…welcomes a man who without the protection afforded by the robes of office would be charged with perverting the course of justice. In all civilised countries, concealing the crimes of others – never mind failing to report them – is a serious offence. Interesting then that the Vatican ‘state‘ has not signed up to the various international agreements that secure human rights.
Shame on you Scotland. Shame.
It was fascinating watching the assembled young families and elderly up in Bruntsfield as they waited for Joseph Ratzinger to pass on his way to the Cardinal’s House for lunch. How many of them would give this man so much as the time of day if it had been their children and grandchildren who had been abused by a priest? Would they be in the mood to forgive the priests who had ruined their children’s lives? If it was Ratzinger’s name that kept appearing on the sort of documents uncovered by police in Belgium, Germany and the U.S.A. that detailed what the Catholic Church had assumed would remain private conversations about which parish paedophile priests should be sent to next, wouldn’t you want to… you know, have a word? Scream a little bit? Even, well, punch him in the face?
We were watching friend’s Twitter feeds as they lined Princes Street to protest. Every time the BBC’s cameras came near to the places where the police had coralled protestors, the BBC coverage cut away to an interview. Every time. This was done so often that it doesn’t even appear in what may usually be supposed to be critical coverage.
Also missing from the coverage was the nine armoured Landrovers carrying what may be assumed to be armed bodyguards. I suppose the Catholic Church assumed these goons would be needed, after all, they were visiting a Third World country. Or is it that the goons were there in the vanguard of European values? As a humanist who knows that states where religion is not held in anything like the same regard as elsewhere will have much lower crime rates, the Vatican is nothing but a pustule on the face of a Europe that wants to outgrow the venomous evil of its past.
In an attempt to not only rewrite his own history but that of Europe, the former member of the Hitler Youth linked ‘atheist extremism’ to the Nazism that Britain fought in the last war… which is to ignore the fact that Germany is still a predominantly Catholic country, that the current pope was a Catholic as a youth volunteered to wear the uniform of the Nazis and that there are records of Catholic priests being members of the National Socialist party. I know this because I read books, lots of books…
…and I also watch TV because I like to be informed of the facts. On a lighter note, the quote of the day must surely be awarded to Father Christopher Jamison, speaking on the Channel 4 news: “I seem to be losing touch…”