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The Disgusting Defense Of Priest Molesters That Catholic League’s Bill Donohue Got The Times To Run

In a few weeks the New York Times will cash a check from Bill Donohue’s Catholic League, as payment for the full-page ad the newspaper decided to run today. Dubbed “Straight Talk About the Catholic Church,” the wordy advertisement is, on its face, a defense of the Catholic Church from the lamestream media who keep trying to paint the place as a disgusting avenue for child molesters to find victims. Not fare, claims Donohue! It’s just a distortion! He then goes on to list some facts, or rather, “facts,” about sexual abuse cases in the church. And of course, there is the requisite blaming of homosexuality — because the monster is male and so too is his victim — for the sins of these men. The Catholic Church and Catholic League, of course, should be ashamed. But so too should the New York Times. Unless the paper is willing to run an ad tomorrow blaming blacks for America’s poverty?

I’m reprinting the ad’s text in its entirely below, because these distortions must remain a matter of public record. And while the Times can stand behind the “this is an advertisement, not a piece of editorial” excuse, it is still guilty of perpetuating falsehoods against our community. The relevant portion from Donohue’s diatribe:

The refrain that child rape is a reality in the Church is twice wrong: let’s get it straight—they weren’t children and they weren’t raped. We know from the John Jay study that most of the victims have been adolescents, and that the most common abuse has been inappropriate touching (inexcusable though this is, it is not rape). The Boston Globe correctly said of the John Jay report that “more than three-quarters of the victims were post pubescent, meaning the abuse did not meet the clinical definition of pedophilia.” In other words, the issue is homosexuality, not pedophilia.

When the National Review Board, a group of notable Catholics, issued its study in 2004, the team’s chief, attorney Robert S. Bennett, said that “any evaluation of the causes and context of the current crisis must be cognizant of the fact that more than 80 percent of the abuse at issue was of a homosexual nature.” One of the members, Dr. Paul McHugh, former psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins, has said that “This behavior was homosexual predation on American Catholic youth, yet it’s not being discussed.” By the way, the figures after 2004 haven’t changed—eight in ten cases involve homosexuality. Worldwide, the Vatican estimates that 60 percent of the cases are same-sex, 30 percent are heterosexual and 10 percent involve pedophilia.

No, Bill, the issue is not homosexuality. It is, plainly, that there are monsters in your church, and you refuse to admit it. The tired rhetoric coming from your kind is simply nonsensical. You’ve been at this game to let priests off the hook for the rape of children for a while now. It’s sad the Times is helping your cause.

You are picking a fight over semantics. This I can understand: It’s a branding campaign to keep words like “rape” and “pedophiles” from being used in the same sentence as “the Catholic Church.” Good try.

But the young boys (and in a few instances, girls) that are abused at the hands of clergy do not squabble over what words you choose to describe these heinous crimes. You have adult men violating minor children. It’s really — really! — that simple. Whether these men are gay or straight is immaterial. They are, I believe your own church would say, sinners. Doing the world of the devil. And they, and your church, must repent and pay for their crimes.

Your silly course on the English language gets us nowhere.

I can think of few people doing more damage to innocent children than the child molesting clergy victimizing them. But Bill Donohue is a close second.

THE FULL AD TEXT:

When the Boston Globe exposed massive wrongdoing in the Boston Archdiocese in 2002, Catholics were understandably angry. And when more horror stories surfaced elsewhere, we were furious. But now our anger is turning on those who are distorting the truth about priestly sexual abuse. That some are exploiting this issue for ideological and financial profit seems plain.

Every time a new wave of accusations surfaces in one diocese, not coincidentally we see a spike in accusations in other dioceses. What is not often reported is that the vast majority of new accusations extend back decades. For example, for the first quarter of this year, 80 percent of the cases of alleged abuse involve incidences that occurred before 2000.

In March, an 80 year-old man came forward in St. Louis claiming he was abused 70 years ago by a priest who has been dead for a half century. This is not an anomaly: the same phenomenon has happened in other dioceses. Unfortunately, too often bishops have been quick to settle, thus inspiring more claims. When $225,000 is dished out to a Michigan man who claims he was abused in the 1950s by a priest who died in 1983—and the diocese admits the accusation is unsubstantiated—it encourages fraud.

A common belief, fostered by the media, is that there is a widespread sexual abuse problem in the Catholic Church today. The evidence is to the contrary: In 2004, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice issued its landmark study and found that most of the abuse occurred during the heyday of the sexual revolution, from the mid-1960s to the mid-1980s. What we are hearing about today are almost all old cases. To wit: from 2005 to 2009, the average number of new credible accusations made against over 40,000 priests was 8.6. This is a tribute to the reform efforts that have taken place: 5 million children and 2 million adults have gone through a safe environment program. Indeed, there is no religious, or secular, institution that can match this record, either in terms of the low rate of abuse or the extensiveness of a training program.

Penn State professor Philip Jenkins has studied this problem for years. After looking at the John Jay data, which studied priestly sexual abuse from 1950-2002, he found that “of the 4,392 accused priests, almost 56 percent faced only one misconduct allegation, and at least some of these would certainly vanish under detailed scrutiny.” Moreover, Jenkins wrote that “Out of 100,000 priests active in the U.S. in this half-century, a cadre of just 149 individuals—one priest out of every 750—accounted for over a quarter of all allegations of clergy abuse.” In other words, almost all priests have never had anything to do with sexual molestation.

