In response to Trump’s policies, Bishop McElroy says, “We must all become disrupters.”
I noted that after Meryl Steep hectored the audience at the Golden Globes, her last name became a verb to describe a prominent person using a non-political platform to make a political statement demeaning a portion of their audience in a quest for social justice credentials.
Entertainers aren’t the only ones who can “streep”, either. At a recent conference in Modesto, CA comprised of nearly 700 community organizers and social justice activists, the Bishop of San Diego, Robert McElroy, recently encouraged “disruption” in response to President Trump’s immigration and economic policies.
“President Trump was the candidate of disruption. He was the disrupter, he said,” McElroy told those gathered here Saturday morning for the U.S. regional meeting of the World Meeting of Popular Movements. “Well now, we must all become disrupters.”
“We must disrupt those who would seek to send troops into our streets to deport the undocumented, to rip mothers and fathers from their families. We must disrupt those who portray refugees as enemies, rather than our brothers and sisters in terrible need.
We must disrupt those who train us to see Muslim men and women and children as sources of fear rather than as children of God. We must disrupt those who seek to rob our medical care, especially from the poor. We must disrupt those who would take even food stamps and nutrition assistance from the mouths of children,” the bishop said.
The are so many flaws in the approach McElroy used, that I hardly know where to begin. But, I would like to start by reminding the Bishop that a majority his fellow Catholics voted for President Trump (in part, because of the very economic and immigration policies McElroy wants disrupted).
I don’t expect every priest, deacon and nun to vote the same way I do. However, there are much better and unifying ways to assist immigrants and the economically struggling than by becoming a priestly-collared member of #TheResistance.
The Diocese of San Diego is beginning to receive complaints. I personally have made one via email, and have provided the email contact to serveral area Catholics upon request. I plan send the diocese more formal letter.
One of the most troubling aspects of the McElroy Doctrine is his disdain for free markets, capitalism, and business in general. At last month’s Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies conference on erroneous autonomy, he warned of “the growing imperialism of market mechanisms,” the technocratic paradigm, and populist nationalism (video is HERE for those interested).
Futhermore, McElroy literally has taken a page from Pope Francis.
Bishop McElroy cited Pope Francis’ 2013 apostolic exhortation Evangelii gaudium and its description of an economy that excludes some people from meaningful participation in social, political, and economic life.
The bishop said that statements like “this economy kills” are not simply exaggerations. He suggested many people have known someone the economy has killed: a senior citizen who can’t afford medicine or rent; a mother or father who is working two or three jobs and is “really dying because even then they can’t provide for their kids;” and young people who turn to drugs, gangs, or suicide because they cannot find a job.
“Now mourn them,” he said. “And now call out their name; let all the world know that this economy kills.”
McElroy is about to get a valuable, free market lesson in discretion. The annual fund drive for the diocese is now occurring, and I have decided I do not want to support the Bishop’s efforts to undermine the President for whom I voted. These monies will now be used to directly support military charities.
I suspect I will not be the only one.
However, I will pray that McElroy has fewer opportunities to streep Catholics in the future.