Progressive Media Pontificates on Right to Free Speech While Trampling It
WiSJ Disses the Catholic Church, Yet Again
Wisconsin State Journal Publishes a Call to Prayer?
The fact that Wisconsin’s State Journal would more appropriately be named the Wisconsin Progressive Journal is not news to many.
But a recent headline in the Wisconsin State Journal calling for prayer, for first amendment rights and for Jesus, is truly worth noticing. Chris Rickert provided us last week with such an invocation with this headline:
Praying that Bishop has a First Amendment Come-to-Jesus Moment
Yes, it’s pretty clear that this call to prayer by Chris Rickert is not genuine and represents an attempt at sarcasm. The headline also represents a number of ironies worth mentioning:
- Disrespectful use of the name of Jesus constitutes blasphemy, insulting not only the God who is a bit more powerful than Chris Rickert, but also the 80% of Americans and Wisconsinites who believe in Him. Nice job, WiSJ, alienate your audience from the outset!
- The headline calls for the protection of First Amendment rights, of free speech. Coming from progressives, who aggressively silence all who disagree with them with name-calling and accusations of hate speech, and who try to ban the mention of Christianity from any public forum, this is amusing.
- The timing of the headline is also highly ironic. Chris Rickert calls for freedom of speech immediately after the Wisconsin State Journal withheld freedom of speech from this conservative Catholic, by blocking me from discussion forums in which I was pointing out the slanted reporting of the WiSJ on the Catholic Church.
Nice Job, Chris Rickert- diss Jesus, diss Christians, diss the Catholic Church and Madison’s Bishop, while pontificating on free speech and simultaneously denying free speech in WiSJ discussion forums to those who are not progressives.
Blind Eye Towards Real Catholic News
Why was this Catholic blocked from discussion in the WiSJ?
I cannot speak to what motivated the WiSJ to block me last week.
I can only describe the discussion in which I participated, and leave you to draw your own conclusions.
During November so far, the Wi SJ, was again, somewhat clumsily, mis-portraying the Catholic Church. WiSJ failed to report the news on Nov 17 that Pope Francis reiterated the definition of marriage as being between one man and one woman-
“Children have a right to grow up in a family with a father and a mother capable of creating a suitable environment for the child’s development and emotional maturity. That is why I stressed in the Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium that the contribution of marriage to society is ‘indispensable’; that it ‘transcends the feelings and momentary needs of the couple’ (n. 66). And that is why I am grateful to you for your Colloquium’s emphasis on the benefits that marriage can provide to children, the spouses themselves, and to society.”
He continues, “May this colloquium be an inspiration to all who seek to support and strengthen the union of man and woman in marriage as a unique, natural, fundamental and beautiful good for persons, families, communities, and whole societies.”
In the present media-generated atmosphere of questioning Pope Francis’ “real” position on various Church teachings, this support of traditional marriage was an important story. Unfortunately Pope Francis’ statements did not fall in with the media’s storyline, which tries to portray the new Pope as supportive of the progressive agenda, despite his repeated assurances that he is a faithful son of the Church.
So this important statement of the Pope’s position on marriage, which would represent real news on religion, of interest to the majority of Wisconsin, was ignored by the WiSJ.
Publishing Dissident Ripples Instead
Yet the Wisconsin State Journal found the time and the space in the last few weeks for FIVE articles on Catholicism, all of which provided a platform and lent credibility to minority dissidents who oppose Catholic teaching:
- In Letter to Pope, Progressive Catholics List Grievances with Madison Diocese – Nov 10, by Doug Erickson- the WiSJ featured 96 LGBT and Call to Action members (96 out of diocese of 270,000, or 0.03 of 1% of Catholics in the Diocese of Madison) because they wrote a dissident letter to the Pope. It should be noted that numerous faithful Catholic groups and individuals who support of Catholic teaching routinely write letters to the Pope, letters which are never featured in the WiSJ.
- Stubborn Bishop Morlino Causes Divisiveness– Nov 13, by John Murphy – WiSJ published a letter in which one man calls out Bishop Morlino for being stubborn and divisive (for Bishop’s failure to promote John Murphy’s vision of Catholicism and for the Bishop’s adherence to Church teaching).
