By Kenneth C. Barnes
Winner, 2017 Ragsdale Award
A well timed examine that places present issues—religious intolerance, immigration, the separation of church and nation, race kin, and politics—in old context.
The masthead of the Liberator, an anti-Catholic newspaper released in Magnolia, Arkansas, displayed from 1912 to 1915 a picture of the Whore of Babylon. She was once an immoral girl sitting on a seven-headed beast, protecting a golden cup “full of her abominations,” and meant to symbolize the Catholic Church.
Propaganda of this kind used to be universal in the course of a national surge in antipathy to Catholicism within the early 20th century. This hostility was once in particular extreme in mostly Protestant Arkansas, the place for instance a 1915 legislations required the inspection of convents to make sure that monks couldn't continue nuns as sexual slaves.
Later within the decade, anti-Catholic prejudice connected itself to the crusade opposed to liquor, and whilst the us went to struggle in 1917, suspicion arose opposed to German speakers—most of whom, in Arkansas, have been Roman Catholics.
In the Twenties the Ku Klux Klan portrayed Catholics as “inauthentic” americans and claimed that the Roman church was once attempting to take over the country’s public faculties, associations, and the govt itself. In 1928 a Methodist senator from Arkansas, Joe T. Robinson, used to be selected because the operating mate to stability the price tag within the presidential crusade of Al Smith, a Catholic, which introduced extra attention.
Although public expressions of anti-Catholicism finally lessened, prejudice was back obvious with the 1960 presidential crusade, gained via John F. Kennedy.
Anti-Catholicism in Arkansas illustrates how the dominant Protestant majority portrayed Catholics as a feared or despised “other,” a phenomenon that used to be quite powerful in Arkansas.
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