Wednesday, August 8, 2007

It's mortal

Since the days of Al Smith, there are many people who have demanded that religious candidates keep their faith separate from their politics. However, if I were ever conned into being a candidate, I would insist that my faith play a role in my political decisions.

There was someone else who shared that same view:

"My duty is to put Christ in politics," he said at his retirement ceremony. "Politics without Christ is the greatest scourge of our nation."

The nation? The Philippines.

The speaker? Jaime Sin.

The retirement? From his position as Cardinal.

As Clifford from Red Stick Rant points out, his title, when coupled with his name, could raise some eyebrows (although I did not realize this until Clifford pointed it out to me). Take a look at these excerpts from the BBC article about his death in 2005:

Cardinal Sin played a key role in the Philippines' transition to democracy following the lengthy dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos....

"Cardinal Sin leaves a legacy of freedom and justice forged in deep personal courage," [Gloria Arroyo] said in a statement....

Cardinal Sin was taken to Manila's Cardinal Santos Medical Centre with a high fever on Sunday evening and suffered multiple organ failure, said his spokesman, Father Jun Sescon....

Speaking on Philippine radio station DZBB, Fr Sescon called on people in Asia's largest Catholic country to "include in their prayers the soul of Cardinal Sin"....

Cardinal Sin espoused a conservative vision of Catholicism, and after the election of the new pope in April he described Benedict XVI as a "bright and good man, and a good friend".

In essence, we're dealing with the reverse of the Chevy Nova effect (except that the Chevy Nova story never really happened). The English-derived phrase "Chevy Nova" translated to "doesn't go" in Spanish, while the Spanish-speaking name "Sin" translated to...well, sin. (It means "without" in Spanish.)

Let's all speak Esperanto and call the whole thing off.


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