The Pope is winging his way to the UK as I type for a state visit to the United Kingdom. Despite the greater fascination with matters of religion here it has managed to generate a good row on the national stage.
Guido goes for the standard counter-attack that criticism is bigotry although atheists are the subject of his ire rather than evangelical Protestants. While a German Cardinal's criticism of Heathrow has been inflated and over-shadowed his legitimate criticism of the state's attitude to religion. Locally the Presbyterian Moderator has tied himself in knots by agreeing to attend a joint service but declining to shake the Pontiff's hand - sounds to me as if he has matters arse about face. The Claudy bombing is also a notable omission from his criticism. Although the choice of Chris Patten to respond and his grating condescension probably gained Norman Hamilton a little sympathy. Meanwhile unsurprisingly the Free P's keep it traditional.
However, beyond the accusation and counter-accusation what is happening is what should happen. Those who wish to identify and support with the visit do so and those who wish to criticise and protest do so.