... is their proclivity for political excess. I can understand people of various political stripes not agreeing with the Pope or having serious disagreements with the Catholic Church. However, the reaction of some of the lefty students at the Sapienza is laughably over-the-top. This Reuters report and photo say it all:
Students stand over a banner reading "La Sapienza is hostage of the Pope" outside the window of an occupied room at La Sapienza University in Rome January 15, 2008. Some professors and students are protesting against plans for Pope Benedict to address Rome's most prestigious university, saying a speech he made nearly two decades ago showed he had reactionary views on science. The German-born Pope is due to speak at La Sapienza on Thursday at a ceremony opening the 2008 academic year. The inaugural event's theme is the death penalty, which the Vatican and the Italian state want abolished globally. But more than 60 professors have written a letter saying the invitation should be withdrawn because the Pope's views "offend and humiliate us".
REUTERS/Dario Pignatelli (ITALY)
Breaking News: The Papal visit has been called off! More info to follow!
Update: This report was made by the news agency ANSA a few minutes ago:
ROMA - The Vatican "has thought opportune to postpone" the visit of the Pope to the Sapienza University "due to the continuing uprest of these days".
It seems that as part of the protests, the Rector's offices were occupied by students today.
One has to imagine that security concerns and the dignity of the Holy Father were the primary concern here. One suspects that many at the Sapienza University are ashamed what the actions of their colleagues have brought about.
The Pope will, however, be sending the text of his proposed address to the Sapienza.
Matt 10:14: And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town.
Edited to add:The American Papist is keeping on top of the story.