Anonymous writes, "I just watched an informative video called "Hollywood vs. Catholicism". Isn't it sad how the RCC is misrepresente and even mocked? I always knew this but didn't realize how many films there were out there. Don't worry I am not going to go see the videos." Thanks, Anon! Along these lines, here are excerpts from an article written by L. Brent Bozell, the president of Parents Television Council. I have edited some of the descriptions and quotes from the TV shows because of their vulgarity. The article, "Anti-Catholic Entertainment", is dated March 21, 2003.
"Oftentimes, drama and comedy writers shape events like clay to fit their own Hollywood prejudices. These prejudices can accumulate into a toxic pattern. The year 2002 was a terrible year for the Catholic Church in the United States, and a year in which some church officials deserved everyone's harshest rebukes. While the overwhelming majority of Catholics -- and particularly their parish priests -- were not just innocent of abusive crimes, but strived to be good, the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights noticed that they were all still cannon fodder for dark dramatic scripts, nasty comedy plots and tasteless jokes.
"This is more than broad religious bigotry. This is specific anti-Catholicism. The league reports that since September 11, 2001, no television dramas have painted Muslims with a broad brush as a religion full of terrorists and haters. But Catholics weren't that lucky -- they saw not only their priests mocked, but their beliefs mocked on TV shows last year.
"The examples are too numerous. The CBS drama "Family Law" featured an episode with a priest who found he'd fathered a child before taking his vows. As the lawyers on the show debated whether the priest should now raise the child, Tony Danza's character suggested, "Maybe the kid would be better off without all that superstitious (stuff messing) her up."
"The thankfully short-lived ABC series "The Job" premiered with a detective dressed as a priest and a stripper dressed as a nun. The "hot nun" was shown disrobing in front of a set of detectives... The "priest" abused the confessional by squeezing information out of a thief who stole from the collection basket. A monsignor was then portrayed as caring more about the sanctity of his own reputation than of the confessional.
"Imagine a prime-time ABC episode dedicated to a stripping rabbi or a dishonest imam. All one can do is imagine, because it would never -- could never -- happen. That would be wrong.
"TV producer-writer David E. Kelley liked the Catholic scandal grist so much that he thrived on it with two episodes of ABC's "The Practice" and another couple of episodes of Fox's "Boston Public." ...
"HBO's "Sex in the City" ... Last summer, the series featured this anti-Catholic poison in one plot: the boyfriend of red-headed single mom Miranda insists on baptizing the child to reassure his Irish Catholic mother, who's stereotypically depicted as not only afflicted by rigid religious prejudices, but also as marinated in alcohol. Miranda, as one of the show's so-hip female leads, demanded there be no mention of Christianity in the sacrament.
"This makes no sense, but this is Hollywood, where the ridiculous is allowed. The central character of the show then joked that Miranda was surprised the priest was so flexible, but 'the truth is, in these troubled times, the Catholic Church is like a desperate 36-year-old single woman, willing to settle for anything it can get.' It's sad that HBO is so desperate to punch Catholics in the teeth for a lame giggle.
"Faithful Catholics took blows below the belt from standup comedians, too. On CBS, David Letterman jokingly compared Catholics to the Mafia: 'The Gambino crime family will probably fall apart. That will make the largest crime organization in the city ... the Catholic Church!'...
"In a separate category of meanness was the unmissed Bill Maher, who was still blasting away in 2002 on ABC's 'Politically Incorrect'... : 'I have hated the Church way before anyone else'...
"Students learn in history class that America in the 19th century was rife with anti-Catholic bigotry. It's time they're told it's still alive and kicking in the 21st century. Just turn on the TV."