I write this post as an act of support for, and solidarity with, Benedict XVI and what he has to say in this address.
The Holy Father's address is very wide ranging, covering as it does many different topics relating to the protection of the environment and diplomatic activity in favour of that protection. Subjects such as poverty, the huge sums spent on weaponry, prevention of conflict .... As usual, to get a full picture of what the Pope says it is necessary to read the whole and not just to take one or two aspects out from the whole, giving the impression that they are the sum total of the entire address. The text of the full address is here, at the ZENIT website. Humble Piety communicates something of the balance of the address when seen as whole.
Now, ignoring what I have just written (!), I quote below the passages that are likely to be attracting media attention:
Perhaps central to properly understanding why Pope Benedict feels able to address issues such as abortion and gay rights in an address to the diplomatic corps is this next passage, where he talks about an appropriate secularity. In the text of the address, this paragraph occurs immediately before the first quotation above:
As for Catholics, and other Christians who hold orthodox views with regard to human sexuality, I would encourage you not to be dismayed when the media tries to portray Pope Benedict as inhumane, backward, a persecutor of gays, full of intolerance etc. Go to the original source, and read the whole of the address, not just the bits extracted by the media. See that Pope Benedict is intelligent, has a very wide ranging and clear minded grasp of the issues at stake, is thoroughly modern in his presentation of the issues within a framework of environmental concern.