Views of K of C members mainstream, not extreme

To the editor:

Democrat Senators Mazie Hirono (HI), and Kamala Harris (CA), interviewing a Trump judicial nominee in December, brought shame upon themselves. At best, it was a display of ignorance — at worst, a show of ant-Catholic bigotry.

They questioned whether the nominee could hear and judge impartially certain cases despite his membership in the Knights of Columbus, an organization which one of the Senators described as having taken “a number of extreme positions.” This is code-speak for opposition to same-sex marriage, and defunding the abortion mill chain known as Planned Parenthood, for example.

These positions are not extreme. They are positions held by millions of Americans, and are reinforced by Catholic teaching (without which, the K of C would not exist, as it is a Catholic organization.)

To its credit, the Senate rebuffed these Senators, passing by unanimous consent, on January 16, a resolution reasserting the Constitution’s prohibition on religious tests for public office. The text of that resolution reminds us of the discrimination faced by Catholic Presidential candidate (and K of C member) John Kennedy in 1960. Kennedy is quoted in the resolution: “For while this year it may be a Catholic against whom the finger of suspicion is pointed, in other years it has been, and may someday be again, a Jew or a Quaker or a Unitarian or a Baptist. … Today I may be the victim, but tomorrow it may be you, until the whole fabric of our harmonious society is ripped at a time of great national peril.”

There are more than 1,600 K of C members in Dubois County. I’m proud to be counted among them. If there’s anything extreme about us, it might be our zeal for charity. Each year we contribute tens of thousands of dollars to the success of Bosco Youth Ministries, Mentors for Youth, Holy Trinity School, Monastery Immaculate Conception, St. Meinrad Archabbey and Seminary, Jasper police and fire departments, Crisis Connection, Dubois County Food Bank, pro-life efforts and so many more worthy causes.

Membership is open to practicing Catholic men, 18 years and older. No experience in extremism needed. If interested, inquire at your local parish.

—Chad Lueken

More on