DISCLAIMER: #NotAllProtestants ; this is a HEATED post, sorry. Protestants who don't seethe about Catholics are cool.
Catholics take a lot of crap from Protestants about "worshipping Mary". This is a common and brainless misconception.
Let's first examine the accusation that Catholics *pray* to Mary.
There's an interesting line in the "Hail Mary" that goes "Pray for us".
Huh, that's odd. Catholics are praying to Mary to... pray for them?
Pray to who? Who would Mary be praying to?
Who could it be? (It's God). Catholics are asking Mary to pray for them. Asking someone to pray for you sounds like something that literally-every Christian from literally-every Christian denomination does. But while it's OK for you to ask your friend named Mary to pray for you, it's wrong to ask the woman who God chose to deliver us our Savior. It's wrong to ask her. Why? Is it really just because we clasp our hands and close our eyes while doing it? That can't be it, right? There's no way Protestants are THAT mindless, right?
So the Protestant definition of prayer is as loose as possible. And to be fair, it's a real dictionary definition: "humbly asking for something". OK great, every person in the world is praying to people and things that aren't God.
Is that what Protestants mean though? No of course not, the accusation is that Catholics pray TO Mary as if she were God. But if Mary were God, she wouldn't need to pray to Him, right? Right. So that can't be it, either.
The same problem applies to their definition of "worship": it's as loose and uncharitable as possible.
And I'll be charitable to Protestants--more than they are--and admit that it does *seem* like some Maryheads might spend time focusing on Mary that would be better-spent focusing on God.
But there's a problem there: ALL time would be better-spent focusing on God.
Does anyone think for one tenth of a second that Protestants spend all of their time focusing on God? No. No human loves and considers God as much as we should. But am I to believe God also doesn't want you to play music or dance or sing or paint something? He doesn't want you to think about or love the people He put around you, the people who came before you? Is His plan for us all truly to be monks who spend every waking moment in devotion to Him? Maybe, but Protestants aren't even monks lmao Catholics are
Instead of dedicating a portion of their hearts and mind to the Mother of God, Protestants will spend it on ANYTHING ELSE.
A Protestant will unironically spend an hour watching American Idol, and then turn around and accuse a Catholic of idolatry for """praying""" to Mary for 30 seconds. A Protestant will have posters and figures and all kinds of stupid Funko-knick knacks of every fictional character under the Sun, and then turn around and accuse a Catholic of idolatry for having a figure of Mary-- the woman who birthed our Savior. And it's OK to have a Superman figure, but Protestant-God help you if you have a figure of Michael the Archangel.
The Catholic culture of revering heroes of the Church-- Mary, the Saints--dedicating your hearts and minds to things that *make up* the Church--it all glorifies God.
The Protestant "solution" to this "idolatry" is submission to the popular culture around them. They don't have LESS time and energy than Catholics, they simply choose to spend it *not* focused on the art, history, and culture of Christ's Church. They abandon Christianity in all ways except, thank God, at least they still have the Bible.
Which is probably why their "churches" are plain buildings and their music is pop music. They mimic the world. I'm not saying you need a cathedral to worship God. I'm saying that cathedrals are objectively beautiful, and I don't think even Protestants would disagree with the thought that God appreciates beauty.
The false and thoughtless Protestant accusation of idolatry against Catholics demands the death of the glorious Christian culture and an adoption of *whatever crap is around you*.
Mary was good enough for God, she's not good enough for a moment of thought from Protestants. And that'd be one thing if they truly were "ALL-IN" on God and nothing but God. But they're not. They're human. They watch teevee, they play games, they waste time, they have HEROES both fictional and real, they sin, they do EVERYTHING everyone else does, including Catholics: except respect the men and women who suffered and died to deliver Christ and spread His word to the world.