Got a chance to read the newspaper a little on the flight to the east coast. Seems a little strange but after all the flurry about the Pope’s statement, now the context is being more clearly explained. That context was a powerful argument for the connection of faith and reason. It was a message about the evils of using violence as a mode of persuasion or conversion in religion. At least what I understand of it.
The Pope has no reason to apologize for his message. No doubt, in retrospect, the reference to comments by a 14th Century emperor will advised as I stated earlier. But the Pope also referenced how outlandish those statements our in our time. But the entire context was lost. Only that reference has been discussed. Whose fault? Yes, the Pope and his advisors for not anticipating how strong statements like that can be so easily misused. But equal blame or more so goes to those who disagree with his basic premise about rationality and religion and who saw an opportunity to promote their message promoting violence in the name of the Almighty. Blame also goes to the media and us bloggers who comment on this who failed to make the greater context known. Will it satisfy dubyus, and others who believe the Pope to be as evil a person as the 14th Century emperor considered the leader of Islam.
For the record, I am not a Catholic and do not consider the Pope infallible. But his message of the role of rationality in religion is an important one. Too bad it was co-opted by those with a more aggressive goal than mere persuasion.