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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Holds Green New Deal For Public Housing Town Hall NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 14, 2019.Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images

WASHINGTON, March 5, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) —  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently declared in a tirade that she was “tired” of faith being “weaponized” and that the “only time religious freedom is invoked is in the name of bigotry and discrimination.”

The impassioned speech by the 30-year-old New York Democratic congresswoman known colloquially as AOC went viral in a tweet on NowThisNews, which declared she had “flipped the ‘religious freedom’ argument on its head.”

But if Ocasio-Cortez flipped anything on its head, it was reason, natural law, and Christian morality. 

That’s according to a Catholic priest I consulted to help deconstruct AOC’s dramatic but morally unhinged address at the February 27 Congressional hearing on “The Administration’s Religious Liberty Assault on LGBTQ rights,” held by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.

AOC spoke to “Evan” Minton, who was there to address the committee. 

Minton is a biological woman who “identities” as a male and who is suing a Catholic hospital for refusing to perform a hysterectomy on her as part of her “gender-affirming healthcare.”

“My faith commands me to treat Mr. Minton [sic] as holy because he [sic] is sacred because his [sic] life is sacred, because you are not to be denied anything that I am entitled to, that we are equal in the eyes of the law and we are equal in my faith in the eyes of the world,” declared AOC.

“It is part of my faith, that all people are holy, and all people are sacred, unconditionally,” she said.

To be sure, Ocasio-Cortez did not specify that this faith is Christian, and while she has identified as Catholic in the past, she may no longer practice, pointed out Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic Civil Rights League.

Certainly, her statements are a distortion of Christian teaching, to put it mildly.

The Catholic Church does not teach that the human person is totally depraved as do some Protestants. Every human person is sacred in the sense that God wills us to exist and created us, noted the priest whom I consulted. 

But that doesn’t mean we are all holy as she said. We are sinners who need God’s mercy. We are born with original sin and a strong tendency to sin. 

Does Ocasio-Cortez regard President Trump as holy, one wonders. Perhaps she would if he decided to identify as a woman. Certainly, so upset was AOC at the treatment Minton had received she banged on the desk repeatedly.

“There is nothing holy about rejecting medical care of people, no matter who they are on the grounds of what their identity is. There is nothing holy about turning someone away from a hospital,” she contended.

But, clearly, cutting off healthy body parts and filling the body with hormones is not “medical care” at all. It is dangerous, often irreversible, and anti-science and anti-medicine.

The priest I spoke with told me that good medical practice is rooted in the truth about the body. A man is a man even if he is castrated. Lying to people and going along with their lies helps no one. It is wrong medically and psychologically. 

AOC also lamented that it was difficult to listen to arguments “weaponizing and using scripture to justify bigotry…White supremacists have done it, those who justify slavery did it, those who fought against integration did it and we’re seeing it today,” she said.

“There’s nothing holy about writing discrimination into the law and I am tired of …communities of faith being weaponized and being mischaracterized because the only time religious freedom is invoked is in the name of bigotry and discrimination.”

But, consistent with most of what AOC says, this is just not true.

The priest commented to me that there are no scriptures that specifically declare whites supreme. Such a concept of white, brown and black skin colors are modern preoccupations and were not part of the biblical worldview. Thus uses of Scripture in the past to support white supremacy were contrived, and a misuse of Scripture that all should rightly condemn.

However, Scripture does consistently and specifically condemn homosexual acts as sinful, as well fornication and adultery, and “teaches that marriage is between one man and one woman to death do them part, bearing fruit in their children.” 

“And as to the ‘trans’ issues, the Scriptures are clear God made us male and female. A man cannot become a woman. That is scientifically impossible and it also violates God’s sovereign role as Creator,” the priest pointed out.

“It is not bigotry for believers to be humbly submitted to what we sincerely believe to be revealed by God. Further, everyone agreed on these matters until about twenty minutes ago in our culture. We are simply believing and teaching what we have always believed and taught.”

It’s also worth noting that “bigotry” is generally a word the left uses as an ad hominem attack. “In effect what they mean by the term is, ‘You don’t agree with my agenda so you are a bigot, you are evil and must be marginalized.’ It’s not bigotry and discrimination just because she says so.” 

As to AOC’s contention that “it is not up to us to deny medical care, it is up to us to feed the hungry to clothe the poor, to protect children and to love all people as ourselves,” the priest asked her to join him in praying outside Planned Parenthood abortion facilities.

“I’m just asking because you claim to love everyone and want to protect children.… Will you join us, or will you just be another hypocrite?”

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Lianne Laurence joined LifeSiteNews as its Toronto-based reporter in February 2015. She is the author of a 2004 biography of Canadian pro-life activist Joe Borowski, the former managing editor of Catholic Insight Magazine, and was staff writer and production assistant for The Christians, a 12-volume history published by Ted Byfield. She has a BA in Journalism and Communications (University of Regina) and is from Alberta.