The view from Billinudgel

Religious persecution
Won’t somebody think of the Roman Catholics?


You have to pity the poor put-upon Roman Catholics. Not since the time of Emperor Nero have they been forced to suffer such relentless persecution.

The entire year has been a constant fight against the ungodly – the insidious humanists, rationalists and secularists (let’s call them what they are: pagan blasphemers) who would deny the Roman Catholics their long-cherished privileges.

It started with Gonski Mark 2: the bonus payments extorted from the desperate government of Julia Gillard under Gonski Mark 1 were to be tapered off, to be apportioned under the guise of needs-based funding. This could mean that some of the absurdly wealthy schools the clerics administer might have to be cut down to size and the loot shared among those who have been previously dudded by the benevolent theocrats. And despite their extravagant and unlikely warnings of higher fees, closing schools and, of course, religious oppression, the government’s antichrist, Simon Birmingham, was standing firm.

But hardly had they time to marshal their righteous anger than they had to confront another threat: the postal plebiscite about same-sex marriage required another crusade to persuade the faithful to strike down those who would interfere with the command for compulsory, heterosexual, monogamous intercourse designed to produce more Catholics. 

But then it got worse, much worse: the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which found plenty of it, and a disproportionate amount among the Catholic clergy, recommended that priests would have to obey the law – not God’s law, or whatever laws the hierarchy deemed convenient, but the law of the land – and break the seal of confessional confidence. Even ordinarily progressive Catholics such as Frank Brennan have said point blank that they would not do it.

Confession is regarded as a conversation with God. God’s response is apparently not required. And, of course, glowering over all this is the fact that the main man himself, His Eminence Cardinal George Pell AC, Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy of the Vatican, has been charged with multiple historical sexual assault offences.

But time is on their side; after all, they outlasted Nero. The apostate Turnbull and his unbelieving mob should be a pushover. So let’s start pushing.

Mungo MacCallum

Mungo MacCallum is a political journalist and commentator. His books include Run Johnny Run, Poll Dancing, and Punch and Judy. Visit his blog, The View from Billinudgel.

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