The pope’s visit to the United Kingdom stirred up religious and atheistic fervor. While Applebaum points out that a noted Jewish or Muslim leader would not receive the same angry protests as a Christian one, she also notes that the furor was ultimately good for the cause of religious freedom. Due to the protests, the pope received a tremendous amount of media attention. And because of the left-leaning nature of the more vicious protests, the conservative right came to the pope’s defense and ended up learning more about some important aspects of Catholicism. All in all, Pope Benedict XVI’s visit was beneficial politically and socially.
Applebaum is a weekly columnist for The Post, writing on foreign affairs.