The Pope met secretly with Kim Davis

According to both the New York Times and NPR, during his U.S. visit Pope Francis met not only privately with gay-marriage-license-refuser Kim Davis, but secretly. From the Times:

Vatican officials initially would not confirm that the meeting occurred, finally doing so on Wednesday afternoon, while refusing to discuss any details.

. . . On Tuesday night, her lawyer, Mathew D. Staver, said that Ms. Davis and her husband, Joe, were sneaked into the Vatican Embassy by car on Thursday afternoon. Francis gave her rosaries and told her to “stay strong,” the lawyer said. The couple met for about 15 minutes with the pope, who was accompanied by security guards, aides and photographers.

“I put my hand out and he reached and he grabbed it, and I hugged him and he hugged me,” Ms. Davis said Wednesday in an interview with ABC News. ‘Thank you for your courage.’”

The Vatican confirmed the meeting only after it was reported by Robert Moynihan on the website Inside the Vatican, which reported as well that the Pontiff gave Davis and her husband a rosary:

“The Pope spoke in English,” she told me. “There was no interpreter. ‘Thank you for your courage,’ Pope Francis said to me. I said, ‘Thank you, Holy Father.’ I had asked a monsignor earlier what was the proper way to greet the Pope, and whether it would be appropriate for me to embrace him, and I had been told it would be okay to hug him. So I hugged him, and he hugged me back. It was an extraordinary moment. ‘Stay strong,’ he said to me. Then he gave me a rosary as a gift, and he gave one also to my husband, Joe. I broke into tears. I was deeply moved.

As I reported a few days ago, Francis, meeting with reporters aboard his plane “Shepherd One,” affirmed that people with religious objections to the duties required by their jobs should have the “right” to conscientiously refuse those duties, and of course the Pope was obliquely referring to Kim Davis and the fracas aroused by her refusal to issue marriage licenses to gays. Their meeting, which must have been requested by the Pope (I doubt Davis would have thought to ask for it, though perhaps her prominent supporters did), can only convey the Pope’s support for Davis’s actions, which in turn means the Vatican’s continuing disapproval of rights for gays, as well as their approval for those who refuse to grant such rights on religious grounds. What else could the Pope’s words “Stay strong” and “Thank you for your courage” mean?

And that’s precisely how Davis took it. As NPR reports:

“Just knowing the pope is on track with what we’re doing, and agreeing, you know, kind of validates everything,” Davis tells ABC News Wednesday morning, speaking about her meeting with Pope Francis and the stand she has taken against same-sex marriage.

She adds, “I’ve weighed the cost, and I’m prepared to do whatever it takes.”

I have yet to see a mainstream American venue, like the New York Times or the New Yorker, point out in an editorial the disparity between Francis’s words and his actions (or rather, his inaction in changing repressive Catholic dogma). Those who claim that Francis really is a liberal pope, committed to changing Church dogma, but moving very slowly because that’s the only way to do it, must explain this secret meeting with Davis as well as his encouragement of her actions. If he really wanted the Church to eventually deep-six its position on gays, the worst way to do it is to provide succor for those who want to deny gays their legal rights.

The Pope is not liberal: he still opposes women’s equality, abortion, and rights for gays. He won’t even mention population growth as a factor causing degradation of the environment. At best his values are those of a Reagan-era Republican. So let us not call the man “liberal”, for while he gives lip service to Enlightenment values, he secretly meets and encourages bigots like Kim Davis.

h/t: Les

160 Comments

  1. Hempenstein
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    A fair number of my FB friends have posted positive things about Frank over the last few months. They’re now posting comments along the lines of feeling betrayed. All I can think is surprise, surprise.

    • GBJames
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      Ditto. How they can be surprised is a mystery to me. But then I’m a shrill and strident evangelical fundamentalist atheist. So what do I know.

      • Dave
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

        You know nothing and keep ur damned evilution out of my kid’s church, er, school while ur at it.

    • Scott Draper
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      Seriously. How could people think that a congress of ancient, conservative, superstitious men would elect a liberal who would undo everything that they value?

      Are liberals more inclined to be naive than conservatives?

    • EvolvedDutchie
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

      I agree with this statement. Those of us who know how the Vatican works, knew from the day Bergoglio was elected that the pope was never going to change catholic teaching on morality.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

        Not only will he not do it, he can’t do it. It would contradict centuries of Church teaching and in one fell swoop unravel their teaching on marriage, birth control and the notion that all sex must be open to procreation. The Church stakes her whole con game on insisting that it has always taught unchanging, universal Truth. A change of this magnitude would mean they’re admitting the charade is over. No way in hell would that ever happen…

        • Pliny the in Between
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

          If the Pope adopted the ‘many popes’ theory he might be able to get away with some changes.

          http://pictoraltheology.blogspot.com/2014/10/but-now-god-knows-anything-goes.html

        • Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

          It wouldn’t be the first time the Church has made a complete about-face — not by a long shot. Indeed, celibate priests were a novel invention that didn’t get canonized until the fourth century, at least. The Church stopped selling indulgences after a certain bit of unpleasantness. Just recently, Limbo, itself a novel invention, has been declared null and void.

          It would be trivial for Bergolio to have some sort of a revelation that the civil authorities really should be in charge of decommissioning his private child prostitution ring, after all. He could have another revelation that the “be fruitful and multiply” language just meant until there were enough humans, not until humans covered the entire face of the Earth thousands of bodies deep, and that we’ve got enough humans now thankyouverymuch. And Mary could even tell him that it’s time for nuns to celebrate her son’s mass alongside priests, and that genitalia is irrelevant in the eyes of the Lord.