The refrain that child rape is a reality in the Church is twice wrong: let’s get it straight—they weren’t children and they weren’t raped. We know from the John Jay study that most of the victims have been adolescents, and that the most common abuse has been inappropriate touching (inexcusable though this is, it is not rape). The Boston Globe correctly said of the John Jay report that “more than three-quarters of the victims were post pubescent, meaning the abuse did not meet the clinical definition of pedophilia.” In other words, the issue is homosexuality, not pedophilia.

When the National Review Board, a group of notable Catholics, issued its study in 2004, the team’s chief, attorney Robert S. Bennett, said that “any evaluation of the causes and context of the current crisis must be cognizant of the fact that more than 80 percent of the abuse at issue was of a homosexual nature.” One of the members, Dr. Paul McHugh, former psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins, has said that “This behavior was homosexual predation on American Catholic youth, yet it’s not being discussed.” By the way, the figures after 2004 haven’t changed—eight in ten cases involve homosexuality. Worldwide, the Vatican estimates that 60 percent of the cases are same-sex, 30 percent are heterosexual and 10 percent involve pedophilia.

Though the data belie the conventional wisdom, it’s hard to break stereotypes. The assault on priests as child abusers has become a staple in the arsenal of Jay Leno, Bill Maher, Denis Leary, George Lopez, “The View” panelists, and others. So it is hardly surprising to learn that a stranger approached New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan at the Denver airport last month saying, “I can’t look at you or any other priest without thinking of a sexual abuser.” Indeed, most priests I know do not dress in priestly garb when traveling—they’ve had to deal with similar instances.

Why are priests being singled out when the sexual abuse of minors among other segments of the population is on-going today? According to Virginia Commonwealth University professor Charol Shakeshaft, the nation’s leading education expert on this issue, “the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests.” We know from the work of Jenkins, and others, that there is no reason to believe that the rate of abuse is higher among Catholic priests than among the clergy of other religions. Moreover, there has been a slew of stories over the past few years detailing the extent of this problem in the Orthodox Jewish community; some rabbis still insist that sexual abuse cases should be handled internally. No wonder Jenkins maintains, “As a result of the furious investigations of the past decades, and particularly the John Jay study, the U.S. Catholic clergy are now the only major group on the planet that has ever been subjected to such a detailed examination of abuse complaints, using internal evidence that could not have come to light in any other way.”

It would be nice if we could all get on the same page regarding the proper remedies. But just three months ago, Federal District Court Judge Jack B. Weinstein took a “compassionate” view toward a man found guilty of collecting thousands of explicit pictures of children, as young as three, that he downloaded from a child porn website. Weinstein slammed existing legal penalties for the crime, saying, “We’re destroying lives unnecessarily. At the most, they should be receiving treatment and supervision.”

How often has the Church been ripped for following the advice of psychiatrists who thought they could “fix” molesters? To be sure, that was the zeitgeist several decades ago, as virtually every institution and profession can testify. Indeed, the punitive approach so favored today would have been cause for condemnation at that time had it been followed. Interestingly, a report on this situation in Ireland correctly concluded that had more bishops followed canon law, instead of seeking a more “compassionate” strategy, much of the problem could have been avoided.

The real damage done by the therapeutic approach is that it fostered the phenomenon of reassigning priests after they were treated. The exact same thing happened in the teaching profession. Indeed, moving treated teachers to new school districts is so common that it is called “passing the trash.” While moving treated priests to new parishes is no longer tolerated, the New York Times found that the practice of moving abusers around who work in New York’s state-run homes is commonplace.

Mandatory reporting of sexual crimes is not uniform in law or practice. In New York State, several attempts to blanket the clergy and other professionals have been met with resistance. Not by the bishops—but by Family Planning Advocates (the lobbying arm of Planned Parenthood) and the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU). Planned Parenthood counselors routinely learn about cases of statutory rape; mandatory reporting would obviously work against their clients’ interests. Even where mandatory reporting is law, such as in the state-run homes, it is seldom followed (more than 95 percent of the time the authorities are not contacted).

Calls for suspending the statute of limitations have regularly been made. But even if one sets aside the fundamental due process reasons why such laws exist, what is most disturbing about this issue is that they almost never apply to public employees. Unless explicitly stated, laws that revise the statute of limitations leave untouched those in education: they are protected by “sovereign immunity,” making transparent what the real goal is—“getting the priests.” And when proposed changes apply to teachers, in every state where this has happened, teachers’ unions and school superintendents have organized to register their objections. Why, then, should bishops who protest these revisions be criticized for doing so?

When the bishops met in Dallas in 2002 to consider reforms, panic gripped the conference. If there was one cleric who saw what the rush to judgment would do to the rights of priests it was the late Cardinal Avery Dulles. Sadly, events have proven him right. Quite frankly, it is more acceptable in our society today to defend the rights of Gitmo detainees than Catholic priests.

