TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

Hundreds took to the streets in response to the death of Saheed Vassell, an unarmed, mentally ill black man who was shot and killed by police. The NYPD is standing by its officers, releasing a video they claim proves their actions were justified. We have the tape, and New York State Senator Jesse Hamilton joins us to discuss it. A former member of MS-13 who believed that helping police take down the deadly gang would help grant him asylum in America is instead facing deportation by the same ICE unit he helped. For him, deportation is likely a death sentence in a nation dominated by the gang. We take an eye-opening and controversial look at Pope Francis and the struggle for the future of Catholicism with Ross Douthat, New York Times columnist and author of the new book, “To Change the Church: Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism.”

Aired on April 6, 2018.

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON 'METROFOCUS.'

PROTEST IN CROWN HEIGHTS.

HUNDREDS TAKE TO THE STREETS IN BROOKLYN AFTER A POLICE-INVOLVED SHOOTING OF AN UNARMED MENTALLY ILLM MAN.

THE NYPD HAVE VIDEO THAT THEY CLAIM SHOWS THE POLICE OFFICER IS INNOCENT.

> HE THOUGHT THAT HELPING TAKE DOWN A CRIMINAL GANG WOULD HELP HIM STAY IN AMERICA.

> AND CHANGING THE CHURCH, AN EYE OPENING AND CONTROVERSIAL LOOK AT POPE FRANCIS AND THE STRUGGLE FOR THE FUTURE OF CATHOLICISM.

THOSE STORIES AND MORE, AS 'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

> THIS IS 'METROFOCUS,' WITH RAFAEL P. RAMON, JACK FORD AND JENNA FLANNIGAN.

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AND BY PSE&G, SERVING CUSTOMERS, STRENGTHENING THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY AND INVESTING IN THE FUTURE.

> TODAY AT 12:40 P.M., THE NYPD RECEIVED SEVERAL 911 CALLS OF A MAN DESCRIBED AS A MALE BLACK WEARING A BROWN JACKET, POINTING WHAT IS DESCRIBED AS A SILVER FIREARM AT PEOPLE ON THE STREET.

THREE DIFFERENT 911 CALLERS DESCRIBED THE MAN WITH THE GUN POINTING IT AT PEOPLE ON THE STREET.

THEY HAVE NO RIGHT TO SHOOT HIM DOWN THE WAY HOW THEY DID IT BECAUSE HE IS NO GUNMAN.

HE HAD SOMETHING IN HIS HAND.

IF THE COP WOULD HAVE SHOT HIM IN THE LEG, I WOULD HAVE TAKEN THAT OVER HIM.

GOOD EVENING AND WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS,' I'M JENNA FLANNIGAN, TONIGHT WE GET USE OF THE DEATH OF A MAN WHO WAS SHOT TO DEATH AFTER OFFICERS MISTAKENLY BELIEVED HE WAS CARRYING A GUN.

IT WAS LATER DISCOVERED AFTER 10 ROUNDS HAD BEEN ENTIRED AT MR.

VASSAL, THAT THE ITEM IN HIS HAND WAS IN FACT A METAL PIPE.

SURVEILLANCE FOOTAGE OF VASSAL HAS BEEN RELEASED BRANDISHING A METAL OBJECT.

A VIGIL WAS HELD LAST NIGHT IN CROWN HEIGHTS TO REMEMBER THE LIFE OF MR. VASSAL AND TO DEMAND A FULL INVESTIGATION INTO THE EVENTS THAT SURROUNDED THE FATAL SHOOTING.

THAT RALLY WAS LED BY A NUMBER OF LEGISLATORS, INCLUDING STATE SENATOR JESSE HAMILTON, WHO I'M PLEASED TO WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

SENATOR HAMILTON, WELCOME.

THANK YOU.

FIRST LET'S START WITH THE POLICE TO BEGIN WITH.

BECAUSE WE NOW KNOW THERE WERE COMMUNITY POLICE IN THE NA NEIGHBORHOOD WHO KNEW MR. VASSAL AND THEY KNEW HE HAD MENTAL ISSUES, BUT THEY DIDN'T RESPOND TO A CALL.

WE HAVE FOR DECADES NOW IN NEW YORK CITY POLICE OFFICERS OVERREACTING TO MINOR CRIMES IN BLACK COMMUNITIES WITH EXCESSIVE FORCE.

