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To wonder if there's more to the Popes resignation than meets the eye?

(150 Posts)
KenAdams England Mon 11-Feb-13 11:26:59

The lack of notice just seems somewhat odd.

ubik Wed 13-Feb-13 12:54:44

This is from the Richard Dawkins foundation - seems a pretty fair assessment

Pope Benedict is human. There are millions of good, kind, decent people who call themselves Catholic. There have been many jokes about Pope Benedict not faced by Pope John Paul II. Sometimes Pope Benedict has been unfairly attacked. The fact that he was in the Hitler Youth should not be held against him for example; he was a child forced by German law to join. Pope Benedict had a cousin who was killed by Nazis, a cousin killed because his only crime was to live with a disability. The Pope comes from an incredibly religious childhood. Many people who visit this page, ex-religious and sometimes currently religious, can perhaps relate to the Pope’s early life.
Also The Pope’s lack of charisma compared to his predecessor is a stylistic criticism. Consider instead the substance of his record. Pope Benedict:

-- lifted the excommunication of a bishop who called Jews "enemies of Christ" and is a holocaust denier.
-- in an interview while on a plane to Africa said that condoms helped spread AIDS, a wildly anti-scientific statement (later modified slightly to say male prostitutes might sometimes use condoms).
-- did not move with any adequate force to sanction bishops involved in sex abuse cover-ups, and in 2001 issued orders for the Catholic hierarchy to clam up about sex abuse.
-- seemed to imply, after the Irish were rocked with Catholic Church scandal after Catholic Church scandal, that loss of religiosity on the part of the Irish people was somehow a demerit to the Irish.
-- strongly embraced the doctrine that women are not to be treated as equal, indeed supported removal of a bishop who even suggested marriage of priests or the possibility of women priests.
-- strongly embraced the doctrine that reproductive and sexual decisions are to be decided by the church, not by individuals regarding their own bodies.
-- impeded and discouraged nuns who took progressive stands on issues.

EllieArroway Wed 13-Feb-13 12:47:54

No, the Pope said that encouraging the use of condoms "aggravates" the problem. Bullshit.

There are lots of ways that can drive down the numbers of people being infected with HIV.

Abstinence works. Being faithful to your (HIV free) partner works. Using condoms (in around 90% of cases) works.

Some people will abstain. Some people will be faithful. Some people will neither abstain nor be faithful - in which case they should be using condoms. To take away the option for a large number of people is ignorant & dangerous.

The Catholic Church needs to remove it's nose from other people's business and wake the fuck up. We are talking about the most vulnerable people on Earth who do not necessarily have access to the kind of information resources that the rest of us take for granted.

Under these circumstances even hinting or suggesting that bad things will happen to you if you use condoms is a crime against humanity of epic proportions. How any decent person can try to justify it is beyond me.

KatyTheCleaningLady Wed 13-Feb-13 11:56:16

The Pope never said that using a condom will give him AIDS. I think some people have said such nonsense, but never the Pope.

For Westerners to promote condom use in the same way that they are promoted in the West can backfire.

An (atheist) AIDS social worker in Africa at Harvard University explains:

www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/ni/2009/03/aids_expert_who_defended_the_p.html

Risk compensation has been found in relation to things like sun block, bicycle helmets, and even seat belts.

sashh Wed 13-Feb-13 11:22:32

* The culture in some African countries is very different than in the West. Throwing condoms around may not make a difference and could have unfortunate consequences.*

Well, yes. And it varies between countries and even regions in the same country.

In some places it is normal for a man working away from home to use prostitutes. Telling him that he will get AIDS if he uses a condom is not going to help stop the spread of HIV.

EllieArroway Wed 13-Feb-13 10:56:07

"The Pope said abuse revelations in 2010 reached "an unimaginable dimension" which brought "humiliation" on the Church"

Yes, just so embarrassing for the church, eh, Ratzinger? How do you all sleep at night in your big, comfortable expensive beds surrounded by priceless works of art?

Better, I suspect, than the thousands upon thousands of raped children who understand what the term "humiliation" actually means.

NicholasTeakozy Wed 13-Feb-13 10:31:46
Tasmania Wed 13-Feb-13 01:40:34

^^ What the ...?

Popes never resigned before but that does not mean that things won't change!

Can't he just resign from old age?? I think it is wise to resign before you become too old, and end up being a puppet of the big firm. What life is that?! And if he has some intelligence, he'd probably want someone to take over before that happens.

Also, I think when he did take on the role, it did seem it was just a temporary measure. I remember thinking at the time that he was meant to just be an "acting pope" until the next one would come. He even looked reluctant at the time...

PessaryPam Wed 13-Feb-13 01:30:46
MonkeySea Tue 12-Feb-13 23:56:44

a sauna I think, for gay men to fuck each other.

prudencesmom Tue 12-Feb-13 23:45:04

Wtf is a bath house???????

seeker Tue 12-Feb-13 23:42:15

"Throwing condoms around may not make a difference and could have unfortunate consequences."
Because that's obviously what the people who work in the field do......hmm

prudencesmom Tue 12-Feb-13 23:41:26

Imagines the new pope introducing" how to use a condom" workshops......