Grand juries are launched with the specific directive of investigating “sexual abuse of minors by individuals associated with religious organizations and denominations,” but then quickly evolve into the single-minded pursuit of priests; in Philadelphia, those who initially reviewed the accusations weren’t even called to testify. The unseemly practice of attorneys searching for new “victims” in bars and prisons is a disgrace. Just as sick is the sight of attorneys advertising for alleged victims of priests, but refusing to represent those abused by others. It has gotten so bad that dioceses are now being sued for “wrongful death” in cases where an alleged victim kills himself after his accusation was found wanting. And when AP runs a story on the “scandal” of allowing ex-priests to go unmonitored—as if someone is monitoring non-priest abusers—the bias shines through.

There is a huge difference between an accusation, a credible accusation, a substantiated accusation and a finding of guilt. But not when it applies to priests. I once had a female reporter lambaste me in my office when I expressed my opposition to proposals calling for all dioceses to publish the names of accused priests. I then asked her for her boss’ name and phone number. Startled, she asked why. “Because I want to press charges against you for sexually harassing me,” I intoned, “and then I want to see your name posted on your employer’s website.” She got the point.

BishopAccountabilty.org is accessed by reporters and lawyers for information on priestly sexual abuse, though the standards it uses cannot pass the smell test. It admits that the database “is based solely on allegations reported publicly” and that it “does not confirm the veracity of any actual allegation.” Swell. Furthermore, it says that “If an individual is ‘cleared’ or ‘exonerated’ by an internal church investigation and/or a diocesan review board decision, the individual remains in the database.” Ditto for cases where a priest faces an allegation for an act which occurred after he left the Catholic Church; even lawsuits against the dead are listed. There is no other group in the U.S. which is subjected to such gross unfairness. No wonder wildly exaggerated claims have been made based off of such collected “evidence.”

Perhaps no reform made in Dallas has proven to be more intrinsically dangerous than demands for “zero tolerance.” It all sounds so macho, but priests on the ground know first-hand what it means. Obviously, there should be no wiggle room in the most serious cases, but when priests are sued for “emotional” abuse, or violating “boundary issues,” the door is left wide open for exploitation. Dulles got it right when he said that “A priest who uttered an inappropriate word or made a single imprudent gesture is treated in the same way as a serial rapist.” Even worse, we now have the specter of a priest being suspended because a woman heard a kid in a playground call him a pedophile; she promptly called the cops. Joe Maher, president of Opus Bono Sacerdotii, a group that monitors the incidence of falsely accused priests, says that “at least a thousand priests…have been removed and remain out of public ministry because of unproven accusations.”

Because the Catholic Church is often criticized for not following a “zero tolerance” policy, the Catholic League did some investigation of its own. Here’s what we found. Almost every media outlet, teachers’ union and religious organization we examined does not have a “zero tolerance” policy in place for sexual misconduct (or any other offense). The few that do make no mention of mandatory reporting.

These organizations are not wrong for not having the same kind of policy that the Catholic Church has. The New York Times seems to understand this matter when applied to schools. In an editorial titled, “The Trouble With ‘Zero Tolerance,’” it noted that schools which have adopted these policies have created conditions where children are being “arrested for profanity, talking back, shoving matches and other behavior that would once have been resolved with detention or meetings with the students’ parents.” The NYCLU agreed saying, “De facto zero tolerance causes wrongful arrests, searches and suspensions of students in too many of the city’s neediest schools.” Yet as recently as April 2, the Times issued another editorial insisting the bishops follow this flawed policy.

No amount of reform will ever satisfy some. Attorneys like Jeffrey Anderson, and his well-greased friends at SNAP, a professional victims’ group, are dogmatic in their convictions; their hatred of the Catholic Church is palpable. Similarly, when others tell the bishops we’re going to “sue the s*** out of you,” and are informed that the goal is to put an “out of business” sign in front of every parish, school and charitable center, it is evident that the Church needs to fight back with greater vigor.

What accounts for the relentless attacks on the Church? Let’s face it: if its teachings were pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage and pro-women clergy, the dogs would have been called off years ago.

The British atheist Richard Dawkins is no fan of Catholicism. But he is honest enough to say that the Catholic Church “has been unfairly demonized over the issue, especially in Ireland and America.” Now if Dawkins gets it, why can’t others?

Bill Donohue
President
Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights

Below, Donohue making the same argument last year, also in the Times:

By:           Ryan Tedder
On:           Apr 11, 2011
Tagged: , , , , , ,
  • 47 Comments
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      More fuel on the fire to deny marriage equality in NYS. Thanks, bigot Donohue!

      Apr 11, 2011 at 10:44 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      More fuel on the fire to deny marriage equality in NYS. Thanks, bigot Donohue, twice married I might add!

      Apr 11, 2011 at 10:45 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • davidclohessy
      davidclohessy

      Half of our 10,000 members are women who were sexually assaulted as girls by Catholic priests, nuns, bishops, and seminarians.

      David Clohessy
      Executive Director, SNAP
      Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
      7234 Arsenal Street
      St. Louis MO 63143
      314 566 9790

      Apr 11, 2011 at 10:48 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JohnyStarr
      JohnyStarr

      Great article – but someone should proofread before they post – it’s making me crazy!

