Listen to Hugh Hewitt much?
But tune in to the Catholic conservative radio host sometime and you may catch the soothing tones of Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput.
To hawk his new book, Strangers in a Strange Land — our archbishop's helpful guide on how to live Catholic in the "post-Christian World" — Chaput took time Monday to chat with Hewitt.
Here's a recap of what His Excellency had to say:
The press are pagans.
And please, everyone, stop treating President Trump so meanly.
Thanks, Padre, for doing your part to delegitimize the media and aid a demagogue. Drop in anytime.
It's no surprise that our traditionalist archbishop calls for supporting a president who is in every way opposite of the word catholic. (It means "universal." Look it up.) Chaput has been offering Trump this kind of mealymouthed half-support since before the election.
In August, in an act of startling equivalency, he wrote to the faithful that neither Trump nor Clinton "is clearly better than the other."
That always stumped me in 10th-grade morality class: "Blessed are the serial sexual assaulters, the haters of women, for at least they will appoint pro-life judges."
Given Chaput's worldview, his embrace of Trump makes sense.
While Pope Francis inspires billions by preaching of bridges, not walls, Chaput's message is of blind obedience. Instead of calls for conversation, Chaput's Catholicism is rigid, his message clear: If you don't like it, leave.
While Chaput's rigidity may keep Pope Francis from bestowing on him the scarlet-colored hat of a cardinal, he's perfectly suited for a red Trump hat.
Trump wants to Make America Great Again. Chaput wants to make America Catholic again, free of nagging liberals who would like a more inclusive church — who seek acceptance.
While saying he did not want to appear "partisan," Chaput told Hewitt: "It seems to me if we are really serious about our common responsibilities, we support the president, whether we accept everything he stands for or not, and wish him success rather than trying to undermine him."
Let's look at what His Excellency fails to say here. In a city of immigrants, in a church of immigrants, where South Philadelphia churches hold alternating Masses for their Vietnamese and Mexican communities, we hear nothing about the sanctuary city order. No protestations about the refugee ban. Nothing about climate change, for God's sake.
For his part, the archbishop said he's amazed at how "hostile" the press is at the president's every move. In a bit of divinely inspired arithmetic, Hewitt offered that less than 25 percent of the mainstream media is of religious faith. Sure looks that way, Chaput agreed.
Actually, my colleague David O'Reilly found a 2007 Pew Research Center study stating that 29 percent of national journalists attend religious worship once a month, with 37 percent of local media doing so. In fairness, that was 10 years ago. A godless bunch we've become, perhaps.
In contrast, according to the archdiocese, only 20 percent of Philadelphia Catholics attend weekly Mass.
Look, it's all Americans' right to disagree with the president, the archbishop allowed — and they should, he said, on moral issues.
And in fairness again, Chaput has spoken out in other venues against the refugee ban — and for the plight of immigrants and the marginalized. But then he offers support to a president who offers them no support at all. He wishes him success. If the long history of the church's involvement in world affairs has taught us anything, you can't have it both ways. The Holy Father makes me want to be a better man, a better Catholic. Archbishop Chaput makes me want to turn the dial.
I attended 16 years of Catholic school. But what do I know? The Jesuits I learned from taught us to be "men and women for others." They never said anything about supporting a president who demonizes "others." I don't attend Mass as much as I should. But I am Catholic enough to carry around the guilt of the times I stayed away too long.
If I don't like it, well, then leave, many of you will tell me.