Chicago Cardinal Defends Comparison of Gays to KKK

Chicago Cardinal Francis George, who last week compared the Gay Pride parade to a march by the KKK, defended his remarks on the Church's website yesterday:

GeorgeThe Chicago Gay Pride Parade has been organized and attended for many years without interfering with the worship of God in a Catholic church. When the 2012 Parade organizers announced a time and route change this year, it was apparent that the Parade would interfere with divine worship in a Catholic parish on the new route. When the pastor's request for reconsideration of the plans was ignored, the organizers invited an obvious comparison to other groups who have historically attempted to stifle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church. One such organization is the Ku Klux Klan which, well into the 1940's, paraded through American cities not only to interfere with Catholic worship but also to demonstrate that Catholics stand outside of the American consensus. It is not a precedent anyone should want to emulate.

It is terribly wrong and sinful that gays and lesbians have been harassed and subjected to psychological and even physical harm. These tragedies can be addressed, however, without disturbing the organized and orderly public worship of God in a country that claims to be free. I am grateful that all parties concerned resolved this problem by moving the Parade's start time so as not to conflict with the celebration of Mass that Sunday.

The Catholic leader has so far resisted calls for his resignation.

Writes journalist Rex Wockner, in a note received by Towleroad:

"The Chicago gay pride parade attracts 800,000 people. It proceeds through a heavily congested, dense urban cityscape. Absolutely positively everything in its wake is disrupted. What on earth makes one service at one church on one day special enough to change the start time of a gigantic parade? Let alone excuses comparing 'the gay liberation movement' with the 'Ku Klux Klan'? No, cardinal, the gay pride committee is not targeting the Catholic church. 'The gay liberation movement' is not targeting the Catholic church either. Your church building is affected in no way any different from hundreds upon hundreds of buildings for miles in all directions (Lake Michigan notwithstanding). You really do need to get out more."


  1. mike128 says

    If the catholic church actually respected LGBT people, then the Pride parade marching by wouldn’t be an issue. The fact that this cardinal wants out to be silent while he celebrates his “divine mass” is certainly symbolic. I grew up in the catholic church, and haven’t heard anything that sounds remotely divine from a member of the church hierarchy for as long as I can remember. (Though I do know many great catholics – sadly the church itself *is* out of step.)

  2. says

    The day this man hits 75, the mandatory retirement age, he ought to be removed from his position, his comments point out he is nothing more that a church appointed and supported bigot.

  3. says

    Why does the flailing of men that believe and worship nonsense warrant so much media attention? When these bad drag queens squeak out a bigoted complaint the blogs and news can’t wait to spread their words. They monitor the movie rating system and so many political leaders actions… I just don’t get their importance outside of their closed little churches.

  4. mike/ says

    @LK – i fear that his doing what he did will ensure that his mandatory resignation is not accepted by Benedict; i also can make the assumption that it was orchestrated for this purpose; i think ‘Frank’ can be a bit of a drama queen, errr, i mean sycophant…

  5. JT says

    What a great christmas gift! Please, please, please keep talking, cardinal. Every time you open your mouth you reconfirm the poison of hate that is inherent in your theology.

  6. Paul says

    Left out of Cardinal Crybaby’s argument is the fact that the old parade route was just as disruptive to his weekly child molestation coverup session. The old route went up Halsted Street and down Broadway, with the street his House of Sin sits on–Belmont–in between. His worshipers were thus boxed in both sides and would have had difficulty getting to the church for mass during previous parades unless they were coming from the south.

  7. MSPBI says

    So, what does the Cardinal think about the Twin Cities Marathon, which passes directly in front of the Cathedral of St. Paul (just prior to the finish line) every year? Since it also “interfere(s) with divine worship in a Catholic parish” (believe me, it does), it must also wish to “stifle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church” like that other organization – the Ku Klux Klan.

    Read more:

  8. MichaelD1026 says

    When Cardinal George’s rebuttal to a complaint sent to him appeared in my inbox this am, I saw red. His faulty reasoning that because the organizers didn’t bow to HIS wishes to reroute the parade, they somehow invite comparisons to the KKK? “Attempt to stifle the catholic church”? Really, tax-exempt status and more money than they know what to do with, so they join Mormons to throw cash at the PropH8 supporters! Poor, widdle catholic church.

