Thursday, September 21, 2006

What the Pope Was Really Doing

A new faculty blog at Marquette, from Theologian Mark F. Johnson, has a sophisticated but accessible account of the lecture in which the Pope quoted those words that have the Islamic world in turmoil.

Our readers won’t be surprised to learn that the quote that caused so much offense among Muslims was not the point of the lecture, but merely a rhetorical foil which the Pope used to move on to discussing the nature of faith and reason.

Johnson’s conclusion:
No one should take offense at the Pope’s robust confidence in true reason, as expressed by his Regensburg speech.
We live, of course, in an age of professional grievance mongers, some of them in the Muslim world. People committed to reason should be willing to face them down and say “shame!” when they take offense at reasonable arguments.

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