Can we finally stop pretending

…that religion has anything to do with morality?

hypocrite-catholics

No sooner does this evil odious shit about Catholic institutional sex abuse in Ireland hit the fan, than we have this, from Seattle:

A 44-year-old man who sued the Catholic Archdiocese in Seattle over alleged sexual abuse by a priest has settled his case for $700,000, his attorney says.

and this, from the UK:

A Catholic priest has been jailed for sexually assaulting three boys in County Durham during the 1980s.

Father David Taylor, 59, of Bedlington, Northumberland, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years at Durham Crown Court.

and this, from Milwaukee:

It’s been 40 years since Jerry Kobs and Jim St. Patrick roamed the halls at St. Patrick’s grade school on Milwaukee’s south side, but they said the pain of the sexual abuse they endured at the hands of their teacher Sister Norma Giannini is still fresh.

and this, from Minneapolis:

A Roman Catholic brother who taught at Cretin High School in the late 1960s and early 1970s has been accused in a lawsuit of sexually abusing a teenage boy who attended the school.

and this, from Wisconisn:

An appeals court on Wednesday upheld the 2006 conviction of a once-prominent Jesuit priest on charges he abused two students during retreats in Wisconsin in the 1960s.

…and these stories are all from within the last couple of days. And there’s more — way more — just google “Catholic” + “sex abuse”. Clearly, if it’s a day that ends in a “Y”, it’s time for more news about more diddler priests and the rotten stinking shit-eating scum that cover up for and enable them. Does the expression “systemic rot” come to mind?

If only all those abused kids hadn’t had the bad luck to have already made it out of the birth canal, maybe we might see some outrage from the church rank and file.

27 Responses to “Can we finally stop pretending”


  1. 1 deBeauxOs Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    JJ – great political cartoon!

    I’m afraid that even if you sent that memo “Religion has nothing to do with morality” to Blob Blogging Wingnut in triplicate, SHE will ignore you.

    Lalalalalalala – I’m not listening to anyone but the Pope, says SHE.

  2. 2 theconverted Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Religion is based on the amoral idea that one person has the right to control the thoughts, bodies and lives of others because they have special dispensation form an imaginary sky fairy and wear a pointy hat.

    Of course religion has nothing to do with morality, the two things are opposites.

    I will be a happy man if I can live to see the day when the last Catholic priest dies in prison. Either old age or a sharpened toothbrush will do.

    Mike

  3. 3 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    deBeauxOs – Ha! It’s amazing what turns up when you go to google images and search “pedophile priest”.

    SUZANNE must be disturbed by all this bad news about more pedophile priests… she’s gone into full “40 YEARS OF ABORTION 3 MILLION MURDERED BABIES BRRRAAACCCCK!” mode, complete with fetus pron. You can always gauge how rattled she is by the amount of fetus pron she posts 😉

  4. 4 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    Mike – While I can see someone using spirituality as a guide or whatever (as long as they keep it personal), I have no use for organized religion in general and conservative religion in particular, especially conservative catholicism. It seems to be no more than institutionalized authoritarianism and extortion dressed up as spirituality. The Catholic church is so compromised by vileness and corruption I’m surprised it doesn’t collapse under the weight of its own rot.

  5. 6 hemmingforddogblog Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    There all isolated incidents…8)

  6. 7 mouthyorange Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    JJ – I like what you said to Mike.

    If there is a grand creator of some sort, I can’t imagine how relating to it could be anything other than personal, direct and unique for each individual. I can’t imagine anyone standing between someone else and the supposed creator and daring to interpret, define, or dictate the other’s relationship without his or her own agenda coming into play. Religion is a human construct – social, cultural, political, and often economic. Religion has nothing necessarily to do with spirituality, and at its worst ends up being but one more of the many corrupt social institutions that humans have created.

  7. 8 Rev Dave Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    “Cretin High School”? That’s… oddly fitting. I wonder who came up with that name.

  8. 9 deBeauxOs Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    Gaah. It makes you wonder from which medical textbook collection of photos of late-term miscarriages does Blob Blogging Wingnut get her gruesome pix.

    Those look like illustrations from case studies of pregnancies where a non-viable fetus stopped thriving in the third trimester and the fundamentalist christian doctors forced a woman to keep it inside her womb until she died in labour, as a punishment for not being a good incubator.

  9. 10 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    JAB – Speaking of things that should collapse under the weight of their own rot, Donohue must be one of those people with the fried logic circuits I referred to earlier this week. Maybe he should try googling “Catholic + sex abuse” if he thinks the church is being undeservedly targeted.

    What a putz.

