The Pope gave an unprecedented speech in Bolivia over the weekend quoting a fourth century bishop, he called the unfettered pursuit of money, and unbridled capitalism “the dung of the devil,” and said poor countries should not be reduced to being providers of raw material and cheap labor for developed countries. In one of the longest, most passionate and crowd rallying speeches of his pontificate, the Argentine-born pope also asked forgiveness for the sins committed by the Roman Catholic Church in its treatment of Native Americans during what he referred to as the“so-called conquest of America.”
The Pope addressed many controversial issues including global warming stating, “Time is running out to save the planet from perhaps irreversible harm to the ecosystem.”
In what may go down in history as a speech that changed the face of the catholic church he even takes a swipe at international monetary organizations such as the IMF and the development aid policies by some developed countries. He said,
No actual or established power has the right to deprive peoples of the full exercise of their sovereignty. Whenever they do so, we see the rise of new forms of colonialism which seriously prejudice the possibility of peace and justice, the new colonialism takes on different faces. At times it appears as the anonymous influence of man: corporations, loan agencies, certain ‘free trade’ treaties, and the imposition of measures of ‘austerity’ which always tighten the belt of workers and the poor.
The Pope’s stance on climate and capitalism has sparked outrage in the Republican party. At least five of the Republican presidential contenders are Catholic. Two so far – Jeb Bush and Rick Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator and “devout Catholic” – have come out against the pope on climate change.
In his first official day on the presidential campaign trail, Jeb Bush, who is Catholic, told a town hall event in New Hampshire that Pope Francis should steer clear of global affairs. “I hope I’m not going to get castigated for saying this by my priest back home, but I don’t get economic policy from my bishops or my cardinal or my pope,” the former Florida governor said in response to a leaked letter in regards to the Pope’s stance on climate change.“I think religion ought to be about making us better as people and less about things that end up getting in the political realm.”
Santorum told a Philadelphia radio station earlier in May: “The church has gotten it wrong a few times on science, and I think we probably are better off leaving science to the scientists and focusing on what we’re good at, which is theology and morality.”
Jeb Bush will support his religion fervently in relation to issues like abortion and has for over a decade, going as far as appointing a representative for the fetus of a rape victim. However he blindly denies the most adored member of the Catholic faith when it comes to issues like Climate change and Capitalism. The Pope’s job is global affairs, but “Devout catholic” Jeb Bush thinks he should steer clear of it as he takes all expense paid trips to speak, golf, and fly-fish, all on the coal industries dollar. Pope Francis’ previous attacks on capitalism and environmental destruction have prompted stiff criticism from politicians and commentators in the United States, where he is due to visit in September. However, presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has only praise for the pope in this video below.
Sanders told CBS host John Dickerson that Pope Francis had highlighted the fact that “casino-type capitalism is causing devastating problems with our climate.” He went on to agree with the Pope on all the issues of his speech saying, “Almost all of the new wealth in this world is going to the people at the top and so many others are falling by the wayside.” By the end of his statement in regards to the Pope he insisted “Money can not be the God of Life!.” and ended with “I am a great fan of Pope Francis.”
You don’t have to be a “devout Catholic’ to agree with Bernie and the pope on this one. Climate change is backed by scientific fact, Capitalism does feed all the wealth up a pyramid to the top, and many grave acts against the Native Americans were committed in the name of God. Bush and other blind conservatives could learn a lesson from the prime representative of their own supposed religion. It is a time for a new era: an era that will enable the powerless, an era that will reverse the flow of wealth, and above all an era that will protect mother earth for the future generations to come. We could all learn something from the Pope’s words today.
“Let us not be afraid to say it: we want change, real change, structural change,” Pope Francis
Watch here:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWB42lnOCtk&w=1366&h=768]
Featured image compliments of Nationofchange.org and Catholicexchange.com