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hue-Man
      Hue-Man

      “Church employees abused their power by raping minor children but it’s OK because most of the attackers were homosexuals” Quite a ringing endorsement of his cult’s morality and surely a comfort to the thousands of victims around the world who bear the emotional scars from these predators.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:36 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ruhlmann
      Ruhlmann

      If deys lookin over der, dey ain’t lookin over here.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:56 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam
      Cam

      The string of Magdeline houses across Ireland have been ripped apart by scandal because young girls were abused, and held as virtual slaves there by the church, additionally many were raped by members of the clergy. So if this phony wants to claim that this isn’t rape, and is all male male he may want to keep those facts from getting out.

      It’s just too bad for him that in this day of the internet, news like this doesn’t just stay in Ireland anymore.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • fuzzy
      fuzzy

      @davidclohessy & @Cam: I’m glad people are willing to point this out. I know an adult woman who was sexually abused by Catholic clergy, and nobody ever mentions what she and others like her were forced to go through. It’s enraging to me that defenders of the church, and the media, are both focusing on same-sex abuse the way they have been – they’re ignoring the reality of the situation to serve their own needs: saving face or making money. The bottom line is that people have been hurt, and continue to be hurt, and it needs to stop.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:13 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      Bigot Donohue equates pedophilia with homosexuality, officially. He actually made that statement in 2009 as a guest on Air America while making sure the audience knew he was qualified to make it since he held a Ph.D. in sociology. He dismissed the hetero molesters and ignored the fact that the reason why there were far more male victims was that there were more males than there were girls available to the predator priests. He’s been spewing this misinformation ever since the scandal erupted. He also claimed pedophilia is overwhelmingly an homosexual phenomenon which doesn’t bare out the government statistics on the number of pedophilia crimes committed over the years predominantly by heterosexual males. Nobody takes him to task, at least nobody with indepth knowledge about the subject.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Richard
      Richard

      Did you miss the double entendre in the title? Straight Talk?

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • julia
      julia

      I believe the catholic church considers abuse of girls and adult women to be warrented and therefore not worth mentioning.
      They have gotton away with telling the world that we (females) “asked for it”, “deserve it” “seduced the priest””are loose women” “sluts”
      you know the rest..
      I think the worst part of all the articles and comments on catholic priest sex abuse scandal is the perpetuation of the lie that it was a few gay priests molesting a few altar boys.
      This is so not true.. i remember in the beginnings of all this back in the middle late 80’s people knew that if they focused on catholic girls and women who were raped by priests that no one would care.. so they decided deliberately to focus on the sweet little altar boys.. so this is what we have.
      we need to stop the lie

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sister Maureen Paul Turlish
      Sister Maureen Paul Turlish

      Church hierarchy tried to blame all the sexual abuse of children on those with a homosexual orientation some time back. I don’t remember if it was before or after the “blame it on the devil” excuse was floated. Neither one floated well.

      Are they now use What’s his name as their shill? I hope What’s his name had to pay a bundle for his ad.

      How many times must it be said that the sexual abuse of anyone, and in particular of children, is fundamentally an abuse of power and authority.

      In the case of any religious denominations or organizations it becomes abuse of children, young women, men and vulnerable adults through the spiritual power and authority the individual holds.

      What neither What’s his name nor any of the hierarchs have addressed, at least publicly, is their own, or their predecessors, involvement in protecting and covering up for sexual predators while victims got the short shrift.

      Perhaps that may change with the calls for the Cardinal Archbishop of Philadelphia’s resignation. Justin Rigali has managed to show just about all the holes in the Dallas Charter with the release of Philly’s second Grand Jury Report, the five arrests that followed and the almost thirty priests who were taken out of ministry. Msgr. William Lynn and the other four will have their formal arraignments on Friday, April 15th at 11:00 A.M. in the Criminal Justice Center in center city Philly.

      There will be rallies with protest signs beginning at 9:30 A.M. in front along with press conferences outside after the formal arraignments.

      When is the topic of disciplining complicit bishops and others going to be the subject of the bishops'(USCCB) meetings?

      JOIN US

      Also, check your Comcast Network Channel on Wednesday, April 13th at 5:30 P.M. for Larry Kane’s “Voice of Reason” show on the Philadelphia Church.

      Sister Maureen Paul Turlish
      Victims’ Advocate
      New Castle, Delaware
      maturlishmdsnd@yahoo.com

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • rhen
      rhen

      so why doesn’t someone also get a full page “ad” that explains things from the victims point of view? (hint hint SNAP) As much as it angers me that gays are being made out to be some kind of scapegoat, it’s more of an atrocity that these sick fucks aren’t being held accountable for their crimes. I hope there is a god because all these evil people pretending to be servants of god are going to fry like bacon in hell.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      These are some of the gems Donohue has spewed over the years…He has referred to the “gay death style,” remarked, “God forbid we’d run out of little gay kids,” claimed that Senator John Kerry “never found an abortion he couldn’t justify,” and claimed that “Hollywood is controlled by secular Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular … Hollywood likes anal sex.”

