Monday, August 19, 2013

"Who Am I To Judge?"

Here's an interesting take on Pope Francis's words "Who am I to judge," as editorially analyzed in a recent edition of the Jewish Daily Forward.  The entire comment, not often fully cited, is as follows:

                  "If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to

The editorial goes on to cite Francis's words as being "conditional."  Judgement was limited to persons of good will and those who believe in "the Lord."  Personal judgement is suspended only on the condition that certain behavior is followed.

Do we ever actually have the right to judge?  Is judgement of human behavior something that should be  reserved for a deity?   Of course we have the right to judge.  "Who are we to judge?"   We are  human beings to whom society gives the right to judge.  It is only through such judgement that societal mores and ethics develop.  When we judge others, however, we should always remain aware of how those being judged may judge us, given a reverse of circumstance.

The issue is not whether or not humans have the right to judge, but that they (we) make judgements honestly, without prejudice, without vested interests, and with the objective to better the welfare of society.

Whether or not there is a "final judgement," made by God, is a question best left for believers.  Perhaps that is the judgement that Pope Francis was referring to.

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