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I am going to be open, and frank in this post, so the warning was needed.
So once again, as per usual, the Pope gave a nice Fervorino in the Daily Mass he holds in the Sancta Maria chapel in the Vatican. Today's theme: Prudence with Words. Today's Fervorino comes to us from the primary (but secondary) source that is Vatican Radio. Find the summary Here: http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/06/13/pope_at_mass:_the_grace_not_to_speak_ill_of_others/en1-701107
Some of you who have come to my blog may have seen my last post and I applauded the Holy Father's gusto to tackle both the RadTrads and the Lie-beral facets (slash self-serving New Agey facets hiding in the institutional) Church. Both serve the Church poorly and provide hypocritical examples of what it means to be a solid, Orthodox, and Traditional Catholic (or rather what it is NOT). However, with today's newest Fervorino, I wonder if there is a pattern brewing and perhaps, a little bias? I feel like this Fervorino combined with my last post is a double edged sword.
I'll be looking at the full text here and putting in my analysis/opinion of today's text with concerns. Good stuff will be bold-faced. The underlined commentary is where I am placing my concern.
Pope at Mass: The grace not to speak ill of others
(Vatican Radio) May the Lord grant us the grace to watch our tongues and be careful of what we say of others, because through our weakness and sin, we often find it easier to insult and denigrate than say or do good. This was the lesson at the heart of Pope Francis’ homily Thursday morning at Mass, which he celebrated in his native Spanish. Greeting the men and women who work at Argentina’s embassies and consulates to Italy and the UN Food and Agricultural Organization in Rome, Pope Francis noted “It’s the first time I have celebrated Mass in Spanish since February 26th!, adding “it feels good!”. Emer McCarthy reports: RealAudioMP3
As is tradition, Pope Francis’ homily was inspired by the Gospel of the day, in particular Christ’s words to his disciples "unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven."
Nice! What is the Gospel for Today's Novus Ordo?
Matthew 5:20-26 (NRSV-CE)
20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of Heaven
21 "You have heard that it was said to the men of old, 'You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgement '
22 but I say to you, that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgement; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says 'You fool! shall be liable to the hell of fire.
23 So if you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you,
24 leave your gift there before the altar and go first to be reconciled to your bother, and then come and offer your gift.
25 Make friends quickly with your accuser, while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison;
26 truly, I say to you, you will never get out till you have paid the last penny."
Uh, wow. There is some serious stuff going on here. Look I may not be part of the Magisterium as a young adult male lay Catholic, but Jesus is really getting down to business here even on the surface:
1) Don't be like the Pharisees, who put the law verbatim and strict observance it to the point of forsaking the works part of faith (like in James Ch. 2). This general point is repeated many times in various situations including interacting with the Jewish authorities themselves.
2) Gossip, slander, detraction, etc. Falls under the 5th commandment of "You Shall Not Kill", and that is serious business as we usually understand killing to be murder. Will expand a bit below .....
3) Direct insult = Fires of Hell????? I'm going to expand on this one below, with number 2 .....
Clearly, this is a Gospel chock full of serious business from our Lord Jesus. Some might think that just because you use words and do not thrust an implement or use a firearm, that this isn't "killing" the person, but I disagree with those sentiments, and truly, to think that is against the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ as outlined here in this very Gospel.
Practical example will illustrate this. Do any you remember this recent suicide last year? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suicide_of_Amanda_Todd/ Amanda was a teenager in British Columbia, Canada, who was bullied TO THE POINT OF SUICIDE! The nutshell story: In grade 7 while making "friends" on the Internet, she was foolish enough to show a picture of her naked breasts to an online "boy-friend" and unfortunately, this guy tried to blackmail her to do a "show" or he would release these photos to her friends. Now, the threat in a sense is stupid because unless you are a pro/semi-genius hacker or are part of her school community and know her friends, this is an idle threat. 2 years and another school later, the photos resurfaced on the Internet. This act of cyber-bullying resulted in "... anxiety, depression, and panic disorder due to the experience. Her family moved to a new home, where Todd later stated that she began using drugs and alcohol." Moving to a new school didn't help. She became bullied now physically by other girls in her school and failed at a suicide attempt where she downed bleach. To make matters worse, she was once again cyber-bullied online that she should have succeeded at her attempt. She did, sadly eventually, commit suicide. Worse, even after her death, "trolls" on the Internet still insulted her post-mortem.
