Yet another conservative, Catholic group thinks Georgetown isn’t Catholic enough

Yes, it’s happening again. Georgetown is being criticized as “too liberal” by an incredibly conservative and Catholic group. This time, GU Pride’s OUTober event came under sharp criticism in a hilariously terrible video called “The ‘Smoke of Satan’ at Georgetown University on Coming Out Day.”

According to Tyler Pierce (COL ’15), one of the students Vox recognized in the video (no, they couldn’t even get the blurring and voice distortion right) the two filming were very young high school students who did not identify themselves, only saying they were working on a class project.

Anna Geduldig (COL ’16) was another student Vox recognized in the video. She said the students were incredibly persistent, and before and after being interviewed she said she did not want to be in the video.

“They started to … use philosophical jargon and complicate their questions,” she said. “They were creepy. Between their creepiness and their complete misuse of terminology, they really lacked credibility.”

What makes this criticism especially interesting is that the students and the conservative, Catholic group they were filming for think they know better than the pope himself. The Pope has said that while the church can express its opinions, it has no right to interfere in the spiritual life of gays and lesbians, in addition to not judging them. According to CNN, this does not “break with Catholic doctrine or policy,” rather it is a shift towards engagement.

These two high school boys think they are more ardent defenders of Catholic doctrine than the leader of the Catholic church. On the Tradition, Family, and Property Student Action’s site, a project by the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, the students posted the video and wrote about their experiences making it.

“With the steady promotion of the sinful homosexual lifestyle at Georgetown University, the smoke of Satan appears to be enveloping the once-respectable institution with the noxious fumes of the sexual revolution,” reads the description under the video. Is it just Vox or does this seem to actually contradict Catholic doctrine as Pope Francis describes it while Georgetown is, in fact, defending it?

That’s not the only illogical aspect of this spectacle. Pierce and Margaux Nielsen (COL ’15), who was also shown in the video with him, said that the students’ often used arguments that were nonsensical. They said that the students would ask them that if a man can marry a man, couldn’t a man marry a boy or a plant?

By discussing the basic logic of consent (and inanimate objects), Pierce and Nielsen believe they successfully countered the boys’ argument. They said that in the video, the boys cut off anything that made them sound like they had a good argument, and the voice changer served more to make them sound silly rather than obscure their identity. “They were egging us on,” Pierce said.

Such a video was also taken at Brown University, where the TFP Student Action site claimed that Brown University students responded with “violence” to one of their “peaceful protests.” Vox is not surprised the group considers holding rainbow flags, logical arguments, and ripping offensive pamphlets to be violence. Even YouTube removed the video from their site. (Thanks, Google!)

As GU Pride elections approach, wait for the Satanic smoke to rise from the towers of Healy to indicate that they’ve chosen their next leader.

Photo: Georgetown Voice

29 Comments on “Yet another conservative, Catholic group thinks Georgetown isn’t Catholic enough

  1. This article is more than just a little bit biased in favor of homosexuality. Could its author find one single student who follows the actual teaching of the Catholic Church per the official Catechism of the Catholic Church, which states that unnatural vice is “intrinsically disordered”? CNN is hardly a credible authority of Faith and morals.

    Also, the video of the TFP Student Action campaign for traditional marriage at Brown University shows how one of their volunteers was spat upon in the face by a same-sex “marriage” supporter. According to the law, that constitutes assault and is illegal. What about the fellow who tries to destroy the banner? Is that also to be construed as a act of benevolent tolerance? Get real, Vox.

  2. As an alumni of Georgetown University I’m quite disappointed in the tone and position of this article. The author distorts the position of the Church and comments made by the Holy Father to make a case that somehow celebrating a homosexual lifestyle is synonymous with outreach and engagement. This is absolutely false.

    Its also rather weak to use biased, secular news sources like CNN when presenting information related to faith. Secular news either has an anti-Catholic bias or doesn’t have the expertise to present these matters.

    A Catholic institution must uphold Catholic teaching. Homosexual acts and a homosexual lifestyle go against the teachings of the Church. Ministering to, praying for and having compassion for individuals with homosexual inclinations is important as well, but the goal isn’t to “celebrate” the lifestyle.

