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Ratzinger is the Perfect Pope - Comments

black wolf's Avatar Comment 1 by black wolf

Ah, but as upstanding, objective and well-informed Catholics advise us, the whole affair is a fantastic campaign orchestrated by Church-hating and dishonest media, namely the New York Times, Der Spiegel, Die Welt, Süddeutsche Zeitung, and now also joining in, the Washington Post and the Telegraph.
But be reassured, 70,000 Roman youth attending the Pope's sermon and the millenial age of the Church indicate that nothing will ever change and all is well.

Excuse me while I go puke.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:34:00 UTC | #453381

Steven Mading's Avatar Comment 2 by Steven Mading

Come on, Richard. Don't hold it in - tell us what you really think.

No, actually I applaud this. There are times when speaking out against something "stridently" and directly without shame is exactly the morally appropriate response regardless of the fact that it will offend some people. This is such a case.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:36:00 UTC | #453384

NonLocality's Avatar Comment 3 by NonLocality

Here are two serious questions to Dawkins and others who agree with him:

Would the evidence that Ratzinger "covered up" the abuse of children hold up in a court of law? If you find that you are mistaken about this evidence, will you apologize to Ratzinger?

I might observe, it's very funny how this is being conducted. There's no sense of "This is what the evidence seems to indicate, but I'm sorry if I'm wrong." For Dawkins, Hitchens and company, it seems to be more than anything else a great opportunity to slander the Pope (regardless of how strong is the data implicating him).

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:42:00 UTC | #453391

TIKI AL's Avatar Comment 4 by TIKI AL

OK, I agree He shouldn't resign, let him stay on, stonewall, act like an ass in general, and thus bring down the church. As the great W Bush used to say: "Denial is a river in SOUTH AMERICA".

Out of shame he should at least turn in his "shroud of Turin" beach towell.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:42:00 UTC | #453392

Ryou Concord's Avatar Comment 5 by Ryou Concord

Haha, very short article. Right to the point.

I think my greatest fear with this whole ordeal is that nothing will change. After all, they've been responsible for some really nasty stuff in the past, and here they still are. Even in the modern world where religion now plays a lesser role in people's lives, it seems to me to be a daunting feat to ever get away with trying to get away with a trial on these people because of their fan club. Celebrities get off of the hook easy. And in this case, the law is dealing with something far scarier than a regular celebrity. It is up against religious celebrities. Something in my gut tells me that they might get off without too much fuss. I reeeeally hope I'm wrong.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:44:00 UTC | #453393

Stafford Gordon's Avatar Comment 6 by Stafford Gordon

The unnatural practices of the Preists and Nuns with regard to sex is probably responsible for these vile crimes; as Richard Feynman said " Nature cannot be fooled."

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:52:00 UTC | #453395

Bernard Hurley's Avatar Comment 7 by Bernard Hurley

Comment #473750 by Ryou_Concord

Something in my gut tells me that they might get off without too much fuss. I reeeeally hope I'm wrong.


Well then it's up to those of us who care about what certain primates do to our fellow primates (pun intended) to make as much fuss as possible.

Until the mid 60's it was traditional for a monk to appear three times before a new pope at his coronation, to burn a taper and utter the words "sic transit gloria mundi" (thus passes the glory of the world) as a reminder of the transitory nature of life and earthly honours. It is about time Herr Ratzinger had such a reminder, but in his case it should be the whole of his church that burns.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:03:00 UTC | #453402

Sekino's Avatar Comment 8 by Sekino

As a the first representant of the church, it absolutely is his responsibility to address the epidemic of child abuse (past and ongoing). That said, I guess he IS being an apt representant of the attitude of the higher levels of the church: "Oh, we're so sorry. But let's all move on and focus on other people's sins, shall we?..."

Who'd let this man kiss their babies??

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:04:00 UTC | #453404

mordacious1's Avatar Comment 9 by mordacious1

Bill Donahue blames parents for church's sex abuse:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2fBqeYK1Yo

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:06:00 UTC | #453407

TIKI AL's Avatar Comment 10 by TIKI AL

"the Catholic Church will emerge just as strong if not stronger than before." ..Paul @ 7.

2000 years from now Jesus and the Catholic church will be as popular as Thor. Have a little patience.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:07:00 UTC | #453408

ghuckin's Avatar Comment 11 by ghuckin

My first thought is the unoriginal "why don't you tell us what you really think?"
My second is a little more reflective. All their lives, members of the Catholic church have been told by their leaders that god watches over everything they do. God cares for you. Why is it that these people cannot connect the dots - that this all-seeing god can allow the priesthood behave in these ungodly ways, and have the leaders back at headquarters in Rome go so far in the opposite direction from what is right?

