Monday, October 16, 2006


First Things: Joseph Bottum; When the Swallows Come Back to Capistrano: Catholic Culture in America

....“You remember how, you know, the old hippie types used to say, ‘Never trust anyone over thirty’? Well, they were right. Only it was their own generation they were talking about,” the thin, quiet one in the back announced as we pulled up to the hotel. “You can see it clearly out here in California. That whole generation of Catholics in America, basically everybody formed before 1978, is screwed up. Left, Right, whatever....The best of them were failures, and the worst of them were monsters.”

There’s something disturbing about that line, although one hears it often enough. Last year, a young seminarian used a version to dismiss the revelations of the priest scandals—day after day of news reports about heart-wrenching vileness: “Yes, yes,” he told me, “it was sickening and evil, but what did anybody expect? Those are just the worst examples of everything that generation did wrong.”....

I think the Boomers will not be thought of kindly by History. The wreckage of their reign extends from the boardroom to the academy to the church.

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