Catholic Leaders To Newt And Rick: Stop Perpetuating Ugly Racial Poverty Stereotypes
More than 40 Catholic leaders are calling on two Catholics in the presidential race to stop using racial stereotypes in their messages about poverty. They’ve written an open letter from Francis X. Doyle, retired Associate General Secretary of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
As Catholic leaders who recognize that the moral scandals of racism and poverty remain a blemish on the American soul, we challenge our fellow Catholics Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum to stop perpetuating ugly racial stereotypes on the campaign trail. Mr. Gingrich has frequently attacked President Obama as a “food stamp president” and claimed that African Americans are content to collect welfare benefits rather than pursue employment. Campaigning in Iowa, Mr. Santorum remarked: “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money.” Labeling our nation’s first African-American president with a title that evokes the past myth of “welfare queens” and inflaming other racist caricatures is irresponsible, immoral and unworthy of political leaders.