Professor Robert McElvaine is the Elizabeth Chisholm Professor of Arts & Letters at Millsaps College, an author, and is known for his anti-Christian diatribes. He is a blogger on Huffington Post, writes for numerous other liberal outlets, and is a giddy supporter of Barack Obama. His rants are famous, and his targets are almost always generally Christians — if not specifically Roman Catholics, one of which he not-very-truthfully professes to be. He once re-wrote The Beatitudes to reflect his hatred for neo-conservative Ann Coulter. He says redistributing the wealth is a good idea; that makes him a bit of a socialist to boot.
So this newest hate-filled screed should really not be a surprise (I speak of the op/ed piece in the Washington Post: “Impeach the Pope”). His ignorance, however, on simple matters of faith and morals, what sin is and isn’t, and Apostolic succession and the hierarchical nature of the Church, is.
Some excerpts from the screed:
Amid all the justified outrage we all feel at Bernie Madoff and the AIG bandits, let us save some intense outrage for Pope Benedict XVI. … Misogyny may not be “the Church’s one foundation,” but it is a major part of the base on which it was constructed.
The pope is bad. Misogyny is bad. They go together. (Wow… Bob … like that’s soooo 1970s!)
Certainly God having seen to it that His only Son was born from the womb of a spotless woman doesn’t fall into the misogyny category, does it? In fact, the Blessed Virgin’s Immaculate Conception, Annunciation, Assumption and Coronation don’t speak of misogyny at all, do they? Neither does the fact that the most elevated human person in heaven is a female bolster the Prof’s thesis about the Church’s woman-hating “base.”
Then what does?
[T]he 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.
Ahh! It’s all about sex. What a surprise!
Of course, to call condoms pro-life, and to say that the Church is immoral in its persistent stand against birth control tells us that McElvaine is either ignorant of Scripture and Tradition, or he could care less about them. Artificial means of birth control frustrate the natural law — authored and created by God — something a modern man should have no difficulty discerning.
But the Elizabeth Chisholm Professor of Arts & Letters at Millsaps College is beyond all that, by light years. His view — that latex devices meant to keep out the male seed will actually save millions from infinitesmally smaller pathogens — is based on science … er… or something.
Never mind. If McElvaine’s biology is wanting, we might expect his prowess in history, sociology, and theology to help us understand the Church’s evil degradation of women. Then again, we might not:
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…
“Necessary evils?” Hey Prof… that’s the Manicheans you’re thinking about, man — not the Catholics! I suppose one can be the Elizabeth Chisholm Professor of Arts & Letters at Millsaps College without having imbibed Tixeront’s History of Dogmas, but to pontificate in major American newspaper while attacking the leader of the world’s Christians would seem to demand a modicum of knowledge of one’s chosen subject.
Unless, of course, one were merely parroting the dronish mantra we’ve heard since the 1960s (but I digress…).
When the fellow clumsily asserts that the Church’s “composition” is “all-male,” he either shows a much deeper ignorance of history, or (if he really meant “the hierarchy’s composition”), a certain clunkiness in the domain of Arts and Letters, of which he is the Elizabeth Chisholm Professor at Millsaps College.
But if my gentle readers ignore the first part of the next sentence — where the Prof falsely declares his religious affiliation — there is a point upon which we can all agree (sigh!):
I am a Catholic and the idea that such a man is God’s spokesperson on earth is absurd to me.
Righto! After all, our Lord did not say: “Thou art Peter, and upon this spokesperson I build my Church.”
Fear not. The Holy Father probably won’t excommunicate McElvaine for calling the august person of the Roman Pontiff a “misogyny denier.” In this category of removing a dissident from the Church’s fold, McElvaine seems to have done quite well all by himself.