Atheists, feminists assail Pope Benedict XVI on his resignation
VATICAN CITY, February 11, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – As supporters of Pope Benedict XVI expressed their shock and gratitude at his unexpected resignation, a number of liberals, atheists, and homosexuals greeted the news with denunciations of the pope, vitriol against the Catholic Church, and in one case a desire for the pope to be arrested.
“Why Is Everyone So Saddened By the Pope's Resignation?” asked Edward Falzon on The Huffington Post. “Good bye; I'll not say 'good luck,'” he wrote. “Perhaps after you relinquish the protection of the Vatican, you can be brought in for questioning like so many have wanted for so long.”
The pro-abortion website Jezebel claimed the pontiff's main duty is “denying women birth control.”
A number of writers virulently condemned the pope under the guise of applying for the open position.
“As a queer woman of Jewish descent I might not be the obvious choice to spread the Lord’s message to millions of Catholics worldwide,” wrote Laurie Penny, a contributing editor to the widely read British publication the New Statesman. “The fact that I don’t believe in God might be considered an impediment.”
Penny, a left-wing feminist columnist, added that she had “no previous experience in promoting life-threatening medical misinformation to millions” and had “never been in the Hitler Youth.” However, she “once drew stigmata on my hands and face in felt-tip to freak-out my Catholic classmates.”
“Some might consider the basic principles of compassion and charity for all men and women an obstacle to the vital duties of discouraging condom use, opposing women’s right to choose and providing cod-spiritual justification for the persecution of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Not being a Christian, all I have to stop me spreading dogmatic misogyny and homophobia in the name of morality is my own personal sense of what’s right and wrong,” she added.
The accompanying photograph depicted Penny wearing the papal crown while smoking a cigarette.
Dean Burnett, a neuroscientist and writer for the UK Guardian, wrote that while he is an atheist he is “dedicated to declining institutions and have a robust if unrealistic belief in resurrection.”
He stated he has “experience speaking in an unfamiliar language to rooms full of people who are struggling to stay awake, so it would be no trouble for me to offer Mass whenever required.”
“At the last count, I also have “the required number of testicles to be pope (at least two). I also have experience with covering up crimes,” he wrote. “I believe these qualities and more make me an ideal candidate for the position.”
He added that while he is “not a homosexual,” he “did once suck a penis.”
Since his elevation to the papacy in 2005, Pope Benedict XVI has unequivocally affirmed the importance of family life, saying the drive to redefine human sexuality threatens “the future of humanity.”
His faithful stance led LGBT activist John Becker to assail the pope as “notoriously homophobic” in The Huffington Post.
“The expressions of joy I'm seeing from many in the LGBT community about Benedict XVI's impending departure from the Chair of Peter strike me, sadly, as rather misplaced,” he wrote. “Institutional homophobia in the Roman Catholic Church isn't likely to go away anytime soon.”
Sex figured in the critique of Richard Dawkins, the philosophical leader of the New Atheists, who tweeted :“I feel sorry for the Pope and all old Catholic priests. Imagine having a wasted life to look back on and no sex.”
The papal resignation – the first in 600 years – has set some dissident Catholics dreaming of a social liberal taking the See of Peter.
“Hoping for a more progressive successor,” actress Mia Farrow wrote on her Twitter page. “Imagine a pope more like Arch[bishop] Desmond Tutu.”
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“I'm hoping that this bold move by Pope Benedict will lead to more bold change by the church in coming years – on contraception, on female and non-celibate priests, and on gays,” wrote New York Times reporter Nicholas Kristof on his Facebook page. “The church has such influence worldwide that it would be great to see a Vatican III!”
Kevin Drum of Mother Jones had more meager goals, hoping for “a new, less terrible pope.”
Drum added, “As reactionary as he was, Benedict did make a tiny improvement in the church's most egregious moral failing of the past few decades,” which he classified as the Church's refusal to allow Africans to wear condoms.
Some regretted that the papal vacancy will result from a choice, rather than the pope's death.
Frankie Boyle, a BBC star and Scottish comedian, sent a message to His Holiness via Twitter. “Don't worry, in a few months you'll be laughing about this. With Hitler in Hell,” he said.
The website Twichy, owned by Catholic conservative Michelle Malkin, aggregated several more slurs and death threats from Twitter users.