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Santorum at odds with church's call to safeguard the earth

 |  NCR Today

It's often struck me as odd that so many self-described traditional Christians regard environmentalism as an assault from the radical, anti-religious left. Stewardship of the planet in woven right into Genesis and throughout the Old and New Testaments -- but not according to the people who scream "Drill, baby, drill!" on their way to church every Sunday.

A provocative column in the Los Angeles Times goes after that inconsistency head-on. The Times' former religion reporter, Larry Stammer, takes Rick Santorum to task for criticizing the theological underpinnings of President Barack Obama's green policy while ignoring his own church's explicit call to safeguard the earth. Here's an excerpt:

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Certainly there are people of faith who don't consider environmentalism a part of their religion. But there are also many environmentalists who see their activism as deeply rooted in Scripture and faith traditions. Threats to the natural world at times implicitly involve issues with which religion has long grappled, among them materialism, social and economic justice, and love of God and neighbor. Indeed, it is not a little ironic that Santorum, a devout Roman Catholic, is at odds with Pope Benedict XVI and the nation's Roman Catholic bishops who view climate change with alarm. They have repeatedly called on the government to address it as a matter of prudence, and to aid poor nations and people who are least responsible for climate change and least able to cope with its consequences.

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