"Some of the worst emails I get are from Catholic conservatives who think I should excommunicate and refuse communion to Gov. Bill Ritter Jr. of Colorado and to former-Sen. [and now Secretary of the Interior] Ken Salazar of Colorado, and why aren’t you doing this? I mean, just awful kind of stuff that they write. Sometimes, I must admit, that when I write back, I’m not as friendly as I should be. But I try not to be mean."
And then, reflecting on the difference between e-mail from liberals and conservatives, he said:
"The left mail I get will use terrible words but be less vitriolic. They use the F-word and things like that, call me names like that. But the right is meaner, but they’re not as foul."
As a blogger, I've noticed the same things. There are certain blogs I won't read anymore because of the way they attack priests and bishops with impunity - or anyone else who happens to share a different view (which in many cases is a legitimate non-heretical opinion from a fellow Catholic in good standing). There are certain blogs I read, but at which I rarely or never comment; not because of the author, but because of the commenters who claim to be solid Catholics in spite of the hatred and accusation they spew into every corner of cyberspace.
It is not that I haven't been guilty of doing the same thing. I have been, clearly, and for that, I sincerely apologize.
I'm glad Archbishop Chaput has spoken out on this issue, and I hope his words are taken to heart by the very people who most need to hear that message, but somehow, I doubt it. It seems like those who do the most damage to the Mystical Body of Christ don't take hints very well and apply the barb to everyone else but themselves.
Thus, I'm not expecting that those offensive bloggers, Catholic newspaper columnists from secular and Catholic newspapers alike will change their attitude any time soon.
Maybe it's time to recall, that, especially in the case of our clergy, we as Catholics are OBLIGATED to respect the office of the Priest or Bishop, and obviously, that of the Pope and every other ordained Ecclesial Office.
§1. A person must believe with divine and Catholic faith all those things contained in the word of God, written or handed on, that is, in the one deposit of faith entrusted to the Church, and at the same time proposed as divinely revealed either by the solemn magisterium of the Church or by its ordinary and universal magisterium which is manifested by the common adherence of the Christian faithful under the leadership of the sacred magisterium; therefore all are bound to avoid any doctrines whatsoever contrary to them.
§2. Each and every thing which is proposed definitively by the magisterium of the Church concerning the doctrine of faith and morals, that is, each and every thing which is required to safeguard reverently and to expound faithfully the same deposit of faith, is also to be firm-ly embraced and retained; therefore, one who rejects those propositions which are to be held definitively is opposed to the doctrine of the Catholic Church.