00 7/26/2010 4:50 PM
Not your average Pope-bashing:
The latest tasteless attack on the Pope
has a strangely self-defeating undercurrent

By Milo Yiannopoulos

Monday, 26 July 2010

Most Catholic journalists and publications have by now received their free copy of The Pope Is Not Gay!, a charming little book that purports to expose Pope Benedict XVI’s complicated relationship with homosexuality while mocking his dress sense.

The book is deeply offensive, but not for the reason you might imagine. Let us skip over the tired and predictable Church-bashing and focus on the central conceit – and the selling-point of this slim, hot pink paperback – that the Pope’s “extravagant attire and his controversial relationship with his private secretary, Cardinal Georg Gänswein” sits uneasily with his “doctrinal rigidity on issues such as birth control, abortion and homosexuality”. [Did the moron really identify Gaenswein as a cardinal???]

By “doctrinal rigidity” I presume the author, Angelo Quattrocchi, means “being a Catholic”. The fact that a third of the book isn’t even original material, but consists solely of freely available documents from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, hardly speaks in its favour.

But it’s Quattrocchi’s laziness and cheap jokes (his tone is consistently snide and malicious), combined with his own strange ideas about what makes a gay man, that gave me pause for thought.

It isn’t enough to say that the book merely insinuates that the Pope is homophobic. It states it outright: “What they [the Pope and Mgr Gänswein] have in common, apart from their reactionary sentiments [again, I think he means "Catholicism"], many reactionary friends and the thousands of little habits created by their day-to-day contact, is a profound and implacable homophobia”.

Quite a claim. Yet, at the same time, Quattrocchi trowels on the innuendo, calling the Pope’s sexuality into question again and again because of his allegedly flamboyant taste in clothes and because he spends a lot of time with his private secretary (deeply suspicious, I’m sure you’ll agree).

In other words, he reduces homosexuality to an offensive and reductive set of physical characteristics and mannerisms before casting aspersions on the man’s sexuality because he matches the physical expectations deriving from those prejudices. Forgive me, but who, exactly, is being homophobic here?

The Pope Is Not Gay! claims to be “an irreverent history of homophobic and sexist obscurantism in the Holy Roman Church and an endoscopic examination of its greatest contemporary advocate, Pope Benedict XVI”. But I wonder if an endoscope was the right instrument for its author to employ. Perhaps a mirror would have been more appropriate.

First, the whole thing is obviously pure crap that stinks to high heavens and not to be taken seriously at all. But I also disagree with the CH writer's loose use of the term 'endoscopic' to describe the so-called 'examination' by an inveterate Pope-hater.

In surgery, an endoscope is an instrument that one can insert into any of the body cavities to examine it minutely (usually with a digital mini-camera attached) without having to open it up. From the apparent lack of first-hand information in this malicious work, it is is more like a quack doctor proclaiming a completely made-up diagnosis on the basis of hearsay alone!... Even Der Spiegel has not dared go this far, so far, though not for lack of trying.

[Edited by TERESA BENEDETTA 7/26/2010 8:23 PM]