Pope warns of dangers of ‘culture cancellation’

Pope Francis on Monday warned against attempts to cancel culture, denouncing “one-way thinking”, he said, of attempts to deny or rewrite history by today’s standards.

Francis made his comments in an address to diplomats, whose central idea was condemnation of “baseless” ideological disinformation about COVID-19 vaccines, support for national vaccination campaigns and calling health care an obligation. moral.

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He referred to the crisis of confidence in multilateral diplomacy, which he said has led to “agendas increasingly dictated by a state of mind that rejects the natural foundations of humanity and the cultural roots that constitute the ‘identity of many peoples’.

Last month Vatican number two Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin expressed concern over a draft European Union communications manual that suggested not using the term Christmas.

The manual, which the Vatican saw as an attempt to undo Europe’s Christian roots, was later withdrawn for revision.

In his remarks on Monday, François warned against “a form of ideological colonization, which leaves no room for freedom of expression and now takes the form of the” culture of cancellation “which invades many circles and public institutions “.

He used both words in English in the middle of a long speech in Italian. The controversy over the “cancellation of culture” is particularly strong in English-speaking countries, such as the United States and Great Britain.

This risked nullifying identity “under the guise of defending diversity,” François said, adding that a sort of “one-way thinking” was emerging, forced to deny history or, worse yet, to deny history. rewrite in today’s terms. categories.

In the United States, there have been conflicts over the removal or beheading of statues of historical figures such as Christopher Columbus and Saint Junipero Serra.

Serra, a Spanish Franciscan, founded a chain of missions in 18th-century California, a forerunner of the state’s infrastructure.

Apart from removing the statues, some have also called for the names of institutions such as schools and hospitals named after historical figures to be changed, claiming they had played a role in the destruction of Native American cultures.

Although the Pope did not mention any specific examples of a culture of cancellation, he said that any historical situation should be interpreted in the context of its time and not by today’s standards.

Read more: Having pets and not children robs us of “humanity”: Pope Francis

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