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A new Web site hopes to use the oldest trick in the book to combat the Catholic Church’s opposition to same-sex marriage: A good, old-fashioned forced outing!
At ChurchOuting.org, you’re invited to scroll through a list of every Achbishop, Bishop, and Reverend in the Archdiocese of Washington, zero in on one you know is gay, and then submit your “detailed account of how you know the priest in question is being hypocritical through his silence.” (Alternately, get at them via Twitter or Facebook).
ChurchOuting.Org is the brainchild of self-described “netroots organizing pioneer” Phil Attey. To Attey, publicly detailing your homosexual tryst with a priest is practically a charitable contribution: “Thank you for helping to liberate a closeted gay or romantically involved heterosexual priest from the oppressive anti-marriage equality agenda,” the Web site reads. Wait a minute: Since when was a homosexual witchhunt meant to free people from their political agendas?
The intention of the Web site is not to bust gay priests out of the closet (and their jobs)—-it’s to coerce them into changing their official positions on gay marriage from inside the priesthood. ChurchOuting.org, then, will not technically involve any outings:
Disclaimer: The goal of this site is not to force Catholic priests out of the closet against their will. The goal of this campaign is to aggregate reports of the every gay priest in the Archdiocese, so that we can work with them, one on one, and help them stand up to the the church hierarchy’s stand on this important issue.
So: Attey is going to approach priests he thinks are gay, and warn them that they better stop lobbying against gay people, seeing how gay they are . . . or . . . else? As Queerty notes, it sounds like it’s not gonna work:
What’s the fun in that? There is none! Sure, we get the noble mission: Find the gay priests and then engage in dialogue with them. But no single (gay) priest is going to convince the Archdiocese’s leadership, including topper Don Wuerl—who is threatening to abandon the Church’s social services program if marriage equality legislation passes—to give up on its anti-gay crusade just because a website has the name of an allegedly gay priest.