The Mohammad cartoons, the purposefully extra-offensive South Park episodes, and Bill Maher: not funny. Also, if you ignore them, they can't hurt you! SO WHY DON'T PEOPLE EVER IGNORE THEM? Bill Maher said something OUTRAGEOUS about the Pope, and the Catholic church. The outrageous thing he said is argurably true, if inelegantly put. Specifically, he called the Pope a Nazi, which he very briefly was when he was a little boy, and he called the Catholic Church a "child-abusing cult," which, if you have a broad-enough definition of cult, is basically what they are. Anyway—the American Life League has launched a website calling for Maher to be fired from his little HBO show. Ok guys! Jesus, you're getting all worked up about Bill Maher? There is a rich history of virulent anti-Catholicism in this great nation, but it pretty much ended once we all decided the Irish were allowed to be White. Attacking the Pope is no more "hate speech" than calling George W. Bush a war criminal. But: confidential to Bill M: you're taking on the Pope? You got nothing better to do with your time? He's not that bad! Seriously, as Popes go, he's one of the least damaging ever.

Jon Stewart had one line the other night about how the Popes have gotten so much nicer since the Catholic church no longer has an actual army. And it's true! There's plenty to criticize, what with the anti-reproductive rights thing, but they're not killing infidels or holding inquisitions anymore! No one's drinking the liquor of succession or raping their own nieces!

Seriously, crusades now are carried on by supposedly secular governments, the worst offenses by religion against the greater good are perpetrated by extremist Islamist clerics and evangelical huckster preachers and even the Jews have more dangerous terrorists than the Catholics these days.

So Bill, it's fun to mock the Pope for looking like Emperor Palpatine, but at least he doesn't have enough power anymore to act like Emperor Palpatine.

And Catholics, please, make like the rest of the nation and stop paying attention to Bill Maher.