What's my take home message? Bullying, harassment, slander, and detraction is RIGHTFULLY GROUPED UNDER THE 5TH COMMANDMENT, as it kills the person. Such constant actions eventually can, and likely will, lead that person to commit sins to themselves, or others. How many a time, especially in the USA have boys (and possibly girls, soon if not now?) have gone on killing sprees with the weapons? Hear of Harris and Klebold, the Columbine Massacre, in the 90's? One or both of them were bullied and retreated to violent video games, and eventually, a massacre of their classmates.
And even if these people do not "die" by suicide or become murderers themselves, the psychological/mental and possible physical damage dealt will last for one's life, even with proper psychological counselling. THEY MAY NEVER RECOVER AND LEAD LESS PRODUCTIVE LIVES, were they not to have been bullied and supported by their peers and their adult role models.
Now, about directly insulting a person = Fires of Hell? Well look above. There's more than one way to get a person to die, whether it is by their own hand or by yours. In addition, for those who take their own life by your bullying, it can take the form of some of the 9 ways to being an accessory to another's sin: By counsel and by command (as in Amanda Todd's case, doing the bleach thing again), BY PROVOCATION!!!, and for those adults who fail to assist the bullied in Schools (and unionized boards), by defense of the ill done. The other ways, FYI, are: by consent, by praise or flattery, by concealment, by partaking, and by silence.
Finally, the Pope Himself in a Fervorino/Homily last month himself calls out these nefarious acts himself: "Calumny ... is worse than sin - it is the direct expression of Satan." That's right, the Pope has declared purposeful lying to destroy one's being an act of Satan. Not surprising considering it's a violation of the commandment. Regardless what way it is approached, OT or New Testament, it's bloody serious. Finally, let's continue .....
The Pope noted how this Gospel follows the Gospel of the Beatitudes and Jesus promise that He had not come to dissolve the law but to fulfill it. Pope Francis said that Christ wants “reform in continuity: from the [planting of the ] seed up to the fruit”.
Pope Francis warned that anyone who "enters Christian life" will have “greater demands made of them than others" and not “greater advantages". He said Jesus mentions some of these demands, in particular the problem of “bad relations among brethren". If our heart harbors “bad feelings” towards our brothers, the Pope said, "something is not working and we must convert, we must change." Pope Francis noted that "anger towards a brother is an insult, it’s something almost deathly ", "it kills him." He then observed that, especially in the Latin tradition, there is a "wonderful creativity" in inventing epithets. But, he cautioned, "when this epithet is friendly this is fine, the problem is when there is another kind of epithet”, when the "mechanism of insult" comes into play, which is "a form of denigration of others."
Once again, the Pope is stressing that being Catholic is much more than just showing up Christmas and Easter. One of his most recent Fervorinos a week or two ago also covered this same important point. Just because we are Catholic, should not be giving us a superiority complex.
It is good and proper, and not prideful, to know that the Catholic Church is One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic, and through Jesus Christ as he dictated in the Gospel`s He is the Truth and the Light, the Way to Salvation in the fullest completion of what was given to our Jewish brethen. What he is most likely speaking out against are those lukewarm `c`atholics, Those who just go to Mass at Christmas and Easter, or just weekly, and do nothing else to proclaim the Gospel in word and deed.
In addition, just being Catholic does not give us the Golden Ticket to heaven. Other passages in the Bible have proven, as well as the Catechism`s doctrines on Mortal Sin, that we can loose this path to salvation, that is our Sanctifying Grace. To believe such is heresy of "once saved/baptized is always saved", is also called `Predestination`. Not to mention common-sense wise it`s a foolish belief. Take that oh-so famous example of Hitler. If he was Christian, or let's make him Christian`` and got Baptized with the Trinitarian Formula, and did the Holocaust, he still goes to Heaven??? Most people with common sense would say "No. After that mass genocide he deserves it? HECK NO!!!" Now replace Hitler with any other Christian or Catholic. Now as for the lukewarm "c"atholics who are just "nice?" Check out the Book of Revelation. Yes, it's an official book of the Bible, and despite the whole "it was just about the Church's early history", it's still the Word of God as Scripture.
