Monday, April 25, 2005

And Speaking of the Hitler Youth ...

... this educational post from Billmon.

I have, as one expect, reservations regarding this pope. As linked in my previous post, there are some serious issues regarding his complicity in attempting to cover up molestations by priests. (I note with regret that John Paul II essentially rewarded Cardinal Law for similar behavior. These Pope guys may be infallible, but they're not perfect.)

It's been widely reported that Pope Palpatine I merely used the Hitler Youth as a ploy to get a discounted tuition to seminary. The money quote, in his own words (my emphasis):
At first we weren't [in the Hitler Youth], but when the compulsory Hitler Youth was introduced in 1941, my brother was obliged to join. I was still too young, but later, as a seminarian, I was registered in the HY. As soon as I was out of the seminary, I never went back. And that was difficult, because the tuition reduction, which I really needed, was tied to proof of attendance at the HY. Thank goodness, there was a very understanding mathematics teacher. He himself was a Nazi but an honest man, who said to me, "Just go once and get the document so that we have it…" When he saw that I simply didn't want to, he said, "I understand, I’ll take care of it", and so I was able to stay free of it.
I take this to mean that his friendly math teacher, a Party member, got His Holiness enrolled in the Hitler Youth so that the future Pope could save a few Reichsmarks on tuition without having to dirty his hands. Which is fine -- I can't seriously fault either party in that transaction. But in all honesty, of the two of them, the Nazi teacher sounds like the better man. Why couldn't they have made him Pope?