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:57 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jim Hlavac
      Jim Hlavac

      So, the NY Times, allegedly on our side (at least since Feb 13th 2011 — they couldn’t even wait until Feb 14th for their first time saying gay marriage is OK, you know, for the romance,) took the thirty pieces of silver. (Note to Queerty, advertising is prepaid; the check’s been cashed.)

      Meanwhile, ol’ Donahooey is seemingly unaware that as long ago as Pope Gregory the Great there were admonitions from the Church to its bishops, cardinals and priests — leave those boys alone.

      Virtually every 20 years for 1500 years some pope had to issue pleas to his clergy: leave those boys alone.

      In October 1492, Pope Alexander VI (nee Borgia, never married, three children, Lucretia of divorcing murderous fame, and Cesare, not a fine fellow, the third murdered after too many philandering hubbies caught up with him,) issued repeated “bulls” to prelates all over Europe — leave the boys alone. And he actually fired a few cardinals.

      It seems there hasn’t been a decade since around 500 AD when the Catholic Clergy was not involved in boy abuse. Indeed, it seems to be one big NAMBLA club, since like forever. I have the feeling if gay men were really pederasts, the Church would come to love us.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 12:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • John
      John

      Ah yes, now I remember why I left the Catholic Church…

      Apr 11, 2011 at 1:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ruhlmann
      Ruhlmann

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Cashel_Orphanage

      Apr 11, 2011 at 1:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr. Enemabag Jones
      Mr. Enemabag Jones

      1. Outside of anti-gay orgs, you are hard pressed to find medical doctors, or phychiatrists who will classify abuse as heterosexual, or homosexual. They consider sex with children it’s own sexuality outside of adult sexuality.

      2. Dr. Paul McHugh is an authoritarian Catholic, who is anti-gay and anti-trans; and he has a history of defending child abusers:

      “Yet Dr. McHugh once said Johns Hopkins’ Sexual Disorders Clinic, which treats molesters, was justified in concealing multiple incidents of child rape and fondling to police, despite a state law requiring staffers to report them.”

      3. With this full page advert, Bill Donhue has gone on record as defending shild abuse. No matter what he does for the rest of his life, this is a record of his defense of the indefensable

      Apr 11, 2011 at 1:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • rhen
      rhen

      I would also like to add, if the sociological data shows an over-representation of homosexuals in the church being the one’s abusing these kids, does that same statistic carry over in the secular portion of society? If not, then it’s obviously an element in catholicism that is the catalyst for these crimes.

      Also, why are they arguing semantics when it boils down to “sexual abuse of a minor”, a crime which should be punished by the legal system. The failure of our justice systems to prosecute these predators isn’t a failure of the church (they are only looking out for themselves, why would we expect them to admit their own atrocities?), it’s OUR failure and our GOVERNMENTS failure for not intervening and protecting our children. No matter the motivation for these acts, they are criminal and we must stop allowing church officials to exist above the law.

      I call on all christians and catholics to cease church attendance and stop giving donations to them until they start to criminally prosecute all the priests guilty of abuse and all the others who helped cover it up. Yes, I mean the pope too. If you hold the institution up as a greater value than the lives of the victims then you are no better than those who commit the crime, you are an abettor. You bear false witness.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 1:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Judy Jones
      Judy Jones

      http://www.ocala.com/article/20110411/APW/1104111355
      Report sees lapses in bishops’ child safety policy

      Quoted on NPR by William Gavin, March 29th.

      “Philadelphia may not be alone, says William Gavin, a former FBI agent who was hired by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to audit each of the 195 Catholic dioceses each year and make sure they’re preventing and reporting sex abuse cases. “It was an audit in quotes,” he says. “I think it was more of a program review than anything else.”
      Gavin says he could ask whether a diocese is conducting background checks on priests and employees ­ but he was not allowed to look at records that would indicate whether there were any allegations against a priest.
      “We didn’t have the benefit of drilling down into personnel files to see what might be there,” Gavin says. “They were off limits.”
      Gavin and his auditors had to depend on a bishop’s word about whether anyone had been accused of abuse. In addition, the questionnaire they use wouldn’t have spotted the Philadelphia 21 anyway. It only asks about allegations within the past year, not older cases.”

      Quoted by Barbara Blaine, SNAP President, April 11th.

      The real solution to this on-going child sex abuse and cover up crisis is two-fold.
      1. Every single person who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes and cover ups must continue to come forward, get help, call police, expose wrongdoers, protect kids and start healing.
      2. Archaic, predator friendly laws must be reformed so that child predators and those who shield them can be exposed in court and others who are tempted to act recklessly, callously and deceitfully are deterred.

      Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, 636-433-2511
      snapjudy@gmail.com
      “Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests”
      http://www.snapnetwork.org/

      Apr 11, 2011 at 1:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      No, 19…Rhen….to answer your question in regard to the overemphasis of male to male molestation in the church and any carryover into secular society, according to the U. S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, it conducted a study some time ago, I believe it was 2004 in which out of more than 234,000 cases of molestation against children under 13, three quarters of those convicted were apparently heterosexual.

