So here’s a joke, the Pope and US Congress walk into a domed chamber…
I’m not sure if you heard, but the Pope is currently visiting the US. With EVERYONE FREAKING OUT over his arrival, there has been much fanfare over Pope Francis’ speech to the joint session of Congress. It was a very interesting speech to say the least. Here are some of the more prominent talking points from his speech.
- In the beginning of the address there was much emphasis on Congress – and an extension the American people – to work together to solve problems. If the underlining message of Pope Francis’ speech could be put into a song, it would have been this.
- So before the Pope’s speech to the joint session of Congress, he sent his prepared remarks to the press. Interestingly, a small part of his original speech was crossed out that dealt with service to the “human person”, in which he then quoted the Declaration of Independence. Yet the most interesting sentence that was omitted from that passage was this, “if politics must truly be at the service of the human person, it follows that it cannot be a slave to the economy and finance.” It’s an interesting statement which could have people wondering if it was omitted due to time or to not incite his critics within the Congressional chambers. Honestly, the answer could go either way.
- A lot of immigration talk was in this speech, which was expected. But it was less condemning of those who have had strong stances against immigration and more about cooperation amongst each other to make America, a nation that “[rejects] a mindset of hostility in order to adopt one of reciprocal subsidiarity, in a constant effort to do our best.” Many news outlets said the remarks were a “strong condemnation of how Americans treat immigrants”, but to be honest it looked to be more about coming together to find a solution, than telling those that they are wrong.
- The same went for the Pope’s remarks regarding climate change. While talking about making changes “to avert the most serious effects of the environmental deterioration caused by human activity”, the message was centered around working together to find a solution to this problem.
- A point that looks to have rubbed conservatives the wrong way is in regards to his remarks on the union of marriage and abortion rights. Or actually the lack there of. In his address, he vaguely alludes to both issues by stating, “fundamental relationships are being called into question, as is the very basis of marriage and family.” Then again, he did also say we had a responsibility to “protect and defend human life at every stage of its development.” While not a very stringent Pro-Life stance, it’s obvious to see what he was alluding to there.
- The harshest tone he took during the speech was on two topics people weren’t necessarily expecting, but in retrospect make a lot of sense. Originally the harsh tone started when the subject of the death penalty was brought up. For years, Pope Francis has been a stanch opponent of the death penalty, so his statements toward Congress should’ve not come as a surprise. He backed his position by stating, “not only do I support [priests in the US that want to ban the death penalty], but I also offer encouragement to all those who are convinced that a just and necessary punishment must never exclude the dimension of hope and the goal of rehabilitation.” His second point was on the US’ involvement with the arms trade. He condemned the West for their “shameful and culpable silence” over the profiting of weapons through, “money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood.”
- It’s hard to see anyone other than Pope Francis make that kind of speech to Congress and not get labeled as a “socialist” or “Un-American” by the far right of the Republican Party. Could you imagine how badly vilified either President Obama or any Democrat made that speech? But that’s just one of the benefits of holding the position as Pope. Of course wearing a SICK hat being the other!
Don’t trust our talking points on Pope Francis’ speech to Congress? Think we’re pawns of the liberal media or Roger Ailes’ cabana boy for the conservative Illuminati?! Well my paranoid friend, you can see the speech for yourself below.
(Photo Credits: C-SPAN’s YouTube Channel, Google Images)