Friday, April 22, 2005

Papal Bull 

Found on Eschaton:
Pope Benedict XVI has responded firmly to the first challenge of his papacy by condemning a Spanish government bill allowing marriage between homosexuals.
The bill, passed by parliament's Socialist-dominated lower house, also allows gay couples to adopt.

A senior Vatican official described the bill - which is likely to become law within a few months - as iniquitous.

He said Roman Catholic officials should be prepared to lose their jobs rather than co-operate with the law.
Later in the article, a cardinal is quoted as saying, "just because something was made law it did not make it right."

Oh, the possible responses to this load of crap. "Fuck you" comes to mind, but since priests and bishops and cardinals and popes are celebate, it's probably the wrong response. Hm. Celebate, and yet they have the balls to meddle in other peoples' sex lives.

Okay, here's a comparison. An Islamic Imam calls for the faithful to, say, not follow sexual discrimination laws. Cut to: Muslim employee of the US government who decides not to follow Title IX, because his Imama said not to. What happens to that man? At the least, yes, he'd probably lose his job. But I can imagine that the religious loonies here would brand him (and his Imam) a terrorist.

Now, I can see the inevitable comparisons to the civil rights movement here. After all, it took Rosa Parks not following the law to bring about change. And I'm sure that someone, somewhere, is going to try to compare Catholic officials in Spain (or fundie pharmacists in Ohio) to Rosa Parks, saying they're just using civil disobedience, blah blah blah.

But there's a huge, huge, huge difference. See, the point of civil disobedience is to bring down an oppressive government dictum in favor of more freedom for the people. Contrast Rosa Parks to George Wallace. She stayed in the front of the bus and it led to the beginning of the end for segretation laws. Wallace blocked the doors of a school in Alabama, to try to keep those laws in effect. Rosa was right, Wallace was wrong.

In this case, Pope Ratzo and company are behaving like George Wallace, trying to block the doors so those nasty gay people can't get into the marriage classroom. Never mind that the pope is meddling in the affairs of a sovereign state. He seems to still think it's the 13th century, and he can scare people into submission.

Apparently, someone hasn't told Ratzo that the fear stick has lost most of its power. Sure, there are still people around who sincerely believe they'll go to hell if they get divorced or masturbate. But there are a lot more people who don't. And there will continue to me more people. I'm sure, thanks to the Church's child abuse scandal, there are a lot of people who are disillusioned, realizing that the whole hierarchy, from Father Smith down the street to Pope Ratzo hisself, are just human. They know about as much about it as any other human. That is, they're talking out of their asses most of the time.

I wonder, though, with this "just because its legal doesn't mean it's right" logic, if we're not just seeing the inverse of the church's attitude about child abuse all along. Is it possible that they've been using the "just because it's illegal doesn't mean it's wrong" argument internally to justify letting pedophiles escape the authorities?

In any case, an old German transvestite in Rome, who's most likely never had sex, has absolutely no business telling Spain how to run their affairs. If that's how this pope is going to behave, thinking he's Gregory XIII, he needs to get the big smackdown from as many European nations as possible, and fast.

We don't need another Nazi trying to tell the rest of Europe and the world what to do.

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