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:08:00 UTC | #453409

tommcc's Avatar Comment 12 by tommcc

NonLocality makes a valid point. Would the evidence stand up in court? The point is, it would be nice to see if it would. Unfortunatey, it seems doubtful that things will get that far.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:12:00 UTC | #453412

Flapjack's Avatar Comment 13 by Flapjack

NonLocality - on what basis are you of the opinion that the evidence against him is thin? The papertrail leads right to his desk, and carries his personal seal of approval. Even his army of spin-doctors don't deny the allegations, but their apologies are half-arsed at best. The institutional coverups under threat of excommunication? Sounds a lot like aiding and abetting child abuse to me.
Personally I won't apologise to that wizened old bastard whatever the outcome, as he's already proven himself so irredeemably odius and bigoted, even child abuse coverups are merely the mouldy icing on the already fetid cake.
If it wasn't this, perhaps you could factor in the deaths in Africa which could have been prevented by providing condoms rather than spreading rumours that condoms cause AIDS. Or perhaps the rampant homophobia?
If anyone I knew had done a fraction of what he's done for the world I would happily shake them warmly by the throat. No apology here.
Cry me a river.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:18:00 UTC | #453414

Dr Doctor's Avatar Comment 14 by Dr Doctor

Made me think of the NOMA reply, of the Andrew Brown ilk. Who is going to bet against a slew of articles fingering the militant atheists for:

1. Making it impossible for the Pope to apologise properly.
2. Making it unlikely that there will be any admission of failure.
3. Making it difficult for the pope to resign.
4. Proving yet again why religion should be beyond the reach of secular justice.
5. Not shutting up, you pitch-fork waving torch burning shrill bastards.

Then it is only a hop-step and a Phillips to blaming atheists for papist buggery.

I'm giving it a week.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:28:00 UTC | #453417

mirandaceleste's Avatar Comment 15 by mirandaceleste

Absolutely fantastic and much-needed piece!


10. Comment #473768 by mordacious1


Bill Donahue blames parents for church's sex abuse:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2fBqeYK1Yo


Nothing Donohue does shocks me anymore. He's a truly vile human being.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:30:00 UTC | #453418

NonLocality's Avatar Comment 16 by NonLocality

You can find a good summary of what happened here. Check out the cited links if you don't trust Wikipedia.

The paper trail does lead to Ratzinger, yes. That is the furthest the "evidence" actually goes. Whether Ratzsinger actually read and understood the documents in question is a matter of pure speculation.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:32:00 UTC | #453419

Barry Pearson's Avatar Comment 18 by Barry Pearson

Chuckle! That is about the first thing I've seen from Richard that could (almost) be described as strident!

I have a feeling that whether or not the Pope is guilty as charged is somewhat irrelevant. Either way, the moral authority of the Roman Catholic Church is discredited.

I have just added a section "What is the Roman Catholic Church for?":
http://www.barrypearson.co.uk/articles/gods/catholic.htm#whatfor

This is based, of course, on Stephen Fry's brilliant retort at that debate last year: After Ann Widdecombe's defence of the Church not condemning slavery because it was acceptable at the time, he said "And what is the point of the Catholic Church if it says 'we couldn't know better because nobody else did'. Then what are you for?"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYWl5Zw2kbU

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:41:00 UTC | #453424

epeeist's Avatar Comment 17 by epeeist

Comment #473780 by NonLocality:

Whether Ratzsinger actually read and understood the documents in question is a matter of pure speculation.
If he read them then he is complicit.

If documents were provided and he didn't read them or didn't understand them then he is not competent.

Which one do you want to go for?

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:41:00 UTC | #453423

epeeist's Avatar Comment 19 by epeeist

Comment #473778 by Dr Doctor:

I'm giving it a week.
A week? That's very optimistic of you.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:42:00 UTC | #453425

Philoctetes                                        's Avatar Comment 21 by Philoctetes

Frequently accused of being "strident" when clearly he is not, has RD deliberately adopted stridency for this article for 2 reasons.
1) Because he is writing for a paper in the Land of Bill O' Reilly and Rush Limburgh.
2) Because by writing as he writes he will retain the approval of those of us whom share his views, while giving an excuse to those wanting to excuse the Pope, thus keeping him in position as head of the RCC in the (probably forlorn) hope that his presence will accelerate its collapse.
Anyway, the RCC has survived on torturing and burning innocents over centuries, surely a little local kiddy-fiddling won't hurt it?
To (mis)quote Blazing Saddles: (their followers)... are frontier folk, simple people, you know - morons".
On a more positive note, the RCC was seriously inconvenienced and weakened by the Reformation which protested about the abuses popularly perceived as prevalent. Nuns were visited by seccubi remarkable for their similarity to their local priest, indulgences were sold with the alacrity of snake oil salesmen. Perhaps this will be yet another nudge on the path to collapsing this unedifying house of cards

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:49:00 UTC | #453428

nalfeshnee's Avatar Comment 20 by nalfeshnee


Would the evidence that Ratzinger "covered up" the abuse of children hold up in a court of law?


What makes you think it wouldn't?

