Casualty of Capitalism

Exiled into Wilmington, Delaware by virtue of corporate layoffs. (Note: Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this blog are Copyright 2005, Michael Collins, and cannot be used without permission.)

Location: Wilmington, Delaware, United States

Graduate of University of Maryland School of Law; University of Maryland, College Park (Economics/Political Science).

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

The Drumbeat Continues

Here a round-up of today's hit pieces on the deceased Pope John Paull II:

1. Thomas Cahill in The New York Times: the Pope didn't care about people, he cared about protecting pedophiles.

Cardinal [Bernard] Law, who had to resign after revelations that he had repeatedly allowed priests accused of sexual abuse to remain in the ministry while failing to inform either law enforcement officials or parishioners, must stand as the characteristic representative of John Paul II, protective of the church but often dismissive of the moral requirement to protect and cherish human beings.

2. Richard Cohen in The Washington Post: the Pope is to blame for the AIDS epidemic in Africa. He should have preached condom use over abstinence, of course, because a person has a magical ability to contract AIDS from abstaining from sexual contact...or something.

The cult of the pope which John Paul II nurtured was useful. It made him an enormous force for good in the world, but it also obscured his obdurate doctrinal conservatism and his intolerance of dissent. (He silenced his critics, not always by the force of his argument but sometimes simply by fiat.) He serves to remind that faith -- the quality most of us lack and which we therefore admire most in others -- can be a form of blindness. As the driving force behind the pope's willingness to duke it out with communism, it did wonders for us all. On the other hand, a faith-based inability to distinguish between the taking of life and the prevention of a pregnancy -- or the spread of AIDS -- is not something to be admired or, to my mind, understood.

3. Charles Madigan of the Chicago Tribune: the Church should become more democratic and change its rules (regarding married and female priests) to suit what the polls say, but it keeps hanging on to its darned laws and doesn't care about us!

The thing about the Catholic Church, of course, is that unlike politics played at a more earthly level, it doesn't respond to polling results. In a very concrete way, it doesn't care what we think at this particular point about much of anything.

But at some point, it will have to confront this crisis aggressively if it wants to continue serving its many flocks around the world.

A woman at the altar, a priest with a family, those would be my solutions.


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