“Of course the Catholic Church started it, of course they did. I shouldn’t even be surprised.” -Me, about 90 minutes ago
The Paternotte/Kuhar article shows that modern anti-gender campaigns originated from the Catholic Church in the 1990s. The Church created a fictional dichotomy between a “culture of life” represented by themselves and a “culture of death” represented by feminism and the LGBT+ community. Despite being a Catholic thing, this idea quickly spread transnationally. However, there is still a potentially Catholic-inspired anti-semitic angle to it, as we see in Hungary with the Peto article. There (and presumably in other countries too), gender is viewed as coming from universities and primarily from the Central European University, which was established by George Soros. Last week, the readings discussed how the use of Soros as a scapegoat was an anti-semitic distraction from actual government corruption under Viktor Orban. This reference to Soros is no different, and really the whole thing smells of smoke and mirrors.
Both the Paternotte/Kuhar and Butler articles note that anti-gender campaigns accuse the LGBT+ community of being pedophiles, and gee I wonder why the CATHOLIC CHURCH would do that. Maybe they use those accusations as a distraction from their own actions? This rhetoric can also be used to strengthen the Church’s position by embedding it in religious freedom debates, anti-colonialism, moralism, and national cultures, as most of this week’s articles point out. Somewhat separate from religion is the aspect of Holocaust memory brought up in the Zuk/Zuk article. Here, we see Polish politicians and clergy equating abortion to the Holocaust, which is evidence of Eastern Europe’s failure to come to terms with the Holocaust, as discussed in previous weeks. It also fits into the anti-semitism of the Soros conspiracy.