Your opinion that Ratzinger hadn't read the documents in question (your post 17)?

Anyway, bit of a red herring, old chap: you can't impeach monarchs of tinpot kingdoms.

I also think the Pope has a whole lot more to say sorry for than Dawkins.

I'd take a bit of mild libel against child rape any day.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:49:00 UTC | #453427

MrPickwick's Avatar Comment 22 by MrPickwick

Original link does not work for me.
This one does:
http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/panelists/richard_dawkins/2010/03/ratzinger_is_the_perfect_pope.html

BTW, there is a factual error in Richard's article: the one who elects the Pope is the Holy Spirit (tm), the cardinals are some kind of medium. (I want to make this point before Karen Armstrong -or Francisco Ayala?- does).

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:02:00 UTC | #453429

Flapjack's Avatar Comment 23 by Flapjack

Nonlocality - That really is grasping at straws.
So he gets passed a large quantity of letters/memos about child rape with the word "Urgent" stamped all over them and then what? They ALL fell behind the filing cabinet? The papal dog ate his papal homework? Someone thought they weren't important enough for him to be personally informed of them?
He couldn't understand them? All that cash and he can't get a translator huh? What's a Cardinal to do?
Get real. As Epeeist said, he's either criminal or incompetant. Or maybe criminally incompetant. I'm not really up for hairsplitting debates as to whether he opened the many letters and memos that were his responsibility. I just think it's a bit of a coincidence that the priests involved ended up in therapy and other parishes instead of behind bars as a result of all these letters he didn't open.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:02:00 UTC | #453430

Squigit's Avatar Comment 24 by Squigit

15. Comment #473778 by Dr Doctor

Then it is only a hop-step and a Phillips to blaming atheists for papist buggery.

I'm giving it a week.


I think someone--the Pope himself, I think--already did that in Ireland: he blamed secularization.
I'll try to track down where I'm remembering that from and post a link or something.
EDIT: Found it. On PZ's blog:
Sadly, this latest everybody-is-responsible-so-nobody-is-to-blame defense is of a piece with a little-noticed section of Benedict's letter to the Irish church in which he seemed to blame the crisis, in part, on "new and serious challenges to the faith arising from the rapid transformation and secularization of Irish society."

Link to the article in the Times:http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-rutten27-2010mar27,0,715320.column

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:04:00 UTC | #453431

Apathy personified's Avatar Comment 25 by Apathy personified

Let no one be in doubt about how RD feels on this issue - he's right of course.

I think NonLocality has a point - For all his apparent guilt, is there actually enough solid evidence in a single jurisdiction that directly implicates Herr Pope? I can't imagine the vatican being exactly helpful if the police come knocking... are catholic authorities foolish enough to leave an incriminating papertrail?

Personally, I hope he spends 5-10 years in HM Wormwood Scrubs - that'll give him new insights into his theological musings.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:07:00 UTC | #453432

Dr Doctor's Avatar Comment 26 by Dr Doctor

Evidence or no, what CEO would fail to resign (if not put a gun to his or her temples) over such a disgrace?

Why tolerate it or consider it out of our domain to bring justice merely because it is a religion?

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:11:00 UTC | #453433

David-in-Toronto's Avatar Comment 27 by David-in-Toronto

23. Comment #473790 by MrPickwick on March 28, 2010 at 7:02 pm
Original link does not work for me.
This one does:
http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/panelists/richard_dawkins/2010/03/ratzinger_is_the_perfect_pope.html


Thanks for that. Turns out there wasn’t much more to the article. But I did want to “Continue reading” and the other links were of no help.

David

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:12:00 UTC | #453434

epeeist's Avatar Comment 28 by epeeist

Comment #473794 by Dr Doctor:

Evidence or no, what CEO would fail to resign (if not put a gun to his or her temples) over such a disgrace?
And what politician would not?

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:15:00 UTC | #453436

markg's Avatar Comment 29 by markg

It took the Raping Catholic Church a few centuries to apologize for the trial of Galileo and their other criminal activities. With that sort of time frame, Pope Joey "The Rat" Benedict won't even be around in the 24th century when whatever's left of the criminal organization possibly apologizes.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:17:00 UTC | #453438

NonLocality's Avatar Comment 30 by NonLocality

So he gets passed a large quantity of letters/memos about child rape with the word "Urgent" stamped all over them and then what? They ALL fell behind the filing cabinet? The papal dog ate his papal homework? Someone thought they weren't important enough for him to be personally informed of them?
Do you know the word "Urgent" was stamped on them, or are you just making that up? According to Rev. Lorenz Wolf, the memo was "routine" and was "unlikely to have landed on the archbishop's desk". So no, I don't think I'm grasping at straws. Nor would I have any motive to do so. I'm a neutral bystander in this, whereas you are militant atheists who make a hobby (or in some cases, a living) out of disparaging theists.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 18:29:00 UTC | #453439