An unsigned statement from the Vatican claiming Pope Benedict XVI was unaware of Bishop Richard Williamson’s statements denying the holocaust makes the ludicrous look reasonable. Unless of course we are to assume the Vatican has it’s vetting process conducted by, say, a tree stump.

And why is the statement unsigned? Is the Pope so George Bush-like that he too is incapable of admitting a mistake?

By the way, if you are one of the few who believes the Vatican statement, I know of a wonderful Bridge in Brooklyn that I’d like to sell you.

The unsigned Vatican statement asks Williamson to take back his statements denying the Holocaust and the existence of gas chambers as well as his insistence that no more than 300,000 Jews died in the concentrations camps.

Take it back? Are you kidding me? Are we in some school yard when one kid demands another kid, who has said something to anger him, take it back? What’s the reasoning here? If he takes it back it means he didn’t mean it? Are you kidding me?

No one frees themselves of the poison of Antisemitism or any form of bigotry by simply taking it back. And if we were talking about Christianity here, then no Christian, clergy or layperson, would claim the holocaust didn’t happen. Moreover, no Christian would say what Austrian clergyman Gerhard Maria Wagner said when he said Hurricane Katrina was an act of “divine retribution” for New Orleans’ sexual permissiveness. The non-Christian Pope leaped into action on that front as well by promoting Wagner to Bishop.

The non-Christian Papacy marches on.


Cardinal Walter Kasper’s claim that the Pope’s decision to reinstate a Bishop who denies the Holocaust was poorly handled would be laughable were the subject matter not so wrenchingly brutal and tragic.

Bishop Richard Williamson not only denies the Holocaust but says no more than 300,000 Jews died in the concentration camps. Williams says he does not believe there were any gas chambers and no more than 300,000 Jews died in the concentration camps.

One is tempted to grab this despicable anti-Semite by the scruff of the neck and say, First of all, it was 6 million, but let me ask you something while I’ve got your attention. Is 300,000 a low number in your world? It would seem his answer would be yes. One would be tempted to tighten their grip when he or she learned that William’s apologized on a blog for having caused the Pope stress.

German chancellor, Angela Merkel, sharply criticized the Pope. “”When a decision by the Vatican gives rise to the impression that the Holocaust may be denied this cannot be allowed to stand … it’s a matter of affirming very clearly on the part of the Pope and the Vatican that there must be no denial here.”

Denying the Holocaust is a crime in Germany. Having said that, one would think the Pope would have no problem remembering the holocaust since he was alive and in Germany at the time and for a period was a member of the Hitler Youth.

Lest anyone think the Pope’s behavior is restricted to reinstating the likes of Williams, he also promoted Austrian clergyman, Gerhard Maria Wagner to the status of Bishop. Which makes sense given the kind of character the Pope looks for in a someone. After all, it was Wagner who said Hurricane Katrina was an act of “divine retribution” for New Orleans’ sexual permissiveness.

There is certainly one thing Pope Benedict does have in common with Williams and Wagner; none of the them are Christians.



I am heartbroken and appalled at Senator John McCain’s acceptance of support from John Hagee, a minister who links the Catholic Church to Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany and a man who believes New Orleans had it coming to them when Hurricane Katrina inflicted an ineffable amount of carnage and death on that city.

While McCain is a man whose courage I deeply admire, my respect for his moral judgment has fractured. I had thought that if the presidential race comes down to a race between senators McCain and Obama along with Ralph Nader, my country, for the first time in a long time, will have three candidates of real principle to choose from. I do not think so anymore.

Mr. Hagee is the President and CEO of John Hagee Ministries based in San Antonio, Texas. When it came to the New Orleans tragedy he said , “I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God and they were recipients of the judgment of God for that.”

In his book, Jerusalem Countdown, Hagee wrote this about the Catholic Church: “Adolf Hitler attended a Catholic school as a child and heard all the fiery anti-Semitic rantings from Chrysostom to Martin Luther. When Hitler became a global demonic monster, the Catholic Church and Pope Pius XII never, ever slightly criticized him. Pope Pius XII, called by historians ‘Hitler’s Pope,’ joined Hitler in the infamous Concordat of Collaboration, which turned the youth of Germany over to Nazism, and the churches became the stage background for the bloodthirsty cry, ‘Pereat Judea’…. In all of his [Hitler’s] years of absolute brutality, he was never denounced or even scolded by Pope Pius XII or any Catholic leader in the world. To those Christians who believe that Jewish hearts will be warmed by the sight of the cross, please be informed—to them it’s an electric chair.”

On top of all this Hagee is hellbent on attacking Iran. Why did John McCain accept his support? I can think of no answer to this question that does not scare me, and ought to scare every American.


