In the most recent episode of HBO’s alleged comedy “Curb Your Enthusiasm” the central character portrayed by writer Larry David is depicted using the bathroom in a Catholic home and splatters urine on a painting of Jesus without cleaning it up. A Catholic woman goes to the bathroom, sees the liquid on the picture and believes that Jesus is crying. She calls to her mother, who joins her. They both kneel in prayer.
We recently saw the outrage when “Shock Jock” Don Imus insulted the Rutgers Women’s basketball team. We saw several days of protest when some claimed that a political cartoon depicting a chimpanzee could be interpreted as resembling President Obama. Where is the outrage of political leaders and the media in showing a man urinating on an image of Jesus?
Some will claim that “Curb Your Enthusiasm” is a comedy, that it is its nature to poke fun at beliefs, even sacred ones. It is “the nature” of “Shock Jocks” such as Imus to make disparaging comments, though many public leaders and other media types successfully called for his firing (as an aside, Imus more than once has made disparaging anti-Catholic remarks, the same people who campaigned to fire him over the Rutgers incident never noticed those). It is “the nature” of Political Cartoons to be controversial, yet that did not stop many in the media calling for a boycott of the NY Post over a perceived insult and waging a successful campaign for the Post to print an apology. Where is the same outrage over the blatant insult to Catholics? Why is it ‘only comedy’ when Catholics and Christians are insulted?
HBO is a “frequent flyr” on Catholic bashing, with avowed atheist Bill Maher, who once even referred to the Pope as a Nazi, being the chief cheerleader. While there are many religions in the world, it seems that only Catholicism/Christianity is subject for HBO writers ‘comedic talents”. “Political Correctness” increasingly now means you cannot offend anyone except Catholics (and if they are Irish that’s an added bonus).
The Irish Political thinker Edmund Burke is credited as observing, “The only thing necessary for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing”. Unfortunately as a cable station you cannot simply “vote with your on/off button.” HBO, if in your cable package, gets your money whether you watch them or not. Whether we as Hibernians should continue to include Catholic bashing HBO in our cable package should be a subject of refection for all of us.