OPINION

Rick Sanchez: Trump's ignorance regarding Pope Francis is insulting to Catholics

ROME, ITALY - JANUARY 17:  A general view of Rome's synagogue during the visit of Pope Francis on January 17, 2016 in Rome, Italy.  The visit marks the third time a pontiff has been invited to the synagogue, following on from the visit by Benedict XVI in January 2010 and the historic encounter of Pope John Paul II with former Rabbi Elio Toaff there in 1986.  (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)

ROME, ITALY - JANUARY 17: A general view of Rome's synagogue during the visit of Pope Francis on January 17, 2016 in Rome, Italy. The visit marks the third time a pontiff has been invited to the synagogue, following on from the visit by Benedict XVI in January 2010 and the historic encounter of Pope John Paul II with former Rabbi Elio Toaff there in 1986. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)  (2016 Getty Images)

It is a truly sad day in America when the representative of the prince of peace on earth is lectured by the likes of Donald Trump. But so it is during this 2016 election year — that will likely go down as the year when America lost it mind.

In this media/election environment we are presently experiencing, hate beats love, up is down and screaming idiots are portrayed as voices of reason.

- Rick Sanchez

Pope Francis, a man guided by a personal faith and intellectual curiosity, qualities once revered in America, had to compete this week with candidate Trump, a man guided by ego, personal radicalism and a craving for angry confrontation. The winner, as chosen by the media – seemingly completely enamored of the latter – Trump!  

In fact, the pope’s message of compassion while addressing the issue of immigration during his visit to Mexico was barely covered until the village idiot himself could properly vet it. Then and only then, after ‘the Trump’ had proclaimed ‘the Pope’ as essentially stupid, easily manipulated and politically motivated, did the media choose to cover Pope Francis’ comments on immigration.

“I think that the pope is a very political person,” Trump said on Fox Business. “I think he doesn’t understand the problems our country has,” Trump repeated dismissively.

“I think Mexico got him to do it because Mexico wants to keep the border just the way it is because they’re making a fortune,” he also said. 

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What was it that caused this type of reaction from Trump? Prayer and a gesture of peace and goodwill! That’s right. The pope, in between masses, walked the banks of the Rio Grande and prayed for the estimated 6,000 migrants who have died crossing the border since 2000.

Even the Vatican was perplexed by Trump’s attack calling his comments “very strange.”

“The pope always talks about migration problems all around the world, of the duties we have to solve these problems in a humane manner, of hosting those who come from other countries in search of a life of dignity and peace,” said the Vatican spokesman, Rev. Federico Lombardi.

Translation: Duh!    

Many of us who make up the largest religious body in the United States are also dumbfounded. Seventy million Catholics in the U.S. comprise 22 percent of the population and we will be voting in large numbers in the general election.   

Never mind that Trump’s braggadocios position on immigration is not only untenable, but also economically catastrophic for America. Never mind his complete and utter ignorance of the most basic economic principles, which prove that without a young vibrant workforce – which America’s aging population no longer delivers – we are doomed to stagnation. Never mind that forcing millions of good people of faith to live in the shadows creates unhealthy communities and increases our own security risks. Never mind the long-term damage he’s doing to the GOP brand by making the party seem unfairly anti-Latino. 

What matters this week is that Donald Trump – who has gotten away with insulting women, African-Americans, Latinos, Asians, Muslims, the disabled and prisoners of war – has now insulted Pope Francis himself and also apparently gotten away with it. Why? Because in this media/election environment we are presently experiencing hate beats love, up is down and screaming idiots are portrayed as voices of reason. 

Rick Sanchez is a contributor for Fox News Latino.

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