Pope book backs George Floyd protests, blasts virus skeptic

ROME (AP) — Pope Francis is supporting demands for racial justice in the wake of the U.S. police killing of George Floyd and is blasting COVID-19 skeptics and the media that spread their conspiracies.

In a new book "Let Us Dream," Francis also criticizes populist politicians who whip up rallies in ways reminiscent of the 1930s, and the hypocrisy of "rigid" conservative Catholics who support them.

But he also criticizes the forceful downing of historic statues during protests for racial equality this year as a misguided attempt to "purify the past."

The pope's English-language biographer, Austen Ivereigh, collaborated with Francis on the book, published Tuesday, which was written during the Vatican's coronavirus lockdown.

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