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14.5.07

Benedict the Conquistador

It's common to talk about how social conservatives wish we could go back to the 1950s (or rather, a false santitized version thereof). But the Pope has decided to up the ante -- he's pining for the 1550s (via Echidne):

Indigenous peoples welcomed the arrival of European priests as they were "silently longing" for the Christian faith, and embracing it purified them, the Pope said in the last major speech of his trip before leaving Brazil on Sunday night.

Many Indian groups believe the conquest brought them enslavement and genocide.


The actions of the conquistadores (and similar coercive missionizing by Protestant groups) are one of the greatest stains on the history of the Church. The Pope should be on his knees begging for forgiveness from the people of Latin America (and Jesus). Instead he's on his balcony proclaiming that they secretly liked it when their people and their culture are destroyed.

Note too how Reuters enables the Pope's bigotry -- "many Indian groups believe" that being conquered led to bad stuff. In the real world, it's a basic historical fact that the Indians were enslaved. It's a basic historical fact that entire tribes were wiped out. The reason only "many Indian groups believe" these historical facts is because people like Reuters' craven reporters won't admit when there's a fact behind the claims.

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