The messianic minds of Bush and Cheney, two men (even writing those two words insults all that is good about manhood) who are seeking and in many tragic ways succeeding in establishing the first American Dictatorship. This week the American Dictator Bush along with his cadre of sycophants are using the firestorms tragedy in California to vilify Louisiana’s state and local leadership’s response to Katrina; never mind that anyone whose mind has been walking erect for 10 seconds knows damned well that had the Louisiana population been wealthier and, well, whiter, the response would’ve been far swifter and far more effective.

I don’t suppose the American Dictator Duo will spend much time on California, they are too busy starting (or continuing) World War III by gearing up to attack Iran; never mind that the American military is already stretched dangerously thin, never mind that the whole American story is taking on a trajectory eerily reminiscent of the failed Roman Empire.

It is up to the people of this country to do something and it is up to congress, both sides of the aisle, to stand up and stop the dictators. The problem is, congress is infested with people who are willing to save lives and save America as long as it doesn’t mean putting their jobs at risk. How many of us would say, I’d be willing to save the lives of our young men and woman being killed and maimed overseas but not if it means losing my job?

Let’s get some term limits in place. The American people are tired and scared…and if things don’t change soon…the American people will soon be no more.


There was a rare instance of unfettered presidential honesty in George W. Bush’s State of the Union speech last night. Take note and be grateful because it doesn’t happen often anymore. To his credit, Bush refused to be restrained by political spin artists and in no uncertain terms came from the very center of his soul when he addressed the deadly carnage inflicted on New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina. He never mentioned it.

Bush is a reminder that racism and classicism are alive and well, that the poorer you are, the darker your skin, the more disabled you are, the less you count. He is a reminder us that the struggle for civil rights in our country is, sadly, far from over.

Tragically, Bush is a reminder that far too many of us have forgotten the dream so majestically set forth by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

To be fair though, many business and political leaders have their own dreams. For instance, they have dreams rooted in greed, dreams rooted in the lust for power, dreams whose success rests on a willingness to send the poor and socially vulnerable off to fight and die. While we might not use suicide bombers, we have a society designed in a way that assures that the military is largely comprised of the economically less fortunateand most vulnerable. Were there even an iota of honesty in Bush’s we-must-fight-the-terrorists-or-we-will-all-die scenario, then why aren’t his daughters actively involved in the fight? If not in the military, why not in some volunteer effort to support the troops? Mary Todd Lincoln made it a point to visit wounded Civil War veterans on a regular basis.

The dream pursued by Bush is absent the presence of equality for all. It is absent the basic tenet that all members of the human family have the right to be who they are safely in the world around them. In truth, the Bush dream is missing one key element: the American Dream.

If New Orleans had fewer people mired in the merciless grip of poverty, the government’s assistance response would have been faster, more comprehensive and far more effective. If there had been more whites and less blacks and Hispanics when a category 3 hurricane (with a storm surge of a category 5 hurricane) ripped into New Orleans on August 29, 2005 flooding 80 percent of the city, the response would have been better. On April 18, 2006 the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals reported 1,464 people had died. Thousands lost their homes and livelihoods. Bloated bodies of the dead were seen floating everywhere. Yet not so much as a syllable in the Bush speech.

Now I would be hard pressed to say anything about Dr. King that has not been said before. He has been a member of my heart since I was a small boy. Yet, as a boy, and later as a young man, I was disconnected from King’s accurate recognition that the power of love combined with non-violence required a form of intellectual, emotional and spiritual strength that not enough of us aspire to.

Now I am certainly no choir boy and have never been in the same room as perfection. Even though as a boy I intellectually and even emotionally believed and understood King was right, I wounded others with emotional and physical violence and dishonesty. Even though it has been many years since violence has had a home in my character, the memories of the pain I caused others can halt me in my tracks and fill me with pain and heartbreak.

It takes strength to turn the “ship” around for a person or for a country. It takes strength to step into the light of honesty and tell the truth. It takes strength to apologize, to admit you are wrong or made a mistake. There is no shame in doing this. In fact, there is a kind healing that takes place in the gentle glory and sweet joy to be found in world of honesty. But it takes strength to get there. All too often we get the message that admitting a wrong or a mistake or apologizing are acts of weakness. Well, if they are, then why are they so hard for so many to do?

If we let King’s accurate view of the human character die, we ought to be ashamed. King dreamed of the day when his children would be “judged by the content of the character, not the color of their skin.” But the dream does not end there. The dream believes in the possibility of a day when we are judged by the content of our character, not whether we are rich or poor; by the content of our character, not whether we are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist; by the content of our character, not whether our country or any country has oil; by the content of our character, not whether we are male or female; by the content of our character, not whether we are gay, lesbian, straight or bi-sexual; by the content of our character, because society has learned that our value is in our humanity, and nowhere else.

Keep the dream alive.