I'm delighted that the elections are over, because now news that the pre-November partisan wrangling would have pushed to the back pages again comes front and center. I give you three examples: First: News that O.J. Simpson has written a book entitled "If I Did It". Second: Roman Catholic Bishops meeting in Baltimore issue 24 page document entitled: "Ministry to Persons With A Homosexual Inclination". And finally: "Illinois Residents Up In Arms About Children's Book On Gay Penguins." I am not a conspiracy theorist, but I see a definite pattern here.
I don't know whether the guys in white dresses and red satin beanies in Baltimore had O.J. directly in mind when they again used words like "inclination" and "intrinsically disordered" to describe something they still don't understand. Some say O.J.'s book is really a confession, and if so, Baltimore has got to be Absolution City with all of those high ranking clerics there.
Of course when O.J. says "If I Did It", he's referring to first degree murder, and not to that other sin which has no name but needs a constitutional amendment to stamp it out for all recorded time and between all committed couples of the same gender. And, in all fairness, when the bishops proclaim that it's not the person who is disordered, but the conduct, they now also say that other "inclinatons" like greed, jealousy, and getting over $3 million in a book deal are also right up there with acting out one's own sexuality. Still, really, when was the last time you saw a document called" "Ministry to Former NFL Stars With Disordered Inclinations Toward Spouses And Propensities for driving a White SUV's On Los Angeles Freeways With Police in Hot Pursuit"?
So where do the penguins get involved in all of this?
It seems that a cute little children's book telling a true story about two male penguins in the New York City's Central Park Zoo that adopted a fertilized egg and raised the chick as their own has some folks in an Illinois town upset. Their library has purchased the book and they are horrified that it's exposing their offspring to the homosexual agenda. I don't know whether their local Bishop has weighed in on the matter, but he likely would point out that it's not the parental penguin pair who are "disordered", but their egg-o-philic conduct that's at issue. And of course, as O.J. would add, only "IF THEY DID IT". It may in the end depend on what the meaning of the word "if" is. (Where is Bill Clinton when we really need him?)
Finally on the subject of disordered penguins, I note that today the movie "Happy Feet" premiers in theaters around the country......though perhaps not in one small town in Illinois. You know, the one that has zillions of carefully choreographed animated penguins dancing on the ever-shrinking Antarctic ice. Now how all of that elegantly synchronized waddling could be called "disordered" is truly a mystery of heavenly dimension. Maybe before they adjourn the guys in Baltimore should take up the subject. After all, all of those cute little creatures bear some resemblence to a convention of the world's nuns before many of them kicked the habit.
So you see, all three stories really DO have something in common after all. And I'm overjoyed to learn that I am not disordered. Only my desk is. The nun (or was she really a cloistered penguin?) who who taught me in the 1950's always gave me bad marks for that "inclination", and despite much prayer, meditation, and spiritual reading, the top of my workspace remains is a truly unrepenitant state. I wonder if the Baltimore Ecclesiastics have anything to say about that. I'll bet my old Baltimore Catechism does. Now if I could only find it.