In a letter dated Tuesday, conservative leaders demanded that Huffington Post publisher Arianna Huffington apologize for allowing a February 24 column, entitled "The Jesus-Eating Cult of Rick Santorum," to be published on the website’s Comedy page. In the post, Larry Doyle (left), a former writer and producer for The Simpsons, delivered a cluster of vicious allegations, including one charge indicating that Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum’s Catholic religion is a "tactical arm" of the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA).
The conservative leaders' letter continued, "Larry Doyle's recent anti-Catholic screed in the Huffington Post, 'The Jesus-Eating Cult of Rick Santorum,' is bigoted and unacceptable, and a perfect example of 'flame-throwing, name-calling, and simplistic attack dog rhetoric' " that Ms. Huffington promised to avoid when she established the website in 2005. The group added, "[Doyle's] column should be taken off your site, and you should issue an apology for ever publishing such trash."
Epitomizing the Catholic Mass as a "barbaric ritual," Doyle wrote that "a black-robed cleric casts a spell over some bread and wine, transfiguring it into the actual living flesh and blood of their Christ. Followers then line up to eat the Jesus meat and drink his holy blood in a cannibalistic reverie not often seen outside Cinemax." He continued:
Roman Catholics like Santorum take their orders from "the Pope," a high priest who, they believe, chats with God. Santorum has made no secret of his plans to implement his leader's dicta on allowed uses of vaginas and anuses, but has said little about what additional dogma he will be compelled to obey. Will child killers and terrorists go unexecuted on the Pope's say-so? Will we be able to conduct our wars as we see fit, or only the "just" ones? If Santorum is a good Catholic, and he appears to be among the very best, our real president will be Benedict XVI (a "former" Nazi, by the way).
Santorum has also remained silent on his religious organization's various reigns of terror, in which good protestants and others were tortured and killed in imaginatively grisly ways. Even more chilling is a possible connection between the Roman Catholic Church pedophile program and NAMBLA, which I discovered after conducting some research on the internet.
While emphasizing that he’s a former altar boy, Doyle said he was a member of the same sect as Santorum — "Irish-Catholic, the worst kind" [Santorum's ancestry is three-fourths Italian, one-fourth Irish] — and that he read the texts and participated in the rites, but ultimately managed to escape. "Santorum is in much deeper than I ever was," Doyle added. He concluded that he has an "obligation to expose this phony theology," as he reminded readers that the last time Americans elected a Roman Catholic President — John F. Kennedy — it ended "tragically."
The group of conservatives who signed the letter to Ms. Huffington include Brent Bozell, founder of the Media Research Center; Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage; Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council; Brian Burch, president of Catholic Vote; and Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List.
"Bigots like Doyle think they can hurl the most contemptible insults towards Catholics ('Jesus eaters') and when called out, claim it was just a joke. What cowardice. What a double standard," the signers wrote in their letter. "If such an article was written concerning the Islamic or Jewish faith, the public outcry would be overwhelming, and rightly so. But anti-Catholicism is the last acceptable form of bigotry, and The Huffington Post is taking advantage of that bigotry for all it's worth."
Bill Donohue of the Catholic League offered a more forceful opinion: "These people may be threatened by Catholicism, but what gives them the chills are babies. And they really flip over couples like the Santorums and the Palins who don’t abort their disabled children."
The signers claim that the anti-religious rhetoric — Doyle’s commentary, for instance — being dished out by the mainstream media has fed ammo to the Obama administration, allowing the President and federal officials to enact unconstitutional, anti-religious regulations like the ObamaCare contraceptive mandate that forces religious institutions to offer insurance coverage for benefits that violate "their most sacred teachings."
The controversy escalated after Doyle wrote a follow-up on Tuesday refusing to apologize for his previous remarks while admitting that he doesn’t care if he offended anyone. "My criticism took the form of a ridiculously over-the-top broadside against Roman Catholicism, a demonstration of the type of vicious religious ignorance and intolerance I too often see coming from too many so-called Christians, especially Santorum," he wrote in his follow-up post. "I hope (Catholics who are offended) will now think twice before they question the faith of progressive Christians, or Mormons or Muslims. I doubt they will."
But in addition to Doyle’s unapologetic response, the writer published a Twitter post that transmitted the worn-out justification that indicates, "I’m part of the team, so I’m scrutinizing my own religion!"
"I’m not blaspheming anything," the tweet read. "I am describing them as Santorum would, if it suited him. (p.s. I’m Catholic)." [Emphasis added.]