The Rude Pundit could not find it in himself to give a single rat's ass about Pope Francis's visit to the United States, other than a desire to find some "Viva El Papa" merchandise because it makes him giggle. Atheism is funny that way. Sure, sure, he understands the importance of the Pope doing papal things, he understands that Francis is far less of an asshole than some other popes who shall remain nameless (lookin' at you, Benny), and he gets that a lot of people do, in fact, give the asses of many rats about the Pope.
One of those people is devout Catholic alcoholic and Speaker of the House John Boehner. Here he is, crying like someone told him he's pregnant, just because he's close enough to sniff the Pope's skullcap:
Seriously, Boehner wept so often and so openly that even teething babies were telling him, "Dude, take it down a notch."
Which part of Francis's speech do you think had the greatest effect on Boehner? Was it the part where he said, "I call for a courageous and responsible effort to 'redirect our steps,' and to avert the most serious effects of the environmental deterioration caused by human activity. I am convinced that we can make a difference and I have no doubt that the United States – and this Congress – have an important role to play."
Maybe Boehner can reconcile that with his statement about climate change: "I'll let the scientists debate the sources in their opinion of that change. But I think the real question is that every proposal we see out of the administration with regard to climate change means killing American jobs." Wasn't there something about washing one's hands of something in that there New Testament?
Or maybe Boehner was moved to tears by Francis's words on immigrants and refugees: "[W]hen the stranger in our midst appeals to us, we must not repeat the sins and the errors of the past. We must resolve now to live as nobly and as justly as possible, as we educate new generations not to turn their back on our 'neighbors' and everything around us."
Perhaps Boehner was thinking just that when he said, through a spokesperson, nothing about the refugees and just that "the president has failed to put forward a broad, overarching strategy to defeat ISIL and promote stability in the Middle East. This tragedy is just one of the consequences." Yes, blaming Obama for everything while taking no action is the same as reaching out to help people.
Or was it the anti-death penalty part, which Francis was passionate about? Or wealth redistribution? Or anti-militarism? Some conservatives are upset that the Pope didn't really get into abortion or same sex marriage. Maybe Boehner was crying because, if you're a Catholic who has clung to the hateful language the church has put out for decades, Francis just fucked your shit up. And if anyone thinks that all of a sudden, Boehner is gonna tell his caucus to get to work on these problems, you're as delusional as a street prophet.
Every conservative Catholic Republican listening to the Pope today reminds the Rude Pundit of Chris Christie proclaiming his love for the music of Bruce Springsteen. Yeah, you can rock out to the guitars and sax, but if you don't listen to the words, your love and your tears are worthless.
Note: Speaking of collection plates, the Rude Pundit is still passing one around as part of his biennial fundraiser. Click on over and give to the Church of the Most Sacred Rudeness. It won't heal your soul, but you'll make sure the whiskey and invective keeps on rolling. And, as ever, mucho thankos to everyone who has donated so far.