Why Catholics Are Hated

The Pope’s resignation and the pending decision to choose a new pope has increased the amount of public Catholic hatred in the past week. Catholics have never been viewed favorably in America but the hate has increased in this current era and seems to be hitting it’s crescendo right now. As to where that peak is and when it stops or begins to lessen one can only guess.

But why are Catholics so disliked? I attended a Catholic church with my family in childhood but have never been fond of religion as a personal matter. I don’t disdain it and appreciate the value it has in forming societies but the active practice of it has been too overwhelming for me. For a better look at Catholics opinions check out our friend Cogitans post at Historia Futura Praedicit titled No Catholics Don’t Think The Pope Is Infallible.

Still I don’t understand why Catholics are hated. Sure Jews are mocked(often by themselves), there are Buddhist and Muslim jokes, and I’ve probably heard every denomination of Christian inserted into a joke.

But why the hatred of Catholics. There’s no chronicles of twitter outrage at Baptists, Methodists, Lutherans, Eastern Orthodox, or Pentacostalists, like there is at the Pope and Catholics.

In asking myself why I think I may have stumbled across an answer.

Organization.

The Catholic church is hated because it is organized. Quick exercise. Who’s the leader of the Lutheran church, what about Baptists, Jewish, Islam? Chances are that most(as in 99%) of people couldn’t answer any of those. Besides the Pope the only other easily known and recognized religious leader in the world is the Dalai Lama. Being an eastern religion(and small) Buddhism isn’t likely to earn the scorn that Catholics do since they have zero interaction with it.

Still it isn’t just the organization itself. History itself plays a part in the matter. Catholics in Spain and Ireland aren’t likely the ones fueling this drive to continually defame the Catholic church. America grew out of British colonies, the British being Protestant. While we had religious freedom the fact is that we were a Protestant nation if we had to choose a religious camp to be in.

In American history for the first several centuries each new group took it’s turn at the bottom of the pile. Germans, Scandinavians, Italians, Irish, Poles, Russians, Chinese, everybody started at the bottom and had to prove themselves desiring enough of America, to be accepted as Americans and get the respect they wanted.

As this relates to religion America was never a huge nation for Catholic immigrants outside of the Irish. The French and Spanish were largely limited to Canada and Latin America while those colonies were in their hands. Because of that, people from those nations tended not to come to America as much as those two areas. This is why Catholicism is particularly stronger south of the border. As for north of the border, Canada did end up(and still is) a British possession.

The only large group of Catholics to come to the United States were the Irish. Also interesting to note that the Irish have probably spent the longest amount of time at the bottom of the pile mentioned two paragraphs above.

Catholics are hated on because America has never been particularly favorable to them, but also I suspect because they are so well organized and visible.

To me it’s no difference. Catholic, Protestant, or E. Orthodox it’s all Jesus to me. Christian is Christian regardless of what it’s wearing so while I can submit my opinion on why they’re so disliked I still can explain why it matters.

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About Moose

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Posted on February 20, 2013, in No Hope For America, Problems to Ponder, The Life of Man and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I think history is the biggest factor. Also, Catholicism itself seems to be more than simply a religion. You mentioned the organizational aspects (which I frankly like, I wish the Protestants had some level of uniformity in their worship instead of a hodgepodge anywhere between the almost-Catholic stoicism to outright cultishness, hard to find a church when you move a lot as a protestant…very easy as a Catholic), but it runs deeper than organization. Some Catholics are very devout, others atheists but even a Catholic turned atheist often considers himself a Catholic still (case in point, Italy, where the vast majority are both atheists and Catholic). Not so with those who break from the protestant church…they simply leave it.

    • And I don’t buy the whole dastardly deeds argument either. Not excusing the church for things like the inquisition, but it’s not like they’re the only religious group to have done bad things.

      I suppose for many people the catholic church is the ny yankess of religion. It’s cool to hate them simply because their the biggest and most successful.

  2. Today the hate could come from three sources, left over animosity from the protestant catholic wars of the 17th century, not likely in my opinion, the fact that they were the religions of ethnic groups that were once not considered highly, and today the lefts rabid hatred for religion. Considering that Catholicism is the largest, and most organized sect, of the largest religion of the world meaning that it forms a very large basis of traditional western civilization thinking and worldview, it makes it a natural target if your aim is to rework western civilization.

  3. I was quite surprised to read this. I was Catholic til age 13, and never encountered any sort of hatred/grievances directed towards my faith at all. Nor have I really seen any in either the local news/media or community here in NY. I mean, Catholics aren’t even ON the list of “most hated groups in America”!

    http://atheism.about.com/od/atheistbigotryprejudice/a/AtheitsHated.htm

    Since I became Wiccan 14 years ago, I’ve had many bad experiences with otherwise nice people, including random strangers or customers who don’t usually give an opinion.

    • Its probably more common in the media than it is among the general population. I’ve come across a few people who really don’t like Catholics and there points are generally verbatim what you’ll hear screeched on TV.

      • Ok, I can buy that.

        I don’t have television at my home (never around to use it, only own a TV for my X360) so I haven’t seen much of what the media does for the last 4+ years. I don’t encounter it much on the general newsfeeds to my phone, or hear it on the radio. Doesn’t mean it can’t exist though…I’ll take your word for it.

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