Voltaire said it best about the pope

Dear Editor:

So the new pope is a 78-year-old arch-conservative who ran the office that used to be called the Inquisition and once belonged to the Hitler Youth. News reports say that he is a hard-liner who has earned such nicknames as “Darth Rottweiler” and “The Enforcer.” I guess the philosopher Voltaire (1694-1778) was right when he said, “Man will not be free until the last politician is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.”

William C. Stosine

Iowa City, Iowa

Tasteless to equate pope with Nazis

Dear Editor,

The April 21 cartoon of Pope Benedict XVI was one of the more tasteless pieces I’ve seen yet in the Stater. To equate the leader of the Catholic Church with Nazis is as offensive as one can get. Sure, you can make a big deal about the fact that the new Pontiff was a member of the Hitler Youth, but what underage boy wasn’t forced to join the cult? The former Joseph Ratzinger had nothing but disdain for the atrocities of Nazi forces during World War II and fought against them in any way he could, much like his predecessor, John Paul II.

Please, don’t stoop to the level of labeling someone a Nazi just because he was German and lived during the reign of the Third Reich. It is insulting and offensive to the pope, myself and the 1.1 billion Catholics around the world.

Antonio DeGaetano

Freshman architecture major

Society is too hung up on classification system

Dear Editor:

Do you remember a time when people were simply human? Before people were a nationality, an occupation, a trend, a genre, a belief or a class? But eyes, ears, noses, hands, feet and smiles? For most of us, that time was childhood. Now we belong to a society, and we live to make our society function.

But what would we think about cats that lived like we do? Paid low wages to make fast food for other cats paid better wages. Sitting in classrooms, studying ideas for years so that some other cats will call them qualified. Fearing cats from distant lands, with different colors of fur. Perpetuating a neo-feudalist global caste system of rich, ruling cats against poor, working cats.

Today we have technologies that could erase national borders and potentially connect everybody to any place on the planet where there are people. The simple cell phone could be used to vote, to organize communities of like-minded people and to report the news. Between that and the Internet, any information could be free. And all people, regardless of where they live or how much money they make, could know anybody else in the world personally, not as a stereotype.

Then we wouldn’t need any bureaucracy or propaganda. And if you still had any other problems, then you would have to work that out among yourselves.

Ted Bowen

Post-undergraduate in mathematics