the holiness of sex and marriage and thereby discourage illicit activity, though this clearly was not Stewart’s intent.)
Now, a conservative political group whose newsletter I subscribe to is following in these perverse footsteps, condemning — while repeating — a vulgar, tasteless joke told by a vulgar, tasteless man who happens to be the president.
Do the idiotic comments of Jon Stewart and Barack Obama deserve this kind of attention? Would it not be best just to ignore these fools? What is gained when religious and conservative groups volunteer to serve as press agents for pagans and perverts?