Thursday, March 1, 2012

Rhymes with ‘Dope’, Starts with ‘P’

Pope Gregory I
I never knew that I could hate somebody so much without actually knowing them personally, but I tip my hat to the Pope for enlightening me. It’s a point of conversation that has always rattled some controversy among those souls in earshot. It’s a feeling which pretty much exists in the same realm of dislike that my loathing of the Queen lives, since in my eyes the Pope is just the Queen of Catholicism anyway. Whether or not it's the title I dislike more or Pope Benedict himself, I couldn’t say for sure. I could argue that I liked John Paul II a lot more than Benedict, but I’d say that’s subjective of how naive and how Catholic I was prior to his passing, not the old man himself. So, here are a handful of reasons why I don't like the pope, past and present:

He’s dangerous
First and foremost, I see the Pope as an act that should not be followed at all; no way, I see the Pope as a danger to the world. I'm not exaggerating. I think it’s such a serious matter that it can’t even be joked about. Where my gripe with the Pope lies most heavily is with the homophobia that wafts from him every time he opens his smug, stupid lips. The Pope is a figurehead of the most popular religion in the world; the Bishop of Rome. People flock to the square to hear this man speak and he’s out there, on the news, spitting out some personal-choice numbers like: homosexuality is a 'moral evil', gays have an ‘objective disorder’ and they are going to destroy the world! gays are some sort of Bond-villain or something. Not only that, but the Pope tours countries that are teaming with HIV, only to give them a song and dance about how condoms are sacrilege. He’s a dickhead. Why is this man not being gagged? Telling people that being gay and that it’s a threat to the future of humanity, which he has said, should be classed as a hate-crime. In fact, if I went down to a busy street-corner and said anything like that, I’d probably be warned and possibly tasered by a patrol-car, so why the fuck does he have the right just because some whenever-the-fuck-century arseholes created some bullshit title? Christ! The ego on this guy!

Now, do I think that Benedict could kill someone by his own hand? Probably not, but when it comes to the Pontiff – whoever that may be at the time - and what he says, it’s no longer a matter of sticks and stones; what the Pope says can be potentially dangerous to people’s lives. Think about it: Roughly, thousands go to see him on his balcony each Easter and Christmas, that’s not counting the Sunday blessings or the international news coverage of it. So when we consider the magnitude of people whom are being exposed to what is said, we have to assume that a fraction of them are criminally-insane, not-withstanding of course, the fact that being religious and being crazy are somewhat synonymous in itself. So here we have these mentally-unbalanced people who hang off every word this old man has to say and he’s out there preaching shit like homosexuality is wrong! Using words like ‘evil’ and ‘disorder’ to describe gays! Not only does this breed and promote bigotry, which on its own could result in murder by the hand of a seemingly-sane person, but this could ring with the nutters as a ‘kill gays’ command. A deeply insane and religious person would have no qualms with killing a homosexual if they heard their leader say that homosexuality will 'destroy the earth’, believe you-me.

And while we’re on danger, answer me this: how are all these bigotry-sessions helping with the suicide rate among gays? Washington in the US recently became the seventh state to pass gay-marriage, which is great news considering that the number of suicides among the city’s gay-teens were skyrocketing. These numbers are being watched because gay-suicides happen. I realise that the ostracism among them is becoming a thing of the past quicker than we can keep up, but, I tell you, if you’re gay in a Christian family, my heart goes out to you, it really does, especially with that buffoon on the television who calls himself your leader. Thanks to the Pope, there’s no mystery why they’ve been killing themselves.

