LAT's Rutten Smears Pro-Life Catholics, Misrepresents Notre Dame-Obama Scandal

If the Los Angeles Times' Tim Rutten is determined to establish himself as one of the nation's worst journalists when it comes to writing on the issues of abortion and Catholicism, he's doing a helluva job. His latest column on the Obama-Notre Dame controversy unfairly characterizes pro-lifers and misrepresents the scandal.

Here's how Rutten portrays pro-life Catholics who are protesting President Obama's appearance at Notre Dame:

Some people just won't be happy until the Inquisition has office space again and kindling is being piled up around the local stakes.

Puh-leeze. Rutten is completely ignorant to the fact that those who protest Obama's appearance are simply seeking to uphold what the full body of United States Catholic bishops declared five years ago:

The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.

And if Rutten or anyone else is unclear as to what those "fundamental moral principles" include, the very same document states:

[T]he killing of an unborn child is always intrinsically evil and can never be justified.

Got it?

As the bishops' statement five years ago clearly indicates, Notre Dame's invitation clearly defies the Church in the United States. Yet that doesn't stop the dishonest Rutten from repeating an awful smear published by the National Catholic Reporter against the Cardinal Newman Society, a leading voice in opposition to Obama's appearance at Notre Dame. The Newman Society is a Catholic group that is "dedicated to renewing and strengthening Catholic identity at America's 224 Catholic colleges and universities." But as Rutten reports, the Reporter newspaper has accused the Newman Society of wanting Catholic universities to become "Catholic madrasas."

Rutten characterizes the Reporter simply as an "influential" newspaper. In fact, it is unquestionably an outspoken liberal newspaper that frequently provides a forum for dissident Catholics, including losers like Fr. Richard McBrien. While Rutten has no hesitation in slapping a "conservative" label on anything representing what is traditional, he flat-out refuses to label anyone "liberal" in this debate.


In the interest of brevity, I have posted a shortened, edited version of my post. For the full version, go to

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