          Well…he could have, were it not for the fact that he’s quite happy to keep his priests happy with a steady supply of children; that he cares more about swelling ranks than global environmental catastrophe; and that he thinks women are worthless icky temptresses.

          Which gets us right back to the whole business of Bergolio really being as nasty as all the other Popes, just with a better PR department….

          b&

          • rickflick
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

            All goes back originally to original sin, don’t ya think?

            • Michael Waterhouse
              Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:20 am | Permalink

              But I didn’t do it, it was like that when I got here.

              • rickflick
                Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:31 am | Permalink

                That’s what they all say.

            • Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

              Ah, yes. Blame the woman. What was I thinking!?

              b&

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      I was inclined to give the Pope the benefit of the doubt, including his carefully-worded statement about ‘conscientious objection’. (After all, IMO conscientious objection is – usually – a Good Thing when people refuse to take part in wars. Of course anything can be misused).

      Unfortunately he’s now removed any doubt. Idiot. Is he being advised by Bill O’Reilly?

      cr

      • Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

        Yeah, me too. I was hoping he just didn’t get it. But no, apparently “conscientious objection” means not just the right to resign, but the right to interfere with marriages that don’t conform to Papal preferences.

  2. Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    The Pope-a-dope rises again. I am not surprised.

  3. Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    Neber trust a Jesuit!!!

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      Never trust a Jesuit!!!

      • Robert Bray
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:12 am | Permalink

        So Neber trust(s) a Jesuit and you don’t approve?

  4. kieran
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    The pope has changed nothing on the catholic teachings on homosexuality or any major doctrine. They are truly woeful and disparaging teachings.
    Just choose to focus on the role of good works and charity instead of always banging on about sexual morality. Also hiring a good spin doctor has helped.

    JP2 had similar good press for a while at the start of his papacy and people took a while to figure out that he was fairly dictatorial in matters of doctrine. Just ask the liberation theologists of South America

    You don’t become a cardinal by being nice and fluffy.

  5. Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    I don’t know why but few things in the news recently have pissed me off as much as this. Misterdeity said it well. Given the liberal nature of catholics in America there isn’t any public relations benefit to this act, so you know the pope’s bigotry comes from the heart.

    • GBJames
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      Agreed on Brian Dalton’s summary.

    • rickflick
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      Dalton does a great job as always. Thanks for the link.

    • eric
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      Given the liberal nature of catholics in America there isn’t any public relations benefit to this act

      Thus, the secrecy. I suspect what happened is that the Vatican agreed to the meeting only as long as Staver & Davis wouldn’t mention it to the press…then Staver released the information anyway for his own benefit. So now they’re in spin control mode. Hopefully the Pope has learned a lesson here; never trust Mat Staver, or Liberty Council, or really any similar US fundagelical organization. They care much more about income flow than ethics.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:02 am | Permalink

        “Thus, the secrecy.”

        Yes I understand, but sometimes things are done secretly with the foreknowledge they will leak. There is no benefit (for the pope)in this leaking, so it was, idiotically in this day and age, a secret they meant to keep.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:05 am | Permalink

        They care much more about income flow than ethics.

        You mean, like the Catholic Church itself?

        b&

  6. Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    Wow.

    Either the wheels are coming off the PR machine, or the gloves are coming off.

    Regardless, as I’ve been saying since his victory in Last Man in a Dress With a Funny Hat and Expensive Shoes Standing, “Meet the very old new Pope, same as the very old old Pope.”

    Well, okay…maybe I haven’t phrased it exactly like that, but….

    Cheers,

    b&

    • eric
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      I think the Vatican mistakenly believed Mat Staver would keep their secret. But he’s all about his own self-aggrandizement. See #5 above.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

        If the middle name is “Hubris,” his new confirmation name is “Stupid.” Those rosaries Davis and her husband took off the pontiff may (figuratively speaking) turn out to be beaded with serpents’ teeth.

  7. Randy Schenck
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    It is right up there with the Pope also speaking before the U.S. Congress during his visit which the FFRF pointed out is against the Constitution. How do you practice separation of religion from government with the guy in Congress? With all those Catholics in the court, no chance of interference there.

    Should also mention that other Pope favorite phrase – protecting the sanctity of life at all levels. This just means don’t you dare get an abortion for any reason. Of course after the birth, you are on your own.

    • Robert Bray
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      The Pope is shielded from charges of bringing religion into Congress by his position as head of a sovereign state. It works for the Vatican very well.

      • Randy Schenck
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        Yes, but when he drives by, Who says – there goes the head of the Vatican. He is the leader of more Catholics than would fit in the state.

        • Robert Bray
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

          Yes, he is. And all those Catholics are diasporic Vatican citizens, at least in a figurative sense. It’s almost inevitable, then, that a visiting pope get into this kind of political mischief, although the irony of his doing so with a pentecostal invites one’s imagination: I can see the fire coming out of the top of her head, as she bends for Frank’s blessing, singeing his nice white dress.

          • Heather Hastie
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

            That’s what I wondered about too – a lot of the fundamentalist Protestant religions consider the pope evil personified. With the pope now endorsing her mission, will they reconsider their support for her?

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      There’s no credible claim to be made that having a religious leader (especially one who is also the head of a state) address congress violates the Establishment Clause (which is the only section of the US Constitution that could arguably apply).

