Carl Paladino's opposition to homosexuality: "Exactly equivalent to the Catholic Church"

That's kind of a scary statement given the latest comments by the Tea Party fave and GOP gubernatorial candidate for governor in New York. Paladino has a hard-earned reputation for being, let's say, mercurial, and his statements on Sunday about gays at an Orthodox synagogue in Brooklyn plus his kind-of-walkback on the "Today" show this ayem only reinforce that.I have a story on the exchanges here, and NYT coverage is here.What intrigued me, in light of our recent discussions of Catholic teaching and gay bullying and the gay marriage battle by the bishops, were these quotes from Paladino's campaign manager, Michael R. Caputo, in reference to Paladino's often sneering dismissal of homosexuals:

"Carl Paladino is simply expressing the views that he holds in his heart as a Catholic," Caputo told The Times. "Carl Paladino is not homophobic, and neither is the Catholic Church."

Caputo continued that line in remarks to CNN.

"Carl Paladino's position on this is exactly equivalent to the Catholic Church," Caputo said. "And if Andrew Cuomo has a problem with the Catholic Church's position on abortion and homosexuality, he needs to take it up with his parish priest."

Caputo may be right, but does Paladino's tone at least merit a pastoral response from someone in the Catholic hierarchy? And is his attitude representative of how many Catholics internalize -- and then express -- church teaching on/against homosexuality and gays and lesbians?

David Gibson is the director of Fordham’s Center on Religion & Culture.

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