Maureen Dowd is plumbing new depths of wrongness. In her latest Times column, she attempted something difficult: portraying Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin as a savior and Pope Benedict XVI as a monster — without bringing any facts to bear. The normally calm Michael Sean Winters of the National Catholic Reporter had the misfortune of stumbling across her piece, and went off:
…the record of Pope Benedict in dealing with the sex abuse crisis is far better than that of his predecessor and deserves a better account than Dowd’s skewed vision permits. Again, such complications would take away from the simple, Manichean worldview that gives her little morality play its sense of clarity. But, facts, too, provide clarity and Dowd, as a journalist, should concern herself with them. Instead, she rants. I am glad she has found an archbishop she likes and admires. Perhaps, once he is done trying to help the Church of Ireland rediscover its soul the good Archbishop of Dublin can help Ms. Dowd rediscover hers. But, good luck finding it.
Yet the (soulless?) Ms. Dowd isn’t the only one to blame. As Winters points out in his post, her article contains a number of plain, simpler errors of fact about the Church. It would be interesting to see if anyone could get a correction or two out of the Times editors.
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