Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has a well-known animus against organized religion. He’s said God was stupid, that Pope Francis is the “son of a whore,” and that the Catholic Church will die out within 25 years.
(He’s no friend to atheists, either, claiming that men can get away with having mistresses just by saying they’re not religious — because, haha, atheists have no morals.)
His latest attack on the Church? At a campaign rally on Sunday, Duterte said it would be a better world if every pedophile priest was murdered.
“To the priests who raped children and fondled balls, you sons of bitches, I will really kill you. Why should I be afraid? If you all get killed tonight, that would be better. Then we will have a better world,” Duterte told supporters on Sunday.
The president also called the bishops “sons of bitches” that “serve the rich and the elite, those who are owners of banks and other businesses.”
Not that his values are much better than the people he’s condemning. Speaking of a priest who allegedly called for his death, Duterte quickly reversed course on the whole wishing-for-people-to-be-killed thing:
“What kind of religion is that? Roman Catholic Church … What kind of religion would pray for the death of another person?” Duterte asked.
… said the guy who just called for the death of other people. (It’s not the first time he’s said something like this.)
For what it’s worth, I don’t believe predator priests should be killed. They should be held accountable for their crimes and punished accordingly. I’d much rather see convicted priests in jail, with the Catholic Church literally paying for their crimes.
Duterte’s own beliefs are hard to discern. Like Donald Trump, he worships himself more than anyone or anything else. But he waffles publicly between criticizing God and proclaiming his own beliefs. In 2016, he even said he stopped swearing because God told him to. (Spoiler: He didn’t stop.) So maybe don’t take anything he says at face value. He’s a tyrant. He’ll say anything to win over gullible masses.