Katie Couric teed off on Ave Maria University’s Tom Monaghan this morning for his plans to build Ave Maria Town next to the university in Florida. I’ve seen even some Catholic bloggers say this is a bad idea because we’re called to go out into the world to evangelize it, not gather ourselves in Catholic ghettos where we won’t be contaminated by the ritually impure. Perhaps this is what some people intend to do at AMT, but that’s not what I’ve heard from the founders. In fact, they say it’s simply a way to give employees of the university a place to live near the campus, plus allow those interested in living near a first-class Catholic university an opportunity to do so. I doubt they’re going to have gates at the entrances to screen for baptismal status.
But what’s got most of the liberal media up in arms is the claim that pharmacies in the town will be forbidden from selling contraceptives or pornography. For those steeped in the culture of death, contraception and abortion must be accepted as a positive good and must be available to one and all, always and everywhere. Yet in reality, all Monaghan had said was that he “hopes” those things won’t be sold there, and it’s likely that residents of the town would use their free-market influence to prevent the sale of such items.
As NBC dutifully plastered the words “Catholic Town USA” on screen, Couric began pestering Monaghan about his hope that pharmacists would not sell contraceptives there. She asked about it four times. After four denials, she started dropping the bombs.
“Some people,” she claimed, think Catholic values might be “deemed wholesome, but in other ways, I think people will see this community as eschewing diversity and promoting intolerance.” Marinelli refused to take the bait, instead calmly explained that this town was open to all people of all faiths with a “traditional family value perspective.” Couric was unconvinced and shot back, “Does that mean you would welcome Jewish residents?” It was an ugly question with the veiled accusation of bigotry lurking just below the surface.
Will the cable channels have enough smut?