Catholic League president Bill Donohue commented today on the latest Muslim reaction to Pope Benedict XVI’s address at Regensburg University on September 12:

“It is a mark of a civilized people that they answer discourse they find disagreeable in a rational manner. Sadly, many Muslims are responding to the pope’s speech in an irrational way, making true dialogue next to impossible. To compare the pope to Hitler, as a high-ranking Turkish official did, is the mark of an uncivilized person. To burn the pope in effigy, as the thugs in Srinagar, India, have done, is also the mark of incivility. Both are classic examples of Muslim overkill.

“Ironically, these pathetic examples underscore the central message of the pope’s address: he was beckoning the world to embrace both faith and reason. Reason unhinged from faith delivers a debased conception of mankind, the result of which has often been violence on a grand scale. But it is also true that faith unhinged from reason is capable of delivering the same outcome. Sadly, this part of the pope’s message has gone unheard in much of the Islamic world.

“Pope Benedict XVI is a brilliant philosopher and theologian. He offers so much to so many, and that is why it is sad to see this kind of reaction. Fortunately, he is also a courageous man, and will not be intimidated from speaking the truth.”

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