Monday, January 7, 2008

§590 of Catechism of the Catholic Church

(Originally posted on my MySpace Weblog on September 30, 2006)

This morning I decided to put down my Nietzsche and remind myself of orthodoxy. So, I picked up my handsome, rack-sized hardback copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (published by Doubleday for $14.95--good deal) and started to read the section on the life of Christ. Then I happed upon something very interesting--in the light of the Bush presidency, startling, in fact. In paragraph 590 one finds this observation:
Only the divine identity of Jesus' person can justify so absolute a claim as "He who is not with me is against me"

The catechism does not go on to point out the converse of this statement, namely that if Christ were not in fact God, such a claim would make him out to be a textbook example of one huge arrogant asshole with lunatic delusions of grandeur, but the implication is, I think, pretty clear.

George W. Bush in his address to a joint session of congress on September 20, 2001 famously (or infamously) said, "Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists." This is a statement every bit as absolute as Christ's claim in Matthew 12:30 (and Luke 11:23).

I have at least one Muslim reader and one Jewish reader. They obviously deny the divinity of Christ. Okay, that will be a debate for some other time, perhaps, but I think that we can all agree that neither Bush nor America (depending whether the "us" is royal or no) is God. This means that Bush's statement above can only be one of delusional and insufferable arrogance, not to mention blasphemy of the most hybristic order.

Yes, other countries have ample reason to hate "us".

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