TheMagicMumber Tue 12-Feb-13 23:23:41

But that is why a responsible, pragmatic approach is needed by those with the ability to educate, eg. the Church. "Throwng condoms around' sounds like a silly idea, but proper guided usage advice from those with the power to do so could save countless lives.
To suggest that the use of condoms might exacerbate the problem is nothing short of disingenuous - deceitful even. Anyone who claims otherwise must be either ignorant, brainwashed, or have an agenda.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 12-Feb-13 22:04:26

the Pope didn't say that condoms cause AIDs. He said that the practice of distributing condoms may make the problem worse. And, he may be right. Encouraging condom use works in some situations very well. Like, in bath houses and brothels. However, in the general population, depending on the culture, it can have the unintended consequences of "risk compensation." That is, unless the condoms are used consistently, they merely give a false sense of security. The culture in some African countries is very different than in the West. Throwing condoms around may not make a difference and could have unfortunate consequences.

BalloonSlayer Tue 12-Feb-13 15:04:22

Oh I see! grin

DH was - unfairly, I thought - taking the piss out of me the other day for being out-of-touch with the news because I didn't know something dull or other. I thought, blimey, when did they find that out?, DH is right about me!

EllieArroway Tue 12-Feb-13 14:54:33

Sorry, Balloon blush

Should've said that "condoms cause HIV".

I even had to read my comment a couple of times to see what you were saying "eh?" about. My first senior moment, I think.

BalloonSlayer Tue 12-Feb-13 14:41:26

"they have been told that HIV CAUSES AIDS. It does not. Ratzinger lied."

eh?

EllieArroway Tue 12-Feb-13 13:34:30

Seeker He said (in 2009 on a flight to Cameroon):

“that [HIV] cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which even aggravates the problems.”

I suppose he and his cohorts might justify that by saying that, well, if they stuck to abstinence there'd be no HIV and condoms just encourage lascivious behaviour, or some such crap. But people have sex, and always will, whatever the "holy father" thinks about it. It would be nice if they could have a shot at doing so safely. Condoms don't "aggravate" the HIV epidemic - telling people not to use them fucking does.

And I know that there are Bishops in Africa who have taken it further and actively tell people that condoms are of the devil and are part of a Western conspiracy to spread AIDS. Same with the polio vaccine.

angry angry

seeker Tue 12-Feb-13 13:14:22

He said that a condom could be used if it's purpose was to protect from infection. Which means that there are no circumstances where a condom could be used when a man and a woman have PIV sex, because it would have a contraceptive effect as well.

EllieArroway Tue 12-Feb-13 12:45:35

Your attack on LRD was unnecessary, Astley. She's right, it should be discussed. Nothing should be "off limits". The Hitler Youth thing is a bit irrelevant in the light of this man's overwhelmingly disgraceful behaviour later in life, but we're entitled to discuss whatever we feel like.

I personally couldn't give a monkeys who your church chooses to "forgive" (leaving aside it's extraordinary arrogance in assuming the right to "forgive" anyone) it's how it treats people and tries to stick it's nose into issues that are absolutely none of it's business.

Gay teenagers have committed suicide from being told that they are "disordered" and their natural desires are "sinful".

Vulnerable Africans have NOT just been told about abstinence - they have been told that HIV CAUSES AIDS. It does not. Ratzinger lied.

And, excuse me, but far from condemning pervert priests (if he did, it was because he was forced to), he actively put in place plans to cover up for them & has refused the civil authorities access to important documentation. Protecting the reputation of the church has always been what matters most to him.

I expect he's very ill. But he'll die in his golden palace, surrounded by the stolen riches of the Catholic Church while the AIDS victims that he LIED to will die in a festering hut somewhere.

Good riddance to the man. I wish the whole institution would turn it's face to the wall and expire, quite frankly.

sashh Tue 12-Feb-13 12:32:56
Astley Tue 12-Feb-13 12:23:16

He used the male protitute as an example. What he actually said was it was ok to use condoms when 'their sole purpose is to reduce the risk of spreading HIV' then he said for eaxample a male protitute. He did not say exclusivly for male protisutes at all.

ComposHat Belgium Tue 12-Feb-13 11:49:07

he has had many opportunities to prioritise the safety of children over that of priests, and has always preferred the latter- moving abusers on to new parishes etc

Exactly, something that his apologists on this thread can't rationalise. He had the power to stop the abuse happening, but didn't.

As Astley said I believe he had does the best he could for the Church

Yes he did, but did this at the expense of vulnerable children who deserved his protection. He could have prevented abuse, but chose to protect the reputation of the church either out of misplaced loyalty or for reasons of personal advancement (I neither know nor care which) at the expense of those abused children.

That to my mind makes him a pretty poor excuse of a human being, never mind a supposedly spiritual leader.

TunipTheVegedude Tue 12-Feb-13 11:46:24

Surely child abuse is something that's only been talked about widely on a societal level within the last few decades, so saying he's the first person to address the issue means what? That he's better than his predecessor?
Doesn't say very much.

amarone Tue 12-Feb-13 11:46:22

I think Tony Blair is applying for the job.

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