October 2, 2012

The evils of the Vatican

In a story in the NYT about the trial of the pope's butler, I found this:
During the testimony, the lawyer Arru complained about the conditions under which Gabriele spent his first 20 days in detention, saying the cell was so small he couldn't stretch out his arms and that lights were kept on 24 hours a day
Such sweet, good souls over there at the Vatican. They decided torture was the best option for Paolo Gabriele, the butler who believed that the Holy Ghost was directing his actions. I wonder if god the father, in his infinite mercy, helped the pope make the decision to torture Paolo. But wait, there's more.
The trial is being conducted according to the Vatican's criminal code, which is adapted from the 19th-century Italian code.
The court reporter doesn't take down verbatim quotes, but rather records reconstructed summaries dictated to her by the court president, Dalla Torre.
On several occasions, Dalla Torre truncated the responses or, with the help of the notary and the prosecutor, reconstrued them, occasionally attributing to Gabriele and other witnesses words they didn't necessarily utter, or leaving out parts of their testimony altogether. For example, the recorded summary of Gabriele's plea didn't include that he loved the pope as a son would.
Sounds like a fair trial, huh?

The pope is not attending the festivities, as I understand it. He's probably sitting in his rooms, missing the ministrations of his former butler. I imagine he sighs as he recalls how Paolo used to help him slip into his camisole. Oh, for the good old days!

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