William Donohue: "Spinning the Pope's Visit"
The Catholic League's William Donohue writes at InsideCatholic:
One week after Pope Benedict XVI touches down in the United States, the Pennsylvania primary will be held. All indications are the media would much prefer to concentrate on the latter; they certainly feel more at home covering a subject they know something about. Nonetheless, they will have to give Hillary and Barack a back seat, at least for a few days.
Unlike the two Democratic senators, and their Republican rival and colleague, the Holy Father is not interested in public opinion polls. Nor is he interested in tailoring his comments to the prevailing sentiments of his American audience. Having been named pope at the age of 78 -- fully 20 years beyond where his predecessor was at the time he was elected pontiff -- he knows he has a short window of opportunity. Ergo, he is not about to waste his time courting good will at the expense of truth.
The pope's U.N. speech will be closely watched, especially for references to the war in Iraq. While events there are complicated, it remains true that if the adherents of Islam today were to show as much tolerance for religious diversity as is demonstrated by Catholics, Protestants, and Jews, peace would be within reach. The human rights deficit that marks Islam is not something this pope has shied away from discussing, and for that he should be applauded, not castigated. Look for him to once again mention what happens when faith is disconnected from reason.
The pope will also discuss what happens when reason is disconnected from faith, making the media quiver. That's because such moral issues as abortion, assisted suicide, and embryonic stem cell research are deemed by the Church to be "intrinsically evil," and nothing sends shivers up the spines of the media than discussions of this kind.