August 31, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro lambasted the mainstream media for its liberal bias in reports on Pope Francis, who now stands accused of having been part of the ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick sex abuse cover up.
“The press, at least the New York Times, seem deeply concerned with protecting Pope Francis from any and all comers because they like Pope Francis. I've rarely seen a more disgusting example of press behavior than this. It is truly an amazing, amazing thing,” Shapiro, editor-in-chief of the Daily Wire, told Fox News.
Testimony by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former apostolic nuncio to the United States, has implicated Pope Francis and many senior prelates in covering up McCarrick’s alleged serial sex abuse of seminarians and priests.
Pope Francis refused to comment on these allegations, telling journalists they should read Viganò's 11-page statement for themselves and come to their own conclusions.
In the wake of Viganò's allegations, the New York Times ran an article under a headline which highlighted not the claims made against the pontiff but rather the “power struggle” between allegedly liberal and conservative factions within the Church. On Monday, that newspaper carried the headline Vatican Power Struggle Bursts Into Open as Conservatives Pounce.
The title of that article in its print edition was Francis Takes High Road as Conservatives Pounce, Taking Criticisms Public.
According to Shapiro, this demonstrates New York Times editors consider it more important to protect the reputation of a left-leaning pope than it is to report the truth on the ongoing sex abuse crisis.
The Times was excoriated for that headline on Twitter and on the Fox segment.
“How is ‘conservatives pouncing’ on sex abuse allegations the story?” asked Shapiro.
Within the Catholic church itself, desperate attempts to discredit Archbishop Viganò have included Chicago Cardinal Blase Cupich's claim that critics of Pope Francis are bigots who don't like the pontiff “because he’s a Latino.”
That cardinal also downplayed the accusations of sex abuse cover-up against the pope by claiming the pontiff “has a bigger agenda” to deal with.
“He’s got to get on with other things,” said Cupich, such as “talking about the environment and protecting migrants.”
Cupich characterized Vigano’s accusations as a “rabbit hole.”
“Has he seen the stories that were published about the Pennsylvania dioceses and what they did to these children?” Fox’s Martha MacCallum asked in disbelief.
“The same people who were so hard on the Church when Spotlight came out and when those [2002 sex abuse] stories came to light should be absolutely leading with these stories and asking him [Pope Francis] and pressing people like Cupich,” MacCallum said. “If Jesus had any central teaching, one of them was that children are the most important to be protected…in Matthew, He says, if you cause any of the little ones to stumble, you should have a large millstone hung around your neck and be drowned in the depths of the sea.”
“When it was John Paul II or Pope Benedict, then the press didn't like those guys because those guys were very conservative on social issues,” commented Shapiro.
“But, because Pope Francis is in his essence a liberation theologist who believes a lot of left-wing things about climate change and redistribution of income and illegal immigration, they're going to protect him from accusations from the so-called conservative wing of the church which is, after all, basically just asking the pope to…enforce what seems to me to be basic Catholic doctrine for the past couple of thousand years,” Shapiro, an orthodox Jew, astutely noted.
Shapiro said he considers it “evil” to put protection of a pope for political reasons ahead of the need to uncover the truth about the sex abuse cover-up.
“When you're treating the pedophilia of children and mistreatment of children – the abuse of children – as a political football in order to protect your guy, I would suggest you're the evil one in the scenario,” said Shapiro.