This week's dangerous tome is an innocent-looking red-and-grey volume called the St. Joseph's Baltimore Catechism. A quick rating will explain this:
Outdated: Yes. As if things we taught children in the '50s are still good for teaching them in today's world. Patriarchal: Yes. Sexist: Yes yes. See discussion below. Ugly: The many illustrations look far too much like real people, and use metaphors too frequently. Kids aren't ready for such things until they're at least 15. Just plain offensive: Again, yes.
If you don't believe me, just take a look at this part of the chapter on "Holy Matrimony" (a sexist word, by the way, which we will explore in a later post). The children are supposed to come up with a list of virtues that will prepare them for a happy marriage. And ....
Oh wow. Look at that -- of course, the girls get the unreasonable demands thrown on them. The very fact that there are two separate lists is bad enough, but then they have to go and patronize us by throwing in under the boys' list "respect for girls" and such. We don't need their stinking respect!
Well, enough space wasted on the Baltimore Catechism. Just don't read it, and if you meet anyone teaching from it, then please report it to us. We will take the necessary steps.