As for that next bold-faced comment, didn't I say earlier that you don't need to directly be the wielder of a weapon to kill a person? Well the Pope beat me to it. Even he says that words can kill a person, if not directly, it kills them eventually via psychological trauma. It kills their souls.
I'll tackle the underlined issue separately in its own section.
“Y no hace falta ir al psicologo...”
Pope Francis continued: “There is no need to go to a psychologist to know that when we denigrates another person it is because we are unable to grow up and need to belittle others, to feel more important." This, he said, is "an ugly mechanism". Jesus, "with all the simplicity says: "Do not speak ill of one another. Do not denigrate one another. Do not belittle one another”. The Pope noted, "in the end we are all travelling on the same road", "we are all travelling on that road that will take us to the very end." Therefore "if we do not choose a fraternal path, it will end badly, for the person who insults and the insulted". The Pope noted that "if we are not able to keep our tongues in check, we lose”. “Natural aggression, that of Cain toward Abel, repeats itself throughout history." Pope Francis observed that it is not that we are bad, rather "we are weak and sinners." That's why it is "much easier", to "resolve a situation with an insult, with slander, defamation instead of resolving it with good means".
The bold-faced line that the Pope is saying, has been discussed so much that it is now commonplace knowledge. A good portion of the reasoning behind bullying is to make yourself feel superior in your life when one is not inferior. It gives you power over another individual and makes you feel "good". Really? is there anything positive from it? Joy, Happiness, Gratitude? No. Just anger, maybe envy, and even short-term self satisfaction. Further, bullies who will do it long term, might just end up on the repeat end of the stick someday when a "bigger" bully comes along, be it the law (police, lawsuit, etc.) or someone physically bigger who will be more than happy to actually kill you, or in the case of the Columbine shooting, buy munitions and firearms to the tune of "We're not gonna take it, anymore!" Further, would you, embracing this lifestyle, like to be with other people who because of your actions, or share your modus operandi, want to always be looking over your shoulder as to who will be your downfall in your career or physically? The expression here is "you live by the sword, you die by the sword," whether that sword is physical or not.
As for the 2nd boldfaced comment, I really enjoy that line. It is so true. We humans are weak and are sinners in His Holy church. We should be taking the high road and striving to holiness (sainthood), but oh how we often fail! He is so right? It is much easier to use sins to solve a problem or quell a bad feeling/fear. Why should we help a person who just might do something better than I or get more fame or fortune or good things than I (ENVY!) when I can do calumny and slander and detract from his character, make him afraid, and get rid of the roadblock to MY progress? Why help him? He'll be better than me!
“Yo quisiera pedir al Señor que...”
Pope Francis concluded: “I would ask the Lord to give us all the grace to watch our tongues, to watch what we say about others." “It is a small penance - he added - but it bears a lot of fruit." "Sometimes, we go hungry and think, ‘What a pity I didn’t taste the fruit of a tasty comment against another person." But, he said, "that hunger bears fruit in the long run is good for us." That's why we ask the Lord for this grace: to adapt our lives "to this new law, which is the law of meekness, the law of love, the law of peace, and at least 'prune' our tongues a little, ‘prune’ the comments that we make of others and outbursts that lead us to an easy anger or insult. May the Lord grant us all this grace".
What our Holy Father is saying Correctly in this Statement
I will start with this last underlined and bold-faced comment, and lead into my concern, which might be unfounded or simply stupid temptations from the Devil, but might be concerning for those of us who embark on the road of Traditional Catholicism.
The last bold-faced comment here greatly summarized the fervorino, and therefore, the main message of the homily today. We should definitely be pruning our tongues about others in anger, or insult, whether it is rightly justified or not. This is something I wholeheartedly agree with, and we should all be too, those of us who embark on Traditional Catholicism.
I agree with our Holy Father on what he has said in this regard: One of the most unfortunate barriers that still floats around Traditional Catholic circles, are these sad sins of gossip, calumny, and detraction. The targets are many: "Novus Ordo" Catholics, bishops, cardinals, even average lay people. Regardless of the target, this is one of the unfortunate stereotypes that get slapped onto us as Traditional (or Traditional-supporting)
Catholics. Most of this is ill-willed, but sadly, there are still some of those who perpetuate these stereotypes. And unfortunately, these stereotypes are the ones that are carrying the most "weight" on the Traditional Catholic Blogosphere." Those ones, are the postings and examples, that get noticed by most Catholics and the hierarchy in the institutional Church.
