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Voice: Pope should be remembered for all the good he has done

May 24, 2002

I collect videotaped news broadcasts. Recently I acquired a tape showing the current pope in his more vigorous days during a visit to Poland in 1983 during a Solidarity protest. The news broadcast commented on his bravery for even saying the word "Solidarity" at a public function.

It was incredible to be reminded of the phenomenal struggle Thatcher, Reagan and the Catholic pope had in chipping away at communist dictatorships. These days the all-knowing wags of short-term memory have convinced everyone of the inevitability of communism's fall, denying the bravery and hard work of those who struggled against as opposed to appeasing it.

I hope real historians of the future remember the pope's early work in this regard as well as the current scandals. A man ought to be remembered as the sum of his victories as well as shortcomings.

I hope the next pope attacks the organizational deficiencies that allowed the current vile scandals to occur with the same vigor that this pope attacked communism in his day.

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JERRY E. ELLISON JR.

El Cajon

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