- Catholic Church is big Enough for All of Us – Nov 14, by Jeanne Burger, WiSJ published a letter in which one dissident, member of the heretical Call to Action and supporter of (non-Catholic) Holy Wisdom Monastery, challenged the Church to include her heretical doctrines because the Church should be “big enough” (to include error?).
- Bishop Robert Morlino Halts Speech, Changes Venue after Tangle with Reporter – Nov 21, by Doug Erickson, in which the WiSJ covered the handful of non-students who came to stir up controversy during Bishop Morlino’s invited talk to UW Platteville Catholic students. The dissidents brought a media photographer, signs, and hummed their favorite controversial hymn, clearly trying to stir up controversy, which the Bishop avoided by moving the talk to a privately owned location. The WiSJ colluded with the Platteville Journal by publicizing this and giving a Wisconsin-wide platform to 7 or 8 Catholic dissidents. Meanwhile, these publications routinely fail to report on pro-life activities in Madison which are attended by hundreds and even thousands of Catholics and Christians.
- Praying that Bishop Has a First Amendment Come-to-Jesus Moment – Nov 23, by Chris Rickert, in which WiSJ’s Chris Rickert calls out Bishop Morlino for not having welcomed the Platteville dissidents with their Platteville media supporter in the UW Platteville confrontation that Bishop Morlino managed to defuse and avoid. Rickert’s headline, claiming to pray that the Catholic Bishop of Madison would have a “Come -to-Jesus Moment” and demanding that the Bishop welcome those who came to disrupt his talk because of the First Amendment, speaks for itself as far as maturity is concerned.
As described above, the WiSJ omitted a major story on Pope Francis and marriage, but focused 5 news items on individuals and minority dissidents who want to change the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Either WiSJ’s journalists do not understand the subject they are writing about, or they are misrepresenting the Catholic Church in the WiSJ intentionally. Neither alternative is very flattering.
I was in the process of pointing these things out in discussion forums at the WiSJ when my posts were suddenly blocked.
Professionalism (and any notion of free speech or of tolerance) had completely been abandoned by the Wisconsin State Journal.
Invoking the First Amendment While Trashing It
Thus the invocation of the First Amendment by WiSJ’s Chris Rickert in his Nov 23rd article was particularly ironic in the light of WiSJ’s own blocking of my freedom of speech last week.
Progressives seem to advocate freedom of speech selectively- freedom of speech for progressives only- for dissidents, for minorities, and for rabble-rousing local media who seek to stir up controversy, as they tried to do at the Platteville talk.
However, progressives deny First Amendment rights to Bishop Morlino, actively hindering his ability to speak to his flock. They also deny faithful Catholics like me, who support Catholic teaching, the right to be heard.
Wi SJ seems to operate via the progressive motto: Freedom of speech for me, but not for you!
Hate speech labels for all who disagree with the progressive agenda.
Now I’m Unblocked…
Now, several days later, my participation in WiSJ discussion has been unblocked- due to what reason, I am not certain.
Perhaps the WiSJ suddenly had, to borrow Chris Rickert’s phrase, a “Let’s Respect the First Amendment Moment.”
More likely, they realized that word could get out if they manipulate their discussion forums.
When will the Wisconsin State Journal start publishing the truth about my Church, the Catholic Church?
Unfortunately, progressives don’t seem to speak or publish truth.
Their Alinsky tactics encourage “lack of transparency” (i.e. lies) to fool the “stupid people” of America into voting for the progressive left.
They specialize in attacking those who oppose them, those who represent reason and morality, with lies and misrepresentations.
Their opponents include, among other good people, the Catholic Church.
I’m not holding my breath to see the WiSJ publish the truth about the Catholic Church.
- Setting the Record Straight I
- Setting the Record Straight II
- Wisconsin State Journal Reports on Bishop Morlino’s Ten Year Anniversary in Madison
- Catholic Belief Now Defined by Media and Sociologists?
- Grading Wisconsin State Journal Report on Bishop Morlino’s 10 Year Anniversary in Madison
- Doug Erickson and the Wisconsin State Journal Are Up to Their Old Tricks or Catholic Bashing in Wisconsin
- Diocese of Madison Prohibits Field Trips to Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery – or – Progressive Guide to Attacking Catholics