Francis in Cuba

 

From an editorial in the Washington Post:

A Cuban dissident is prevented by securiThe pope is spending four days in a country whose Communist dictatorship has remained unrelenting in its repression of free speech, political dissent and other human rights despite a warming of relations with the Vatican and the United States. Yet by the end of his third day, the pope had said or done absolutely nothing that might discomfit his official hosts.

Pope Francis met with 89-year old Fidel Castro, who holds no office in Cuba, but not with any members of the dissident community — in or outside of prison. According to the Web site 14ymedio.com, two opposition activists were invited to greet the pope at Havana’s cathedral Sunday but were arrested on the way. Dozens of other dissidents were detained when they attempted to attend an open air Mass. They needn’t have bothered: The pope said nothing in his homily about their cause, or even political freedom more generally.

m.5207_pope-john-paul-krakowCare for a contrast? Just look at this picture of Francis’s predecessor, St. John Paul II, embracing Lech Walesea, the leading dissident in Communist Poland. It is possible to reign as supreme pontiff, remaining, fundamentally, above politics — and yet to stand with those fighting for human liberty.

Photo above: AFP/Getty via the Telegraph

Published in General, Religion & Philosophy
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  1. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    BrentB67:

    Casey:Peter, I understand why you want to take a swatter to those bastard flies in Cuba. But Francis putting out a plate of molasses is hardly a Save the Flies campaign.

    Not sure the flies view it that way.

    Fly

    • #61
  2. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Steve in Richmond:

    Peter Robinson: In Cuba, Francis uttered not a word–not a word–that would have caused the Castros any discomfort or unease whatever.

    Hmmm. I wonder if he will be as careful not to utter a word which will cause discomfort when he addresses Congress?

    • #62
  3. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    He should.  If you see two evils in the world – one of which is arguably greater than the other – and you choose to call out one while embracing the other, it is not unreasonable for people to raise questions.

    See what you’ve done, here, though?  I did not say that Francis should not call out capitalism.  I juxtaposed his desire to call out Capitalism by name with your suggestion of his “bowl of molasses” technique with other political structures.  You then ask why I might be opposed to recognition of potential evils within capitalist systems, which was never my argument…

    So what’s your answer to my actual question?  It was not unclear.

    • #63
  4. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    Casey:

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    The. Do you see that word? The. You used the word the.

    Capitalism isn’t the problem.

    That word in that sentence is the problem.

    Stop arguing with strawmen, Casey.  You did not misunderstand my point.

    • #64
  5. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    A report in the Wall Street Journal said the Vatican disputed the White House’s invite of several transgender and gay advocates to Pope Francis’ welcome ceremony, but a top Vatican official said Sunday that the Vatican never gets involved with the guest lists of heads of state.

    Vatican adviser Father Thomas Rosica said on “Fox News Sunday” that the unnamed source that spoke to the Wall Street Journal, identified as a high-level Vatican official, should “come forward and give their name.”

    Source: Washington Examiner

    • #65
  6. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    Once again, I am going to beat this horse because it is starting to get obnoxious.  I did not ever suggest that a person cannot call out capitalists.  Casey’s response is non-responsive.  Capitalism may or may not be a problem, and we can discuss whether there are alternative solutions that are any better … but that is not the point I was making.  The logical structure of this discussion is pretty clear, and a person doesn’t need “The Philosopher’s Toolkit” (see what I did there, Peter?) to observe it:

    1) I make a point about the disconnect in the claim that Francis is supposedly luring flies to the molasses in one system while calling by name in another system, and requested an explanation.

    2) Casey replied with “why shouldn’t he call by name?”, which is not even close to what I said, but it does attempt to turn the tables by placing me on the defensive for an argument I never made.  It is perfectly reasonable to analyze a person’s position by juxtaposing his statements regarding one system with his statements (or lack thereof) regarding alternate systems.

    3) I’m turning it back around.  Address my initial point.

    • #66
  7. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    Ryan M: So what’s your answer to my actual question?  It was not unclear.

    It was perfectly unclear.  What is it you expect me to respond to?

    • #67
  8. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    Pseudodionysius:

    A report in the Wall Street Journal said the Vatican disputed the White House’s invite of several transgender and gay advocates to Pope Francis’ welcome ceremony, but a top Vatican official said Sunday that the Vatican never gets involved with the guest lists of heads of state.

    Vatican adviser Father Thomas Rosica said on “Fox News Sunday” that the unnamed source that spoke to the Wall Street Journal, identified as a high-level Vatican official, should “come forward and give their name.”

