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Pope Francis had a damning message for European leaders when he addressed them in the European Parliament. He attacked Europe's 'throwaway culture'. He said the elderly, the seriously ill and unborn children are ignored. He said technology and economics are now more important than people. He said men and women were just "cogs in a machine that treats them as items of consumption". He added that: "Whenever a human life no longer proves useful for that machine, it is discarded." He called it the "consequence of a throwaway culture, and an uncontrolled consumerism".
The Pope criticised Europe's politicians and systems. He said Europe's dynamic, caring and artistic cultures were disappearing because of bureaucracy. He said great ideas were being replaced by "the bureaucratic technicalities of its institutions" which were "downright harmful" to people. The Pope warned that Europe risked losing its sense of community. He said: "One of the most common diseases in Europe today is the loneliness typical of those who have no connection with others. This is especially true of the elderly, who are often abandoned to their fate, and also in the young."
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