Thursday, February 23, 2006


As a Catholic, I've never been prouder.

The Vatican has said what it had to say a month ago when the riots over the cartoons started: Muslims, practice what you preach. Some highlights, although I recommend everyone read the entire story:

Reciprocity -- allowing Christian minorities the same rights as Muslims generally have in Western countries, such as building houses of worship or practicing religion freely

Vatican diplomats argue that limits on Christians in some Islamic countries are far harsher than restrictions in the West that Muslims decry, such as France's ban on headscarves in state schools.

Saudi Arabia bans all public expression of any non-Muslim religion and sometimes arrests Christians even for worshipping privately. Pakistan allows churches to operate but its Islamic laws effectively deprive Christians of many rights.

"Enough now with this turning the other cheek! It's our duty to protect ourselves," Monsignor Velasio De Paolis, secretary of the Vatican's supreme court, thundered in the daily La Stampa.

"The West has had relations with the Arab countries for half a century, mostly for oil, and has not been able to get the slightest concession on human rights," he said.

"Let's drop this diplomatic silence," said the rector of the Pontifical Lateran University. "We should put pressure on international organizations to make the societies and states in majority Muslim countries face up to their responsibilities."

Tags: , , , , ,