Even if Hitler had been an atheist – as Stalin more surely was – how dare Ratzinger suggest that atheism has any connection whatsoever with their horrific deeds? Any more than Hitler and Stalin’s non-belief in leprechauns or unicorns. Any more than their sporting of a moustache – along with Franco and Saddam Hussein. There is no logical pathway from atheism to wickedness. Unless, that is, you are steeped in the vile obscenity at the heart of Catholic theology. I refer (and I am indebted to Paula Kirby for the point) to the doctrine of Original Sin. These people believe – and they teach this to tiny children, at the same time as they teach them the terrifying falsehood of hell – that every baby is “born in sin”. That would be Adam’s sin, by the way: Adam who, as they themselves now admit, never existed. Original sin means that, from the moment we are born, we are wicked, corrupt, damned. Unless we believe in their God. Or unless we fall for the carrot of heaven and the stick of hell. That, ladies and gentleman, is the disgusting theory that leads them to presume that it was godlessness that made Hitler and Stalin the monsters that they were. We are all monsters unless redeemed by Jesus. What a vile, depraved, inhuman theory to base your life on.
Joseph Ratzinger is an enemy of humanity.
These are the words of Richard Dawkins, from the speech he gave yesterday at the London rally against the pope. I can hardly think of anything to add to them. Anyone with half a conscience ought to be enraged that this man receives any quarter outside of his gilded palace. Whether we can blame “The Church” for the horrifying crimes against humanity still being perpetrated in the name of a loving savior, we can certainly blame Ratzinger. Out of everyone in the Catholic Church, he alone has the power to make proclamations from God. He could do good. But he chooses to do evil. He could back away from the obscene position that AIDS is exacerbated by condom use. But he reinforces it. He could agree to cooperate with international authorities to protect children and punish abusers. But he chooses to obfuscate, obstruct, and deflect while giving lip service to “internal” reform.
As an atheist, I am appalled that he has equated me with Hitler. I am terrified at how easily history can be rewritten. How can it be that less than a century later, we’ve forgotten that the Nazi regime was an enemy of atheism, and that it tried to actively stamp it out? How can we not open a copy of Mein Kampf and recognize that Hitler was a Christian? How can we continue to give so much power to a man who is so clearly an enemy of humanity, who would rewrite the worst genocide in our collective memory?
How long until people of conscience refuse to pay homage to this villain? If he wishes to leave his luxurious bed, his servants, his adoring sycophants, and his embarrassingly wealthy “holy city” to visit other countries, then he can pay to do so. There is no reason for Britain or any other country to throw another dime in the collection plate so long as this profligate degenerate is in power.