The Pope: Hot and Cold
Once again Pope Francis has amazed/stunned/shocked the faithful — and the world at large — with comments that the church is too obsessed with a few narrow cultural issues like gay rights, abortion and contraception. He argued that these issues should not take the focus away from the church’s mission of being a “home for all”. He explained in an interview in the Rome-based Jesuit journal La Civilta Cattolica that “The people of God want pastors, not clergy acting like bureaucrats or government officials.”
Right on, Your Holiness! And an “Amen, brother” too!
Yes, let’s rein in our petty obsessions and cast our eyes on the bigger picture. It’s time we got back to caring about those among us who are not so fortunate. Mother Teresa is a great example caring for the poor in Calcutta. We never saw her holding a sign, “Ban the pill!” did we? No, because she knew what the church’s rightful mission was.
I hope that the Pope’s words are taken to heart by not just Catholics, but everyone in the world who has a heart and concern for the well being of all of its citizens. It is good to see at least one organization take up the battle for equality and justice, because it appears that the United States is heading in the opposite direction.
A portion of our government known as The House of Republicans (uh, Representatives) is showing its Scrooge-like ways again. As the Pope’s words were being published, they voted to slash the SNAP program (food stamps) $40 billion, which would affect 47 million Americans who are either unemployed or employed in jobs that pay so little they can’t afford to adequately feed their families. The House leaders (Boehner, Cantor, et al) said they were proposing rules requiring food stamp recipients to get jobs in order to give them a boost out of poverty. News flash: they said this with a straight face.
Really? Give them a boost out of poverty and an endless cycle of government dependence by starving them to death? Why don’t we just get it over with and set up the labor camps for the poor now?
House leaders have once again abandoned the big picture for the sake of a few ideological battles that will threaten all Americans. Yes, able-bodied Americans should not have to be, theoretically, on food stamps. However, many of these Americans are gainfully employed in jobs that don’t meet all of their economic needs. More importantly, many of these Americans have dependents that are too young to be held accountable to the new job requirements.
Drat those child labor laws! What were the progressives thinking when they enacted labor restrictions on young people, reasoning that staying in school is more important than making a living?
These are the people Republicans are “helping”. Oh, but their week was not finished on Thursday…unfortunately.
The next day they voted to extend funding the government for a few months while calling for the defunding of the President’s centerpiece legislation: Obamacare. Everyone who has a brain inside and outside the Beltway knows this will not pass the Senate and certainly will never see the President’s signature. Yet they passed the resolution anyway, and in doing so raised the specter of a government shutdown.
What did the Pope say about finding a new balance, “otherwise the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards?” Hello, House, are you listening? Many of your critics and, yea even your supporters (O’Reilly, Krauthammer, et al), are warning that you will destroy your party in the dogged pursuit of narrow-minded principles. It’s the GOP’s business if they want to engage in this murder/suicide pact of the American economy, but I just wish they would leave the American people alone.
Of course, the Pope’s week didn’t finish on Thursday either...unfortunately.
The next day he went from hot progressive to cold conservative when he reiterated the church’s stance against abortion. Surely a nod to the supporters of church tradition, but now I’m worried about him.
His Holiness’ mood swings are getting out of hand….
(Thank you for reading! Hey, House of Republicans, do everyone a favor and get a real job!)