      Hell, the House and Senate both have chaplains’ offices and begin their sessions with an opening prayer. If that doesn’t violate the Establishment Clause, it’s difficult to see how a mere speech addressing secular concerns could. The Dalai Lama has received a Congressional Gold Medal and has appeared as guest chaplain to deliver the opening invocation.

      I’m speaking solely of the legality of having a religious leader appear before congress, of course, not the wisdom of doing so.

  8. Historian
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    We need more information about this meeting (which we will probably never get) before we can say for certainty exactly what it meant. It would seem unlikely that the Pope was intimately aware of the Kim Davis saga. We do not know what he was told about this situation by his handlers. It may have been that an arch conservative in the Church’s hierarchy here in the U.S. wanted this meeting for domestic reasons and did not tell the Vatican the details. If, in fact, the Vatican knew the details then this meeting was terribly bad politics. From the news reports that I have read, it seems the Vatican is reluctant to comment on the incident. Perhaps it realizes that this meeting was a mistake because it has dissipated the goodwill from liberals that this pope has created by his trip (regardless of whether he deserves it or not).

    • GBJames
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      Unlikely he was unaware of the Kim Davis saga? I completely disagree. He’s many things, but he doesn’t live in a vacuum. He runs an organization that has been working actively against gay marriage for a very long time. He has a bunch of US bishops who keep him up to date on anything relevant on a trip like this. He knew exactly who he was talking with.

      • Historian
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:45 am | Permalink

        Of course, he and the Church are against gay marriage. But, what he was told or understood about the Kim Davis incident is unknown and will probably remain that way since the Vatican isn’t talking. We all speculate on many things, but speculation on what the Pope knew is based on decidedly little evidence. In any case, the fun exercise of trying to read the Pope’s mind on this one specific incident is trivial compared to what we know with certainty is the Church’s position on gay marriage and other social issues.

        • GBJames
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:52 am | Permalink

          I think it begs credulity to think that the Pope would grant a private audience with someone without knowing who that person was, and why that person might be wanting to meet. It is not reasonable, to me, to think that he would spend a quarter of an hour without figuring it out.

          We do have a firsthand account of the meeting, of course. It comes from Kim Davis herself and her account is quite clear that he knew exactly what was going on. Now, she could be lying about it. That would put the onus on the Vatican to explain otherwise. Silence on their account is tacit confirmation of her version of events.

          So, we have two options. One is that Kim Davis is right and that the Pope’s understanding and behavior are consistent with the teaching of the the organization he leads, or… the nice Pope was clueless about this whole thing.

          These two possibilities don’t seem equally probable to me.

          • Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:30 am | Permalink

            So, we have two options. One is that Kim Davis is right and that the Pope’s understanding and behavior are consistent with the teaching of the the organization he leads, or… the nice Pope was clueless about this whole thing.

            These two possibilities don’t seem equally probable to me.

            Does it matter? If the Pope is so out of touch with current religious news, and ignorant and incompetent and all the rest, as to not know about Kim Davis…isn’t that even more damning for Christ’s Vicar on Earth than garden variety institutionalized homophobia?

            b&

      • Les
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

        If Frank doesn’t mean it, he needs to tell a reporter that. The news would reach us within hours.

    • Randy Schenck
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:40 am | Permalink

      Think your last sentence was on target.

      oooops…

    • Alan Feuerbacher
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      The fact that the pope requested a meeting with Davis shows that he knew plenty about the situation. Davis isn’t even a Catholic, but a flaming Pentecostal. So the pope’s actions are obviously intended to encourage religious fanatics to go along with the Vatican’s position. I fully agree with your last two statements.

      • Randy Schenck
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        Hey, Pentecostal today, Catholic tomorrow. She was a Democrat yesterday and a Republican today.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

        I have doubts about ‘the Pope requested a meeting with Davis’. Usually there’s a lot of background manouevring before such requests or invitations are issued. So which side the initial contact came from will probably never be known.

        And on reflection, I also have doubts about *why* the Pope met Davis – in secret. I can’t imagine what the RCC stands to gain from it. If Davis was the leader of a powerful sect of Xtianity, it might make some sense, but she has no power whatever. Most likely explanation is cock-up – some faction in the RCC was trying to do something cunning (G*d knows what) and it backfired. Or the Davis camp somehow convinced someone in the RCC that they had something to offer (though just typing that makes me shake my head in disbelief). It’s also bizarre to imagine why anyone in the RCC thought they could trust Davis et al.

        cr

    • Scott Draper
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      “It would seem unlikely that the Pope was intimately aware of the Kim Davis saga. ”

      It’s certainly possible. He probably has to be briefed every morning by handlers, like the US President. In that sense, he probably does live in a vacuum.

    • Mark Sturtevant
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      I had too that the pope and his advisers did not fully weigh the PR effects on this meeting before the meeting was committed to take place. Perhaps there are factions around the pope, and a faction who wanted this meeting to happen pushed to have it happen, and the inner circle did not really think about its broader repercussions.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Some things about this story don’t add up. I suppose, as Historian suggests, it’s possible the Pope was not fully aware of the details of the Davis case when he agreed to the meeting, although it’s difficult to accept that he’s being that poorly advised.

      What would be more shocking, and reveal an unsuspected depth of South American naiveté on the Pope’s part, would be if he simply accepted that these Prods would honor their word to him to keep the meeting secret. (It would also suggest that Francis lacks a hardnosed Irish or Irish-American adviser within his circle.)

