This year, the Gay Pride Parade in Chicago was rerouted, and the new route happens to pass in front of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church. This has caused much consternation for the church who fears that they will not be able to have mass that Sunday because the parade will interfere with their services.
The pastor expressed his concern to Catholic Cardinal Francis George, who made the following comments, as reported by ThinkProgress:
Well, I go with the pastor. I mean, he’s telling us that they won’t be able to have Church services on Sunday, if that’s the case. You don’t want the gay liberation movement to morph into something like the Ku Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism. So, I think if that’s what’s happening, and I don’t know that it is, but I would respect the local pastor’s, you know, position on that. Then I think that’s a matter of concern for all of us.”
Cardinal George has just shown what an idiot he is. To compare a celebration of gay pride to a Klu Klux Klan parade is not only revolting but maddening. The KKK is a bigoted, hate mongering group who used to revel in their parade of men dressed in white sheets. Their parades were about lynching minorities. Their parades were designed to instill fear and spread hate. Their parades included violence and cross burning.
Gay pride parades are about celebration, about being accepted for who you are, and about not being afraid to celebrate being gay. I see no comparison between a gay pride parade and the KKK.
Cardinal George apparently doesn’t agree. Either that, or he just doesn’t get it. The Chicago Gay Pride Parade isn’t a march against Catholicism. In fact, when Chicago’s LGBT community learned about the pastor’s concerns, they met with him and arranged to start the parade at a later time to give the congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel the time they needed to worship. If the parade was truly some secret march against Catholicism, they wouldn’t have done that.
Of course, the Holy Cardinal is trying to eat his words now saying, “Obviously, it’s absurd to say the gay and lesbian community are the Ku Klux Klan, but if you organize a parade that looks like parades that we’ve had in our past because it stops us from worshipping God, well then that’s the comparison, but it’s not with people and people — it’s parade-parade.”
Sorry, Cardinal George, you can’t take back your hateful words, and your attempt is weak at best.
And there are some out there who are calling for action. Change.org, an online organization that mobilizes petitions for change, is calling for George’s resignation. Also Equally Blessed, a pro-LGBT rights Catholic organization, stated that George “has demeaned and demonized LGBT people in a manner unworthy of his office. In suggesting that the Catholic hierarchy has reason to fear LGBT people in the same way that blacks, Jews, Catholics and other minorities had reason to fear the murderous nightriders of the Ku Klux Klan, he has insulted the memory of the victims of the Klan’s violence and brutality.”
Thankfully, George is facing the consequences of his actions. Perhaps, the good Cardinal needs to learn a lesson in prudence. I’m sure the Bible has something to teach about that.