Chris Matthews is taking the latest child-abuse scandal in the Catholic church hard. He loves the church, this story shakes him to his unreconstructed core. He gathered his kinsmen, Pat Buchanan and Joan Walsh, on Hardball tonight to talk the scandal over. They were all good, though Buchanan struck a slightly parochial note, saying that this just gives ammunition to the "enemies" of the Catholic church. But Matthews dismissed him. He said, I know that, but so what. What should be done? he kept saying. Then at the end he said, emotionally, the children come first, before any concern for the priesthood. The children had no power here.
It was important for Matthews to account for his church in the eyes of the world. Yes, he gathered Catholics who love the church, and no he didn’t talk about celibacy; but he addressed non-Catholics in his closing remarks.
Let Jews understand how the world looks on the Jewish church: it is married to Jim Crow, it defends the imprisonment and abuse of thousands of children, for allegedly throwing rocks, and defends the slaughter of 430 women and children last year in Gaza.
Matthews should get over his historicist respect for Jewish suffering, which allows him to be pious about the Israel lobby, and start talking about the treatment of Palestinians. It’s an American interest.