Pope Francis creates new doctrine of Evil
Traditionally, the Church has claimed that (love of) money was the root of all evil. But the Church is increasingly unwilling to push that doctrine, as it is increasingly eager to curry favor with the rich and get some of their filthy lucre. The Church’s practice of child abuse has cost them billions of dollars, and is even hurting their revenue stream. Since it is hard to raise money while claiming it is the root of all evil, Pope Francis invented a new doctrine. NCR (National Catholic Reporter) announced: “Contempt for life is the source of all evil, pope says.”
“Is it right to snuff out a human life to solve a problem?” Pope Francis asked his loyal followers. He added, “One can say that all the evil done in the world can be boiled down to this: contempt for life.”
Pope Francis recently warned of Satan taking control of the Catholic Church (Pope Francis says Church under Satan’s influence). Why don’t we look at its halcyon days, when the Catholic Church was a major world power, and when it boasted of being God’s earthly agent, guided by the Holy Spirit. When the Church burned thousands of witches and heretics at the stake, was it evil? When The Church called for crusade after crusade against the Muslim world, showing contempt not only for Muslim lives, but seemingly for Christian lives as well, was this evil? (The Church promised Christian soldiers eternal life in heaven if they sacrificed their earthly life; does this still fit Pope Francis’s definition of evil?) What about all those wars against the Protestants?
Both Pope Francis and NCR ignored the Church’s long history of bloodshed and persecution. For centuries, the Church’s Office of the Inquisition terrorized much of Europe, threatening not only lives, but property and liberty. Where does this fit into Pope Francis’ new definition of evil?
Vox on new papal doctrines
You might expect a Catholic newspaper like NCR to present a biased report that favors Pope Francis and ignores competing views. And you would be right.
You might expect a liberal, mainstream newspaper like Vox to present a more balanced picture than NCR, and perhaps challenge some of Pope Francis’s claims. But you would be wrong. Their reporter on religion, Tara Isabella Burton, has an even greater Pro-Francis bias than NCR (here).
Ms. Burton emphasizes Pope Francis’ comment that getting an abortion is “like hiring a hit man.” She says that “according to Catholic doctrine, life begins at conception, and abortion is therefore seen as an act of murder.” Pope Francis is simply dramatizing the party line.
Ms. Burton simply accepts the claim that life begins at conception, and that the moment a sperm fertilizes the egg, you have a fully human life. She makes no attempt to get any expert biological or medical opinions on the subject. Nor does she inquire whether this claim is consistent with other claims regarding life and death.
In fact, many if not most fertilized eggs never result in a human child. The egg fails to implant in the uterus, or one of many other problems arise. It appears that God kills a great many of these supposedly human lives- thousands of times more than are ever aborted. While religious zealots often claim that fully human life begins at conception, relatively few doctors, philosophers, ethicists, or other experts would agree. Furthermore, most theologians would probably disagree. The Bible makes no such claim. Ms. Burton, however, is only concerned with Catholic doctrine, a rather bizarre attitude for a journalist for a mainstream newspaper.
Most professionals who have thought about the subject feel that the definition of human life presupposes a more-or-less fully functional brain. That’s why a person is declared legally dead when his or her brain fails to show appropriate cortical activity, even if that person can breathe and sustain various vital signs.
By this definition of "brain dead," which is shared by nearly everyone, it is absurd to maintain that a fertilized egg is a fully human life. If has no brain, much less a fully functional brain. In general, only after the first trimester does a fetus develop the type of brain that would not be ruled “brain dead.”
Since nearly all abortions are performed within the first trimester, they are aborting fetuses that have not yet reached fully human status. They are still “brain dead.” It is therefore inappropriate to say that such abortions kill human life. And it should qualify as hate speech to say that women who have such abortions are murderers and baby killers. Pope Francis said: “it is not right to kill a human being, regardless of how small it is, to solve a problem. It is like hiring a hit man to solve a problem.” This is demagoguery and hate speech.
In covering Pope Francis’ inflammatory comments about abortion, Ms. Burton is only concerned with how well his claims fit Catholic doctrine. This is unprofessional behavior for a journalist. At best, it might pass for a Catholic newspaper, but most of them, like NCR, have higher standards than Ms. Burton's.