Pope Benedict XVI arrived for a visit to the U.S., welcomed by the president and first lady Laura Bush. They showed the pope the unusual deference of going to him, by meeting his plane, instead of the pope going to the White House when he arrived.
An appearance by the leader of millions of Roman Catholics on our own soil is rare. The pageantry connected with such a visit is always wonderful to see.
The pope addressed different groups and spoke of the lofty aspirations of all human beings: freedom and dignity. On those aspirations almost all could agree.
However, it was when the pope spoke about “welcoming the stranger among us” that an uneasiness began to set in. Some say it was just a general statement of charity.
That would be easier to believe if the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops had not been running a campaign for years to give citizenship to all illegal aliens who have broken into this country. The campaign has been continuing from the pulpits of the Catholic churches, directed by the bishops.
Along with this, one of the most prominent Bishops, Cardinal Mahony of Los Angeles, publicly avowed that he would not obey any laws targeting illegal aliens.What was more, he said he would instruct his priests to follow his lead. Cardinal Mahony stood by Senator Ted Kennedy as they lobbied for amnesty.
The USCCB is on record as favoring the DREAM act. This act would give illegal alien students the same benefit of in-state tuition to colleges and universities that citizens enjoy. It would mean several thousands of dollars in savings of tuition costs. With higher education slots limited, it could mean that a citizen would be put in line behind an illegal alien, since they would most probably be denoted as “minority” status.
The pope, speaking to U.S. Bishops, said the U.S. must be welcoming to immigrants. President Bush and the pope, speaking for the U.S. and the Vatican, said the leaders had discussed “the need for a coordinated policy regarding immigration, especially the humane treatment of immigrants and the well-being of their families”.
This echoes the campaign for “comprehensive” immigration, which means amnesty for all the illegals already here. The U.S. public said “no” and burned up the congressional switchboards when the law was being pushed by the president and some of congress. It did not stop the open borders special interest crowd, which is still trying to get laws passed that favor illegal aliens.
Now that the INS has begun raids on businesses that hire illegals, we hear accusations that illegals are not being treated with dignity and families are being torn apart as some are deported.
As for “humane treatment”, would that be letting them use our hospitals free, thereby draining our resources for citizens? Would it be giving them an expensive education, courtesy of the taxpayers? Would it be giving them welfare services, courtesy of the same taxpayers? If putting them in jail separates families, anytime you break the law and are caught, you go to jail and your family is separated.
The pope professes to be worried about divisions among Catholics. Encouraging them to aid and abet lawbreakers does nothing to unify them, since many Americans have no toleration for it. In fact, over 80% of all Americans, including Catholics, when polled, said they were against amnesty.
Even such a dignitary as the pope should be careful about coming into a country and trying to tell its people how to conduct their political affairs. To keep the respect of those people it is well not to interfere with their sovereignty.
President Bush has made it a top priority to grant amnesty to the twenty+ illegal aliens here. He has never wavered. Now it seems he has used the pope to plead his case for him.
Barbara regularly writes for CapitolHillCoffeeHouse. She also appears in California Chronicle, Border Patrol, and Citizens Caucus. Her primary interest is illegal immigration, but she writes about other subjects as well.
Barbara lives in a large city on the West Coast. Her loyalties are with God, family, country, heritage and borders.
She enjoys music, painting, poetry and song writing.