The Washington Post's Sunday magazine features a light -- and I mean l-i-t-e light -- interview with Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington.
The interview is the latest installment of the magazine's "Just Asking" feature, in which reporter Joe Heim asks a few short questions, often humorous, to someone prominent in local politics or culture, with the aim of showing his or her human side. With Wuerl as the subject, that means,
A moral question: Should the Washington Redskins change their name?
And the hard-hitting follow-up:
But is saying that [the Redskins should make the "right call"] sort of the same as saying they should change their name?
A few thoughts on the piece:
- Given that the Washington Post has severely cut its Godbeat reporting since dumping "On Faith," it's good to see any kind of coverage of religion in the paper that is not occasioned by a political issue or controversy (Redskins aside).
- That said, couldn't Heim have done at least as much research for his Wuerl interview as he did for his interviews with film director Mike Cahill and the National Zoo's "panda guy"? As the Washington Post's own Michelle Boorstein noted in an expansive profile last April, Wuerl is among the U.S. bishops who are closest to Pope Francis. Surely Heim could have asked him something more meaningful about his work with the Pope than the open-ended, "Pope Francis has received a tremendous reaction. ..."
- The style and format of "Just Asking" would work so much better with Cardinal Timothy Dolan, or another prelate known for his wit. It is not ideal for a prelate who, as a longtime aide told Boorstein, is so formal that he has "cuff links on his pajamas."
What do you think?