    This is part of a larger issue regarding universities and Catholic identity. A Catholic institution cannot official sanction this type of event and still call itself Catholic. It must choose. To be Catholic, the official position must be in line with the faith. Dissenting opinions may be tolerated as seen as opportunities for engagement, but they can’t be sanction or endorsed (tacitly or explicitly) by the institution. If it wants to do so then it certainly can, but cannot identify as Catholic.

    Finally, I COMMEND THESE BRAVE YOUNG MEN! They are going into the Lion’s den to present an authentic position related to their faith. If more high school students behaved in this way our country would be much better off. God bless them and I hope they continue to expose the hipocracy that takes place at institutions that want to call themselves Catholic but are afriad of being bullied by pro-homosexual activists or being labeled as “close-minded”.

  3. I’ll happily debate–in a video, live, or in text–any of GU’s students or professors on the legitimacy of homosexuality, or on the right to have a pro-homosexual event on a Catholic campus. If logic is on the side of “Vox Populi” and its ilk, then allow them to prove it in a neutral medium, rather than on its own website.

  4. It makes me swell with pride that Georgetown and Vox have the capacity to piss off the people like those who wrote this article and wrote those first three comments. Hoya saxa!

  5. The only thing funnier than the trolling triumvirate above, are the actual comments on the TFP Student action site.
    And, as a Catholic, I feel it absolutely necessary to point out that these betches cray.

  6. I think its interesting that:
    1. The negative commentors have chosen to remain anonymous. If you feel so strongly about your position and if you are a student (the first) and a Catholic (the second) then write your name. I did.

    2. You offer no constructive arguments, nothing to defend a position that equates this event with CAtholic identiity. Its likely because you have none.

    3. No one is forced to believe anything just because they attend Georgetown or any other Catholic school. People of all faiths and beliefs are welcome. What the institution cannot do is endorse positions contrary to its faith.

  7. The Catholicism position on Homosexuality it’s clearly stated on its Catechism.

    Chastity and homosexuality

    2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity,141 tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.”142 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

    2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

    2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

    And if you read the full transcript of Pope Francis interview you can see if never says other wise.

    The essence here is to go against the sin not the sinner, the Catholic Church goes against saying homosexuality as culturally and socially ok, it recognizes its existence and ask for those struggling with it to remain chaste, in the very same way as it ask unmarried men a women, as it the same way it ask married couples not to use contraceptives, you might agree with it or not, but you can’t not change the fact those are the rules and if you’re a Catholic or a Catholic based institutions you’re called to follow them, that’s all.

  8. On a semantic level, Georgetown actually doesn’t “endorse” GU Pride events; they just provide “access to benefits” per a 1989 settlement based on D.C. anti-discrimination law.

    Otherwise, this does not strike me as a particularly “sexual” event, so I don’t actually understand where the conflict with the catechism is. In any case, the catechism is a work of human beings created in the last 20 years. Who’s to say that revealed knowledge won’t cause it to change in the future?

