Wednesday, April 20, 2005

The Hard Line on Ratzinger

I've gone and expanded the collection of media outrages on Pope Benedict XVI over at The Daily Standard. Honestly, no matter what you've prepared yourself for, you won't believe it.


Anonymous said...

I was actually (pleasantly) surpirsed at the moderate tone of the NYT editorial. I was expecting the typical written-in-crayon-stomping-the-foot diatribe and it was actually quite thoughtful (for them, I mean).

Anonymous said...

I don't have a dog in this fight, but he sure honks off all the right people!

Anonymous said...

Why is that you term this to be journalistic "outrage" when some of it is just reporting the fact that there are parties, rightly or wrongly, who were dismayed at the choice of Cardinl Ratzinger? For example:

"Some liberal Catholics and interest groups criticized the choice as a lost opportunity to move the church in a less doctrinaire direction because the new pope, a conservative German who was close to the late John Paul II, has long held hard-line positions on many divisive issues, including birth control, homosexuality and the ordination of women."
--Dean E. Murphy, New York Times

"But as the international reaction to the death of Pope John Paul II demonstrated . . . the leader of the Catholic Church has extraordinary political and moral influence around the world. There are areas in which the new pope could have a tremendous impact, on both Catholics and non-Catholics, in this country and everywhere else, for better or for worse."
--Editorial, Washington Post

That isn't lining up against him, it's reporting that others are upset. What, a journalist is supposed to not say that Ratzinger has come out strongly against changes to the vow of celibacy, and has kept a fairly conservative and doctrinal position? Wouldn't it be worse to accuse him falsely of having been liberal?

Anonymous said...

I think the real outrage is the application of american political labels to a world-wide religious leader. Conservative, Neo-conservative, hard-line, far right, fanatic, have all been used to describe Benedict XVI, but none are appropriate. The issue of celibacy is not the issue with which the media takes issue with the Pope, it's the issues of Abortion, the ordination of women, homosexuality, and birth control which classify the pope as a "hard-liner" and "conservative" in the eyes of the western media. What they fail to mention (out of ignorance or malice) is that there are no cardinals who disagree with the pope on these issues, therefore those labels mean absolutely nothing. The issues that differentiate liberal from conservative cardinals are often economic and globalization issues and the role of the church in the third world. The "outrage" is that the media attempts to create controversy where there is none.

Anonymous said...

From a non-Catholic's perspective, this whole debate is a bit baffling.

So the cardinals picked a man who promised to uphold the church's teachings and traditions. This is shocking?

After all the church holds these traditions were handed down from God himself. It's not like they are subject to amendment. No pope could change them with potentially unraveling the church's claim to represent universal, revealed truths.

Who did Ratzinger's critics want the cardinals to pick? A Protestant?

It is as if they thought the next chief justice of the Supreme Court should be a guy who though the U.S. Constitution was just a rough guideline that could be tossed aside for whatever legal or cultural fad comes along.

Oh, wait a minute ...

Anonymous said...

There are people out there who are upset with his election.

there are people out there who are pleased with his election.
name just one publication that has stated this.

Anonymous said...

If the conclave had picked a liberal Pope who backed gay marriage, women priests, handing out condoms at mass, etc. wouldn't that have been divisive? Wouldn't that have appalled large sections of the church, especially in the places where it is now growing like Africa and Latin America?

You can be certain if the conclave did pick such a Pope all the stories wouldn't be about any possible divisiveness but how brave, tolerant, far-thinking the choice was.

As far as the media is concerned is it only divisive if liberals are ones who are upset ...

Van Helsing said...

I wonder if Andrew Sullivan has any idea what a self-parody he has become with his shrill hysterical screeching.

Anonymous said...

I was waiting for him to be described as a 'neocon' and the NPR Vatican correspondent managed to work it in! Back when the term had meaning many neocons were Jewish liberal intellectuals who came over to the conservative side of US politics during the Cold War. It's like the conclave sat down and decided to elect Irving Kristol.

I read one article where the most effusive praise of B16 came from Jewish leaders, who praised his outreach efforts. All of the criticism came from liberal catholics. Bizarre.

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