      Equally shocking would be the hubris on the part of Davis and her lawyer (if, indeed, it was agreed that this meeting would be held in secrecy). Forget about divine retribution in the afterlife for lying (to the pope no less). Few entities have as long an institutional memory as the Catholic church or are better at exacting payback. If these people chose to embarrass the Pope by breaking their word to him about the confidentiality of this meeting, the Liberty Counsel is in for a holy — by which I mean earthly — screwing.

      • eric
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

        On your last point – IIRC Mat Staver is a terrible lawyer who regularly files lawsuits that go nowhere, angers judges, and gets settlements against his clients. “Hubris” might as well be his middle name.

        • Les
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

          Staver is like the Communist lawyers of old: creating martyrs to exploit, not necessarily to exonerate.
          Of course Davis has been told she will be made wealthy. Some combination of speeches, ghost written books, and paid slots on Fox News will have her buried in greenbacks.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

            At least the communist lawyers of old also did some good, like providing legal representation for the Scottsboro Boys. (In this respect, their mixed legacy more closely resembles that of the Catholic church.) Far as I can tell, Mat Staver and the Liberty Counsel have never done a damn thing to serve the public weal.

            • Heather Hastie
              Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

              Have a look at the list of some of Liberty Counsel’s cases on Wikipedia. One of the first big ones was taking a case against a library for awarding a medal to kids who read ‘Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’ because it promoted the religion of witchcraft. FFS! All the cases are either ridiculous or expose their bigotry.

              • Les
                Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:42 am | Permalink

                Liberty Counsel is the spawn of Jerry Falwell of Liberty University and “Moral Majority” fame.
                His bigotry dates back to Brown v Board of Ed. Upon his death, Hitchens said, “If you gave Falwell an enema he could be buried in a matchbox.” Gosh, I miss Hitchens.

              • darrelle
                Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:07 am | Permalink

                That is one of my favorite Hitchens moments.

      • cornbread_r2
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

        According to Davis’s lawyer, Davis was asked by unnamed Vatican functionaries to keep the meeting secret just until the poop was out of the country. The lawyer says that the Vatican didn’t want the poop’s other messages overshadowed by the Davis meeting.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

        “If these people chose to embarrass the Pope by breaking their word to him about the confidentiality of this meeting, the Liberty Counsel is in for a holy — by which I mean earthly — screwing.”

        Now _that_ is a very attractive prospect.

        cr

  9. Tom Snow
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    I hope after this people stop calling him the “cool pope.”

  10. Alan Feuerbacher
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    The pope has pretty thoroughly undone his growing reputation among liberals as having his heart in the right place. He has shown that his seeming liberal leanings are a sham.

    • GBJames
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      And yet the defense is active…. “He didn’t know who he was meeting with.” “Just because he meets with someone doesn’t mean he agrees with them.” and so on.

      • Delphin
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:31 am | Permalink

        “Just because he meets with someone doesn’t mean he agrees with them.”
        I don’t think that will wash. He was very picky about who he’d let on the president’s podium, much less meet with in private. He wouldn’t meet with dissidents in Cuba, or gays in New York. Ms Scoff-law gets a private audience.

        • GBJames
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

          It doesn’t wash with me. But for those who desperately want to believe in the nice Pope, it seems to.

    • Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      Frank Bruni in last Sunday’s NY Times (he was not writing about the pope meeting with Kim Davis) said because of this pope and all the good will, this is a great time for Christian liberals to become energized. Bruni pointed out that when the pope spoke to the US congress he did not use the word “abortion,” thus liberals could connect with their Christianity. Bruni claims to be more conservative himself, but he would welcome the return of liberal Christians to the political scene. Better than atheists who, according to Bruni, have no basis for morality. So I hope news about this secret meeting with Kim Davis is well noted by the liberal Christians Bruni hopes are drawn back to church by this pope.

  11. bric
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Surely a head of state meeting secretly with a foreign citizen who is openly defying the law of her country is to say the least undiplomatic. Quite possibly a causus belli in former times. I don’t suppose they will, but other governments should avoid this sort of provocation on their own soils by not allowing him in.

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      “Surely a head of state meeting secretly with a foreign citizen who is openly defying the law of her country is to say the least undiplomatic.”

      Yeah I suspect if this had been done by the leader of a state who’s ass we weren’t interested in kissing, there would at least have been a state department reprimand. I mean if reports are correct he didn’t just meet with her, he supported her breaking of the law.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

      “Quite possibly a causus belli in former times.”

      Drone strikes on the Vatican? 😉

      cr

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        And destroy all that artwork? Hell no!

        Just revoke their tax-exempt status and throw all their rapist priests in jail….

        b&

        • Michael Waterhouse
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:43 am | Permalink

          I wouldn’t want the baby raping pope and his baby raping priests corrupting other prisoners.
          Maybe we could get them to build their own new special baby raper prisons. Hard labor, first.

          Although I hear convicts don’t think too much of child abusers.

  12. Kevin
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    In the spirit of true Christianity. Christians seek out others they think embody some modicum of the Christian message.

    Unlike science, which is what it is because nature is that way, Christians can only receive security from their community of believers.

    What’s amazing is that if all of Christianity were erased from the memories and artifacts of the world, no one would rediscover it. They might think of some other bizarre, arbitrary religion but very improbably the same version of Christianity.

    Science on the other hand has no choice but to reveal the same truths about nature that have already been uncovered.