    Source: Washington Examiner

    That is interesting, Pseud.  But instead of merely posting the quote, perhaps you could add some commentary?  I’m unclear what point you’re making.  I’m not saying I don’t agree with your point, only that I’m not 100% certain what it is.

    • #68
  9. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So what’s your answer to my actual question? It was not unclear.

    It was perfectly unclear. What is it you expect me to respond to?

    Stop playing dumb.  I’ve read enough of your posts and comments to know you’re not… generally.  ;)

    Go back and read my comment #51.  I also posted a much longer comment that makes a similar point.

    • #69
  10. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    “It is one thing to dine with sinners. Entirely another to toast to them.” Patrick Archbold

    • #70
  11. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Ryan M:

    Pseudodionysius:

    A report in the Wall Street Journal said the Vatican disputed the White House’s invite of several transgender and gay advocates to Pope Francis’ welcome ceremony, but a top Vatican official said Sunday that the Vatican never gets involved with the guest lists of heads of state.

    Vatican adviser Father Thomas Rosica said on “Fox News Sunday” that the unnamed source that spoke to the Wall Street Journal, identified as a high-level Vatican official, should “come forward and give their name.”

    Source: Washington Examiner

    That is interesting, Pseud. But instead of merely posting the quote, perhaps you could add some commentary? I’m unclear what point you’re making. I’m not saying I don’t agree with your point, only that I’m not 100% certain what it is.

    There has been no official Vatican complaint about the invite list, which contradicts the original WSJ story.

    • #71
  12. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    But this has not translated into numbers. Twenty-two per cent of Americans identified as Catholic – exactly the same percentage as the previous year. Forty per cent said they attend a weekly mass, a figure that also remains unchanged from the previous year.

    “There has been no measurable rise in the percentage of Americans who identify as Catholic,” the survey said. “Nor has there been a statistically significant change in how often Catholics say they go to Mass.”

    • #72
  13. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    V.S. Blackford

    BrentB67: I don’t have any reason to think that, Tommy may have more coherent thoughts on the meeting. I read that Pope Francis gave Castro a book, not sure what it was.

    Report on the meeting, which includes the following:

    “Francis gave Castro several of his official papal writings, two books on spirituality and a book and CD on the writings of Father Armando Llorente, a priest who taught Castro in Jesuit prep school more than 70 years ago.”

    But more importantly, Fr. Llorente made a public declaration of wanting to hear Castro’s confession:

     Before Father Llorente’s death, he publically asked for Castro’s conversion and repentance.

    That’s Pope Francis making a silent point.

    • #73
  14. Roadrunner Inactive
    Roadrunner
    @Roadrunner

    Thanks Peter for what seems to be an obvious point.  Who knew that it would generate so much sophistry?

    • #74
  15. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Manny:

    : I don’t have any reason to think that, Tommy may have more coherent thoughts on the meeting. I read that Pope Francis gave Castro a book, not sure what it was.

    on the meeting, which includes the following:

    “Francis gave Castro several of his official papal writings, two books on spirituality and a book and CD on the writings of Father Armando Llorente, a priest who taught Castro in Jesuit prep school more than 70 years ago.”

    But more importantly, Fr. Llorente made a public declaration of wanting to hear Castro’s confession:

    Before Father Llorente’s death, he publically asked for Castro’s conversion and repentance.

    That’s Pope Francis making a silent point.

    Hammer and sickle Crucifix 3

    • #75
  16. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Roadrunner:Thanks Peter for what seems to be an obvious point. Who knew that it would generate so much sophistry?

    “If he catches you you’re through.”

    • #76
  17. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Ryan M:

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    Once again, I am going to beat this horse because it is starting to get obnoxious. I did not ever suggest that a person cannot call out capitalists. Casey’s response is non-responsive. Capitalism may or may not be a problem, and we can discuss whether there are alternative solutions that are any better … but that is not the point I was making. The logical structure of this discussion is pretty clear, and a person doesn’t need “The Philosopher’s Toolkit” (see what I did there, Peter?) to observe it:

    3) I’m turning it back around. Address my initial point.

    I have no idea what you are ranting about. I was responding to Casey. If you have an issue with him go cover it up in his litter box.

    • #77
  18. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Pope John Paul II on his 1983 arrival in Managua, wags his finger and publicly reprimands Liberation Theology Jesuit priest and Sandinista Minister of Culture Ernesto Cardenal.

    • #78
  19. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    BrentB67:

    Ryan M:

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    Once again, I am going to beat this horse because it is starting to get obnoxious. I did not ever suggest that a person cannot call out capitalists. Casey’s response is non-responsive. Capitalism may or may not be a problem, and we can discuss whether there are alternative solutions that are any better … but that is not the point I was making. The logical structure of this discussion is pretty clear, and a person doesn’t need “The Philosopher’s Toolkit” (see what I did there, Peter?) to observe it:

    3) I’m turning it back around. Address my initial point.

