Douglas W. Kmiec
NCR Today: The synod is history. The takeaway is the bishops have answered the famously inclusionary kindness implicit in Francis' "who am I to judge" by answering that they will.
Several years ago in Cairo, President Barack Obama spoke to an overflow crowd at Al-Azhar University.
"So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, and who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity," he said. "This cycle of suspicion and discord must end."
There were many reactions to the health care ruling, but the one I find most appealing is joy. Obviously, strong supporters of President Obama, like myself, had this reaction, but it was far more widespread than that; indeed, the sentiment was very close to the ebullient inaugural day when those who voted for and against Barack Obama felt good about burying many of the ghosts of slavery and racism and hatred that still can at times walk this blessed land.
The world is meeting this week in Rio de Janeiro for the 20th anniversary of the earth summit. Under the aegis of the UN, the focus of the meeting is sustainability and eradicating poverty. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is subbing for President Barack Obama, who chose to attend instead a G-20 session devoted to the troubled economy.
This being 2012 and an election year, it is understandable why the president would feel the necessity to focus upon economic growth over RIO+20, as the conclave on environmental preservation is being called.