Viewers Disagree on Purpose of Separatist Clubs

Dear Catholic Exchange:

I just wanted to point out that in your article, you seem to think that all Latinos and all blacks belong to the same culture. A Mexican and an El Salvadoran and a Cuban or South American Hispanic person would disagree with you. As would the various black ethnic backgrounds which are so different that they feud and kill each other in Africa. If white people must only have clubs that address their individual Euro division such as Irish, French etc., then why wouldn't the Latino and black cultures have to group themselves according to the actual locale from which their ancestors came?

I would appreciate an explanation as I think ethnic clubs are a good idea as long as they recognize and celebrate each other's cultures…not their skin color.

Mary K. Feeley


Dear Mr. Fitzpatrick:

I am not sure I can agree with you on the issue of single race clubs. Your assumption appears to be that the only reason to have the Caucasian only club is to score points about racial minorities. Your other assumption is that the Gaelic Society and the Italian Club only exist to discuss and share interests unique to their group. This is not always true as some of these clubs were formed for the same reason as the All-black, All-Hispanic and other clubs. That reason is to associate with a group of like-minded people in a culture that may be hostile to your group.

While it is true that caucasians may be the statistical majority, they may find themselves treated with disdain by the local culture. Is this not the case at many universities, which are hotbeds of political correctness? Do you really believe that having All-black or any other All-”one-race” club is always benign and does not cause some non-members to think they are unwelcome?

And finally, is it not possible that allowing some groups to associate and not others will confirm the second-class feelings of the same-race club?

I think that the measure of a club should be its actions. If it helps or does no harm, then it should be allowed to exist. If it hurts, say so.


Frank Malinowski

I thank Mary Feeley and Frank Malinowski for their response to the column. They make points that must be made in this debate. My objection to Mary Feeley's position is that I do not think “black clubs” focus on the black race, but on the experience of blacks in the United States in the wake of slavery. I think this puts them in a position comparable to other ethnic clubs. They are not about race, but about a historical experience.

I have no quarrel with Frank Malinowski's position. Those “black clubs” and “Hispanic clubs” that preach race hatred should be disbanded. Those that are dedicated to promoting pride in the black and Latino experience in the United States are a healthy element in the national scene.


James Fitzpatrick

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Dear Catholic Exchange:

While I agree with 90% of your article on the “Real” Jesus, I wonder about your assertion that Jesus was not married.

Is that statement based on any better evidence than the journalist's evidence in the article? Is there actually an official Church teaching which says that Jesus was not married?

If not, shouldn't we leave this as one more attempt to speculate about things unknown? I get tired of the popular press talking about whether Jesus was married, what Jesus may or may not have done for a living, whether Mary (or Peter, or whomever) was rich or poor. There are so many things the Bible does tell us. Let us focus on those.

Peter Olynick

Dear Peter:

There is no official dogma that Jesus was not married that I am aware of. There is also no official dogma that Jesus was not a mariachi player with a passion for playing Bridge who could whistle “The Blue Danube.” There is also no evidence for these absurd claims. There is, instead, simply the common tradition of the Church that Jesus was celibate, which has now been challenged by one badly-research novel that is full of a number of outright lies (such as the lie that Jesus was elevated to the status of God by the Council of Nicea).

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The common tradition of the Church that Jesus was celibate is the data we have. The absolute vacuum of Scriptural evidence to the contrary supports this strongly. The burden of proof is not on the Church, it is on the person making the extraordinary claim that Jesus was married, without any evidence whatsoever.

Mark Shea

Senior Content Editor

Catholic Exchange

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