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Sunday, September 24, 2006

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Does one European victim deserves more compassion than millions of Afrikan victims?

BBC News reports: "Pope Benedict XVI has paid tribute to an Italian nun killed in Somalia who is reported to have forgiven her attackers as she lay dying.

"Sister Leonella Sgorbati was attacked, along with her bodyguard, outside the hospital in Mogadishu where she worked. Some suspect the shooting was connected to recent remarks by the Pope which caused anger across the Islamic world."

So the pope makes some ugly remarks. That's bad (Correction as of Oct. 2: Garvey's Ghost demonstrates clearly that Pope Benedict, in fact, did not make the remarks attributed to him. Thanks, Br. Sondjata, and sorry to the Pope (no, I'm not being sarcastic). And someone else in Somalia kills someone else for those remarks? That's freaking monstrous.

Who on earth can support this? Obviously not 99.9% of Muslims, any more than, say, 99.9% of Christians directly supported the Ku Klux Klan or the Nazis. But--and let me put it frankly--this barbaric shit has got to stop. This woman was helping heal people in a country that's been suffering for far too long.

No, I don't subscribe to the notion that one European victim deserves more compassion than millions of Afrikan victims.

I subscribe to the idea that killing any innocent person will always be wrong, forever and ever, eh, man?

Here's what Br. Sondjata over at Garvey's Ghost has to say in general regarding this problem.

Here's a BBC analysis:

"[T]he row has highlighted their concerns about the Pope's attitude towards the Church's relations with the Islamic world.... When Joseph Ratzinger was elected pope in 2005, it was assumed that he would follow closely the policies of his predecessor, John Paul II....

"But on one key issue, Vatican-watchers detected a divergence in the views of the two men: the Vatican's attitude towards Islam. John Paul II wanted to reach out to other religions and in 2001, on a visit to Syria, he became the first pope to set foot in a mosque. It was a gesture intended to help end centuries of hostility and suspicion between the two religions. Benedict XVI undoubtedly wants to achieve better relations with Islam, but there is an important proviso.

"It can be summed up in a single word: reciprocity. It means that if Muslims want to enjoy religious freedom in the West, then Christians should have an equal right to follow their faith in Islamic states, without fear of persecution.

Archbishop Michael Fitzgerald
"One of the first signs of a toughening of the Vatican's stance came with the removal from office of Archbishop Michael Fitzgerald. The British-born cleric ran a Vatican department that promoted dialogue with other religions. A distinguished scholar on Arab affairs, he was an acknowledged expert on the Islamic world.


"The decision by Benedict XVI to remove him from his post, and send him to Egypt as papal nuncio, was widely seen as a demotion. Some wondered about the wisdom of the move."


1 comments:

sondjata said...

I am humbled for the link.