  9. The Vox article does little to present an accurate overview of the Catholic position, as already noted. Instead, Echarte relies on ridicule toward those making the film, primarily on the basis of the video’s admittedly overstated title (no doubt intended to provoke dialogue). A lack of credibility has not been established, only a complaint about the technical means of protecting the identities of the speakers (something the Vox reporter fails to do). The Vox article also quotes a spokesperson for the “Coming Out day”group who believed his position not fully conveyed in the video. If the “Coming Out” spokesperson said his ideas had not been sufficiently expressed in the video, yet the representatives filmed in the video are given several opportunities to define the purpose of their event and the video does not break off the interview in the midst. Moreover, the Vox article represented yet another opportunity for the “Coming Out Day” representative to fully present his position. Finally, Encharte criticizes those making the video for using “philosophical jargon.” While the video includes phrases common to Catholic doctrine that merit further explanation, these are terms necessary to understanding the Catholic position, and the assumption was probably that those taking classes at a Catholic college should be familiar with such terms. Re-watching the video, I notice that the spokesperson for the “Coming Out” day is the one to introduce the terms “individual revelation” and “hierarchy.” The person conducting the interview points out that homosexuality is considered “intrinsically disordered” by the Catholic Church. According to Bishop Arthur Serratelli of Paterson, N.J., head of the committee on doctrine, “Homosexual acts are never morally acceptable. Such acts never lead to happiness,” he said, because they are “intrinsically disordered,” meaning they are not directed to the bonds of marriage and the goal of procreation that are “part of God’s design. But having an inclination that is disordered does not in any way diminish human worth.” Encharte might have gone to the trouble to include such definitions in her article, and thereby moving toward genuine dialogue. Instead, the Vox article demonstrates the “Mutz paradox.” College is…not just a place to gain information and to acquire skills, colleges also provide indoctrination in political correctness. According to a group called FIRE(Foundation for Individual Rights Education).Lack of real dialogue with those holding divergent opinions is so common, in fact, that it has been coined the Mutz paradox, after Diana Mutz’s book, Hearing the Other Side. The higher a crowd’s educational level, it turns out, the less willing they are to hear divergent views.

    Only talking within like-minded social networks is one thing, but actually perpetuating a viewpoint in the name of even-handed or balanced journalism is another. Journalists from the Washington Post and The New York Times, for instance, admit to submitting editorial veto power to the power base. In another example named in “Mainstream Media Censors the News,” a journalist admitted that CNN had become a voice for a 3rd world dictator, taking his money for ads and serving as a vehicle for his state-sponsored propaganda. The three comments below the Vox article offer corrective details as to the Catholic position on homosexuality.

  10. I’d like to say that the video and “Smoke of Satan” article are completely ridiculous, but this Vox article is pretty ridiculous too.

  11. Good points from Faith! The question isn’t whether Georgetown is Catholic enough. The question is whether it is Catholic! Either you follow all of her teachings or don’t. And let’s not start splitting hairs with “oh we don’t endorse homosexuality. We just provide access for people to express themselves…” Oh please!
    Yes kiddos. I know you go to Georgetown and that somehow being there spending all of someone else’s money ($24k+ annually) to educate yourselves there makes you feel intellectually superior to others and that just breathing the air at Georgetown (or any college campus for that matter) will raise your IQ a few points. But let’s “get real” and try to stick with logic and not emotionalism.
    As a matter of fact, as students of higher learning, you really should demand more reasoning from both yourselves and your professors (especially given all the “moolah” spent to go there). Don’t allow yourselves to be spoon fed that “truth is relative.”
    In the end, if you really feel strongly about your opinion, why not invite the group that caused you such gastro-intestinal distress to the college for an open CIVIL debate? Put your indignation and pride away and have a mediated discourse.

  12. Ohhh goodness please somebody invite them to a debate. I would pay big money to watch TFP try to debate.

  13. Hello all! Welcome to Vox. I see most of you have not visited this blog before considering how shocked you are by both the content and the tone. Anyways, commenting is generally reserved for trolling. This is the highest form of argument one can use on this site. I suggest you google search “trolling” and practice a bit before bringing all your TFP friends to comment. They would simply be wasting their time, as I can guarantee that those essays above are being skipped entirely for their lack of wit, logic, and entertainment. I hope you will stay and read more posts to educate yourselves on the art of trolling and, as a free bonus, learn about basic human rights.

    Don’t mess with Georgetown

  14. @Faith “According to Bishop Arthur Serratelli of Paterson, N.J., head of the committee on doctrine, “Homosexual acts are never morally acceptable. Such acts never lead to happiness,” he said, because they are “intrinsically disordered,” meaning they are not directed to the bonds of marriage and the goal of procreation that are “part of God’s design.”

    I don’t know, gay sex makes me pretty happy. But I am after all a queer chicano relativist that still celebrates la Virgen de Guadalupe. So meh.

  15. I just want to let all of you who have a same sex attraction know that God has a plan for your life and He wants you to become great saints!

  16. Oh Dear Don’t Mess with Georgetown, please enlighten us all wit-lacking, dull-writing, naive-thinking, out-space-and-time Catholics , since apparently you might think we still live in the dark ages any way.

