Pope Francis fights for justice
Pope fights for justice
After years of controversy over the rumors and allegations against the Catholic Church and its association with the sexual abuse of young boys is finally being addressed by Pope Francis. The now former papal nuncio, Josef Wesolowski, has been arrested under the charge of sexual abuse. Previously when these charges have been made against other members of the Church, they have been covered up and have been dealt with a lack of seriousness on the behalf of the Pope. This way of dealing with this crime has been a disgrace towards the Catholic Church and has drawn many followers and potential followers away from its flock. And so Pope Francis’ approach to handling this problem is a breath of fresh air. Ever since Pope Francis got his position, his humble and down-to-earth ways and views about the world has done wonders for Catholicism and has earned many critics respect and admiration. It would be hard to imagine that the Pope does not understand how devastating this sort of press can be to his faith which is most likely why Pope Francis truly finds this matter to be of the utmost seriousness and importance. But this does not mean he has no sense of compassion for his fallen colleague. Since Wesolowski is quite old and not of the best health, he has in fact been allowed to be under house arrest instead of in jail. Many people, such as parents, could be outraged at this but I think it shows a true sense of being a ‘good’ Catholic. If I was him, trying to reclaim the honor and respect that Catholicism once had is a major goal, and it really does seem that that is what he is trying to do here. Now, I don’t know about you, but Pope Francis has definitely earned my respect. If only I was Catholic. SD #200
Islam Is a Religion of Peace and a Religion of Decapitations
Hawkins’ article at best is a condemnation of Islam. He begins his piece by taking the religion apart with his own twisted views on Islam and then makes a hasty ending of his commentary by throwing Muslims in the Western world a dog bone by sheepishly stating that there are a few good apples in the bunch. The article reports on the horrific decapitation and stabbing of two Vaughan Foods employees. Hawkins points out that the FBI’s investigation is taking into consideration the fact that the killer is a recent convert to Islam. Hawkins makes it clear that any intelligent person would come to the conclusion that Islam and violence go hand-in-hand.
This form of yellow journalism is quite common with the emergence of political unrest in the Middle East. It seems as though that with the Western World’s eye on Middle Eastern oil that the Americans are doing everything they can to justify their political undertakings in this region. Making Muslims out to be a bunch of rapists, murders, and terrorists just seems like the best bet in appeasing the public’s unrest when it comes to attempting to control the Middle East’s natural resources. This comment is in no way connected to the conspiracies around the atrocities committed on 9/11, but a general view on American activities in the Middle East.
How quickly society forgets the 250 year long genocide and bondage of black Americans which included much of the same atrocities that we see present in the Middle East today, or the horrors that our Aboriginal communities around the world of been subjected to and are still suffering the effects of. Moreover, the annihilation and almost complete extinction of Jews by Nazis Germany is completely overlooked by Hawkins. Every race and religion on the planet has been involved in violence in the supposed name of God. Hawkins writes, with nonexistent support, that Islam does this on a scale much larger than any other religion or peoples have done in the past.
Hawkins even goes as far as saying that Muslims themselves will attest to begin brutes in the name of God, all you need is ask them. What people in their right minds would claim to be lower than animals, or even attest to such ignorance as he has stated throughout his article. Hawkins’ commentary repeatedly patronizes Americans Muslims by stating that if they only understood their religion, they would want to murder us. Further, he goes on to state that Muslims need to be encouraged by racist bigots, like himself and his kind, to stand up to the difficulties that they face brought on by extremists. He ends his condescending article by claiming to support Muslims in their attempt to fight the intentions and actions of radical extremists.
Hawkins, J. (2014, September 27). Islam is a religion of peace and a religion of decapitations. Retrieved September 27, 2014, from http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2014/09/27/islam-is-a-religion-of-peace- and-a-religion-of-decapitations-n1897416
Hexham, I. (2014). Origin and Nature Religious World Views. Religion 200 Course Lectures.
Should Americans Mix Religion and Politics?
A recent study found that nearly half of Americans surveyed felt that religion should influence social and political issues. Although a majority (78.5%)1 of the United States’ population is made up of Christians, there is still a substantial populace of other beliefs. The United States is a culturally diverse country and the government has a responsibility to ensure that no religious demographic is overlooked. In contrast, Saudi Arabia is a Islamic theocratic monarchy. It’s population is 97% Muslim2 with the remaining 3% being foreign expatriates, meaning that 100% of citizens are Muslim (as is required by law). I’m not saying I agree with Saudi Arabia’s political and religious policies but it’s reasonable to understand why religion influences government, to such an extent, when 100% of citizens share a common interest. That being said, obviously the extent of religious influence in the United States would never be that of Saudi Arabia. If the government was influenced by religion would it defend the interests of those minority, non-christian groups? Probably not. The American Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion and prohibits the establishment of an official religion by government3. Mixing religion and government could lead to intolerance of other beliefs, such as the intolerance seen in Saudi Arabia where apostasy carries the death penalty. If government decisions were to be influenced by religion this would be unconstitutional. If views are being influenced by one religion it could exclude the beliefs of other minority groups. This would be contrary to the idea that America was built on respect for all religion or the right to have no religion. I think the best thing the United Sates can do is continue to allow freedom of religion and expression but keep those interests away from political and social issues. TJ #200 1 http://religions.pewforum.org/pdf/affiliations-all-traditions.pdf 2 http://www.pewforum.org/files/2009/10/Muslimpopulation.pdf 3 http://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/first_amendment