One example was the Society of St. Pius X, when their "superior" Fellay Came to Canada, administered sacramentally INVALID AND ILLICIT confirmations to those in the Toronto Chapel, and further, made a speech which featured anti-Semitic remarks. While there was clarification from their end, anyone who has seen the history of the SSPX has known that such things have gone hand in hand, and that kicking Wilson out of the group was to "save face". Other examples have not come from the society, but rather other "Traditional" blogs. Some of them, allow extreme anti-clerical or anti-Vatican II viewpoints. Others lightly, or directly, insult members of the (Arch/)diocesan chanceries and not in a charitable "spiritual"-with-valid -concern type of manner either.
Sadly, it is these actions that are reaching the ears and eyes of the higher members of Church hierarchy besides pastors of parishes. And you wonder why they are reluctant to let the EF grow and why it only gives parish pastors credence to disallow celebration of the EF, even just their spaces for valid and licit diocesan worship! And parish priests talk with each other too you know. All it takes is some RadTrad's actions in person or online to reach the ears of a parish priest, whether it`s their own ears or by ``gossip`` and then they cower to the stereotype thinking "All Trads are Bad. Novus Ordo Good." When other clergy or EF groups inside their parish or outside, ask kindly for their parishes to hold Latin Masses (NOT EVEN FOR THEIR DIRECT HELP OR THEIR SERVERS TO BE PART OF THE MASS), those priests will kick out ANYTHING ASSOCIATED WITH TRADITIONAL CATHOLICISM thanks to the bad example of our peers who ignored the words of our Holy Father.
This is why I side with the Pope of this one, mostly. In addition, I myself, in my journey in the EF Rite, have also seen this first hand and experienced the consequences of these bad examples. In a way I am thankful that the Lord opened my eyes, and made me realize that there is a proper and Gospel-appropriate way to go about Traditional Catholicism, and that He has shown me why such criticism is lobbied at us for our honest love for the Extraordinary Form. Now in case you want to know my personal stuff ..... NO! Out of respect for the EF community in general, I am not going to use my blog as a soapbox for that stuff. That is only for private ears whom I feel can handle my personal experience and I trust not to be calumnous or detracting themselves with such information. Critical exceptions will only be made, should I need to (1) legally defend myself or my allies against calumnous action with legal counsel (e.g. as a defendant or witness in a lawsuit or against criminal charges), should someone engage in abusing the legal system as a weapon for personal gain, and (2) Necessary calling out of spiritual and moral evil for the sake of souls. Such an instance of proclamation of sins for the benefit of souls should only be a last resort when secular channels of authority AND the princes of our Church fail to listen to reason and even commit accessory to sin by concealment, silence, and defense of the ill done. An example of necessary calling out of moral/spiritual evil for the sake of the souls of the faithful, is Fr. Matthew Despard's tell all e-book about homosexuality plaguing seminaries in Scotland, the co-working of the institutional Church hierarchy to work against proper catechesis of the souls of the faithful, and the DE-recruitment of true and honest soldiers for Christ in his Church (and consequently, the promoted recruitment of potential teen boy rapists (ephebophiles) into normal parish life and the hierarchy). Clearly such action was necessary, and led to Pope Francis beginning investigation into the matters, as well as no new bishops being elected to sees in the the country. In fact, the very diocese Fr. Despard works in (Motherwell), is now vacant as the bishop tendered his resignation (no doubt due to the work of Fr. Despard).
What I fear is possibly, going on or being now frequently expressed in the Holy Father's homilies/audiences, etc.
It is exactly what I have described above which is starting to become a concern in my mind as a young adult, EF-supporting (and altar serving) male in the Catholic Church.