      I don’t know how bigot Donohue could counter government crime statistics with his own bias to overstate homosexual molestation. In fact, a male molesting another male doesn’t necessarily mean the perpetrator is homosexual at all. As a sociolgist, he should know that. Its all about availabity of the targeted victim(s), something which Dononhue can’t get his head around. I wonder if he would have had the article printed had the church scandal involved more girls than boys? Probably not.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 2:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • greenmanTN
      greenmanTN

      According to Jason Berry in “Lead Us Not Into Temptation,” one of the earliest books (1992) about the modern child sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church, it became common knowledge in pedophile circles over the years that becoming a Catholic Priest was a ‘good gig.’ You had lots of access to children, the Church would cover up your crimes and not report you to authorities, and if your crimes did become a legal matter the church would pay for your defense. Pedophiles (or ephebophiles, for strict accuracy) flocked to the church for these reasons and in the intervening years rose through the church hierarchy so oversight was further weakened. It was far more important to the Church that it protect its power, reputation, and financial holdings than protect its parishioners.

      Complicating things further, the priesthood and convents had traditionally been a repository for homosexual Catholics since a lack of sexual interest in the opposite sex was seen, often deliberately, as “a calling.” It was what gay Catholics were supposed to do, join a religious order. The lowest estimate of the percentage of gay seminarians given in Berry’s book by experts was 30%, with other estimates going higher, over 50%. Berry goes to great pains to distinguish between gays and pedophiles, but surmises that in most cases gay priests either remained celibate or formed relationships with adult males, but for some sexual repression and denial plus frequent contact with youth resulted in a warping of adult homosexual desire and resulted in the abuse of underaged boys.

      I’m no expert on the topic but that makes sense to me.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 2:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh

      And what about the case of those nuns who were raped by priests and then forced to have abortions? That seems like a PRETTY FUCKING HETEROSEXUAL problem, if you ask me.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 2:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Syl
      Syl

      Just sickening. And pious fools actually parrot this stuff. ‘It’s because they let the homos into and run the seminaries’, I heard a relative say this weekend. Underlying this defense is the belief, and spreading of the belief, that all or most homosexuals are rapists and child molesters, when all credible data suggests that a child is less safe with a male heterosexual than anyone else. Add all the little girls molested, and it is clear that this isn’t homosexuality, but sexual predation and opportunism.

      I’m sick of this self-serving, two-faced criminal enterprise and its useful idiot defenders. Is it really impossible to be a good Catholic and hold the church and its leaders accountable? If it is, then fuck it.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 4:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DJ
      DJ

      Brain washers… Just sayin…

      Apr 11, 2011 at 4:24 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • GetBalance
      GetBalance

      GreenmanTN

      I agree. That is a very black and white picture, but it has perfect contrast.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 4:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the crustybastard
      the crustybastard

      Applying Bill Donohue’s “logic,” by observing that 100% of the child-raping priests were Catholic, it is fair to conclude that all Catholics are child-rapists.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 4:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hana
      Hana

      If he wants a language lesson, the correct term for sexual predation on adolescents by adults is either hebephilia or ephebophilia, and like pedophilia, the word does not change whether it is “straight” or “gay”. probably because, like pedophilia, it is not about sex or sexual preference as much as it is about a feeling of power derived from abusing another person. in this case, one who may not have the experience and judgment or the legal standing to give informed consent. i don’t know of many places where a teenager is considered legally capable of giving informed consent to sexual activity with adults, and in my opinion, any sexual act performed without consent is a sexual assault. a few more years added to the victim’s age does not change that.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 5:24 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jonnied
      jonnied

      The truth sometimes hurts. You people are terribly sick. May God have mercy on your souls

      Apr 11, 2011 at 6:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 19 · rhen wrote, “Also, why are they arguing semantics when it boils down to ‘sexual abuse of a minor’, a crime which should be punished by the legal system.”

      Simple answer – it is PR trick. Researchers may distinguish pedophilia from ephebophilia or hebephilia for technical reasons (differing behavior, and maybe different causes), while the general public tends to use the term “pedophilia” regardless.

      If you can technically say the priests are not pedophiles (using the research definition), the public will assume you mean that the sex-abuse scandal never actually happened. If someone complains about the lies, you then go into a long-winded technical explanation that everyone ignores, just remembering that you had some sort of credible-sounding reply. Large businesses use this sort of trick whenever they have to explain away an embarrassment, so it is nothing new.

      From an ethical perspective, these church supporters are simply liars – their use of wording is obviously intended to mislead people – but if you try to call them on it, they have a plausible reply based on an arcane defininition.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 6:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • John
      John

      @jonnied: Perhaps you’d better save your prayers for your own tortured soul and those of the “pedophile pimps” you seek to provide cover for. If you seriously believe that Christ is happy about the slander, lies and other shenanigans you nutjobs have engaged in because of your belief that homosexual behavior is sinful, you are very sadly mistaken and are in for quite a rude shock come Judgment Day.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 6:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeffree
      Jeffree

      The Catholic church’s way of dealing with the abuse scandals is rigorously questioning all applicants to the priesthood about being gay.