HE WAS A YOUNG MAN WITH KNOWN MENTAL ISSUES, HE WENT TO CHURCH EVERY DAY, HE HELPED OUT ELDERLY PEOPLE.

SO HE WAS KNOWN AS A GOOD KID WITH MENTAL ISSUES, SO THE COMMUNITY IS QUESTIONING, WHY DID YOU HAVE TO SHOOT HIM DOWN.

SO WE HAVE A PROBLEM IN THE POLICE DEPARTMENT OF DEHUMANIZING PEOPLE OF COLOR IN OUR COMMUNITIES, ESPECIALLY YOUNG, BLACK MEN.

HAD SHAEED BEEN A PERSON WHO WAS WHITE, WOULD THE POLICE HAVE RESPONDED BY SHOOTING AND KILLING HIM?

THERE'S SO MANY QUESTIONS THAT FEED INTO THAT.

ONE OF THOSE IS THE 911 CALL, AND WE HAVE NOW HEARD THAT PEOPLE CALLING 911 WERE SAYING WE THINK THIS MAN HAS A GUN, OR THIS PERSON LOOKS LIKE HE HAS SOMETHING THAT MIGHT BE A GUN.

BUT WHEN IT GOT TO THE DISPATCHER, THE DISPATCHER SAID HE HAS A GUN.

SO IS THAT REALLY THE FAULT OF THE POLICE, WHEN THEY ARRIVE WHEN THEY ASSUME THEY ARE GOING TO A PLACE WHERE A SUSPECT HAD A GUN?

IT WAS NOT A GUN, IN FACT IT WAS A SHOWER HEAD THAT COULD HAVE LOOKED LIKE A GUN.

AND OFFICERS HAVE SECONDS TO REACT TO SOMEONE WAS SHOT.

THE POLICE DID NOT HEAR THAT SOMEONE WAS SHOT.

IF YOU KNOW ONE HAS A GUN, HOW DO YOU APPROACH THAT PERSON?

DO YOU TELL THEM TO STOP, PUT YOUR HANDS UP AND WAIT?

DO YOU THEN CLOSE IN ON THE PERSON GIVING THEM DIRECTIVES OF WHAT TO DO OR DO YOU JUST COME UPON A PERSON AND SECONDS LATER START SHOOTING.

SO THE QUESTION IS HOW DO WE DEAL WITH PEOPLE WITH MENTAL ISSUES, SOMEONE WHO DOESN'T HAVE THE MENTAL CAPACITY TO WAVE A GUN AROUND IN A NEIGHBORHOOD.

A LOT OF TIMES PEOPLE WITH MENTAL ISSUES WHO ENCOUNTER POLICE USUALLY DIE.

I WANT TO MAKE SURE WE HAVE TRAINING FOR POLICE OFFICERS.

LAST YEAR I HPASSED A LAW REQUIRING ALL POLICE OFFICERS TO TAKE A CPR COURSE EVERY TWO YEARS.

WE DO THE SAME THING FOR POLICE OFFICERS NOW WITH MENTAL HEALTH TRAINING, IF SOMEONE HAS A GUN, HOW DO I RESPOND?

IF THIS PERSON HAS A MENTAL HEALTH ISSUE, IS HE A THREAT?

DO WE APPROACH IT LIKE LIFE AND DEATH?

IS HE THREATENING ANYONE?

HE WAS NOT THREATENING ANYONE.

ACCORDING TO THE VIDEO, WE SEE THIS YOUNG MAN WITH THIS METAL PIPE WHO'S DRAN BENEF BRANDISHING IT IN A VERY AGGRESSIVE WAY.

AND IT LOOKS LIKE A PERSON WHO HAS A GUN.

WE STILL HAVE A PERSON WHO HAS A MENTAL DISABILITY, IN HIS MIND, IT'S A PLAY, HE MIGHT HAVE BEEN REACTING, AS FAR AS HE HAD A BAD DAY, MAYBE DIDN'T HAVE HIS MEDS, BUT HE WAS ACTING IN A MENACING WAY.

IF SOMEONE DOESN'T TAKE THEIR MEDICINE -- IN A DISPROPORTIONATE AMOUNT OF PEOPLE WHO EVEN COUNTER PEOPLE WHO DO DIE, VERSUS THE PEOPLE OF COLOR WHO DO DIE.

