In a recent edition of the ABC-TV show The View the four panelists held a glass of red wine while joking about its alcoholic effects. After Rosie O’Donnell made a crack about the way alcohol affects Mel Gibson — “you just start spouting anti-Semitic statements” — Joy Behar responded, “In vino veritas. Don’t you remember when you went to Communion? In vino veritas. The priests were all drunk, don’t you remember?” Here is what happened next:
• O’Donnell: “No. I remember they would do Body of Christ. You’d have to say Amen and then sometime in the 70s there was a big congregation and you were allowed to get it in your hand. Do you remember this?”
• Behar: “No, I think I dropped out by then.”
• O’Donnell: “Oh, well it was big because my mother used to say when you have that Host in your mouth don’t let it touch your teeth because it was against [inaudible] so you know the pressure on the child getting it, you know the priest would put it right on your tongue and you’re [Rosie twists her face pretending to swallow it without having it touch her teeth]… Yeah, it was a lot. But anyways, cheers.”
Catholic League president Bill Donohue responded as follows:
“A few weeks ago, O’Donnell compared Christians whom she disagrees with to Muslim terrorists, and now we have her ridiculing Jesus. Egged on by Joy Behar, who is no stranger to Catholic-bashing, O’Donnell showed no qualms about toying with the Eucharist: the ex-Catholic knows that the Host is regarded by Catholics as the Real Presence of Jesus.
“This show is out of control. What happened today is not an extension of Sister Act comedy — it is a below-the-belt attack on Catholicism. And if The View panelists protest that this is just innocent fun, let them try their brand of religious humor on Muslims. Surely they must know some fun things to say about the core beliefs of Islam.”
(This update courtesy of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.)