The situation regarding the racist cartoon that was reprinted in Milwaukee's official Catholic newspaper, The Catholic Herald, has recharged my discontent with the Catholic hierarchy. A Milwaukee friend e-mailed me a copy of the cartoon. It depicts caricatures of two African American males standing side-by-side. One has his arms up saying "You're not helping, you know," and wearing a tee shirt that reads, "HANDS UP, DON'T SHOOT." The figure standing next to him has his arms up holding a 42-inch TV wearing a tee shirt that reads, HANDS UP, JUST LOOT." There does not appear to have been any immediate response from Archbishop Listecki. According to e-mails I received, black Catholic well-known personalities living in Milwaukee are incensed and have been vocal in making their feelings known. This is just another proof of insensitivity Catholic decision makers have in regards to African Americans.
Chicago's archdiocesan newspaper, The Catholic New World, is replete with human interest stories. It follows traditional Catholic doctrine in its editorials and has been my source in keeping up-to-date on ordinations of priests and deacons.
The Catholic hierarchy, like the mainstream decision makers, is delusional in its attempts to portray situations as if we live in a society with little racial overtones. Of course, the growing victimization of African American and Latino males belies such thinking.
Another sample of the insensitivity of Catholic decision makers regarding African Americans is the passing-over of African American clerics regarding the appointment of cardinals. I understand that the vetting process is underway regarding the successor to Chicago's Francis Cardinal George.
I have noted that a Haitian Bishop, Chibly Langlois, was elevated to the level of cardinal, being the first Haitian to achieve that level. According Internet writings, two Haitian archbishops (Loius Ke`breau and Guire Poulard) were by-passed. It was reported that at the time of Cardinal Langlois' appointment, Archbishop Poulard was his superior in the ecclesiastical province at Port-au-Prince.
There may be valid reasons for a bishop being elevated to the cardinal level, above that of an archbishop, but Cardinal Langlois' appointment appears to be a precursor of a possible trend to make cardinal appointments below the archbishop level. Only time will tell whether this will figure into the continued ignoring of African Americans whose credentials and demonstrated commitment to the Roman Catholic Church doctrines make them worthy cardinal candidates.