Pope Francis is running for President of the United States. Never mind that he is not eligible to run or that he would not be interested in the job. Pope Francis certainly knows his politics and understands the issues. Yesterday, in addressing a Joint Session of Congress, Pope Francis took shot after shot at Donald Trump without naming him and his politics of “immigrant hate-mongering” and the “politics of ignorance.” Donald Trump, it is plain to see, is the “anti-Pope Francis.” Pope Francis and Donald Trump are on opposite ends of the political and human perspective.
Donald Trump was asked about Pope Francis, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church, and that the pope said that we should “not be afraid to welcome” immigrants into the U.S. On CNN’s “New Day,” Trump described the words of the pope on immigration as “beautiful,” although he failed to point out which part as he slammed the pope saying we cannot afford to support the influx of undocumented residents.
“Well, I think his words are beautiful and I respect the Pope and I like the Pope very much,” Trump told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota. “I will say this, we have a country that is going through tremendous problems. We owe $19 trillion. So No. 1, we can’t afford this process.” Once again, Trump noted the crimes committed by undocumented immigrants in the U.S., and warned that they are taking jobs away from Americans.
On the political level, Pope Francis believes in opening doors to all and Donald Trump believes in building impenetrable walls. Pope Francis pointed out “most of us were once foreigners” and that “so many of you are also descended from immigrants.” Pope Francis implored that “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.”
Donald Trump, on the other hand, wants to shut out immigration and promises, “I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.” Trump adds time after time, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re sending people that have lots of problems. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
Pope Francis takes a kinder, gentler tone. “On this continent, too, thousands of persons are led to travel north in search of a better life for themselves and for their loved ones, in search of greater opportunities. Is this not what we want for our own children? We must not be taken aback by their numbers, but rather view them as persons, seeing their faces and listening to their stories; trying to respond as best we can to their situation. To respond in a way which is always humane, just and fraternal.”
Donald Trump doesn’t see it that way. “We got to move ’em out. We’re going to move ’em back in if they’re really good people. Politicians aren’t going to find them because they have no clue. We will find them, we will get them out.”
Pope Francis points out his own background. “I am deeply grateful for your welcome in the name of all Americans. As the son of an immigrant family, I am happy to be a guest in this country, which was largely built by such families.”
But Donald Trump shoots back, “You have people coming in, and I’m not just saying Mexicans, I’m talking about people that are all over that are killers and rapists and they’re coming into this country.”
Donald Trump, the “anti-Pope Francis,” full of the politics of hate mongering and rage, has spoken once again. Loudly and with a “shrill” voice. Pope Francis speaks with love, compassion and full of hope. One might say that he speaks with “Pope and Change.”