Saturday 17 March 2018

UnTimely haste to idolise Pontiff

The more one looks at this Pope, the harder it is to see the touch-feely liberal of media legend, writes Eilis O'Hanlon

Pope Francis was named ‘Time’ magazine’s Person of the Year
Pope Francis was named ‘Time’ magazine’s Person of the Year
Mahatma Gandhi
Martin Luther King
Margaret Thatcher

Eilis O'Hanlon

Winning Time magazine's Person Of The Year award is far from a one-way ticket to universal acclaim. Some, such as Martin Luther King and Gandhi, have stood the test of time. Others not so much. Hitler is the obvious example. Richard Nixon too. He won twice. Then Watergate happened.

Of course, Time insists the title is not an endorsement. It's simply given to the person who made the greatest impact on the year "for good or bad". In that respect, granting this year's accolade to Pope Francis is true to tradition. He certainly won this year's battle of the stats, being the most talked about person on the internet in 2013. Yes, even more than Miley Cyrus. The reason given by Time editor Nancy Gibbs also sounded plausible: "In his nine months in office, he has placed himself at the very centre of the central conversations of our time: about wealth and poverty, fairness and justice, transparency, modernity, globalization, the role of women, the nature of marriage, the temptations of power."

You can't get more zeitgeisty than that.

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