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The Male-Gigolo-in-Chief actually graces us with his presence today, confronting anti-Catholicism in Angels & Demons.  SPOILERS ahead, as if anyone is actually planning on watching that shitty movie.

People whose opinions I respect have defended A&D as not being anti-Catholic. This is probably due to the end of the film which delivers a trumped up moment of warmth and reconciliation between Tom Hanks’ Robert Langdon character and the Church in the form of a new Pope.  From my perch, this moment is a subtle but devious cherry on top of a blisteringly unfair and wholly dishonest attack on the Church.

Serial adulterer Martin Luther King, Jr.

Serial adulterer Martin Luther King, Jr.

Serial adulterer Martin Luther King, Jr.

One way to dishonestly destroy someone or something is to repeat only the negative about that someone or something. DreamWorks has just announced a new film about the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. and were it to focus solely on King’s extra-marital affairs no one would argue that the movie was anything other than a propaganda tool produced with the goal in mind of assassinating his character.

You know, if MLK had tortured and enslaved people, executed religious leaders, and massacred his enemies (just off the top of my head), this argument might hold more water.  Those things are all significantly worse than cheating on your wife. 

Rather than get sidetracked, let’s just stipulate each criticism is accurate (though they’re not). But it doesn’t matter, because… None of the enormous good the Church has done over the last 2,000 years is ever mentioned. So even if the filmmakers are right on “the facts,” they’re telling no less of a lie. Intentionally omitting all the good the Church has done intentionally creates a false impression no reasonable person would get if the film provided the full story.    

Nolte never elaborates on what exactly this “enormous good” has been.  I am wont to play Church-apologist among my LIBTARD friends, but come on,  2000 years?  There were entire centuries where the Church did not do a single thing right.  Inquisitions and crusades aside,  how big of an asshole do you have to be to side with Phillip II over Elizabeth, for instance?  Or Charles V over anyone?

Finally, to reaffirm his straw man really does exists, Howard tacks on a warm closing scene that portrays the Church as evolving into an institution more open and accepting of scientific truth.  

Some may have gotten the fuzzies from this moment, but the Church is already open and accepting of scientific truth and to say it could be what it already is… Well, let’s just say that if “Angels & Demons” was as clever at storytelling as it is at spreading lies, it might have been a watchable movie.

As Christian institutions go, the contemporary Catholic Church is on the pro-science end of the spectrum.  At least they’ve mostly kept out of the whole Creationism/ID game.  They’d rather not look like idiots again in another 200 years, so they’ve learned that “we have no position” is the best space for a religious organization to occupy with respect to scientific issues.  

Sadly, the Church’s embryo fetish has not allowed it to extend this good sense to its position on stem cell research.  But hey, you can’t win ’em all.   The Church is an ancient institution, and I, for one, am pleased with the current no-burning-people-at-the-stake policy.  Baby steps, people.



Written by dieblucasdie

May 19, 2009 at 5:45 pm

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