Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Pope and the Right

Today I was listening to Sean Hannity, a professed Catholic, on the radio*. Now, I’m not denying that he is very sincere in his beliefs, but one thing just irked me to no end: he kept bringing up the Pope, talking as if John Paul subscribed to the same ideology has he, Hannity, does.

Yes, the Pope did coin the phrase “culture of life,” but, he used it consistently. This meant no to abortion, but it also meant no to the death penalty and no to war without just cause. The Pope was against the invasion of Iraq.

How dare right wingers co-opt the cause of Pope John Paul II? Have they ever heard his teachings on the poor? It’s Jesus style liberalism, folks. Sean Hannity doesn’t believe that stuff.

I wish he would stop pretending. The Pope’s politics didn’t fit into anyone’s neat little ideological agenda, whether you’re Sean Hannity or Michael Moore. Please stop trying to stuff him in yours.**

*I also listen to Rush Limbaugh. It makes me laugh.

**Lest I come off as trying to stuff him into mine, let me just say that I would never try to claim the Pope for the left. I disagreed with him on many issues, many of them relating to gender. But I agreed with him on a lot and it’s frustrating to see those parts of his record downplayed when he is crammed into a certain mold to fit someone’s agenda.

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