Of Archbishops And Alcohol
A small, but embarrassing episode (about which I have been alerted by an excellent reader) allows me to give two words about the way we Southern European, blessedly free from Protestant and puritanical influences, see this kind of things.
So Archbishop Cordileone was found above the legal alcohol limit for California. Big deal. If the California alcohol limits are anywhere near the European average, we are here far, far away from anyone being defined, by any reasonable person, as “drunk”.
Concerning the “guilt”, we Southern European never had such a high expectation of our leaders, even spiritual ones. In these disgraceful times Padre Pio would have been arrested countless times (violent behaviour in public, violence against children, “hate crimes” no end), and even Jesus (a clearly above average drinker in times of massive alcohol consumption) would never have a chance to pass the same alcohol test poor Archbishop Cordileone fell through. Coming to more recent times, Don Camillo would have been possibly defrocked after several periods in jail (another violent type, and no mistake). I could go on, but you get my drift.
The point is that the Nazi Nannies now demanding to control every minute aspect of our life, being Nazi, tend to set limits way below what would be considered reasonable by a reasonable person. The logic of ruthless repression does not allow any other behaviour, and the logic of nannyism is not satisfied with anything else than ruthless repression.
Of course, a certain stigma will be “linked” to the one who is found wanting: he will be rapidly depicted as a danger to public safety, whilst very probably (I think I can safely say so for the Archbishop, and I am sure this is what happens in countless other cases) the “culprit” was, being a sensible person, not even aware he was in danger of being above the limit or – for which I would applaude him – decided to be reasonable anyway.
It appears now the Archbishop has apologised – with words I find utterly disproportionate to the circumstances – and nothing will happen – thank God – to his appointment.
Still, this should let us reflect about the stupidity of laws an extremely respected Archbishop may be found in breach of, and which is in my eyes more evidence of the stupidity of such laws than of a real failing of said Archbishop.
Archbishop Cordileone is in front of a very tough time, and does not need to be shot at (I do not say the above mentioned reader did this; I am merely afraid of Puritanical currents running in the American blood) because of such a small incident.
If anything, this incident makes him more pleasant in my eyes. A small “Don Camillo”-like embarrassment every now and then can only be good for the soul, particularly if you are Archbishop.
Here’s to your health, Excellency, and I hope the wine was worth of your courage.