From George Weigel's most recent essay, "Maureen Dowd's Catholic Problem", on National Review Online, which begins with an historical overview of (Protestant) anti-Catholicism in the U.S., and then states:
Ecclesiastes notwithstanding, there is something new under the sun in the annals of American anti-Catholicism; and that something is the rise of the anti-Catholic Catholics, self-described Catholics who make a career (or at least part of a career) out of mounting endless attacks on the Church, its settled beliefs, its leadership, and its people. Like the Nast/rationalist anti-Catholicism of the past, today’s Catholic anti-Catholicism is a left-of-center phenomenon that, in secular guise, often reflects the critiques of the Church mounted by so-called “Catholic progressives”: The Church is hopelessly sexist; the Church is hopelessly sex-obsessed; the Church is cruel to women and gays; the Church is hypocritical. And, of course and most recently, the Church is a global criminal conspiracy of child rapists and their abettors, which “fact” validates the other charges in the standing indictment just cited. ...
Dolan, you see, opposed New York governor Andrew Cuomo’s attempt to get the New York state legislature to adopt “gay marriage,” of which Ms. Dowd approves. But Dowd was not content to register her disagreement with the archbishop, who had properly described such legislation as a quasi-totalitarian extension of state power. No, the Catholic girl raised in Blessed Sacrament parish on Washington’s Chevy Chase Circle lit into Dolan — “the Starchbishop” — and the Church as a gang of hypocrites who defend marriage but deny it to gay couples; who worry about the young leaving the Church but then don’t protect the young from sexual predators; and who have tried to slough off responsibility for clerical sexual abuse by blaming it on a toxic ambient culture, a tactic Ms. Dowd unoriginally described as “Blame Woodstock.”
The last is, in fact, the key to understanding Maureen Dowd’s particular form of virulent anti-Catholicism. Ms. Dowd believes in the sexual revolution as fervently as Archbishop Dolan believes in the Creed in which he leads his congregation at St. Patrick’s every Sunday. The difference between them is that Archbishop Dolan can rationally defend the articles in the Creed, while Maureen Dowd is impervious to the massive empirical evidence that demonstrates that the sexual revolution has been a snare and a delusion for a) women, b) children, c) men, d) marriage, e) family stability, and f) the country’s political culture (cf. Clinton, William Jefferson [whom Dowd helped save in 1998]). Interestingly enough, and in this respect, Maureen Dowd is not the linear descendant of Nast and the rationalist anti-Catholics, who were more often than not the “progressives” of their day. Rather, she is the rhetorical great-great-granddaughter of Elder W. C. Benson and his 1928 anti-Catholic screed, the difference being that Benson’s fundamentalism involved notions of Biblical inspiration and inerrancy, while Dowdian fundamentalism involves an irrational and empirically unsustainable belief in the sexual revolution.
Read the entire piece. And also see Dr. Ed Peters' post, "Oh no! Maureen Dowd doesn’t seem to like me!" (June 19, 2011).
Here are a couple of posts I've written in recent years about Dowd's attacks on the Catholic Church:
• "The Vatican’s insistence on male prerogative is misogynistic poppycock" (July 18, 2010)
• Dour, unhinged, and factless, Maureen Dowd seeks papal whipping boy (March 29, 2010)
• Dowd for the Count (October 27, 2009)
• Maureen Dowd: Dan Brown is Vatican's ally (March 27, 2005)