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      They might think of some other bizarre, arbitrary religion but very improbably the same version of Christianity.

      That’s a big part of why the “Jesus visits every planet” fantasy is so popular. If we ever do make contact with an extrasolar intelligence and they’ve got an easily-recognizable version of Christianity or some other major terrestrial religion, that would be even bigger than finding Noah’s Ark on Mt. Ararat…and even less likely….

      b&

      • JonLynnHarvey
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:19 am | Permalink

        There is a Ray Bradbury short story on precisely that theme, and oddly a Star Trek episode- the latter weirder since most of the show is devoted to a secular and sceptical viewpoint.

        • Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

          On the other hand, one of the lessons of “Bread and Circuses” seems to be that (real) Christians are hypocrits – but one has to read between the lines to get that, IMO. (The ending is still silly, though.)

        • eric
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

          There was also a relatively recent (last 10 years) sci-fi book where every inhabited planet had gone through a dinosaur-like cometary hit at about the same time, and leading eventually to the sentient race arising. I don’t remember the details but there was some interplay between the characters who thought this was evidence of a good god ‘clearing the way’ for his creation, vs. characters who thought it was evidence of a malicious force that was going to swing around and cause extinction events on a regular timeline.

  13. ascanius
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    We need to thank Kim Davis for unmasking the pope.

  14. Dermot C
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    Did Obama request the extradition of the ex-Archbishop of Boston, Bernard Law? The man who is suspected of covering up sexual torture and who was secreted away to the Vatican. Surely Pope Francis knows where he is. x

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      I think that’s on Obama’s agenda for sometime after he ends the war in Afghanistan and before he issues recall orders for American personnel at Guantanamo.

      b&

      • Dermot C
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:40 am | Permalink

        What, are you blaming that on Bush as well, Ben?

        So, I take it the answer is that Obama didn’t ask for Law’s extradition: shame on him, as his guest quite possibly breaks U.S. law: we have an ‘incitement to commit an offence’ law here; I assume the U.S. has something similar. x

        • Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:28 am | Permalink

          I think a most reasonable case can be made for obstruction of justice and conspiracy in the Pope’s behavior with respect to the Church’s private child prostitution racket for its leadership. But I don’t see the political will to hold the Mafia Don accountable, since he’s such a nice man and those Mafia enforcers he’s protecting don’t get the respect they deserve for the difficult jobs they have.

          b&

  15. Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    I thought you might find this interesting after our talk.

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

    From:”Why Evolution Is True” Date:Thu, Oct 1, 2015 at 4:05 PM Subject:[New post] The Pope met secretly with Kim Davis

    whyevolutionistrue posted: “According to both the New York Times and NPR, during his U.S. visit Pope Francis met not only privately with gay-marriage-license-refuser Kim Davis, but secretly. From the Times: Vatican officials initially would not confirm that the meeting occurred, “

  16. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    In the 1970s there was a survey which revealed that a far higher percentage of American Roman Catholics simultaneously supported the Equal Rights Amendment, and favored the criminalization of abortion (15% of American Catholics as opposed to less than 1% of any other demographic).

    It’s a kind of selective liberalism which is pro-labor and pro civil rights that are based on race and religion but against ordination of women and against normalization of homosexuality.

    These latter positions are just too deeply entrenched in Catholic thinking, the albatross being…past pronouncements of the Catholic church. Nothing in the dogmatic albatross prevents Catholics from advocating rights for Africans or all religions, but rights based on sex/gender and sexuality just aren’t up for negotiation.

    Catholic liberalism can go so far but not past a line drawn in the sand long ago in pre-modern times. Here the pope must put on the brakes, and come to a screeching halt.

  17. Chris
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    Hmm, I wonder if Davis considers the pope a Christian? Her “before I was a Christian” schtick re: marriages points to a time when she was a baptist, IIRC.

    Chronic (although not entirely shocking) hypocrisy all round. Business as usual, then.

  18. Jonathan Wallace
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    I wonder if Kim Davis and the Pope would believe it to be ok for a vegetarian to accept a job at a MacDonalds (other burger franchises are available) and then refuse to serve meat to customers?
    The truth is that Davis has a perfect right to not marry gay couples but she must exercise that right by resigning her job and working somewhere else where performing same sex marriages is not part of the job description, not by unilaterally blocking the right to marry of other citizens. Freedom of religion means the freedom to practice your own religion without persecution not the freedom to impose your religion onto other people.

  19. Delphin
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    I can reasonably be described as “a Reagan era republican” and I support gay marriage, equal rights for women, want to end RFRAs, oppose prayer or ID in schools, and support abortion rights. So I dispute that particular characterization of this pope.

    • Randy Schenck
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      might be your views but don’t think they were Reagan’s views.

      • Delphin
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

        Hardly pertinent as JAC did not say Reagan, nor did I. But I think you’re very wrong about Reagan and gays. See Les’s comment.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

          Ronnie and Nancy had the personal toleration for gays of old-time “true tinsel” Hollywood veterans. Reagan never did anything, however, to publicly promote gay rights — and he went as long as he possibly could on his watch in ignoring the burgeoning AIDS crisis.

    • Les
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      Ronald Reagan in 1978 was instrumental in defeating the Briggs Initiative. He said no to gay discrimination then. He knew lots of gays in Hollywood so any vile concocted religious blather had little effect on him.
      37 years later, he probably would be for marriage equality, just like the children he raised are.

      reference: Reagan, Ronald (1978-11-01). “Editorial: Two Ill-advised California Trends”. Los Angeles Herald-Examiner. p. A19

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

        And one son is an atheist and the other has stated publicly he wishes he’d shut up about it because it’s damaging to the “Reagan Legacy.”

