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Meet Bishop Sal, the Face of Catholic Anti-Gay Discrimination

Timothy Kincaid

September 22nd, 2009

bishop salThe East Bay Express has an article on Salvatore Cordileone, the new Bishop of Oakland. It seems the Catholic Church rewarded him with this position for all his hard work and devoted efforts in taking away civil rights from gay couples.

What almost no one knows is that without Bishop Sal, gay men and lesbians would almost surely still be able to get married today. As an auxiliary bishop in San Diego, Cordileone played an indispensable role in conceiving, funding, organizing, and ultimately winning the campaign to pass Proposition 8. It was Bishop Sal and a small group of Catholic leaders who decided that they had to amend the state constitution. It was Bishop Sal who found the first major donor and flushed the fledgling campaign with cash. It was Bishop Sal who personally brought in the organization that took the lead on the petition drive. And it was Bishop Sal who coordinated the Catholic effort with evangelical churches around the state. Bishop Sal even helped craft the campaign’s rhetorical strategy, sitting in on focus groups to hone the message of Proposition 8.

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Candace
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Maybe now that Bishop Sal is such a public figure, someone will notice him and start digging around in his closet to see what they can find. I never met a minister or priest that I’d trust any further than I could throw them, with good reason.

elaygee
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

and just how does the Catholic Church diocese in San Diego still have 501C3 tax exempt stauts after funding and running a political campaign?

Chris McCoy
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Yet more proof that the anti-SSM movement is based entirely on religious intolerance.

I have yet to see any argument against Same-sex marriage that could not be boiled down to religious bias.

Priya Lynn
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Chris, I agree with you that many, if not most anti-gay people are that way because of religion, but some are anti-gay because “gays are icky” and they merely use religion as an excuse for their bigotry. I’ve encountered a number of irreligious people who, when the topic of gays came up, for the first time in their lives suddenly felt the need to say something along the lines of “that’s one thing religion has right anyway, thou shalt not lie with a man…”.

Timothy Kincaid
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

elaygee,

Churches can take positions on propositions and other non-candidate election issues. They can seek to have their views enacted into law without any threat to their 501(c)3 status.

Emily K
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

This guy looks like he’s gay himself. Wouldn’t surprise me; the closet is loaded with religious celibates. What has happened to the Church? Launching an investigation of nuns, Prop 8, calling for anti-gay action from the pulpit, excommunicating people for providing abortions to 9 year old rape/incest victims…When they clean up their own house then they can clean up mine.

cowboy
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

You have to wonder what kind of backroom strategist meetings took place between former RC Bishop of Salt Lake Neiderhauer and the Mormons too.

John
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Timothy: I believe that should be changed. Religious and non-religious groups shouldn’t hide behind their tax exempt status and receive a benefit that non-tax exempt groups do not enjoy, all while influencing voters in elections. That is horribly wrong IMO, regardless of the issue or their position. So yes, I’m including “pro-gay” churches or groups in this…

Burr
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

The Roman Catholic PAC strikes again.

John
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

This post has a glaring omission. Although some Catholics and evangelicals were important to the Prop 8 effort, this effort was dominated by the Mormons. This post leaves the implication that Catholics and evangelicals were the true driving force behind this effort.

I happen to live in the arch-diocese of Oakland and have no love for this looser or his boss, Ratzinger, in Rome.
On some level, I still consider myself a Catholic despite only going to mass for the occaisional funeral over the last few years, but I have little respect for people who engage in despicable behavior.

Timothy Kincaid
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

John,

Are you saying that the AIDS Project Los Angeles should not be tax exempt or that they should not be allowed to take a position on legislation that might greatly impact those infected with HIV?

Timothy Kincaid
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

John (the second),

We have thoroughly reported that members of the Mormon Church contributed at least half of the funds and 80% to 90% of the volunteers for Proposition 8.

However, the information present in the article do suggest that the initial impetus behind the effort was from the Catholic Church. We have long known that Catholics funded the signature collection effort.

Incidentally, we do recognize the distinction between the Catholic individual (or Mormon individual) and the hierarchy of the institution.

Emily K
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

I know we try to avoid petty statements and blanket stereotypes..but guys, my gaydar is really going off here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZvAg2mE-mA&feature=related

Lindoro Almaviva
September 22nd, 2009 | LINK

And with all that, he certainly looks like he likes to eat tube stake. There is something about him in that pic that screams GAY!!!!! to me.

Wouldn’t it be interesting if Monsignor is just a black sheep in the family?

tavdy79
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

My gaydar isn’t all that strong, but the moment I saw that photograph it started pinging so loud I’m pretty sure you guys must have heard it on the other side of the Atlantic!

Emily K
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

tavdy79, you should see the video link I posted and see if the ping goes away or gets louder and faster. I’m guessing the latter.

michaelinnorfolk
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

And worse of all is that the fact that he’s likely a self-hating closet case who has transferred his self-hatred to normal gays who understad that they are just the way God intended them to be. The more someone works against gay rights, the more I question that person’s own sexual and psychological issues.

Timothy Kincaid
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

guys,

let’s not jump to claim this guy as some secret closeted gay guy. Frankly, in my experience gay folks – even closeted gay folks – have compassion and empathy earned by the public reaction to their orientation – even if only suspected – and are less inclined to adamantly insist on rigid orthodoxy.

Besides, do we really want to claim supporters of discrimination as our own?

Priya Lynn
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

Timothy, what about Ted Haggard? He was very anti-gay.

Timothy Kincaid
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

Priya Lynn,

Actually, if you go back and look at his statements, Haggard was less aggressively homophobic than others in his particular branch of religion. Yes, he was theologically and politically anti-gay, but he was nuanced (for example, there is some indication that he supported civil unions or other non-marriage arrangements).

And while there is no question that Haggard is same-sex attracted (at least bisexual in orientation), I really don’t want to claim him as part of my community.

Timothy Kincaid
September 23rd, 2009 | LINK

From 2004, two years before the scandal broke:

“Our primary argument is that marriage is a foundational institution in society that should be protected,” said Rev. Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals in Colorado Springs. Once marriage between a man and woman is protected, legislatures can do what they want to provide benefits for others in civil unions, he said.

leo
September 25th, 2009 | LINK

Wow!

The substance of Cordileone’s actions aside, it takes A LOT (i.e. an impossible amount) of trust from my side to confide in the opinion, formed conscience and overall ability to judge phenomena of people who come up with ad-hom-arguments like “He looks gay and he’s probably in the closet and hates himself…” Utterly weak. Sure, in an era where public opinion and dispute are ruled by emotions, facts are simply unfair. But hey, you even manage to to the double back flip and would rather not have “supporters of discrimination as your own”. Congrats.

P.S.: Non-religious argument: Nature. Unless somebody finds proof that the survival of mankind will be ensured by relationships which generate no offspring. ‘But not all couples are gay, so no problem’. Right! And: Not all couples are hetero and contribute to aforementioned survival, hence no equal status.

And now fire away, clerophobes.

Timothy Kincaid
September 25th, 2009 | LINK

leo,

Your argument is illogical. Whether a same-sex couple has their relationship recognized or not will have absolutely zero impact on whether that couple will “generate offspring”.

And if we are dismissing the civil rights of individuals based on whether they “contribute to aforementioned survival”, then Catholic Bishops should be first in line to have “no equal status”.

Truth Wins Out - Catholic Ex-Gay Group to Offer Less Support, More Politics and Antiscience
January 10th, 2011 | LINK

[...] and Cordileone are board members of Courage, and Cordileone — Box Turtle Bulletin notes – is the father of California’s anti-marriage [...]

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