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A beautifully told story with colorful characters out of epic tradition, a tight and complex plot, and solid pacing. -- Booklist, starred review of On the Razor's Edge

Great writing, vivid scenarios, and thoughtful commentary ... the stories will linger after the last page is turned. -- Publisher's Weekly, on Captive Dreams

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Pope Approves of Gun-Brandishing During Bank Robberies!

Recently, the Pope said in an interview
There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a bank robber uses an unloaded gun, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization,  a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants. But it is not really the way to deal with the evil of bank robbery. That can really lie only in a humanization of economics. 

Oh, wait.  What he said was this:
There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization,  a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants. But it is not really the way to deal with the evil of HIV infection. That can really lie only in a humanization of sexuality.

The Late Modern Age, which is focused as always on technology, instrument, and consequence can't see beyond the condom.  But the condom is not a bad thing per se.  It is not haram or treff or anything like that.  Traditional Christianity is orthodox, not orthoprax; and this means a different attitude toward inanimate objects.   

So what did the B-16 say?  Take a look at the first paragraph above and ask if that implies some sort of approval for brandishing weapons "in some cases" during a bank robbery (let alone approval of bank robbery).  No, what the pastiche says is that a bank robber who uses an unloaded gun is showing signs of a first, halting step toward moralizing his economic transactions.  While one cannot approve of the bank robbery or the gun-brandishing, it does show that the person (not the inanimate object) has demonstrated some degree of concern for the well-being of others beside himself.  Not everyone holds concern for others in high regard (see previous post), and so they have difficulty seeing this as the point; and so, there is nothing left to see but the use or non-use of the inanimate object. 

For those interested in the full context of this interview, which seems to have lots of ill-informed folks abuzz, esp. those unaccustomed to critical analysis, see here and scroll down to AIDS and Condoms.  The meaning should be quite clear. 

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