Blessed are you when B-List Comics Slander You because of me.

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you [falsely] because on me. Matthew 5:11

A few weeks ago B-list comedian Sarah Silverman made headlines for ranting about the Catholic Church. “Sell the Vatican. Feed the world!” unfortunately this is a tired, recycled argument that hold little rational weight. The real story was that Sarah Silverman was able to grasp the media’s attention with this profane rant. Why was this headline news?

The headline for an article in America magazine in 2000 read “The Last Acceptable prejudice?” and reflects on the argument that Catholicism is the last socially acceptable prejudice in the United States. The article quotes eminent historian Arthur Schlesinger Sr. who goes so far as to call anti-Catholicism “the deepest-held bias in the history of the American people.”

I can think of times in which I have been confronted with Catholic prejudice. In high school a good friend of mine was a preacher’s kid – of the Southern Baptist persuasion. I can  remember reading my first Chick tract at his house. They were conveniently left out when I was over. Chick tracts are infamously anti-Catholic. A quick browse of their very slick website offers on-line tracts entitled “Are Roman Catholics Christians?” (I bet you can guess the answer)0071_04, and

“Why is Mary crying?”0040_10

and most insulting and degrading of all “Death Cookie” (I refuse to post any of this track – it is just too shocking – but it involves Satan and a priest conspiring to delude humanity about the Holy Eucharist…)0074_01

For a young teenager that was still trying to figure out his faith, you can imagine the effect these tracts had on me. The obvious fallacies in these would be laughable if it were not spewing lies about our most sacred beliefs. Check out “The Nightmare World of Jack Chick” if anyone every hands you a chick tract. How many Catholics have been disillusioned with their faith by anti-catholic bigots like Sarah Silverman and Jack Chick?

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy a good spirit debate. I am not uncomfortable with people who have different beliefs than I do. I think that human beings are capable of having open, honest discussion about things as important as religion.  pre=””>Spewing anti-Catholic bigotry is a completely different story. I cannot tolerate that. This is my family you are talking about.