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Pope Benedict XVI's Replacement Should Be A Gay, Black Man Or A Woman: Alan Cumming

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POPE BENEDICT XVI
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Alan Cumming has a few suggestions for the Vatican when it comes to choosing Pope Benedict XVI's replacement.

"If I was going to rebrand the Catholic Church, as much as I despise what it stands for, I would say get a black person -- well, first I would say get a woman or a gay -- but then I'd say get a black person or a Hispanic person," the openly gay actor tells New York Magazine.

Media speculation over who could replace Pope Benedict XVI has been rampant since news of the pontiff's resignation broke Feb. 11. But Cumming did not mince words when it came to the outgoing pontiff, saying he was "horrified by his stance on gays."

"I was reading today that the Pope arrived in a Christian Dior cape with red Dorothy shoes and blah blah, and he tells us that it’s wrong to be gay," Cumming, who is currently gearing up to star in "Macbeth" on Broadway and has two forthcoming concerts with Liza Minnelli in the works, added. "And, I don’t know, I’m really intrigued by it; there’s more to this than meets the eye. It’s not just because he’s old and sick [that he's resigning]."

Still, Cumming will probably be waiting for a while. Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana, said to be one of the top papal candidates, is reportedly so vehemently anti-gay, he's even defended Uganda's notorious "Kill The Gays" bill.

"Whoever is chosen, however, you better believe the cardinals will make sure it's someone who is likable and doesn't carry Benedict's baggage while still enforcing Benedict's doctrine," writes Michelangelo Signorile, HuffPost Gay Voices editor-at-large, in a blog post. "In that way, the new pope will be more insidiously homophobic, and that is always more dangerous and anti-gay."

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