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Change of Tone
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September 16, 2006

The Peace Trains Pulls into Vatican Station

Of the many mind-numbing aspects of religious belief, the inability to see ridiculous irony in one's own behavior is probably the most amusing - unless, you know, you're on the receiving end of a fatwa. Like the Pope might soon be:

The worst crisis since Benedict was elected in April 2005 was sparked by a speech in Germany Tuesday that appeared to endorse a Christian view, contested by most Muslims, that early Muslims spread their religion by violence.

In his speech, the pope quoted 14th-century Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus who said: "Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached."

As you can imagine, this accusation of violence didn't sit well with a lot of Muslims, so they responded...errrr... peacefully?
Authorities were investigating the motives of Molotov cocktail attacks on three churches in the West Bank city of Nablus, following a day of Palestinian protests against the pope's remarks. No one was hurt and the churches were not badly damaged.
One small attack, so let's not generalize.
Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi on Saturday urged the pope to apologize and withdraw his controversial comments, according to The Associated Press.

"The pope must not take lightly the spread of outrage that has been created," the Bernama news agency quoted Abdullah as saying, AP said.

Because, if he does take it lightly, what will happen? Stern frowns? Pointed accusations? Or, rather, some sort of jihadic fatwagasm?

Maybe they'll kill him with kindness.

But I have my doubts.

Also of interest:

During his address at the University of Regensburg on Tuesday, Benedict quoted 14th-century Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus.

"God," the emperor, as the pope quoted, said, "is not pleased by blood -- and not acting reasonably is contrary to God's nature."

Do people actually read their holy books? Sure, maybe drowning every living thing and slaughtering the first born Egyptian wee ones weren't technically bloody, but all our fabricated deities seem to get their jollies from some murder and mayhem.

The Pope is just as silly as those getting their Korans tweaked by his word.

Posted by Andy at 03:21 PM