      Confusing same-sex orientation with pedophilia means that theyre still not getting at the source of the abuse. What they *are* reducing is the number of new priests by at least 30%.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 7:07 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Christine
      Christine

      Recommendation for a great new book, for anyone interested in the Catholic clergy abuse situation:

      Clergy Sexual Abuse Litigation – Survivors Seeking Justice, by Jennifer M. Balboni, http://www.FirstForumPress.com

      Apr 11, 2011 at 8:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Markie-Mark
      Markie-Mark

      Perhaps gays could consider canceling their subscription to the NYTimes. It really is indefensible that the Times offers this bigot a platform and then you’re paying for the privilege of reading it.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 9:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Colin
      Colin

      Did anyone ever read the piece or just read queerty’s ridiculous selective criticism of it?! Donohue never says homosexual behavior is OK, just the opposite!! And the anti-Catholic bias is obvious when you realize that the vast majority of priests are admirable, virtuous men who are faithful to a vow most would find way too difficult to keep. Yet all you hear is about the “Catholic Church’s” problem as if it’s rampant throughout the clergy when just thn opposite is true. And btw, to believe practicing homosexuality is inappropriate is a right to free exercise of belief, speech, etc. and does not qualify one for the hate diatribes emanating from these pages…how about just plain old honest disagreement….try it; it’s much easier on the blood pressure and may even lead to appreciation for the other’s point of view if not agreement…

      Apr 11, 2011 at 10:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Christine
      Christine

      @Colin: Why have the vast majority of “admirable, virtuous” priests been so quiet about the abuse and the cover-up in their church? How many of these so-called admirable priests have publicly supported the victims? How many have demanded that all the enabling bishops be held accountable? How many have publicly criticized their leaders for failing to be transparent? Pathetically few. Where is their outrage?

      Why have the (very few) courageous priests who have spoken out been shunned, punished, and dismissed by other priests and their leaders?

      And you are missing the point, the protecting of abusing priests WAS rampant and continues to be an issue. This is a systimatic, wide-spread, world-wide crisis. It is an issue which ALL Catholic clergy need address. Enough with the excuses.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • GetBalance
      GetBalance

      This is very very bad press for the catholic church. Anything that highlights man boy sex in the clergy Is going to deepen the fracture no matter how its verbally framed. Bring it. Crash bang splat. The sooner the better.

      Apr 11, 2011 at 11:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeffree
      Jeffree

      @Christine:(36). Well said!

      A group of Catholic nuns came out against the abuse publicly, and were basically silenced.

      The sad fact is that the abusers were moved from one diocese to another instead of being ousted. Culpability is not just for the priests who abused children but also for those who enabled them by silence & coverups.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 12:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • All Natural Loving
      All Natural Loving

      Colin

      “And the anti-Catholic bias is obvious when you realize that the vast majority of priests are admirable, virtuous men ”

      The overwhelming majority of all GLBTQ people are admirable, virturous, compassionate human beings who would never abuse a child or cover up such abuse. Yet the Catholic hierarchy continues to lie, portraying all GLBTQ people as people who rape children.

      Most GLBTQ people are more virtuous than the average Catholic priest.

      “And btw, to believe practicing homosexuality is inappropriate is a right to free exercise of belief, speech, etc.”

      No, not really. The belief that homosexuality is a sin falls under the legal definition “fighting words” and is not protected free speech, though it is protected as religious speech.

      More importantly, that belief is not innocent or neutral or innocuous. It explicitly asserts that the most beautiful, loving, intimate, personal aspect of the lives of millions of human beings, makes them worthy of death, abuse, torture, and eternal damnation. Bear in mind, the Catholic church used to torture and murder homosexuals, or people presumed to be homosexuals.

      “and does not qualify one for the hate diatribes emanating from these pages…”

      So, yes, that belief does qualify for extreme critism, as you would recognize if you had a functioning moral/ethical code. Shoot, if you had even a semi-functioning morality, you’d at least recognize that the Catholic hierarchy is at least entitle to criticism that matches what they inflict on GLBTQ people. And that equality of criticism has not been met. After all, anti-gay theology is so vicious, so constant in society, that it drives some people to commit hate crimes against GLBTQ people, and some GLBTQ people to commit suicide. So far, the criticism of anti-gay theology has not had a parallel consequence.

      “how about just plain old honest disagreement”

      How about mind your own business? No heterosexual, of any religious background, has any right to disagree with homosexuality. None. You don’t get to disagree with anyone else’s intrinsic trait, no more than racists get to disagree with people having dark skin.

      While the incidence of sexual predators within the Catholic clergy was not substantially higher than that found in any other demographic group – the coverup by the hierarchy enabled predatory clergy to have access to a disproportionately higher number of victims, and the practice of moving them to new hunting grounds, facilitated these predators in harming an above-average number of people. And all of that is simply compounded by the hierarchy’s tactic of punishing and persecuting the victims.

      The deepest horror in all this is not that some clergy abused their authority and preyed on children, teens and adults sexually, but that the organization itself, the church hierarchy, enabled the abuse to continue, facilitated it by protecting predators when caught and moving them to new, unsuspecting communities of potential victims.

      Additionally, the Catholic church’s repressive and regressive theology about sex, particularly anti-gay theology, had the effect of enabling sexual abuse by placing the burden of shame and guilt on the victims.

