Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.
What is the Catholic League?
The Catholic League is the nation’s largest Catholic civil rights organization. Founded in 1973 by the late Father Virgil C. Blum, S.J., the Catholic League defends the right of Catholics – lay and clergy alike – to participate in American public life without defamation or discrimination.
Motivated by the letter and the spirit of the First Amendment, the Catholic League works to safeguard both the religious freedom rights and the free speech rights of Catholics whenever and wherever they are threatened.
Is the Catholic League Necessary?
Absolutely. Harvard professor Arthur Schlesinger, Sr. once observed that prejudice against the Catholic Church was "the deepest bias in the history of the American people." Yale professor Peter Viereck commented that "Catholic baiting is the anti-Semitism of the liberals."
And today’s brand of anti-Catholicism is more virulent and more pervasive than ever before in American history. While it is true that Catholics as individuals have made progress in securing their rights, the degree of hostility exhibited against the Catholic Church is appalling. Quite simply, Catholic bashing has become a staple of American society.
What Does the Catholic League Do?
When slanderous assaults are made against the Catholic Church, the Catholic League hits the newspapers, television, and radio talk shows defending the right of the Church to promote its teachings with as much verve as any other institution in society.
When Catholics are the victims of a bigoted portrayal by the media, the Catholic League issues news releases bringing the matter to the attention of the public. It may also encourage a boycott of the program’s sponsors.
When Catholic students or employees are denied their rights in school or on the job, the Catholic League makes a formal response to the guilty parties; the league response may include litigation.
When the religious freedom rights of any American are threatened, the Catholic League stands ready to fight for justice in the courts.
When Catholics are slighted by public officials, the Catholic League calls press conferences alerting the public to the unacceptable behavior of their servants.
When Catholic interests are unfairly represented by public policy initiatives, the Catholic League offers testimony before legislative bodies to set the record straight.
When officials in government, the media and education need an informed perspective on Catholic civil rights issues, the Catholic League provides a quick and effective response.