February 19, 2006

A Retraction, Re: Sen. Brownback and "Fruits"

On January 27, I made the ill-advised decision to believe everything I read in magazines. I posted about a quote by Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) which was taken out of context in an interview with Rolling Stone, so that it appeared that Sen. Brownback had referred to gays and lesbians as "fruits." Rolling Stone has since retracted its "interpretation" of Sen. Brownback's remarks, and I also issued a retraction on January 30 after Sen. Brownback's press office clarified his comments.

But I also wrote something else which, up until now, I have refused to retract:

I also call upon all Catholics to think long and hard about supporting the bid for the presidency that Sen. Brownback is sure to make -- and ask yourselves, reading the article carefully and paying close attention to his words, if he is even really Catholic. I do not see a Catholic in his words, but a fundamentalist pseudo-Christian hiding behind the relative normalcy of the Catholic Church.

It was wrong for me to attack Sen. Brownback's faith and to call into question the authenticity of his conversion, especially as a convert myself who knows how hurtful it can be when other Catholics question your Catholic "credentials" over one issue or another. Sen. Brownback and I received the same sacrament of reconciliation, made the same profession of faith, and received the same Holy Spirit in the sacrament of confirmation. We have since been members of the same Body of Christ, each of us bringing our own gifts to the People of God. I have sinned against him by presuming to judge the authenticity of his faith, and I have sinned against the God of Love by attacking Sen. Brownback so personally and questioning his response to God's call. I retract and apologize for what I said -- and I ask Sen. Brownback, our readers, and God our Father for forgiveness.