WE ALSO KNOW THAT SO MANY OF THE PEOPLE IN COMMUNITY KNEW THAT SHAHEED HAD MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES, AND HIS FAMILY KNEW HE WAS NOT TAKING HIS MEDS.

IS THERE ANY RESPONSIBILITY ON THE FAMILY THAT THEY KNEW HE WAS NOT TAKING HIS MEDS AND DIDN'T DO ANYTHING TO?

I WANT TO MAKE SURE -- AND THERE'S A STIGMA IN OUR COMMUNITY, THE STIGMAS IN COMMUNITIES OF COLOR ARE SEEING PSYCHIATRISTS OR PSYCHOLOGISTS.

THAT'S WHY WE'RE TRYING TO GET MORE SOCIAL WORKERS IN THE SCHOOL.

WE HAVE PSYCHIATRISTS AND SOCIAL WORKERS TALKING TO CHILDREN IN THE COMMUNITY TO FIND OUT IF THERE IS ANY PROBLEMS.

JUST GROWING UP IN A SHELTER, JUST GROWING UP BLACK SOMETIMES CAN HAVE A SIDE EFFECT.

WE CAN'T MANDATE THAT HE TAKE HIS MEDICATION, BUT THE QUESTION IS, HOW DO WE CREATE LAWS AND CREATE SERVICES.

I WANT TO TURN TO THE VIGIL AND THE MARCH THAT HAPPENED IN BROOKLYN, THIS IS ALL HAPPENING RIGHT ON THE HEELS OF THE SHOOTING IN CALIFORNIA OF THE YOUNG MAN STEPHON CLARK, AND I'M WONDERING WHAT WAS THE MOOD OF THE COMMUNITY AT THE PROTEST?

I MEAN, THERE'S A LOT OF ANGER.

WE HAD THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE ASSASSINATION OF DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING 50 YEARS LATER, AND WE'RE STILL TALKING ABOUT THE SAME ISSUES THAT WE WERE TALKING ABOUT 50 YEARS AGO.

I THINK WHAT WE REALLY TRY TO UNDERSTAND WHEN IT COMES TO THESE SHOOTINGS IS WHAT DOES JUSTICE LOOK LIKE FOR THE FAMILY?

WHAT DOES THE VASSAL FAMILY WANT?

THE JUSTICE IS, THERE PROBABLY WILL BE A LAWSUIT.

BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT SEEN THE RESPONSE FROM THE POLICE ARRIVING AND THEM SHOOTING HIM.

WE JUST SEE HIM MENACING PEOPLE, BUT YOU DON'T SEE THE FOOTAGE OF THE POLICE GETTING ON THE SCENE AND HIM BEING SHOT.

HOW MUCH TIME ELAPSED BETWEEN THE POLICE OFFICERS ARRIVING ON THE SCENE AND HIM ACTUALLY SHOOTING HIM?

THAT'S THE QUESTION THAT I DO NOT HAVE ANSWERED.

THEY DO HAVE A VIDEOTAPE, THE QUESTION IS WHY HAVEN'T THEY SHOWN IT.

THERE'S ALWAYS TWO SIDES TO THE STORY, AND MAYBE ONE IN THE MIDDLE.

BUT THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STORY HAS NOT BEEN SHOWN OF THE ACTUAL ENCOUNTER BETWEEN THE POLICE AND MR. VASSAL, AND AS SOON AS PEOPLE CAN SEE THAT, A LOT OF QUESTIONS WILL BE ANSWERED.

LISTEN, STATE SENATOR JESSE HAMILTON, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US ON THE PROGRAM, WE REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR INSIGHT, ESPECIALLY YOUR FIRSTHAND ACCOUNT OF WHAT TOOK PLACE IN CROWN HEIGHTS AND OF COURSE WE'LL BE FOLLOWING THIS STORY VERY CLOSELY.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME ON THE PROGRAM, GREAT TO BE HERE.

> A NEW REPORT FROM PRO PUBLICA SHOWERS PEOPLE COOPERATING WITH THE GOVERNMENT'S ANTI-GANG STRATEGY ARE NOW PLACING GANG INFORMANTS IN JEOPARDY.

