When nothing else will work, accuse a Catholic prelate of NSO
by Dr. Edward Peters
The mainstream media is in panic over Pope Francis.
The new pope is solidly opposed to everything big media wants (contraception, abortion, ‘same-sex marriage’, etc.), but it can’t simply write him off as an out-of-touch academic (Benedict) or as a provincial Slav suffering Nazi and Communist induced post-traumatic stress disorder (John Paul II).
Worse, the first prelate of the Catholic world is a man of proven commitment to the poor (far more demonstrably than are his limousine liberal critics), and has lived his whole life in a simplicity that is utterly beyond the ken of Manhattan or the Beltway sophisticates.
So, confronted by a major Catholic prelate of such palpable integrity, what’s the media to do? Only one thing: Look up what country the prelate calls home, find out what trauma that country suffered (that’s not hard to do, all modern countries suffer from traumas, generally those organized by their governments), and accuse the prelate of—wait for it—Not Speaking Out.
NSO is the perfect accusation: first, it can only be levied by history, that is, by folks with access to much more information than was possessed by those against whom an NSO is aimed; indeed, as NSO is almost always raised well after the trauma and its agents have passed from the scene, retaliation by such agents for reminding folks of their travesties is unlikely or impossible; very importantly, NSO allows the media to claim the moral high ground by implying that, had it been on scene during the trauma, it would surely have “spoken out”.
That last claim is, of course, the most laughable (as—to take just one example of ignored victims of modernity—hundreds of millions of baby souls will attest on Judgment Day). Best of all, even if evidence of “speaking out” can be found, it can always be dismissed as “not enough”.
Totalitarian regimes (whether left or right) act like rabid dogs in that their behavior, while irrational, is often predictable. Now, if one can, according to the information available to one at the time, predict that “speaking out” will provoke an act of irrational savagery, pray, where exactly is the obligation to speak out such that one’s “failure” (a judgmental word, notice) to speak out is later sanctionable by those not remotely confronted with the crisis?
What if, moreover, one directly confronted by a crisis, on the basis of the information available at the time, makes the choice to oppose the savagery in other, even hidden, ways, though not in a way that big media pundits, separated from the crisis by decades and oceans, are so sure was the “correct” way to act?
I figured that an NSO would, sooner or later, be visited upon Francis, but that it comes so quickly underscores, I think, how really, really worried big media is about the influence that Francis will wield against their vision of the world.