      The institution of the Catholic Church, and its theology about sex, is the real problem. But congenital liars like Bill Donahue profit from both, and so blame innocents – the victims of abuse and GLBTQ people, rather than work for the necessary changes to the institution and its theology on sex.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 1:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jubejubes
      jubejubes

      Looks like they’re following an instruction manual that says “blame the Jews, then blame the victims, then blame the homosexuals,” which is pretty much their go-to policy on everything. The fact of the matter is, no matter how much they try to rationalise it, children were psychologically and sometimes physically damaged on their watch. “Oh, it’s because of the evil gays”–did the evil gays FORCE you to let them join your cult, and then FORCE you to cover up their crimes too? The Church officials all had a hand in these crimes whether they ever touched a child or not. I’d say I wonder how they sleep at night, except I doubt they sleep at all, since sleep is for human beings, not mindless soulless merciless cyborgs.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 1:26 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 39 · All Natural Loving wrote, “No heterosexual, of any religious background, has any right to disagree with homosexuality. None. You don’t get to disagree with anyone else’s intrinsic trait, no more than racists get to disagree with people having dark skin.”

      [following uses “you” as a less formal equivalent to “one”)

      Not true in the U.S. under the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech (and freedom to have your own ideas – thought police are prohibited). What is not allowed is to act on those beliefs in specific ways, including refusing to hire them, mistreating them at work, not allowing them as customers, renters, guests at a hotel, etc.

      If you don’t like racial/ethnic minorities or gays, you have a right not to invite them into your home or associate with them socially. If you act like that, however, you can expected to suffer the same treatment as more reasonable people decide they want nothing to do with you.

      Basically, U.S. law allows you to act like a jerk and to be treated as one as a result.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 1:49 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kyle
      Kyle

      @robert in NYC: He’s actually right in saying it isn’t pedophilia. IF the majority of victims are post-pubescant (meaning they have hit puberty) then it’s pederasty, which is something completely differnt. Pederasty is also something that’s been practiced in the world of thousands of years, and still is. In fact, it was even in America until after World War II. My issue is it’s rape…these boys/girls are stating they didn’t want the touching and such to take place, that’s rape, plain and simple.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 9:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The sane Francis
      The sane Francis

      What’s so interesting is that there was an in depth study and investigation on the causes of the raping within the Catholic church, and it was found that homosexuality was not a cause of the problems. So really, all it comes down to at this point is a man who hates gay people who is going to say whatever he so chooses to justify that hate and brainwash others into hating us.

      As for people who say “I disagree with homosexuality”, well, I disagree with rain. I disagree with allergies. I disagree with sicknesses. I disagree with them. I don’t believe in them. I disagree with Asians. I don’t believe they are Asian. I disagree with it. I’m beginning to disagree with women, too. Women are bad. Because they are women. And I disagree with what women are, which are women, because of that.

      Make sense? No. Neither does being anti-gay.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 9:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      Kyle, yes, he is right. Either way, as you say, unsolicited advances or touching of the vicitims who were post pubescent does constitute sexual assault or rape, no question about it. I still wonder if he would be reacting the same way or printing the article had the vast majority of cases been heterosexual oriented? I don’t think there would have been as much villification had that been the case. This is clearly an attack on gays to the exclusion of the straight perpetrators involved. He’s not once denigrated any of those or their orientation, nor has he villified heterosexuals in general as he has us. In his distored view of the world, Gay = pedophile, Gay = HIV/AIDS, Gay = chosen lifestyle, period. There are no exceptions to that in his mind. We’re all painted with the same brush, scapegoats for all that is wrong with the roman cult, among others. His views aren’t much different on marriage equality either. We are destroying marriage and responsible for the immorality in society.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 9:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • robert in NYC
      robert in NYC

      Kyle, yes, he is right. Either way, as you say, unsolicited advances or touching of the vicitims who were post pubescent does constitute sexual assault or rape, no question about it. I still wonder if he would be reacting the same way or printing the article had the vast majority of cases been heterosexual oriented? I don’t think there would have been as much villification had that been the case. This is clearly an attack on gays to the exclusion of the straight perpetrators involved. He’s not once denigrated any of those or their orientation, nor has he villified heterosexuals in general as he has us. In his distorted view of the world, Gay = pedophile, Gay = HIV/AIDS, Gay = chosen lifestyle, period. There are no exceptions to that in his mind. We’re all painted with the same brush, scapegoats for all that is wrong with the roman cult, among others. His views aren’t much different on marriage equality either. We are destroying marriage and responsible for the immorality in society.

      Apr 12, 2011 at 9:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      http://www.latexmaskcentral.com/images/difeofatdevil1thumb.jpg

      Apr 12, 2011 at 10:32 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DJ
      DJ

      It seems that he is big on stereotypes. Which just shows how ignorant he is. Someone needs to rip out his voice box. It really sounds like he has some hidden issues within himself.

      And Michael was so right. Instead of blaming this all on gay people, look at what’s going on in the CATHOLIC church; the catholic church is the only one having this problem. Maybe the priest are being suppressed mentally and it leads them to this type of behavior… Don’t fucking say just because your gay you’re more proan to being a pedophile. I for one have NO interest in dating anyone younger than me. Ever.

      May 3, 2011 at 8:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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