A FORMER GANG MEMBER DECIDED HE HAD HAD ENOUGH AND TURNED HIMSELF INTO THE POLICE.

HE THEN AGREED TO BECOME AN INFORMANT AND PROVIDED IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON MS-13 MURDERS WITH THE HOPE OF BEING GRANTED AMNESTY.

BUT NOW HENRY IS NOW FACING DEPORTATION FROM THE SAME I.C.E.

GROUP HE HELPED.

[ SPEAKIN [ SPEAKIN [ SPEAKING SPANISH ]

AND JOINING US NOW IS THE JOURNALIST WHO SPEARHEADED THE REPORT FOR PRO PUBLICA, AMANDA DRYER.

WHAT A STORY.

LET'S START WITH HENRY'S STORY FROM THE BEGINNING.

HOW HARD WAS IT FOR HIM TO GROW UP IN EL SALVADOR AND WHAT WAS HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH MS-13?

HIS PARENTS GAVE HIM UP WHEN HE WAS A TODDLER AND THEY WENT TO LONG ISLAND AND THE GANG WAS THE ONLY SUPPORT HE COULD GET FROM EL SALVADOR, THEY GAVE THEM FOOD, THEY GAVE HIM SCHOOL UNIFORMS SO HE COULD GO TO SCHOOL.

AND FROM THE TIME HE WAS 9, HE WAS IN THE GANG.

AND HE SAID THAT WHEN HE WAS 12, HE HAD TO COMPLETE THIS FINAL INITIATION RIGHT WHERE THEY TOOK HIM TO A COCONUT GROVE WHERE A MAN WAS STRUNG UP AND THEY POINTED TO THE MAN AND SAID YOU HAVE TO KILL THIS MAN OR WE'RE GOING TO KILL BOTH OF YOU.

SO HE TOOK A MACHETE AND HELPED TO KILL THIS MAN.

AT 12 YEARS OLD?

THE SALVADORANS HAVE CONFLICTS BECAUSE THERE'S SO MANY SALVADORANS, WHAT THEY ALSO HAVE IS THE MS-13 GANG.

HOW DID HE FALL BACK INTO THE GRIP OF THE MS-13 GANG?

HE HAD THIS ONE GREAT YEAR IN BRENTWOOD, HE SAW THAT THE GANG WAS THERE, LIKE YOU SAY, THE GANG IS VERY PRESENT IN BRENTWOOD AND LONG ISLAND.

BUT NOBODY RECOGNIZED HIM.

NOBODY RECOGNIZED THAT HE HAD BEEN IN MS-13.

NO, NOBODY RECOGNIZED, SO HE WAS ABLE TO BLEND IN AND BE A REGULAR KID FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HIS LIFE.

BUT IN HIS SOPHOMORE YEAR, ANOTHER KID FROM THE SAME CLIQUE IN EL SALVADOR CAME IN AND RECOGNIZED HENRY AND THAT WAS THE END.

HENRY TOLD YOU HIS WHOLE LIFE STORY AND HE DESCRIBED IN DETAIL SOME OF THE OPERATIONS, YOU ALREADY TALKED ABOUT THE MURDER WHICH WAS VERY GRIZZLY.

WHAT SHOCKED YOU THE MOST ABOUT WHAT HE TOLD YOU?

HENRY GAVE ME HIS CELL PHONE AND I WAS ABLE TO LOOK THROUGH YEARS OF TEXTBOOK MESSAGES AND FACEBOOK CONVERSATIONS AND REALLY GET A SENSE OF HOW THE GANG REALLY OPERATED.

AND WHAT I WAS SURPRISED BY IS THESE ARE TEENAGERS.

THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT PEOPLE BEING MURDERED AND TALKING ABOUT BEING ARRESTED BY FEDERAL PROSECUTORS AT THE SAME TIME, THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT GIRLS AND THIS GANG THAT THEY'RE OBSESSED WITH.

AND IT'S CLEAR THAT THEY'RE DOING THE WORK OF THESE INSECURE HORMONAL TEENAGERS.

DECIDING TO LEAVE MS-13, THAT IN ITSELF CAN GET YOU KILLED.

NO, IT'S FOR LIFE.

BUT DECIDING TO INFORM ON THEM, WHAT IS UNBELIEVABLY DANGEROUS.

