Thursday, April 21, 2005

New Pope, Old Pope

Found these little nuggets in the "letters" section of Salon.

How can anyone be surprised that the new pope does not appear to be enlightened? Just look at the job listing.

Wanted: Replacement pope for Catholic Church. Must try to resolve complex modern crises by reference to cryptic, ancient, incomplete, self-contradictory and apocryphal writings. Must believe that a virgin had a baby. Must disparage homosexuals, even though significant numbers of co-workers are gay. Must assert that all other religions are false. Must believe that women are not qualified to be leaders in the organization and they must serve the men. Must believe himself to be infallible. Must be willing to stand up in expensive clothes in posh surroundings and declare himself "a simple, humble worker." Willingness to tolerate rape of children by co-workers a plus. Typing skills not required.

-- Erich Vieth

Nothing is going to change. The church will continue to do what it has always done for the past two thousand years; sow fear, self-loathing and empty promises to its adherents. The Catholic Church, like most other religious organizations, is -- and always has been -- an institution built on the fundamental idea that the rabble need to be kept in line so that the elites can exploit and plunder them with as little resistance as possible. Give a peasant a work ethic, a fear of a jealous and wrathful almighty, and then add a promise of rewards in the afterlife for his servitude here on earth, and bingo: an ignorant and docile subject! If this sounds cynical and harsh, I'm sorry, but as the Bible says, "By their works ye shall know them." You only have to look at Cardinal Ratzinger's treatment of liberation theology (an oxymoron if there ever was one) to see that his election is business as usual for the church.


I can't help but recall the words of the philosopher and revolutionary Denis Diderot: "Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest." I can't condone the means -- but the end is a noble goal.

-- Chad Bagley

Yeah, I'm going to hell, I know.


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