Tuesday, November 15, 2005

People complain about left-wing "political correctness" and the left-wing "language police," but has anyone ever been as hypersensitive about language as the contemporary American right? Modern right-wingers get the vapors when department-store cashiers say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas," they detect anti-Italian prejudice in the nickname "Scalito" -- and now we have Father Richard John Neuhaus, Bush advisor and editor of the right-wing Catholic magazine First Things, writing this about Judith Miller in his First Things blog:

... She said she is free from the "convent of the New York Times, a convent with its own theology and its own catechism." Who would have thought of the Times as a convent?

The image of the nun jumping to freedom over the convent wall was a staple in the heyday of anti-Catholic propaganda. Of course the nun almost never had the help of high-powered lawyers extracting a big severance deal from the convent....

Anti-Catholic innuendos notwithstanding, a convent, a theology, and a catechism are all things of beauty. In the service of Christ and his Church, they well warrant the surrender of a life in devotion to transcendent truth. As I would like to think Ms. Miller knows, that is very different from having spent 28 years of her life surrendering her intelligence in order to toe the line of the smelly little orthodoxies of the
New York Times.

I don't have much good to say about Judy Miller, but give me a break -- she's not exhibiting anti-Catholic bigotry here. Switch to decaf, Father.

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