CNS article on marriage missed the point

November 04, 2011

A Catholic News Service article and its title, “Fight against federal law will undermine marriage” (CR, Sept. 29) is misleading. The Sept. 20 letter from Archbishop Timothy Dolan, head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, to President Obama concerned the ongoing attack on the religious liberties of practicing American Catholics.

The article did not make clear the importance of the quote from the Archbishop’s letter where he wrote it is wrong “to equate opposition to redefining marriage with either intentional or willfully ignorant racial discrimination …” This sentence from the Archbishop’s letter shows why the quote is important: “Nor should a policy disagreement over the meaning of marriage be treated by federal officials as a federal offense – but this will happen if the Justice Department’s latest constitutional theory prevails in court.”

In other words, to be faithful to the teaching of the church would be a crime. The least the article could have done is informed its readers that the archbishop’s letter and the frightening analysis supporting the letter are on line at Placing the article in the middle of the paper and the article not informing its readers of the importance of the issue was misleading. At the least, the title should have been “Fighting federal law which will undermine marriage.”