Saturday, April 9, 2011

State Department Claims Douglas Kmiec Is Too Catholic for Malta

Douglas Kmiec — early "Obamacon," author of the 2008 election book Can a Catholic Support Him?, and not unrelatedly, current ambassador to Malta — has been rebuked by the State Department for "spending too much time writing and speaking about subjects such as abortion and his religious beliefs."
The 41-page audit says Douglas Kmiec's "outside activities have detracted from his attention to core mission goals" in the Mediterranean island nation, such as promoting maritime security and American business. It acknowledges the wide respect for Kmiec in the conservative, Catholic country of Malta but notes that his articles distract him and his embassy officials by forcing them to carefully review his writing. They have upset administration officials in Washington too.
And if you're wondering whether his excellency would have gotten the same dressing-down if he'd been freelancing for Rolling Stone instead of Catholic Online, know that Kmiec himself attributes it to "hostility toward expressions of his religious faith" on the part of "some State Department officials."

This is a man who staked his political credibility on the Obama administration's warmth toward religion and religion-based arguments. Poor fellow, this probably stings a bit.

But if you must laugh at someone in this story, don't make it Kmiec. Laugh at the State Department official who thinks there is such a thing as being too Catholic for Malta, which is like being too hollow-legged for Moscow. And in fact, when the story ran on the Times of Malta
's website, Maltese Catholics quickly filled the comments section with statements of support for Kmiec and his theological extracurriculars:
Ambassador Kmiec is doing a great job. If anything, his "outside activities" give more credibility to the man.

Continue doing your good work Mr Ambassador; most of us appreciate it.

Better rebuked by the state department than rebuked by God.

Mr Kmiec is charismatic, entwined with the local realities, excellent speaker and of good Christian faith.

I was under the impression that for the first time for many decades the US had managed to send us a representative of intellectual worth and serious intentions. Once again, shame on "the boys back home" and kudos to Ambassador Kmiec. May we get more people of his stuff from other countries as well. In the meantime Italy has changed her representative Trabalza who did almost nothing during his tenure of office with someone apparently superior both in intellectual quality and the willingness to seek bringing the two people together. (In actual fact I had always suspected Trabalza's qualities as compared to his home patronage since I was acquainted with his grandfather's history of Italian grammars published with the blessings of the Mussolini regime . . .
It's true — say what you like about Kmiec, at least none of his ancestors ever wrote a grammar textbook that was approved by fascists.

By the way, it's pronounced "keMECK," like "th'HECK?" and if you need help remembering, here's a mnemonic clerihew:
Obama sent Douglas Kmiec
To this one-hundred-square-mile speck.
Foggy Bottom thought he was plus catholique que le pape,
And they told him to stop.

No comments:

Post a Comment