WHAT MADE HENRY DECIDE TO DO THAT?

WE HAVE TALKED TO SOME OF THE DETECTIVES THAT HENRY SPOKE WITH BACK WHEN HE BECAME AN INFORMANT HIS JUNIOR YEAR OF HIGH SCHOOL.

AND THEY WERE SURPRISED THAT HE WAS TALKING WITHOUT HAVING CRIMINAL CHARGES AGAINST HIM.

USUALLY PEOPLE TALK BECAUSE THEY'RE TRYING TO SAVE THEMSELVES, THEY'RE TRYING TO GET A REDUCED SENTENCE.

HERE HENRY JUST VOLUNTEERED.

HE DIDN'T CAN COMMIT ANY CRIMES IN THE UNITED STATES, HE JUST WANTED TO TALK.

IN A SENSE HE WANTED GETTING OUT OF THE GANG, SO HE TALKED TO THE FBI, THINKING THAT THAT WAS GOING TO LEAD HIM TO BE ABLE TO GET OUT OF THE GANG IN A SAFE WAY.

AND THE SCHOOL THOUGHT THAT'S WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN.

EVERYBODY SORT OF THOUGHT HE WOULD BE OKAY IF HE TALKED TO THE FBI.

AND OF COURSE INSTEAD, THE FBI DIDN'T PROTECT HIM AND ALL OF HIS INFORMATION ENDED UP IN THE HANDS OF I.C.E.

IN ADDITION TO TELLING THEM ABOUT WHAT HE HAD DONE, HE ALSO TOLD POLICE ABOUT WHAT THE GANG WAS PLANNING, HE HELPED THEM CONNECT GANG NAMES WITH REAL NAMES.

HE TOLD THEM WHO THE GANG WAS PLANNING TO KILL NEXT.

AND HIS FBI GANG TASK FORCE HANDLER LATER SAID THAT HE GAVE OVER THE NAMES OF TWO PEOPLE THAT I.C.E. WAS ABLE TO ARREST.

SO TO MAKE A LONG STORY SHORT, HE HELPED THEM, BUT INSTEAD OF THE AMNESTY THAT HE THOUGHT HE WAS GETTING, WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM?

ONE DAY AGENTS CAME TO HIS DOOR, HE THOUGHT HE WAS THE FBI AND IT WAS NOT, IT WAS I.C.E.

THEY ARRESTED HIM AND PUT HIM IN JAIL.

HE TALKED TO SOME MS-13 GANG MEMBERS, AND I GUESS SOME OF THEM, DO THEY KNOW HE WAS AN INFORMER?

THEY KNOW WHO HE IS.

AS SOON AS HE GOT TO THEIR HIGH SCHOOL, THEY CALLED HIM BY HIS GANG NAME.

SED.

YES, BECAUSE IT MEANS SAD IN SPANISH.

AND THEY CAME OVER TO HIM AND STARTED ASKING HIM HOW HE HAD GOTTEN THERE, WHAT POLICE HAD ON HIM.

HE'S SEEKING AMNESTY, AND IF HE DOESN'T GET IT, HE'LL BE SENT BACK TO ELS SALVADOR HE WILL BEA DEAD MAN WALKING?

THERE'S A CHANCE THAT HE'LL GET LEGAL STATUS HERE, BUT IT'S LOOKING VERY, VERY BAD AND HE KNOWS THAT.

WELL, LET'S HOPE FOR THE BEST FOR HENRY.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR BRINGING THIS TO LIGHT.

IT'S A VERY IMPORTANT STORY, HANNA.

THANKS FOR HAVING ME.

♪ I REALLY DON'T NKNOW LIFE AT ALL ♪

> ALMOST EXACTLY FIVE YEARS AGO, WJORGE WAS CHOSEN TO LEAD THE MAN THAT WOULD LEAD 1.2 MILLION CATHOLICS.

FROM THE MOMENT POPE FRANCIS STEPPED OUT IN PUBLIC FOR THE FIRST TIME, HE SIGNALED THAT HIS PAPACY WILL BE DIFFERENT.

A RENEWED FOCUS ON HUMILITY AND ON THE POOR.

FOR MANY CATHOLICS AFTES AROUND WORLD, FRANCIS THE FIRST EVERYBODY POPE FROM THE AMERICAS, REPRESENTED A BREATH OF FRESH AIR.

