25.12.8 by Daniel Bartolo
December 2008 will be remembered as the Pope's month of shame when Pope Ratzinger decided to increase his dose of aborrent homophobia to the detriment of the gay community around the world.
First the EU declaration at the United Nations calling for the universal decriminalisation of homosexuality was strongly opposed by the Vatican, on the grounds that this would open up the way for "states that do not allow gay marriages to be persecuted". That is, the Pope would rather have gay individuals persecuted in more than 80 countries worldwide than have states face up to gay relationships. Malta signed up to the declaration, along with all other 26 EU states and more than 30 other self-respecting democracies, where homosexuality has been decriminalised for decades now. Talk about the Pope not living in the middle ages!
Then in his Christmas message to the Church Curia, the Pope decided he had to centre his message on what surely is the biggest joke of 2008: stating that saving humanity from homosexuality and transexuality was just as important as saving the rainforest from destruction. If this was not a direct and aggressive attack on lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual people around the world, I don't know what is!
I still have to see humanity destroy itself as it slowly turns to homosexuality. What with us humans already above the 6 billion mark, more than 90 % of whom are heterosexual, and homosexuality being an integral part of human nature (has been so for thousands and thousands of years), the Pope's position is absurd and grotesque to say the least. I have also become convinced that the Pope still does not quite understand that controlling reproduction is an essential part of human civilised behaviour. And what about transgender people, who are born in a male or female body but who feel it in their skin (with all the mental, physical and emotional pain) that they were born another sex? Is the Pope so insensitive to their plight? What would Jesus have said?
Would he have said they were intending to destroy the human race? There were so many pressing issues the Pontiff could have talked about: from the poverty brought by the credit crunch, the millions of unemployed people, the pitiful state of human rights, the rights of children and women abused and beaten around the world...but priority number 1 for Ratzinger was the condemnation of homosexuality and transexuality, in a style that is eerily reminiscent of the condemnation of Jews, astronomers etc and all those whom the Church found as convenient scapegoats during its history.
I therefore strongly appeal to all Maltese Catholics, and the Maltese Church in particular, to speak up against this cruel and absurd attack on our fellow brothers and sisters. I, for one, no longer feel part of this homophobic machine that the Pope has turned the Catholic Church into. I have heard comments in the same sense from scores of friends - gay and not gay. We are ready to protest, to move out of this Church if there is no stop to this madness! Stop attacking gay people - NOW!