  9. anon says

    His reasoning is faulty for some very big reasons. To wit, the whole of US society is built around the free time away from work available on weekends to attend religious ceremonies. It’s this exemption from the workday regime that empowers him so as weekday church attendance is minimal. So, the irony is that the free time allotted for church attendance also makes it the proper time for parades and other secular activities and helps minimize their impact on society. Weekends have become a magnet drawing in activities that give people a “second life”. Also, are there no other parades? Has he complained about any other parade?

  10. ophu says

    While I detested his comparison, he does have sort of a point. There’s no need for the parade to disrupt a service which needs quiet to proceed. We must be willing to give a little if we want our movement to continue making progress.

  11. chiman says

    Yes cardinal George, our hometown has almost 10 million residents who “claim to be free” and Chicagoans exercise that freedom in 10 million different ways. That fear in your voice is the sound of the epic failure of your church to serve its people. I guarantee you on Pride Sunday there will NOT be 800,000 people in all Chicago’s Catholic churches and there never will be on any given Sunday. I’m certain on Pride Sunday Jesus would rather hang out with us on Halsted St and not your phony righteous crew in robes.

  12. Paul B. says

    My trip to Remulak to consume “mass” quantities with francis george has been postponed. Beldar & I will be taking Connie to Chicago instead for fun & games with the earthling. We’ll be bringing him a nice hat for the holidays!

  13. Caliban says

    Pardon me if I’m wrong, but I thought I read that the “gay community” didn’t have a THING to do with the changes to the parade’s route. The changes were made at the request of the CITY so the parade would cause fewer traffic problems. It seems very unlikely the parade organizers went to the city and said, “We want the parade to detour HERE so we can screw up church services for Cardinal George.”

    Cardinal George is just in a snit because Illinois Catholics are shutting down their adoption services (they’re being moved to private services), so his favorite ministry, The Fish In A Barrel Home For Boys, will be closing its doors.

  14. says

    The powerful Catholic Church in Chicago has been a force for hate much too long. In the Movie “Magic Christian” with Ringo Starr… There is a line in it that asked the Question about how to win a war game. “When will there be Peace?”

    A. “When the last Cathedral is not standing.”

    The same goes for here in Chicago and all the Vatican franchises everywhere!

  15. Chris says

    I do not see him complaining that the Columbus Day parade or the St Patrick’s Day parade “..proceeds through a heavily congested, dense urban cityscape. Absolutely positively everything in its wake is disrupted.” Could he be upset that Gay Pride parade attracts of approximately 800,000 attendees and the St Patrick’s Day parade only attracts approximately 350,000?

  16. jack says

    I know the catholic church from the inside. I was a Franciscan brother studying for the priesthood for 6 years. Later , i was a social studies teacher and guidance counselor in a catholic high school for 35 years. The church is filled with good gay priests and brothers, most of whom spend there lives in the service of their fellow man. However, at the top there is a hierarchy that wants to deny all of that good service. What they do is hide the evil that a few pedaphiles and “chicken hawks” do to innocent children. A priest friend of mine used to say that the Catholic church was like a bucket of stagnant water ;the scum rises to the top.

  17. says

    Boy, is the Cardinal’s logic off — first, though — he has a gay nephew, his sister’s kid. And he says of that man: “he’s a fine man.” But he says too of all gays, we are “intrinsically evil.” So which is it, sir? Evil or Fine? Can we truly be both? Can your own flesh and blood, your nephew, truly be both? How do you speak to him at family gatherings, presuming you are invited, while thinking he is “evil”? I find that so very odd, and far from your pastoral mission to accept even the least of God’s creatures. You apparently think we are less than that, sadly.

    And then, the KKK is all about a power trip to exclude people from society (geez, sounds like the Cardinal and his Church,) and the gay rights movement is Jesus based: “Love they neighbor as thyself.” We sir, have begged for inclusion — which is 100% opposite from the KKK’s preaching of exclusion. You are historically illiterate, apparently, and unable to think logically about such a simply thing called “comparisons of like things.” The Church and the KKK have far more in common with each other than any gay group has with either of your pointy hat crews.

    And what street then would you recommend we march down? For it would seem that some church is on every street — and does that mean you would have us take a convoluted merry-go-round of a route so as to never sully the sidewalks we pay for on which your churches sit tax free? Egad, sir, you are a confused man.

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