FRANCIS'S READY PERSONA SEEMED READY MADE FOR TV.

HIS TRAVELS MADE HEADLINES AROUND THE WORLD.

BUT EVEN IN THE EARLY DAYS OF HIS PAPACY, FRANCIS RAISED CONCERN AMONG CONSERVATIVE CATHOLICS AND NOW FIVE YEARS ON, THOSE CONCERNS HAVE EINVOLVED INTO DEEP FEARS AND FIERCE CRITICISM.

ACCORDING TO THE CHURCH, POPE FRANCIS'S POLICIES ARE LEADING TO A DIVIDE IN THE CHURCH ITSELF POTENTIALLY LEADING TO A SCHISM OR FORMAL BREAK UP.

ONE OF THOSE CRITICS, THE AUTHOR OF 'TO CHANGE THE CHURCH, POPE FRANCIS AND THE FUTURE OF CATHOLICISM' HE TAKES A LOOK AT THE PAPACY AND THE CONTROVERSY SURROUNDING THE POPE.

SO ROSS, IN THE BOOK YOU ARGUE THAT FRANCIS IS NOT ONLY A LIBERAL, BUT A RADICAL POPE.

BUT HE WAS ELECTED IN A CONCLAVE THAT WAS MADE UP ALMOST ENTIRELY OF CONSERVATIVES, HAND PICKED ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY BY THE CONSERVATIVE POPE JOHN PAUL II AND BENEDICT XVI.

IT'S REALLY A FASCINATING STORY.

I THINK THE CARDINALS HAD NO IDEA WHAT THEY WERE GETTING.

AT MOST, THERE WERE A FEW CARD NATURALS THAT WERE MORE ON THE LIBERAL END OF THE SPECTRUM WHO HAD CAMPAIGNED FOR HIM WHO HAD SOME IDEA THAT HE WOULD BE A REFORMER AND A LIBERALIZER.

BUT MOSTLY HE WAS ELECTED BECAUSE HE WAS SEEN AS A KIND OF CLEANUP ARTIST.

HE WAS A SORT OF AUSTERE FIGURE, HE HAD A REPUTATION FOR BEING SCANDAL PROOF, AND HUMBLE AND IN TOUCH WITH THE POOR AND SO ON.

AND HE WAS AN OUTSIDER TO ITALY AND ROME.

AND TO CONSERVATIVES, HE HAD A PATH, ESPECIALLY IN THE 1970s, OF FEUDING JESUITS OF HIS OWN ORDER.

SO HE WAS SEEN CENTER RIGHT PROBABLY WITHIN THE CHURCH AND SOMEONE WHO WAS THERE TO SORT OF CLEAN UP THE MESS IN ROME.

AND INSTEAD, HE'S BECOME SOMETHING ELSE, SOMETHING MUCH MORE DRAMATIC I THINK THAN JUST A KIND OF BUREAUCRATIC REORGANIZER.

YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER TOO, THAT IN ARGENTINA, HE WAS AUSTERE AND INCORRUPT AND A FRIEND OF THE POOR, HE WAS NOT A CHARISMATIC, INTELLIGENT FIGURE.

HE WAS SEEN AS A CDOCTRINAL FIGURE WHO WAS AT ODDS WITH THE LEADERSHIP OF THE COUNTRY.

AND IT WAS STUNNING AS TO HOW THIS GLOBAL OFFICE CAN AFFECT A PRETTY RADICAL, AT LEAST PUBLIC TRANSFORMATION.

WHEN DID IT BECOME EVIDENT THAT FRANCIS WAS INDEED RADICAL OR WAS HEADING IN A RADICAL DIRECTION?

I THINK THAT BASICALLY THE PARTICULAR QUESTION WHERE FRANCIS CHOSE TO SORT OF PUSH FOR CHANGE, THIS QUESTION OF COMMUNION FOR REMARRIED CATHOLICS, DIVORCED AND REMARRIED CATHOLICS WHO HAVEN'T RECEIVED AN ANNULMENT, BASICALLY SAYING THAT THEIR FIRST MARRIAGE WAS INVALID.