That basically brings me to danger of a different nature, one that could actually affect me and those that I love personally: stonewalling stem-cell research. For anybody who doesn’t know, basically the discovery of stem-cells opens the door to cures for a litany of diseases, including diabetes and heart-disease, but like with any scientific-research, stem-cells have a long-road. Take the research of cancer for instance. The man-hunt for a cancer-cure has been going on since the nineteenth century, so naturally, science, on its own, is tough and lengthy. The thing that sucks for people whose hearts are a ticking time-bomb is that not only does the cure have the demon of science against it, but religion too, unnecessarily slowing the research even more. I’ll admit, this has become a bit of a non-issue ever since scientists seemingly trashed embryonic stem cells in favour of adult stem cells as a more-promising alternative. This means that the research that John Paul II once saw as ’immoral’ and akin to abortion whenever he wore his crazy-goggles (all the time), can now be endorsed by Benedict because, for some quasi-scientific reason, adult stem cells aren’t babies. Now, this is all very pleasing to hear, but it still raises some questions. Just dipping my hand in the conspiracy-jar with what I’m about to say, but what if scientists are just saying that adult stem-cells aren’t babies so that the Vatican will shut the fuck up about it? You’ve got to wonder, is adult stem-cell research being pursued because it’s better for research or easier for religion? It’s just a mild spit-ball, but a valid curiosity nonetheless, and that’s one of the issues about the weight of the Pope’s influence. He did guilt-trip laboratories of scientists funded to save lives into feeling like murderers after all, so you can’t count my suspicions out as a possibility. Anyway, when the Pope is stonewalling, influencing and slowing already slow research, that means bad news for me and anybody else who one day scores themselves a spinal cord injury or suffers from Parkinsons, and I’ll be damned if I die because some narrow-minded fuckwit wants to play like he cares about others with his right hand, but swats cures from the sky and points fingers into crowds of people with his left.

The Pope is dangerous, I haven’t a doubt.

He’s monumentally hypocritical
Secondly, if I ever had a ‘force somebody to sell their house’ Monopoly card sitting in my wallet, I’d use it on the Pope. I hate the Vatican, not the building itself but the fact that the Pope, a man of compassion, lives in it. Can you tell me how anybody who cares about other people, rich or poor, could live in that...hotel? It sort of brings me back to David Cross' astute observation where he disputes how Jesus is labeled a ‘humble carpenter’, meanwhile he’s telling everybody that he is the son of God; this is the exact same hypocrisy. I mean, Benedict and Popes before him have talked about world poverty and how it's bad, but it’s pretty hypocritical when they do it ten stories up from the balcony of a mansion. I mean come on. It seems that not only is he the Queen of Catholicism, but the Sonny Bono of it as well, trying to sell himself off as charitable while shitting stink-less into a toilet made of solid gold.

I realise this goes without saying because of the whole religion thing, but the man is a world-famous hypocrite. If he cared at all about anybody else, he'd be selling the Vatican to give money around the world, or at the very least, he’d vacate the Papal Palace. People will probably think ‘well, it’s just not that simple’, no, actually, when you’re the Pope, the Bishop of Rome, the head-honcho of Catholicism, it really is. The thing is that selling the Vatican just takes somebody that can put there foot down, but, if the past is any indication, when it comes to real-issues, the Pope is not your guy. And look, if selling isn’t an option, I’m not saying live in rags, but he could at least draw some attention away from the Vatican by moving somewhere which won’t make people living in Indonesian shacks want to slit his throat. Seriously, does he have no shame or is he just stupid? If I wanted a Pope-like figure, the leader advocating the religion I follow, I'd want him to be compassionate, and how compassionate can somebody be when they’re living out of a home worth billions of dollars while countries starve.

I guess it’s true what James Dewar said, “Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open.” It’s also true what Susan Sarandon said when she called Benedict a Nazi. But don’t be misled by thinking that my hate for religion came before my hate for the Pope, because it’s the other way round. If I had to equate blame for why I’m so staunchly opposed to Christianity, I’d place a lot of it on his shoulders - plain and simple. Basically, I just feel that siding with any Christian-denomination means also siding with homophobia and slavery by proxy – two of the most amoral things in this world, one of which all Popes have basically talked of like some infectious disease. The Pope is also the richest source of hypocrisy in all of Christianity. He’s had a few things to say about Hollywood celebrities and how they are spreading their trash-values, but, I mean, I’d much rather somebody who does cocaine in the privacy of their hotel room than somebody who openly propagates homophobia and endorses the spread of sexually transmitted infections. Fuck, the Pope is an infection! I mean, the way people are being treated, I’m either licking toads or people are accepting this man’s bullshit. Believe me, he is as dumb and tragically misguided as those Christian girls who listen to him and think that anal and giving blowjobs is what it means to be abstinent. Listening to his nonsense is bad for us, toxic for the world’s health and whenever I read anything he says, it makes my fucking eyes bleed!

Further Bigotry Reading
Barrage of gay-bashing by Benedict in 1986
Gay marriage is 'insidious and dangerous'  (Benedict)
Gay marriage is a threat to humanity's future (Benedict recently)
Same-sex marriage is “a new ideology of evil.” (John Paul II in his last weeks)
Light of the World: The Pope, The Church and the Signs Of The Times

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