- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 20, 2000

Pomp and drivel

"Public television commentator, author and liberal icon Bill Moyers continued a tradition of left-wing diatribes at the 2000 University of Texas at Austin commencement held May 20… . Moyers harangued the hapless students and their parents with a trite and formulaic rant against all things American, particularly the free market, a market that happens to pay his speaking fee… .

"Moyers … parroted the favorite liberal myth, 'workers are actually making less money today in real dollars than they did 20 years ago.' In fact, the average American's standard of living has increased 44 percent from 1973 to 1997… .

"Moyers closed with the tediously familiar call to action for the next generation. He bloviated: 'Why am I haranguing you about this on the day of your graduation? Because you've got to do something about it. Our generation has left you unfinished business. America needs a new politics of justice and you have to lead it.' …

"Tellingly, Moyers concluded, 'In the words of that old Transcendentalist benediction: May God keep you safe until the word of your life is finally spoken.' …

"Texas parents got a taste of the intellectually vacuous and completely biased propaganda used to brainwash their sons and daughters. May God keep students and their parents safe until the last windbag commencement speaker of their lives has finished oozing out liberal drivel."

Marc Levin, on "Moyers Delivers Liberal Drivel at UT Commencement," July 11 in Front Page at www.frontpagemag.com

Papal pique

"In a curious way, World Pride, [the July 9] gay demonstration in Rome, was a tribute to Pope John Paul II, one of the demonstrators' principal targets… .

"Requests from the Catholic Church and the Rome city government to defer World Pride until after the Jubilee Year of 2000 were summarily rebuffed. The simple truth is the demonstrations were a provocation. Confronted by this challenge, John Paul knew that he had to say something, for to say nothing would be to suggest that he agreed with World Pride's agenda or was intimidated by its threats.

"And so the pope, at his weekly audience address in St. Peter's Square … stated the obvious: that World Pride was a deliberate 'affront' to the Jubilee of 2000 and the Christian values symbolized by the city of Rome… .

"The pope also spoke of … his 'bitterness' over the refusal of World Pride's leaders to show the slightest sensitivity to the deeply held moral convictions of others… .

"Serious reflection on our embodiedness as male and female leads us, the pope argues, to deep truths about the human condition, and ultimately about God… . Sexual love between husband and wife, the pope proposes, is an act of worship.

"All of which is about as far as it's possible to get from the sexual revolution's concept of sex as a contact sport."

George Weigel, writing on "The Pope Is Not a 'Homophobe'," July 12 in the Wall Street Journal

Tight-fisted Catholics?

"Nearly a quarter of the people in the United States identify themselves as Catholics some 60 million souls and despite most families' humble, immigrant beginnings, Catholics long ago moved to near the top of the American economic mainstream. American Catholic households on the average now earn over $50,000 a year, more than both their Protestant brethren and American households as a whole.

"Still … Catholics do not give either to their church or to other charitable causes at nearly the level that might be expected, given their affluence. This despite clear church teachings that emphasize both denominational and individual responsibility for the poor.

"How bad is it? Catholic households give barely more than 1 percent of their income to their church about half of what most mainline Protestant families give, and far below what Jewish, Mormon and more evangelical Protestant households contribute."

Archdiocese of Washington director of development Gregory Cannon in "Stepping Up to the Collection Plate" in the May/June issue of Philanthropy

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