Monday, 23 March 2009

Is it so hard to become a Pope...or a journalist?

Hugo Rifkind, over at Timesonline, blogged the following post on how neither the Pope nor the Archbishop of Canterbury seem very competent. I chuckled quite a bit when I heard this due to the extreme irony.

He writes, "Frankly, [the Pope's] starting to look like the most hapless religious leader since, well, the Archbishop of Canterbury. And I think I know why. You know how many aspiring priests or vicars I came across during my textbook Oxbridge education? None, that's how many. Fifty, a hundred years ago, I bet you couldn't have moved for them. Think too much? No inheritance? Bad at fighting? Bang. Clergy."

So, in his opinion clergy now are the uneducated, those who don't do so well. Quite interesting as I've looked into their education and this is what I found:

Rowan Williams: Cambridge BA, Oxford PHD.(here)

Pope Benedict XVI: University of Munich; 'University of Life' (Member of the Hitler Youth) (Here)

Now, I'm not saying that I agree with them to but say they are ill-educated or that they don't understand real life is foolish. He cites two comments as examples. Firstly the Popes comments of condoms and Aids, and secondly Rowans supposed comment on Sharia Law in the UK. Its worth noting on both of these:

1) The Pope: The comments merely stated that encouraging condoms also encourages promiscuous sex in which conditions Aids will spread faster, where as abstinance and marital relations will slow the spread, maybe even stop it. All this is true. The danger of course is that in reality people will still have the same sex patterns they always had and look for remedies of Aids elsewhere. (One horrific example is in certain area infected men are told by witch doctors to have sex with a virgin to cure yourself).

2) Rowan: He never actually encourages Sharia Law in the UK. He was merely responding to the move at the time as discussing a live issue. He was doing exactly what Hugo say he doesn't: relating to society in an educated manner.

He claims that the reason behind this is the exciting voices won't get involved in a failing industry and that they are out of their depths. Interesting enough however, both the Anglican and Roman Catholic Church are pretty static in percentage of world population. Not good enough I know but certainly not a 'failing industry.'

What we seem to have here then is actually a failed case of good journalism. Is it so hard to be a good journalist....Apparently so. Maybe you should try writing a novel Hugo; you seem a lot better at fiction.

Till next time!

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