Perhaps you remember my last posting about Pope Francis from the private audience with members of some group. I got a couple of comments too. In this posting, I titled it that Pope Francis has his head screwed on right. When I wrote this, I was correct in saying that he will not bend to the far right of Traditional Catholicism (e.g SSPX, SSPV, Rad Trads) nor give into radical Liberalism, as has been noted in his history prior to becoming Pope Francis (e.g. rejected liberal theology as a Jesuit and got ostracized by others in his order.). However, while we should be thankful for his doctrinal and dogmatic conservatism (which must be true of the Church, else the dogma of Infallibility is false and so is the Church) and his stance against hard-line extremes of the Church, I can't help but notice a repeat pattern between my last post and some of his fervorinos. I once again highlight the part where it concerns RadTrads:
"I share with you two concerns. One is the Pelagian current that there is in the Church at this moment. There are some restorationist groups. I know some, it fell upon me to receive them in Buenos Aires. And one feels as if one goes back 60 years! Before the Council... One feels in 1940... An anecdote, just to illustrate this, it is not to laugh at it, I took it with respect, but it concerns me; when I was elected, I received a letter from one of these groups, and they said: "Your Holiness, we offer you this spiritual treasure: 3,525 rosaries." Why don't they say, 'we pray for you, we ask...', but this thing of counting... And these groups return to practices and to disciplines that I lived through - not you, because you are not old - to disciplines, to things that in that moment took place, but not now, they do not exist today..."
Personally, I think this practice is ridiculous as a whole. Perhaps if it is needed to teach a young child routine for practicing prayer and establishing good behaviour (practices most adults lack with regard to junk food, exercise, etc.), then maybe for a young child to a certain point. Even so, a family or two-person rosary at a set time, like before bed, can also achieve the same end without the means of the treasure sheet. But this trend is tied into Radical Traditionalism and IS practiced in these groups, as I linked to in my post. Now, I boldfaced this part in the above citation because it tells us that the Pope has had to deal with Radical Traditionalism as a whole in his prior experience. Further, I wouldn't be surprised if he has read the briefs from Ecclesia Dei dealing with the SSPX negotiations to get caught up on the matter. However, let's tie that boldfaced comment into what I have underlined here:
".... He then observed that, especially in the Latin tradition, there is a "wonderful creativity" in inventing epithets. But, he cautioned, "when this epithet is friendly this is fine, the problem is when there is another kind of epithet”, when the "mechanism of insult" comes into play, which is "a form of denigration of others ...."
"... the law of peace, and at least 'prune' our tongues a little, ‘prune’ the comments that we make of others and outbursts that lead us to an easy anger or insult. May the Lord grant us all this grace".
Notice that it is mentioned the "Latin" tradition, not the Byzantine or the Maronite .... no, it is the Latin Tradition with its two forms. Further, the epithet comments, are, sadly, the very behaviour I have discussed above that has been prominent amongst RadTrads, whether it is light or directly blunt. Again: While it is valid, and even under canon law, for the faithful (and clergy like Fr. Despard) to speak against moral evils damaging the souls of the faithful, especially when all proper channels have been exhausted for whatever reasons, not every post or comment or behaviour has been proper in this way, and unfortunately, gives credence for the Holy Father and clergy to (misguidedly, but correctly in a certain sense thanks to a few outspoken members,) slap on the stereoptype for those of us who partake in the EF.
When we combine the audience quote in red, the underlined above, AND other messages from the Holy Father in his fervorinos, his Jesuit education (and generally, the modern Jesuits do not care much for the liturgy as other things in their charism or orders' focus), AND his dealings with traditionalist groups in the red bolded portion, one has to wonder if sadly ... because of the actions of the few .... the Pope is caving into the stereotype of the Rad Trad when it comes to those involved with the EF.
Now look, he does not totally hate us. In fact, one of my earlier posts shows here that he will not overturn Summorum Pontificum. Clearly, he knows that generally the faithful who partake in the EF are not all RadTrads. Still, common themes plus history seem to be giving us not good signs. I don't want to be paranoid, but one cannot be blind and just "pay, pray, and obey". Look where that has gotten us in terms of Catechesis in education. I am worried in a certain sense, and I am not the only one in the EF community who shares valid and proper concern. Perhaps we all have gotten too comfy and spoiled with Benedict Emeritus XVI, and to paraphrase Fr. Zuhlsdorf with regard to expanding the EF, it's time to take the training wheels of the bike and get peddling! With or without the Holy Father's examples or not.