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

          Michael, the older son — the one RR adopted with first wife Jane Wyman — is a failed rightwing talk-radio jock who has spent his adult life trying to capitalize on his last name and white resentment.

          The two younger kids RR had with Nancy, Patti and Ron, are all right in my book.

          • GBJames
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

            Ron is speaking at the FFRF convention next weekend.

  20. jrhs
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    What else could the Pope really say to Davis though? We could hardly expect him to chastise Davis for her behavior. I do wonder how the meeting was arranged. Via a local bishop?

    • GBJames
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

      Apparently via the Papal Nuncio.

      • jrhs
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

        Where did the idea or suggestion of meeting Davis from?

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

        I don’t think you can get to the pope in a foreign country except through the Papal Nuncio. But there’s still a story behind the story; doesn’t seem to me this meeting was set up solely along regular diplomatic channels.

        • GBJames
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

          Here is some video of a couple of liberal Catholics trying to make sense of it and describing the role of the Nuncio.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

            Thanks. Curiouser and curiouser …

    • darrelle
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      What else? He could have not met with her. That would have been the ethical thing to do. Even if the meeting were not instigated by the Vatican, if Davis or a sponsor of her’s asked for the meeting, there is no doubt that the Vatican is well versed in composing polite negative responses to such requests.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

        Indeed…he could have chosen to have spent the same fifteen minutes with somebody from the Boston prosecutor’s office….

        b&

        • Les
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

          In November, the movie “Spotlight” will be released. It covers the Boston Globe’s breakthrough investigation of the Boston church.

    • eric
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

      What else could the Pope really say to Davis though?

      “I encourage you to keep up your lawsuits. Its nice to see the protestants making us look good, for a change.”

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

      It would have been easy NOT to meet her. I’m sure hundreds (at least) of requests for meetings were turned down. He wouldn’t even have to give a reason – just say he was too busy.

      I wonder if some more deserving cases for meetings with the pope will begin to emerge? Perhaps there’s a Catholic charity that helps all comers who missed out because he was busy with the bigot. It’s a bit like all those people God doesn’t help because he’s busy with the sports and movie stars.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

        I wonder if some more deserving cases for meetings with the pope will begin to emerge?

        I’m sure there’re many such cases, and I’d be surprised if they emerged. Most of those who would seek an audience with the Pope will be his loyal fans who wouldn’t want to embarrass him in any way.

        …with, of course, one very notable exception: the former “fringe benefits” in the Church’s private child prostitution racket. I wouldn’t at all be surprised if one of them attempted to seek an audience with the Pope with the hopes of confronting him with a demand to submit to the jurisdiction of civil authorities…and somebody like that may well be willing to come forth with a notice of refusal that could have been met had Bergolio not been busy kissing bigot ass.

        b&

  21. Bruce T.
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    For a hilarious parody of Kim Davis in a Gilbert and Sullivan format, check out this video.

    https://goo.gl/FOqocY

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

      Hilarious, and very well done too! 😀

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

        Set to the tune of “I am the Monarch of the Sea” from HMS Pinafore, if I’m not mistaken.

        • Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

          Er…actually…you’re mistraken.

          ‘Tis the Major-General’s Son from The Pirates of Penzance. But it is Gilbert and Sullivan….

          Cheers,

          b&

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

            You’re right, my bad. I’ll hum a few choruses of “I am a Buttercup” as penance.

            • Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

              That would be acceptable.

              b&

            • Dermot C
              Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

              BBC Radio 4 has a delightful parlour game, ‘Inheritance Tracks’. Songs which remind you of your parents and a tune you would want to pass on to your kids.

              ‘I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General’ is a song that my dad would want to pass on to me for its brilliant harmony of the stress of spoken English with stressed and unstressed beats. Ray Davies has that as well.

              I would also nominate from ‘Patience’, ‘Am I alone and unobserved’, an apparent, and beautifully snarky, dig at the Oscar Wilde set. I have just found out that the ‘S’ in W.S. Gilbert stands for Schenk. Who knew he was a Pixar cartoon character? Here’s John Reed singing it: the version my dad had. x

              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFVSQQRGVmA

              • Gregory Kusnick
                Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

                Schwenck, actually, and if the film Topsy-Turvy is to be believed, that’s how his friends addressed him.

          • infiniteimprobabilit
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

            Major-General’s SonG (with a G) 😉

            (OK, typo?)

            But very well-known.

            And an extremely well-made parody, I have to say. Well worth a watch.

            cr

        • Heather Hastie
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

          I recognize the tune, but I’ve never actually seen the musical.

          • infiniteimprobabilit
            Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

            Gilbert & Sullivan are not ‘musicals’, they’re operettas.

            (OK, I’m not sure what the difference is, other than period, but I’m sure any true G&S fan could tell us)

            cr

            • Gregory Kusnick
              Posted October 1, 2015 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

              G&S is usually characterized as light opera or comic opera. If pressed to say how it differs from classics of musical theater such as Guys & Dolls or South Pacific, I’d point to the emphasis on humorous patter songs rather than big song-and-dance production numbers in the G&S canon.

              It’s not a sharp line, though. Some modern productions of G&S shows do include big dance numbers. The Kevin Kline/Linda Ronstadt film of Pirates comes to mind.

              • Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:59 am | Permalink

                A full answer is going to have to go into the history of the subject, and toss around terms like, “buffo,” “verismo,” “sprechstimme,” and all sorts of other foreign high-falutin’ words. But, when push comes to shove, only two things matter: Gilbert and Sullivan wrote uproariously satirical staged musical works that remain perfectly relevant today; and, if it sounds good, it is good.

                Cheers,

                b&

            • Heather Hastie
              Posted October 1, 2015 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

              My mistake. I don’t know anything about that sort of stuff. When it comes to music I just know what I like – how they make the sound and what it’s called is mostly a mystery to me! 🙂

            • infiniteimprobabilit
              Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

              hmm yes, i’m not sure of the distinction. it’s just that ‘musicals’ seems somehow wrong to me.

              cr

              • Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:27 am | Permalink

                I always thought an opera was simply a tragic musical. 😉

              • infiniteimprobabilit
                Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

                @Keith

                Sung by fat people who don’t try to dance.

                cr

  22. Matt
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Joe Rogan summed it up best in a tweet. “Breaking news! Flamboyantly dressed cult leader meets with crazy woman.”

    • kansaskitty
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      Lol! That’s the best comment I’ve heard about the meeting!

  23. Gregory Kusnick
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Even Larry Wilmore is now forced to admit Francis is not “the cool Pope” people want him to be.

  24. darrelle
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    Oops. Nothing like a little peak behind the curtain to cut through the nonsense about the liberal pope. Though I am sure there are still plenty of accommodationists and believers that will perform whatever cognitive gymnastics are necessary to maintain their liberal pope beliefs in the face of this tiny sliver of sunlight.

    The RCC is a disgusting organization and this pope doesn’t change that, and isn’t going to change it because his beliefs are not compatible with the actions that would be required in order to turn the RCC into a reasonably decent organization. Given that it were possible in the first place.

  25. Posted October 1, 2015 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    I was a bit befuddled when I heard on NPR the story about how the pope is now “forgiving women who had an abortion.” Which also fits in with the idea that they can now forgive people for homosexual acts. Anyways, the idea that the pope and church is now able to forgive a certain group of heinous, sinning people, whereas before they were eternally outcast, just strikes me as absurd.

    I do not understand how more moderate members of catholicism find it to be a sane institution. Why do people think they need to set up such a relationship with their church and such moral guides? They humbly look to their earthly fathers (the pope) for granting forgiveness for sins against their heavenly fathers.

    Also, it seems a bit self-defeating that the pope embodies with supreme authority a changing but objective moral code.

    • bric
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      It’s a little more absurd than that – it’s for one year only (from Dec 8th 2015 if you want to plan your year) then it’s back to forgiveness the hard way, via a genuine Bishop. It’s all in the timing, as the Catholics say.

      • darrelle
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

        Perhaps it’s just a marketing ploy. Sometime after Dec 8th the RCC will probably start charging for the indulgence of being forgiven for having an abortion.

        • rickflick
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

          Imagine the stampede in late November.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

      It’s a tradition started in the Middle Ages called Jubilee Years, which were initially once a century, but were discovered to make so much money they occurred more often.

  26. demfromsc
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    In my opinion, the Pope’s actions make him an accessory to a crime. Davis must uphold the law as a civil employee, and the Pope clearly encouraged her to break it.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

      Davis hasn’t been accused, much less convicted of, a crime. And there’s nothing to suggest that the Pope gave her any encouragement before she refused to issue SSM licenses, or that she intends to do anything different following their meeting. To be liable as an “accessory after-the-fact” to a crime, one must provide material support to the criminal — usually either refuge from the law or a means of escape, which clearly hasn’t occurred here. So your “opinion” seems a shade hyperbolic.

      • Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

        All true for the case of Davis.

        …but for the priestly rapists…?

        b&

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

          On that count, J’accuse!

      • demfromsc
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for your comment, but I believe that I was correct. Here is the legal definition for “accessory to a crime”. This appears to fit the Pope perfectly.

        “Aiding or contributing in a secondary way or assisting in or contributing to as a subordinate. In Criminal Law, contributing to or aiding in the commission of a crime. One who, without being present at the commission of an offense, becomes guilty of such offense, not as a chief actor, but as a participant, as by command, advice, instigation, or concealment; either before or after the fact or commission.”

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:40 am | Permalink

          So what is the crime that you think was committed, and how did the Pope assist or contribute to it as a subordinate by command, advice, instigation, or concealment?

          • Dermot C
            Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:01 am | Permalink

            Presumably criminal contempt of court on Davis’ part and advice on the Pope’s part to ‘stay strong’. x

            • Ken Kukec
              Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:45 am | Permalink

              Davis hasn’t been accused of criminal contempt, and advice to “stay strong” is legally insufficient to constitute “abetting” a crime.

          • Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

            …running a private child prostitution ring for priests, complete with transportation and accommodations for fresh supplies of victims whenever necessary to avoid local law enforcement…?

            b&

      • Jaybee
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

        The lack of an official accusation or conviction of Davis is more a matter of a lack of political will than it is proof that she hasn’t broken any laws.

        She is, to my understanding, an elected official who is sworn to uphold the US Constitution. She has refused to do so, and has even altered official documents. Those are both offenses that she will, alas, never face charges for because of the fear of the outcry it would cause in what is (almost) a Presidential election year.

