Arlington Diocese, Catholic League Denounce Gov. Northam's Appt of Anti-Catholic

By Michael W. Chapman | August 26, 2019 | 4:01pm EDT
Virginia's Democratic Governor
Ralph Northam. (Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) -- Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam's (D) decision to appoint liberal activist Gail Gordon Donegan to the Virginia Council on Women was denounced by the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, which described Donegan as an "anti-Catholic bigot."

The Catholic Diocese of Arlington also criticized the appointment, stating that Donegan "has a record of ridiculing Catholic beliefs and practices and trafficking in stereotypes that would disqualify her from this role had they targeted any other category of persons."

In some of her tweets, reported by the Richmond Times-Dispatch , Donegan has said, “Abortion is morally indefensible to Catholic priests bcuz it results in fewer children to rape" and “Go tell a Catholic they have dirt on their forehead,” with the hashtag "#waystooffend."

Activist Gail Gordon Donegan and
Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine (D). 
(YouTube)

"Gail Gordon Donegan is a local political activist," said Catholic League President Bill Donohue in a press release. "She is also a vicious anti-Catholic bigot. Now, thanks to Gov. Ralph Northam, she is an appointee to the Virginia Council on Women."

"It is an appointment the governor must withdraw -- at once!" said Donohue. He also noted some of Donegan's "vile tweets," which reveal her "sustained hatred for Catholics, Catholic priests and Catholic teachings." These include, 

  • "Abortion is morally indefensible to Catholic priests bcuz it results in fewer children to rape."
  • Christmas is "the one time of year the Catholic Church is allowed to focus on a little boy."
  •  "Saw a bumper sticker: 'You can’t be both Catholic & Pro-Choice.' Add: You can be a pedophile though!"

"This is the kind of thing one would expect from a Klansman, not a responsible advocate for women's issues," said Donohue. "There is no place for this kind of hate speech in the halls of government."

 

When asked if Gov. Northam believes Donegan is the best person for the council, spokeswoman Alena Yarmosky did not answer, according to the Times-Dispatch but did say that Donegan “has spent years advocating on behalf of issues important to women across the Commonwealth." Yarmosky also said, “The governor certainly does not condone this language.”

That response, said Donohue, is "woefully inadequate."

"Northam must rescind his appointment of Donegan," said Donohue.  "Anything less will make him complicit in her anti-Catholic bigotry."

(Screen capture, STV News)

In a statement, Billy Atwell, the chief communications officer for the Catholic Diocese of Arlington, said, “Governor Northam’s appointment of Gail Gordon Donegan to the Virginia Council on Women is disappointing, particularly given her documented use of social media to offend members of the Catholic faith."

“Ms. Gordon Donegan has a record of ridiculing Catholic beliefs and practices and trafficking in stereotypes that would disqualify her from this role had they targeted any other category of persons," reads the statement. "Her statements are offensive to human dignity and fail to reflect the depth of character one would expect of a leader in our Commonwealth.”

Deborah Cox, a spokeswoman for the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, said Donegan's social media posts “are extremely offensive to Catholics and the Catholic faith," reported the Times-Dispatch.

To read some of Donegan's other tweets, click here

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