KY county clerk Kim Davis’ lawyers have announced (and the Vatican, when reached for comment, declared they would “neither confirm nor deny”) that Pope Francis met with her to offer her support in her battle against doing her job, thanked her for her courage and told her to “stay strong”.
If true, and considering the Pope also took time in his very short visit to meet with the Little Sisters of the Poor to offer support for their legal fight against the ACA (because they don’t want to allow insurance companies to provide contraception to their employees, even those who don’t share their religion), it certainly casts the “new, progressive, liberal” Pope in an interesting light.
Which looks remarkably like the old light, filtered through the same dusty stained-glass windows.
Imagine for a second the uproar if a foreign Muslim leader came into this country and met with people to encourage disobedience against the rule of law for religious reasons. Imagine the bio cleanup that would be needed in Fox News as everyone’s heads simultaneously exploded. If you can justify a Catholic leader doing this but not a Muslim one, or if you can justify Kim Davis but not a Muslim DMV clerk denying driver’s licenses to women, then you and I need to have a conversation about what religious freedom means.
For those of you who think this is a new, improved Pope, so much better than the ones before: yeah, not so much. He just has better PR, and the ability to oppose abortion, oppose contraception, oppose stem-cell research, oppose women in leadership positions, oppose same-sex marriage, all in a way that sounds so much gosh-darned nicer than the previous Popes. If you still think you like him, consider what his opinion must be on Planned Parenthood, and the likelihood that he provided support for the fight against it during his visit to Congress (happening coincidentally on the very day legislation to defund PP was being discussed).
You may be able to square your opinions on Kim Davis, the Little Sisters, the ACA, Planned Parenthood, same-sex marriage, equal rights AND the Pope in a way that allows you to still think he’s progressive and liberal and nice, but I spend too much time on sidewalks being yelled obscenities by people who are supported, organized, funded and transported to the clinic by the organization he leads to share your opinion.