I guess what I can say about this, in the end, is that what he is saying is powerful in his fervorinos. Many of these messages ring true for all Catholics and clearly he's no spiritual wimp! However, I would hope that because of the actions of a few, or those voices in public that misrepresent those who partake and aid in the EF, he is not harbouring sentiments against us. As people, sometimes we let those emotional sentiments or thoughts slip in our communication and behavior. If more fervorinos and homilies come out like this, this will make me highly concerned for the Latin Mass. With Benedict, we had a great strength in that he was leading by example with regard to traditional Catholic liturgy and the EF. If this becomes a trend for our Holy Father, it will become much more difficult to promote traditional liturgy with the EF, or even generally in the Latin Rite.
If I could sit down with our Holy Father for 5-10 minutes, here's what I'd say regarding all this:"
Your Holiness, Thank you for having an audience with me, A young Male Catholic. I want to discuss with you about your powerful fervorinos and also, something of concern to me, as a partaker and altar server in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. What you are preaching in your "Fervorinos" in the Sancta Maria are excellent! You are really not afraid to preach the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord never encouraged those who followed him to "play nice" and He knew His very Way to Salvation (and our choice to TRULY follow Him) would be like the very sword of division described in the Gospel of Matthew. Please keep doing that, but with a caution I must discuss.
I understand that in your prior history as Cardinal Bergoglio, before your Papacy, you had to deal with "RadTrads" and/or Traditional Catholics. Not all of us, Father, have been true to the example of the Gospel. Even myself at times, have acted like the Pharisees, and sadly, it is those who have not acted as true Traditional Catholics, who have been like "a noisy gong." It is these examples in person and on the Internet that have embarrassed those of us who partake in this form of the Rite, and as a consequence, have resulted in much opposition from priests, bishops, and even our own family and friends.
Your Holiness. I apologize on behalf of those who have exhibited the stereotype behaviours that "liberals" accuse us of, and make people fear the EF and Traditional Catholicism. However your Holiness, please do not let these poor examples cloud your preaching and vision for the Church. The EF and those of us who are within it, are in majority among your loving and great servants to Holy Mother Church. Yes, there are Novus Ordo Catholics who are faithful servants to the Lord and the Church, but it cannot be denied that the EF and those of us in it are heralds of the Gospel and vital to the New Evangelization! And the Young People! We are becoming curious to this form of the Roman Rite not given to us in our childhoods and want to discover this "Hidden Treasure" as St. Leonard's self-titled book calls it! Even my friends are coming to these masses. Young people like myself!
When you use certain words and phrases, even to describe a certain sin or general behaviour in your preaching and your discussions with others, and it goes on the Internet, we find out, and it hurts us. When the wrong words are chosen, they will be used by our enemies to paint us with a "Scarlett Letter" and for even good-hearted Catholics to shun us, just because of the example of a few.
If you truly are hurt deep down because of some of our actions, again, I apologize, and like the Fervorino you made on June 13, here I come to apologize to you, my brother, leaving my gift at the altar, on behalf of us. But please, do work with us, with, others, with our Lord Jesus and let those hurts be healed!
Please your Holiness, please help us. We are just as vital and as important to the Church as the other Catholic in other rites and the Novus Ordo too! We truly love you and will serve Holy Mother Church. Please, do try your absolute best, to be cautionary with your words, and not to give our enemies the fuel that will smear us more, and even, commit the very murderous act of calumny, the work of the Devil, in vilifying us. You said it yourself. Please Holy Father, help us.
Everyone, please pray for our Holy Father, and if you partake in the EF community, please do your best to be the light of the world, and the salt of the earth, and work to ensure that it is the truth about us that is prominent, and not the sins or poor examples of certain members.
Pax Tibi Christi, Julian.
P.S. Do you think that I am off my rocker or that there is some valid concern here? Any evidence to support or deny what I have said? I will encourage valid commentary and discussion IF you have at least a pseudo-name blogger or other profile (no anonymous postings), but as per my bold warning, don't try anything calumnous or detracting.
P.P.S. Um, I kind of feel like I am speaking in the manner of the Holy Father above. Is he having an influence on me? Or am I channeling what I read once, that to help people listen to you, speak in a similar manner (without mockery) and thought pattern like them, but keeping your message solid?