Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is a columnist for The American Prospect. She is the winner of the 2017 Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism.

Recent Articles

Benedict in Brazil

The Pope visits a country now led by adherents to the liberation theology he tried to crush.

In 1985, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, then prefect of the Vatican's Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, officially silenced Brazilian priest Leonardo Boff, forbidding him to teach, publish or preach on theological matters for a year. In the best tradition of radical priests, Boff embraced liberation theology, which fused Catholicism with a highly politicized "preferential option for the poor" that was based on a Marxist critique of the Brazilian economy. Ratzinger may have rightly thought that he was pretty much done with the troublesome dean of Brazil's liberation theology movement. But today, in his first papal visit to the land of the bossa nova , Pope Benedict XVI (as Ratzinger is now known) will find himself in contention with Brazil's left-wing president -- a man who claims roots in the liberation theology that Boff began to preach preached by Boff in the 1970s and '80s. "I'm a Christian, a friend of Leonardo Boff, of [liberation theology practitioners] Pedro...

State of the Church

What does it mean to be a European? Though it does not entail a common language or cuisine, these days, we're told, a growing number of young people on the continent are more likely to describe themselves as European than by any identity drawn from the language they speak, or their home country. Yet perhaps the most obvious aspect of European identity that transcends the continent's national borders stands rejected by the continent's citizens: despite the entreaties of Pope Benedict XVI, Europe, it seems, is loath to claim its Christian (largely Catholic) heritage as a common bond. Benedict argued hard for a mention, in the European Union Constitution, of Christianity as the root of European values, and lost. In his quest to return Europe to its former status as the Christian continent, Pope Benedict XVI lays the blame for Catholicism's loss of Europe to many things: modernism, relativism, multiculturalism. But never, it seems, has he looked in the mirror to find the true reason the...

PARSING BIGOTRY.

PARSING BIGOTRY. Having fallen behind on my oppo reading, I somehow missed this post by Ramesh Ponnuru at The Corner, who claims my TAPPED post on Bill Donohue 's graceless response to the right's big Supreme Court victory last week on abortion to be fraught with rage: "This Rageful Bigot" [Ramesh Ponnuru] That's what Adele Stan calls William Donohue of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. Follow her links, though, and I think you'll find that the Donohue article Stan is criticizing is rather less rageful than Stan's own post. It's also not in the least bigoted. First, I find it interesting that Ponnuru provides a link to my post, but not to the Donohue piece I discuss in that post. Perhaps he expects his readers to take him at his word. But even more interesting is Ponnuru's lawyerly wording of his own post. While I call Donohue, the person, "a rageful bigot," (and one who should be disavowed by such supporters as Mary Ann Glendon , George Weigel and Dinesh D'Souza ),...

SORE WINNER.

SORE WINNER. One would think that William Donohue , the mouth of the right-wing organization, the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights , would be humbly and joyously thanking his Creator for last week's merciless Supreme Court decision upholding the federal ban on the dilation & extraction method of abortion. Instead, the official bully of the Catholic right chooses to use the occasion, in this piece at Human Events Online , to rehash old, trumped-up charges against journalists who, when reporting on the nominations of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, noted that both men are conservative Roman Catholics. According to Donohue, who has made a career out of spewing resentment and worse , reporting on the biography of a Catholic Supreme Court nominee amounts to anti-Catholicism. (Note to my future biographers, I am a Roman Catholic and I don't mind if you say so.) In fact, Donohue confers upon the Prospect and yours truly a special...

WHEN DID HE...

WHEN DID HE KNOW ORDER IT? Right out of the box at today's big hearing , Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez cast himself as the fall guy for decisions made by "the White House," i.e., President George W. Bush and his Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove . In the opening volley of questions served by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Partrick Leahy , Gonzo said that he would never have initiated the removal of of U.S. attorney for political reasons, "nor do I believe that anybody in the department would advocate for such a purpose." (Emphasis added.) The attorney general then admitted that he had "heard concerns" about U.S. attorney David Iglesias of New Mexico from Rove and "the president." Iglesias, you'll recall, refused to pursue a voter fraud case against Democrats prior to the 2006 congressional elections (he was not able to find damning evidence), which prompted a phone call from New Mexico's Republican Sen. Pete Domenici , who improperly attempted to pressure Iglesias to prosecute...

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