Friday, 17 September 2010

Connecting Atheism And Nazism: Pope Irony?

During the Holocaust thousands of LGBT people were tortured, persecuted and killed. The Nazi's views of family life and focus on procreation rendered those with different sexualities to suffer a great deal (along with many other groups of untouchables be they Jews, Communists, democrats, Jehovah Witnesses, Roma, the disabled, the list goes on).

So it was ironic to hear Pope Benedict XVI criticise atheism and link it to Nazism despite atheisms modern form. His hatred of LGBT folk, his focus on the family and on procreation (which leads to higher STD levels in countries who take his demand they do not use protection seriously), is concerning.

Even in our own lifetime, we can recall how Britain and her leaders stood against a Nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate God from society and denied our common humanity to many, especially the Jews, who were thought unfit to live. I also recall the regime’s attitude to Christian pastors and religious who spoke the truth in love, opposed the Nazis and paid for that opposition with their lives. As we reflect on the sobering lessons of the atheist extremism of the twentieth century, let us never forget how the exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus to a “reductive vision of the person and his destiny” (Caritas in Veritate, 29).

Some atheists, like me, actually believe in REAL religious freedom. As I said in my last post, I'm prepared to stand up for even the most bigoted person's freedoms. I don't want anyone to be killed, I have no great idealistic dream of nationalism (in fact I despise nationalism), and I don't believe in Social Darwinism.

So who is more like the Nazis? The Pope who seeks to control LGBT people by supporting retrograde laws to keep us in a repressed role in society. Or me, an atheist, who believes people should be free to believe what they like, to practice their religion how they like, and to moan about upstart heads of major religions whenever they like?

Personally the world I hope for, one free from intolerance and stupidity, is a world away from the dark dreams of the Pope for a world where everyone agrees with him.

If you feel benevolent and particularly generous, this writer always appreciates things bought for him from his wishlist


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