According to Chicks on the Right, a poor little seventeen-year-old entreprenuer in Virginia is being picked on. And the big bad bully? Is a group of “Conservative Catholics.” Well, that’s not entirely true, but according to the title of their post, would definitely lead you to think that these so-called “Conservative Catholics” are leading the way.
According to the article they got their scoop from initially, the main agitators are not identified as Catholic but a “Conservative Alliance.” In fact, nowhere in that article is the word “catholic” even present. But, the Chicks focus on the “Catholic” aspect because of some facebook messages and emails left by people identifying as “Conservative Catholics.” I find it hard to believe that these are the only harassing emails but that’s the one the shop posted on it’s facebook page.
I admit, I think the name of her shop is dumb. Certainly nothing I would choose for my own shop. And I have no intentions of ever going to Front Royal, VA. Ever. So I would never be her customer anyhow, but it raises a few interesting questions. For one, why pick on Catholics? And why are the Chicks conflating political conservatism with religious orthodoxy. Plenty of so-called “Conservative Catholics” hold a pretty wide array of political views. In fact, Pia de Solenni in this piece talks about how the terms “liberal” and “conservative” are not especially helpful in the context of the Church as they are applied politically. But I have serious doubts the Chicks know much, if anything, about that. And so, when they say that “conservatism needs a make-over” they have no clue about those that might be deemed more “conservative” within the church.
It also raises the questions of those who defend the Church and her teachings on modesty and sexuality. Are we the enemy if we choose to follow church teaching in regards to what we allow our children to be exposed to because it might upset a teenager living her dream of owning a shop? Are we the enemy if we dislike the use of the word naughty to convey only sexual desires? Because if I’m re-claiming the word naughty to describe my sons’ misbehavior and I don’t like another application of the word so I don’t patronize a business using it in that undesirable way, I’m somehow degrading the conservative movement AND a poor girl’s dreams? Or am I only big and bad and EVIL if I send her a note saying why I’m boycotting.
I wouldn’t be staging a crusade against this shop, but I wouldn’t be it’s customer either. And. while realizing Front Royal is her home town, she had to have known that if she opened a shop with that name with those pictures, people were going to have feathers ruffled. I think she knew exactly that and that’s why she’s making all the negative publicity public. I think she knows, in her young years, that controversy sells more doughnuts than just making great doughnuts does. I believe she is fully aware that just thumbing her nose at people in her town who do get all hot-under-the-collar about this sort of thing by having her name and local success isn’t enough. She has bigger aspirations, and to make them go global, she’s gotta attract global attention. So, when the local loony bin calling themselves “Conservative,” “Catholic” or a combination provided it, she jumped right into the fray. I don’t believe for a second she is a poor, suffering kid having to deal with negative publicity rather than run her shop. If anything, she’s laughing all the way to the bank. And the ding-dongs who sent her these letters would do better to run her business into the ground by not patronizing it and not giving her ammo for growth. I certainly am not going out of my way to skip her shop, but plenty of people (read the comments) are going out of their way to patronize it now as a result of this little “boycott.”
We live in America. Anyone can, as Chris Rock says, “say any dumb ass thing he wants,” So these people can write their letters, silly as they may be, and this young woman can name her store any crazy name she wants. So what is a good conservative Catholic to do? Keep on keeping on. Do what you feel is best. Walk past the store. Go to mass. Teach your daughters not to stoop to the sluttification of the world however that may be. And teach your son’s to respect women. In your thoughts and words, be the Catholic you want others to think of when they think favorably of Catholics. Realize that before the world hated Catholics for the behavior of a few, it hated Jesus. You don’t have to appear harassing, but you just have to act according to His will.