Let the Catholic League's Bill Donohue March in the Gay Pride Parade!

Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, poses in his office Tuesday, May 12, 1998, in
Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, poses in his office Tuesday, May 12, 1998, in New York. Since Donohue took over as League boss in July 1993, he has revitalized the organization that marks its 25th anniversary this month, fighting "Catholic bashing" and delivering the Catholic line in his blunt, plainspoken manner. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)

The Catholic League's Bill Donohue, pit bull of the Catholic Church in America and a man who now seems completely out of touch with his own pope, is furious that Guinness beer opted for diversity rather than bigotry when the company decided to pull out as a sponsor of the St. Patrick's Day Parade in New York City this year. Donohue has now called for a Catholic boycott of Guinness beer (we'll get to that in a minute), and yesterday he also applied to the NYC Pride march committee to march this June in the parade under a banner that reads, "Straight Is Great," and the committee has agreed to let him march.

I say: Bring it on! Let's let Bill Donohue march in the parade and show that we are better than those troglodytes who run the St. Patrick's Day Parade in New York, increasingly out of touch with the world. Of course, the Pride parade is about LGBT pride, so perhaps Donohue has to tweak that banner a bit to say, "Straights Who Support Gays Are Great," or "Catholics Who Support Gays Are Great." After all, the LGBT people who want to march in the St. Patrick's Day Parade don't want to march under a banner that says, "Gay Is Great." They want to celebrate Irish pride and being gay and would more likely have a banner that says, "Irish, Gay and Proud."

But hey, why even quibble? Let's go for more speech, not less. Let Donohue march under his "Straight Is Great" banner if he truly wants. I mean, straights are great, even if gays are great too, right? Or as Pride Director David Studinski put it, "Straight is great -- as long as there's no hate." And let me march under a banner right in front of Donohue's contingent, saying, "Bill Donohue Is the Biggest Blowhard on the Face of Planet Earth." I'm even happy to amend that banner to say, "Gays Who Believe That Bill Donohue Is the Biggest Blowhard on the Planet Earth." I'm sure I'll have a sizable contingent. And OK, if that's not cool, then those of us who are Catholic and gay should simply march alongside Donohue, as part of the "league," with signs that say, "Gay, Catholic and Proud."

But by all means, let Donohue march!

And about his Catholic boycott of Guinness beer: It's a free country, and by all means, he has a right to launch a boycott to send a message. Let him try. The majority of Catholics worldwide and in the U.S. support full LGBT rights, including marriage equality. And that includes Irish Americans. The majority disagree with the parade's exclusion of LGBT people and the bigotry that the parade's leadership has promoted for years. Are Catholics really going to give up their favorite beer for the windbag Bill Donohue while Pope Francis says, "Who am I to judge?"

Donohue, who has never before seemed to be anything beyond a one-man show, is suddenly talking about an entire "staff" at his "league" that is compiling lists:

This is the start of an on-going protest that will send an unmistakable message to Guinness: declaring war on Catholics is risky business. The rollout of this campaign is visible here at our headquarters: the staff is busy assembling a list of Catholic organizations, Irish groups, pub owners, and all those persons and associations that have worked with us in the past, to boycott Guinness. There will be public statements, paid advertisements, and more. Of course, we will continue to blanket the media. While we will not refrain from addressing other issues, the Guinness boycott is our top priority. We have the time, the money, and the determination to conduct a full-court press. Stay tuned.

You heard that right. People are starving in the streets and Pope Francis is talking about how to feed them and clothe them, but for Bill Donohue of the Catholic League, "the Guinness boycott is our top priority." I wonder if Rupert Murdoch is pouring some cash into this effort. He was, after all, outraged over Guinness pulling out of the parade, tweeting a few days ago that the Irish should boycott the beer.

The very first thing we all need to do today is thank the LGBT Pride committee in New York City for letting Bill Donohue march in the parade. And the second thing we all need to do, later on in the day, is buy ourselves or someone else a cold Guinness.

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