    I have no idea what you are ranting about. I was responding to Casey. If you have an issue with him go cover it up in his litter box.

    :)  I’m agreeing with you, Brent.  My rant was about Casey’s misdirection.  It was admittedly confusing that I said it in response to your comment.

    • #79
  20. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno
    @TommyDeSeno

    Roadrunner:Thanks Peter for what seems to be an obvious point. Who knew that it would generate so much sophistry?

    Passive aggressive.

    Beep Beep!

    • #80
  21. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Casey,

    Ryan is absolutely correct.  The Pope clearly considers it part of his job to call out the evils he sees.

    Apparently, brutal dictators don’t make the cut.

    • #81
  22. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Tommy De Seno: On an apostolic visit? Is he supposed to do that?

    Yes. The Pope’s #1 job is to save souls. He looked evil, the Castro brothers, in the face yet made no attempt to reform them.

    How much do you want to bet he has stronger words for Paul Ryan than he did for the Castro brothers?

    • #82
  23. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Ryan M:

    BrentB67:

    Ryan M:

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    Once again, I am going to beat this horse because it is starting to get obnoxious. I did not ever suggest that a person cannot call out capitalists. Casey’s response is non-responsive. Capitalism may or may not be a problem, and we can discuss whether there are alternative solutions that are any better … but that is not the point I was making. The logical structure of this discussion is pretty clear, and a person doesn’t need “The Philosopher’s Toolkit” (see what I did there, Peter?) to observe it:

    3) I’m turning it back around. Address my initial point.

    I have no idea what you are ranting about. I was responding to Casey. If you have an issue with him go cover it up in his litter box.

    :) I’m agreeing with you, Brent. My rant was about Casey’s misdirection. It was admittedly confusing that I said it in response to your comment.

    You lost me that time Ryan. No sweat. It is easy to do.

    • #83
  24. Ryan M Member
    Ryan M
    @RyanM

    Tommy De Seno:

    Roadrunner:Thanks Peter for what seems to be an obvious point. Who knew that it would generate so much sophistry?

    Passive aggressive.

    Beep Beep!

    You mean sophistry isn’t a good thing?

    [runs over to dictionary; gasps]

    • #84
  25. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Casey:

    BrentB67:

    Casey:

    Ryan M: So why is it that Francis is perfectly content to call out the evils of capitalism by name?

    Why shouldn’t he? Why shouldn’t we?

    Because capitalism isn’t the problem.

    The. Do you see that word? The. You used the word the.

    Capitalism isn’t the problem.

    That word in that sentence is the problem.

    Actually, the key word is “is.”

    Capitalism has problems.

    Communism is a problem.

    • #85
  26. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    Ryan M: 1) I make a point about the disconnect in the claim that Francis is supposedly luring flies to the molasses in one system while calling by name in another system, and requested an explanation.

    If your question is “Why is he more critical of X than Y?”, then perhaps it is because in his view X presents greater moral hazards than Y.  And/or perhaps he believes that Y, reluctant to accept his message, is best approached gently.  And/or perhaps X needs a little shaking up.

    Does that address your question?

    • #86
  27. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Casey: And/or perhaps he believes that Y, reluctant to accept his message, is best approached gently

    Got it.  The capitalists should be increasingly brutal in order to insure a gentler hand from the Pope.

    • #87
  28. Bereket Kelile Member
    Bereket Kelile
    @BereketKelile

    If the Pope can’t be a prophetic voice then what is he good for? At that point he’s just a Latin American Marxist wearing a funny-looking robe.

    One thought that popped up as I read through the comments: “Is there an ethnic component? Being from Argentina, does the Pope have an aversion to criticizing the Castro regime?”

    My understanding is that Cuba is to the region what the PA is to the Arab world, at least for some people. Is there anything to that?

    • #88
  29. Casey Inactive
    Casey
    @Casey

    Ryan M: misdirection

    Is it really impossible that you were unclear?

    • #89
  30. Roadrunner Inactive
    Roadrunner
    @Roadrunner

    Tommy De Seno:

    Roadrunner:Thanks Peter for what seems to be an obvious point. Who knew that it would generate so much sophistry?

    Passive aggressive.

    Beep Beep!

    Tu quoque all day long my brother.  That is sophistry isn’t it?  I thought it was brave drawing attention to the silence of American officials to the sexual abuse of Afghan boys.  Sometimes tu quoque can have unintended side effects.

    • #90
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