Readers Speak Out: February 7, 2021

  • February 4, 2021

Papal protection

Re: “Windsor scholar studies rise in local anti-Semitism” (Jan. 24):

I would like to thank Dr. John Cappucci for his research into anti-Semitism in the Windsor area. This is a very important issue that should not be downplayed, as anti-Semitism is still very much alive.

That being said, there is one problem in the article I wish to address.

Certain statements attributed to Dr. Cappucci, viz., that the Church needs to “come to grips with its 2,000-year history of anti-Semitism” and “We can’t erase 2,000 years of history, where there was that very strong relationship between Christianity and anti-Semitism,” is a big generalization. First, the Church has indeed “come to grips” with the crimes of certain Catholics (including some popes) who were guilty of anti-Semitism and this can be seen in the numerous apologies made by St. Pope John Paul II, as well as increased dialogue with Jews as a whole. Second, the picture these statements paint is one of a highly anti-Semitic Catholic Church. This, of course, is inaccurate especially if one were to look at the actions and statements made by popes throughout the centuries.

One of the experts in this area, renowned Jewish historian Cecil Roth, summed up the history in this way: “Of all the dynasties in Europe, the papacy not only refused to persecute the Jews … but through the ages popes were protectors of the Jews.”

Rory Endrizzi,

North York, Ont.


New normal

In his Jan. 24 column, Glen Argan has predicted that President Biden is likely to use war as a tool in American foreign policy, restrict freedom of speech and rebuild the old normal. In all honesty the old normal is gone after Donald Trump’s reign. He closed the border to immigrants he did not like and cut off many meaningful relationships with European countries, with the exception of Russia. He changed the rules of the Constitution to suit himself.

How can Argan predict this in an age of surprises? Maybe Vice President Kamala Harris will have an influence on Biden. I doubt that she would go along with war, or not insist on free speech, and with a Black woman as vice president, there is no way that normal will not change. It already has changed. 

Virginia Edman,

Toronto


Harsh choice

Re: Second Catholic president causes some to celebrate, gives others anxiety (Jan. 20):

The headline looked balanced, but the article from Catholic News Service mostly covers two clerics, both of whom are clearly Biden sympathizers. Cardinal Tobin is on record before the election as saying that “a person in good conscience could vote for Joe Biden,” but that he “would have a more difficult time with the other option.” Well, the other option turns out to be Donald Trump, the most pro-life president the U.S. ever had.

Biden, by contrast, wants a full taxpayer-funded license for abortion domestically codified in federal law and for it to be attached to trade abroad. He also plans to re-persecute the Little Sisters of the Poor for their refusal to accept the Obamacare Contraceptive Mandate, a policy that was eventually struck-down by the Supreme Court.  

Tobin goes on the attack against those who would use “harsh words” against Biden. If only the Church hierarchy had consistently used such “harsh” words over the last number of decades to correct such politicians we would not now need to naively (or disingenuously) hope to dialogue with this “second Catholic president” who shows no signs that he understands either his faith or the gravity of abortion.

Donald Macdonald,

Ottawa

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