THIS WAS SOMETHING HE BROUGHT UP OCCASIONALLY FROM THE BEGINNING OF HIS PONTIFICATE, AND THEN HEHE MANEUVERED TO WHERE THE BISHOPS WERE SUPPOSED TO DISCUSS THE MODERN FAMILY.

BEHIND THE SCENE, FRANCIS MADE IT CLEAR THAT HE WANTED THOSE TO OPEN THE CHURCH TO REMARRIAGE.

IT PLACES FRANCIS IN A KIND OF PRETTY OVERT CONTRADICTION WITH WHAT HIS IMMEDIATE PREDECESSORS HAVE SAID.

THE THING ABOUT POPES, THEY ARE ABSOLUTE MONARCHS IN CERTAIN WAYS, IT'S AN INCABSOLUTE MONAR, BUT THEY'RE SUPPOSED TO BE BOUND BY THE TEACHING.

BUT THERE'S ALSO A QUESTION OF WHERE SECOND MARRIAGES AND SO ON, OTHER THAN OTHER ISSUES LIKE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE OR CONTRACEPTION AND SO ON, IT ACTUALLY DOES GO ALL THE WAY BACK TO THE NEW TESTAMENT ITSELF.

JESUS DOESN'T SAY ANYTHING ABOUT HOMOSEXUALITY, HE DIDN'T SAY ANYTHING ABOUT GAY PEOPLE.

HE DOES MAKE A STATEMENT ABOUT THE INSOLUBLIBIEABILITY OF MARRIAGE.

MY PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS ARE BOTH DIVORCED, I'M A CHILD OF THIS CULTURE AS MUCH AS ANYONE.

SO IT'S TRYING TO MAKE THOSE KIND OF ACCOMMODATIONS WITHOUT HOLDING THE LINE AND SAYING ABSENT THIS KIND OF ANNULMENT, YOU CAN'T HOLD COMMUNION, BY PUSHING FOR THAT CHANGE, FRANCIS HAS PUSHED THE CHURCH INTO A THEOLOGICAL CRISIS, WHERE CARDINALS ARE FIGHTING WITH CARDINALS AND THEE LOLOGIANS WI THEE LEE JANUARIES.

A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT CONSERVATIVE CATHOLICS SAY LOOK AT THIS AND SAY, LOOK, THE EASTERN ORTHODOX CHURCH HAS ALLOWED THE REMARRIED TO GO TO COMMUNION, AND THEY REALIZE THAT CHRIST IS IN THE HOST AND THE REAL PRESENCE, JUST LIKE THE ROMAN CATHOLICS AND THEY HAVE SURVIVED, SO WHAT IS THE BIG DEAL?

IT'S NOT A QUESTION OF SURVIVAL, THERE'S GOING TO BE SOMETHING CALLED THE CATHOLIC CHURCH MOVING FORWARD NO MATTER WHAT.

THE ORTHODOX CATHOLICS DON'T HAVE THE AUTHORITY THAT THE -- THE ORIGIN OF THAT VIEW IS THAT IT MAINTAINS A DOCTRINE THAT ARE IN MANY WAYS VERY CONSERVATIVE, CATHOLICS WOULD SAY HAVE LOST ON THIS PARTICULAR POINT.

CATHOLICISM IS THE ONLY CHRISTIAN RELIGION, PROTESTANTS AND SO ON, SORT OF MAINTAINS IF THE FIRST MARRIAGE ISN'T VALID, THE SECOND MARRIAGE IS IMPOSSIBLE.

THE DISTINCTIVENESS OF CATHOLICISM, THE IDEA OF TRANCE SUBSTANTIATION, THE BREAD AND WINE LITERALLY BECOMES THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST AND SO ON.

THEY'RE NOW CONSIDERED CONSERVATIVE IDEAS.

SO I'M A CONSERVATIVE CATHOLIC.

BUT IN FACT WHAT THE CHURCH IS PRESERVING IS A KIND OF RADICALISM, THE RADICALISM AROUND MARRIAGE AND SO ON, AND THAT'S WHY IN THAT SENSE WE'LL SAY FRANCIS IS A RADICAL POPE, BUT IN FACT WHAT HE'S DOING ODDLY IS BRINGING THE CHURCH IN LINE WITH SORT OF UPPER MIDDLE CLASS BOURGEOIS MORALITY.

IT'S A FASCINATING BOOK, THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, I APPRECIATE IT.

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