        The lack of a formal accusation or conviction hardly means that one is not guilty of breaking a law. Ask O.J. Simpson about that.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

          Nonfeasance of official duties by an elected official may provide grounds for impeachment or recall or for the issuance of a writ of mandamus from a court compelling the official to perform his or her statutory ministerial duties.

          I do not believe, however, that mere official nonfeasance (or the alteration of a form by a county’s chief clerk) runs afoul of any criminal statutes. And I’m unaware of any precedent for a criminal prosecution under such circumstances. (If the official refuses to obey a court order compelling his or her performance of a duty, on the other hand, he or she can be prosecuted for criminal contempt — and I’m on record in a prior posting on this matter as recommending that that’s how Judge Bunning should have handled Davis’s case.)

  27. Mark R.
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Note to Kim Davis:

    Please leave the world alone, it’s tired of you…and shut-up…and start doing the job tax payers are paying you to do. The dustbin of history is waiting.

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

      My Andy Warhol stopwatch is showing 16 minutes for Davis….

      b&

      • Mark R.
        Posted October 1, 2015 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

        Yeah…the zealots seem to have an extra minute as of late.

  28. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

    Worst move by a supposedly cool guy since Fonzie — quite literally — jumped the shark.

  29. MrJoshua
    Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    Charlie Pierce is my go to source for all things Catholic. (Mostly because I find the church itself despicable in every way and don’t care to learn of it’s intricacies.) Anyway, Charlie’s a liberal Catholic so he’s done a plausible connect-the-dots on how conservatives within the church engaged in some shenanigans to dupe the pope into a meeting with Davis. Interesting theory, if anything.

    http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/news/a38440/pope-francis-swindled-kim-davis-meeting/

  30. Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    This should come as a surprise to absolutely no one. I’ve been saying it from day one. This Pope is full of shit. I grew up in a very conservative Catholic household and none of these “modern cutting edge announcements” the Pope has made changes church teaching a bit. It’s simply well spun propaganda promoting the same things the Church has always promoted.

    Atheists redemmed by Christ? Nothing new there…the Church has never had a notion of an anti-Saint where they declare someone undoubtedly to be in Hell.

    Love gay people? Same old “hate the sin, love the sinner” bullshit.

    Forgive abortions? It’s never been the case that sins aren’t forgiven when they are confessed.

    With this stunt, Frank let down his guard. There’s no spinning this and this is exactly the sort of thing I saw all the time in Catholic circles growing up. They don’t damn you to Hell, after they “don’t judge” but don’t fall in line with their backwards Medieval thinking and they’ll make it hell on earth for you, one application of hypocritical guilt at a time.

    • Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

      Should read….”after all, they don’t judge”

    • darrelle
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

      What you said.

    • EvolvedDutchie
      Posted October 1, 2015 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

      hear hear!

    • Michael Waterhouse
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:56 am | Permalink

      Yep.

  31. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:50 am | Permalink

    Davis says the Pope’s comment to her “validates everything.” Anybody here believe that, if the Pope had come out and criticized her, she would now be saying that his disapproval “invalidates everything”?

  32. Les
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    The Vatican explains the meeting saying Francis met with several dozen persons who had been invited by the Nunciature to
    greet him and so they could meet him.
    “The only real audience granted by the Pope at the Nunciature was with one of his former students and his family.
    The Pope did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects.”

    • Les
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      Still unexplained: why did the Pope meet with Davis in the first place?

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

        If this is true then it sounds like it may have been some sort of general ‘audience’ (which Kim D and/or her agent duly misrepresented as a ‘by special command’ sort of occasion).

        Which leaves two questions: How did Kim Davis get on the list?
        One scenario presents itself:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOaRI3GM0GE
        (the relevant scene is 7.00 – 8.00 minutes in)

        Second question: Has Kim Davis and/or her agent/lawyer succeeded in doing what millions of atheists have failed to do – right royally screw over the Pope?

        cr

  33. ChrisB
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    I wonder if the pope reminded Kim she is going to burn in hell for eternity for adultery, divorce, and having children out of wedlock.

    Stay strong, Kim, eternity is only forever.

    At least she will have all those gay people to keep her company.

  34. rickflick
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    “Stay strong, Kim, eternity is only forever.”

    Now you’ve got me thinking…if our universe is subject to entropy and will suffer heat death after trillions of years, what about hell? Maybe there is a heat death there too where all the fire and brimstone cools down and temperatures return to normal for a while. If so, there is indeed hope for Kim.

    • ChrisB
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

      you have probably already seen this, but your pot reminded me of it:

      http://www.quantumlounge.com/data/hell.htm

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

        … your pot reminded me …

        Which explains the laying about discussing the heat death of the universe. You guys need some snacks or Yoohoos? 🙂

        Hell of a thermodynamics answer by the kid at U. Wash., btw.

  35. Diane G.
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    More news about the Pope’s activities is coming out, and it turns out he met with a gay couple, also in private, just the day before Davis.

    http://www.cnn.com/2015/10/02/us/pope-gay-washington/

    It’s always possible that the Pope intended to keep both meetings private but that someone from Kim Davis’s side leaked her story.

    I vacillate between thinking that this pope is just putting some icing on the same old cake and that he really is a LOT more liberal than all the other church bigwigs, and trying to keep them appeased while he manages to push the envelope just a little bit.

    (Wouldn’t it have been nice if he’d met with Cecile Richards?)

    • Diane G.
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

      A comma after “cake” might make that less ambiguous.


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