No offense, but isn’t it about time for the Catholic Church put up or shut up?
Wait and see! After this piece comes out some folks will say, well gee, the Popes (this one and the last one) haven't been big supporters of the moral atrocities and sadisms of the Bush/Republican Presidency.
Aarugh! How do you talk to people like that? Let's look very closely at what has NOT happened.
The Catholic Church (Popes, Cardinals, Bishops, etc.) have been playing it INFINITELY safe. Dear God (see, we can talk about God too), the silence has been deafening. Sure a few candyass denunciations here and there about the horror show in Iraq. And even a few murmurs about the Israeli/Palestinian "conflict". Yeah, conflict is the word since that insane asylum of mutually righteous blood letting is the core cancer that has metastasized to the entire planet. But do you hear Rome making any comments about even pouring oil on troubled waters. Silentio.
We all know it’s tricky for institutionalized (VERY institutionalized) religions such as the Catholic Church to speak to desperately immoral political realities, but, duh, aren't religions supposed to say or do SOMETHING about tsunamis of world wide evil?
Here's the thing. The more you watch allegedly "religious people" (e.g., the Catholic hierarchy) walk with averted eyes around, say, a rape and murder in the streets, is the less you think of them as being religious AT ALL.
And that's what the Catholic Church has been doing about the murder of Mother Nature, the destruction of America's middle class, the unbridled greed of America's Dictatorship of the Rich, the contempt for science and education, the theft of America's retirement and health care programs and about 43 other things. The cassock folk just keep walking by and walking by, having conversations about who knows what, but doing essentially NOTHING to even acknowledge, much less condemn, behaviors and policies which would have made Jesus weep.
But, who cares about Jesus? The Baptist Big Bang folks (Armeggdonites) expect the world to go boom in the next week or two, and are flatly indifferent to the compassionate and loving teachings of Jesus Christ. And the Catholic Church? Well, it's basically doing the same thing it did to St. Francis centuries ago: speak no evil, see no evil, and hear no evil.
And yes, there are some significant exceptions. Very, VERY rarely the Church makes some statement that genocide is naughty and the Middle East isn't a cartoon movie of good guys and bad guys. Hint: the bad guys are murderers and the good guys are retaliators against the bad guys.
What about the following possibility? What about the realistic possibility that if the Catholic Church had made some encyclicalesque denunciation of the anti-humanity, Middle Eastern policies of the Bush/Republican Administration, thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of children, would now be alive?
Seriously, VERY seriously, what about this possibility? Perhaps such a judgment from the Catholic Church would have very significantly weakened the moral legitimacy of these greed/oil obsessed "Crusaders".
By now, even barnyard animals know the Iraq War (and the Iran War to come?) is chiefly about oil and the obscene construction of dipstick religious fanatics.
So, what's the deal here? We all know Jesus wouldn't have walked by the Bush/Republican Heart of Darkness with his eyes averted. And neither would St. Francis or Buddha or Mohammed or the Hebrew Prophets.
So why has the Catholic Church been on its tippy toes for the last six years? The horror of the last six years hasn't been some political "game". It's been mass murder, killing the planet, robbing disadvantaged citizens to make pig rich people, pig, pig richer, regressing science back into the dark ages, under funding schools out of existence, pouring GASOLINE on Middle Eastern troubled waters, when it could have long sense mediated a Middle Eastern peace that the entire region (and world) would have accepted.
An image that fits is a city which has been utterly taken over by criminals and murderers. Daughters are raped, sons are cannon fodder, homes are destroyed (bulldozed maybe?), "legal" theft is the name of the city administration game, other cities are bombed, and EVERYTHING is under the control of the very, very rich.