Gay marriage supporters trumpet “pushing” incident

Gay marriage supporters trumpet “pushing” incident

All the pro-gay groups and blogs are trumpeting this as evidence of how hypocritical Catholics are, how the big, bad patriarchists are showing their true colors, oppressing women and gays and whatnot. Not that I believe this happened the way they claim—I tend to believe Larry Cirignano’s story—but even if it were so, what about all the personal assaults by pro-aborts and pro-gays and all the others on Catholics and other Christians and marriage supporters? I’ve been to pro-life and pro-marriage rallies and I’ve seen the verbal and physical violence directed at our side, often elderly grandmothers and grandfathers. I don’t even want to get into the vile language directed at priests. Ask Kelly Clark about having to walk the gauntlet every Sunday as she attended Mass at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston during the height of the Scandal. She has said that children entering the church were told to run away or cover their (explicit words for privates) to keep from being molested inside.

But here we have what looks like it amounts to either a staged incident or the blowing up of a minor accident into felony assault and suddenly all the media and all the liberal blogs and all the gay media from coast to coast are pointing at this as if they finally had photographic evidence of a common occurrence. Pitiful.

“Catholic group leader denies pushing activist”

The executive director of a Catholic group founded by Raymond Flynn, former Boston mayor, yesterday denied pushing a gay marriage supporter, who fell to the ground in Worcester during a weekend rally organized to criticize the Legislature for not allowing a constitutional vote on the contentious issue.

Sarah Loy, 27, who supports same-sex marriages, said she was facing the crowd with a sign that read “No discrimination in the constitution” when a man approached her outside city hall, telling her she had to leave. Before she could go, she said, he grabbed her by the shoulders with both hands and pushed her backward . Loy said she fell to the ground.

“He came out of nowhere,” she said. “It happened very fast. I never imagined someone would push me.”

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette, which covered the rally on Saturday, identified the man as Larry Cirignano, executive director of Catholic Citizenship, which is described on its website as a nonpartisan organization that promotes political activism among Catholics.

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette reported that police interviewed but did not arrest Cirignano. Loy said she intended to file a complaint, but Worcester police refused to discuss the incident yesterday.

In a telephone interview last night, Cirignano acknowledged guiding the woman away from the event with his arm on her back, but said he had a portfolio in his left hand and did not knock her down.

He said he did not see her fall. “I promise you, I did not throw her to the ground.”

Flynn, who spoke at the event, said in a written statement yesterday, “I didn’t see any incident, but nobody has the right to push anyone. The marriage issue is very important and everyone is entitled to protest and demonstrate peacefully.”

Loy said she was not injured during the fall.

That last sentence is very interesting because it directly contradicts some of the so-called eyewitness testimony that is being trumpeted as corroborating her story. At the very liberal Blue Mass Group blog, “rollbiz” claims to have seen something very different.

I was 10 feet away, and I saw it. I had to go and pick her up off the pavement, comfort her, and get her the hell out of there. ... Ms. Loy, admittedly, was in a section of the rally where she should have expected some resistance to her presence. But to be shoved to the ground by a 240+lb. man so hard that her head hit the pavement?

... There were several witnesses who all gave similar accounts of the altercation, and yet police let this man walk free. It wasn’t a bump or a jostle. Cirignano took her by the shoulders, with both hands, and shoved her to the ground. I saw it, and I don’t think there was any misinterpreting his intent. He meant to hurt her.

So which is it? Did she hurt herself or did she hit her head on a particularly soft part of the pavement? Did he put both hands on her shoulders and shove her to the ground or did he have a clipboard in one hand and direct with with one arm behind her back? Since the Worcester Police took no action against Cirignano, I’m guessing the “assault” story didn’t stand up. I also wonder how long Loy’s complaint against Cirignano will stand up in court or even whether she’ll file it.

In the past, at such rallies, when members of one or another side tried to stand in the midst of their foes to foment trouble, it was the police who intervened and escorted the person out. I think Larry should have let the police take care of it this time too. It’s a hard lesson he’s learned.

Update: Catholic blogger JayG of Defend the Faith blog was there and gives his eyewitness account.

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Written by
Domenico Bettinelli