For the record, I have about as much esteem for the pope and Catholicism as I do for Islam in general. I’d find this news pretty amusing if it weren’t for people getting killed and stuff.
The gist of it is Mr. Pope said something that certain quarters of the Muslim world didn’t cotton to. Talk about titty babies. Seriously, these guys need to just grow up already and get the chips of their collective shoulders. What kills me is this: Benedict XKJVCXIII (whatever number he is…if I ever made pope, I’d call myself Pope Bibleman the first and carry a broomstick-looking lightsaber thing) quoted a Byzantine emperor who described the teachings of Islam as “evil and inhuman”–can’t say that I disagree with that assessment, but I’m not a leader of a major world religion, either. So then you have the mature, measured response of certain “Palestinian” Muslims who firebomb two churches (that aren’t even Catholic) and the killing of a nun working a hospital and her bodyguard and co-worker in Somalia. Gee-whiz, I won’t comment on the system at large here, but whatever Islamic teachings those geniuses applied to their own lives certainly is evil and inhuman, I’d say. Good going, if you were trying to prove the pope right!
Of course, demands for an apology from genuinely offended Muslims isn’t an unreasonable thing in the least. But, the fact that the pope’s supposed to be the infallible representative of Christ on earth means that he can’t admit it was a mistake to make what I personally see as an irresponsible statement, regardless of who, what, or why he was quoting when he said it. So reading the “apology” was amusing in that it admitted no wrong, just offered regret over the Muslim reaction to the statement. That’s classic Vatican verbiage for you.
In other news, I’m still waiting on the official Vatican apology and renunciation of the Council of Trent, which pronounces over 100 condemnations of those who are in disagreement with their weird version of Christianity. But you don’t see me throwing Molotov cocktails at anybody.