    I find interesting that rather to generate actual discussion you are looking for “entertaining” comments on such a serious matter as homosexuality.

    The idea on providing insight on this piece it’s to clarify things, the articles states that somehow Pope Francis condones homosexual relationships, nothing far from the truth, he brings to the table that we must remember the Cathechism of the Church that clearly states that those with homosexual tendency should not be discriminated: –” Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.”

    There’s also quite “popular” to say that the Catholic Church is “homophobic” also far from truth, the Church is against the promotion of homosexual relationships and intercourse as acceptable; some people thing otherwise, that’s fine, but let people decide for their own! There’s two sides to this, let people hear it, know it and then choose.

    Trolling? for such a serious matter, no thank you, feel free to troll us; that’s fine it has been like that for the past +2000 years, we had adjusted to it.

    Take care and God bless!

  17. @Jesus Chavez

    Now that’s what I’m looking for! See I learned from what you said and it was witty too. Thank you for giving us a balanced, educational, and interesting comment. I might still disagree with you but at least we can have a conversation. (Those were sincere statements). Also this post does not insinuate in any way that Pope Francis condones relationships. It says that he has, in the past, said that the Church does not have the right to interfere with the lives of gay and lesbian people and that it should not judge them for it. Your quote says exactly what the post is saying.

  18. I agree with the comment that the Church is reaching out to All people, but that doesn’t mean all behavior is good for a person’s well being. We do not say go ahead and engage in self-cutting because that’s how you’re inclined. ( I use this analogy as another action that can be harmful.) What strikes me about this incident is the administration’s role of censorship on the campus of Georgetown University copied by students, including those writing for the student paper, once the bastian for free speech and anti-censorship. Further comments are here.

  19. And now we’ve compared homosexuality to self-harm. When did we leave Earth again?

  20. @Faith

    What the fuck are you talking about? In what way is Vox inhibiting free speech? I mean, look at this comment thread. Vox is letting all you wackos say whatever you want about sexual morality without censorship.

  21. Let’s see. On this thread, we have:

    1. A reporter who is clueless about my position on homosexuality putting a bunch of words in my mouth.

    2. A number of well-intentioned but painfully sincere people who have the teaching right, but seem to have lost track of the whole “Christian charity” thing in their desire to berate a bunch of college students on a blog that, um, is not exactly known for intellectual stimulation. Love ya, Vox, but let’s be honest here.

    No wonder that other guy decided to hang up his subcinctorium so early. But I forgive you all anyway.

  22. a) I remember TFP from my own undergraduate days, when they stood outside Healy Gates dressed to the nines holding those tall, red banners. So jaunty! Never a hair out of place. Don Draperesque.

    b) It might be considered a cheap shot by some, but be they left or right wing, liberal or conservative, high & holy or low & profane, everyone I have ever met who fixates on gay people has wound up either coming out of the closet, or showing his hand long enough to confirm that he is indeed in there. From the bro who cracks gay jokes or accuses you of being gay for someone, to the crusader who insists on saying “homosexual” instead of gay — I’ve never seen the pattern break. Straight people of any religious or political persuasion never think about gay people as much as these closet cases do. I wish the pain they were in didn’t need to cause so many other people pain, but I hope they find some peace.

  23. As you say, a cheap shot and not really relevant to the question of what the Catholic Church teaches about LGBTQIA. I do think The Crowd’s call for a debate is in order. With this qualification: provisions must be made so the debate is fair to both those representing “Coming Out” day and those who can explain Catholic doctrine. The editors of Vox could surely call for a forum for authentic debate rather than the administrative totalitarianism that seeks to escort TFP–or any who would question the current progressive agenda–off campus. Instead of an echo chamber for the administration–a kind of mind-meld medium– why not challenge Georgetown to provide a public space for genuine dialogue on a much-debated national issue?
    Now that would be a novelty on campus–see the trend as discussed by Greg Lukianoff of Stanford

  24. I wasn’t trying to win an argument, just pass on a little inherited wisdom.

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