The Papal Peanut Gallery...
The fallout from the death of John Paul II is still settling, or should I say, beginning to get very unsettling.
From what I read today, the Germans, those stalwart catholics who brought us the Second Crusade, Martin Luther and Adolf Hitler, are beginning to make loud, obnoxious noises about wanting a more 'liberal' Pope. I'm sure this isn't the desire of all German Catholics, merely the ones that got to the media with a snazzy press release first, and which, thanks to the miracle of mass media, will now be presented as the collective will of all German Catholics.
Germany, for those of you who haven't been, is one of the weirdest places on the planet. It's a place where 40 year-old men with back hair slip into leather pants three sizes too small and wiggle as if they were the sexiest objects in the universe. It's a place where illicit sexual encounters in cemetaries are considered the proper way to cap a night out on the town. Germany is the place where prostitutes (steered onto this career path by Government Employment offices) are forced to join a union, whether they want to or not. The Germans are probably, as a whole, the most permissive society on the entire European continent as well as the second most disgusting (the French still hold that title).
What's really at work here, and not only in Germany, is that those who wish to live in a more secular, permissive society are always looking for other ways (besides crying and complaining a lot) to prop up their view of how things should be. Having a Pope that was more 'liberal' (i.e. a rubber stamp to behavior pooh-poohed by JP II) is just another way of making it happen.
Imagine, if you will, an inebriated man, dressed as a clown, caught in the act of screwing a daschund. In Germany, you have the right to do that, even if there is still a segment of the population that considers it wrong on moral grounds. If a 'liberal' Pope should suddenly decide that bestiality was not a sin, that freak could point to Papal acceptance of his deviance and avoid universal scorn. There would be less of a stigma attached to his disgusting behavior if one of the moral regulators of his society were to decide his perversion was not, in fact, a perversion.
And that is the whole idea behind a secular society to begin with: to remove stigmas.
Stigmas are nasty things to a liberal, interfering with the human imperative to engage in complete chaos because you felt like it. It's easy to be a liberal; you merely need to feel and react, rather than think about your actions and their consequences.
That's why the stigmas attached to homosexuality, abortion, birth control, euthanasia, and bestiality must be removed, by any means possible. It absolves one from having to deal with guilt, fear of being found out, censure by the community as a whole, and allows you to simply do as you please. Remember that phrase, "Do as YOU Please".
Once you begin to deconstruct the very carefully crafted 'unwritten laws' of society, you invite the unintended consequences. Once you remove the stigma from poverty, it's okay to be poor. Remove it from crime and suddenly no one is a criminal. Do as you please: rob a bank, kill Grand Ma before her cancer treatments ruin you financially, shoot heroin, engage in a 'lifestyle choice' that exposes you to AIDS, and finally, screw a pooch in a cemetary. It's okay because it will no longer be illegal, nor will we even look down upon you or even giggle anymore. The Pope said you could do it, so that makes it right.
These are the kinds of people who want to live in a world where there are no absolutes, except one --- the absolute that the individual is the Alpha and Omega, and screw the rest of you. It never occurs to them, however, that the rest of us, if we thought that way, would be individuals with the same agenda and that what goes around, comes around. They'd also be the first to kick, cry and complain when they are victimized by the very behavior they excuse or condone.
Never mind your 'liberal' Pope. I'd like another one just like the one we had.