  10. 11 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    SQ

    There all isolated incidents…

    I wonder how many “incidents” have to occur before they become “not-so-isolated”. (Are we there yet?) I’m pretty sure that the whole organization could be shown to be a gang of depraved child-molesting thugs, from Pope SeigHeil on down, and the rabidly devout would find a way to minimize it.

  11. 12 J. A. Baker Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    Speaking of things that should collapse under the weight of their own rot,

    Or in Donohue’s case, “Things that should simply collapse under their own weight.” 😆

  12. 13 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    orange

    Religion is a human construct – social, cultural, political, and often economic. Religion has nothing necessarily to do with spirituality, and at its worst ends up being but one more of the many corrupt social institutions that humans have created.

    Well said, that’s my feeling exactly. I’m an atheist, but I consider myself a very spiritual person (in a slightly pagan-ish way, heavy emphasis on nature). But the bottom line is one doesn’t have to adhere to an organized mainstream religion, or any religion at all, to be spiritual. Institutionalizing spirituality in the is no doubt well-intentioned, but unfortunately too many of the people who seem to end up running the “institutions” are authoritarian prigs who use spirituality as a club to beat people into following their “rules”.

  13. 14 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 6:21 pm

    Rev Dave 😆 That’s the first thing I noticed. “CRETIN?” Are you serious?? 😈

  14. 15 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    deBeauxOs – Aborted at 27 weeks — so sayeth SUZANNE.

    If that picture was an abortion, it was done for some medical emergency. It also represents less than 1/2 a % of all abortions, so when she puts it under a headline that says “3 million!!!!11!!oneone!” she’s being very dishonest. What a surprise!!! 😯

  15. 16 JJ Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    deBeauxOs – O/T – stageleft addressed your concerns about his post in the other thread here, if you want to go have a look.

  16. 17 brebis noire Friday, May 22, 2009 at 3:40 am

    Every time she posts fetus pron, it breaks my browser so I don’t go back for several days or weeks. And I have this feeling that SHE thinks it’s quite all right that kids are being abused by priests: Abuse is OK as long as it’s being done by authorities. It’s only freelance abuse that’s not OK.
    And that is why so-cons will stand up for the rights of abusive priests and teachers everywhere. You’ll hear them muttering in corners these days about how that teacher’s aide in Thunder Bay was perfectly in her rights to cut off the hair of the 7-year-old First Nations child.

  17. 18 toujoursdan Friday, May 22, 2009 at 5:32 am

    Dare I say that there are many are greatly helped in living more moral lives in religious communities, but in my experience the healthiest religions tend to be decentralized and “light” (non-dogmatic/non-controlling), like Anglicanism, Reform Judaism, the United Church of Canada, Buddhism, Unitarians, etc.

    The problem occurs when any institution becomes too centralized, too ideological, too focused on gaining power. But the ugly truth is that any human organization has the potential of becoming that – religious organizations being one of of them. I don’t think it has much do to with religion per se, but is part of human nature and group dynamics to try to control others even when it goes against the core principles of the organization. (Remember Orwell’s “Animal Farm”?)

    And while I am very supportive of people who are spiritual but not religious and as a gay person certainly share a certain disdain of what comes out of organized religion, I also know that spiritual people organizing and coming together leads to much good as well. Many of North America’s great universities and hospitals were built by religious groups. Catholic Charities and Episcopal Relief and Development have been in the trenches in Southern California and Arizona working hard to help families avoid foreclosure. And the Baptists were one of the first to arrive after Hurricane Katrina, opening foodbanks and putting up shelters. It’s all great to be spiritual on your own, but being part of a community allows people of similar beliefs and values to do great things beyond what we can do individually. A

    So great good and great bad can come out of religious institutions, but overall, I still think they have a niche in society.

    Finally, it’s not just religious institutions that have abused us. As a gay person I am often reminded that some of the worst abuses of my community didn’t come from religion, but from the psychiatric and psychological communities who, in their attempts to “cure” us locked us in mental hospitals, castrated us, injected us with hormones, put us into jails where we were raped and gave us lobotomies. That only stopped within my lifetime. And gays were just as poorly treated in atheist regimes (Cuba, East Germany, etc.) as they were in overtly religious ones. So I don’t believe for one minute that if you got rid of religion, the world would necessarily be a safer place for people like me.

    As far as I am concerned, anyone who abuses anyone else, as well as those who cover it up need to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I think our government needs to be as secular as possible and clip the wings of any group – religious or otherwise – that tries to dominate and control others. I was glad when my own church, the Anglican Church, was hauled before the court for the Residential school debacle and I am glad to see the RCC get it’s comeuppance here. We deserve it and, in my church’s case, it led to great soul searching and change.

  18. 19 mouthyorange Friday, May 22, 2009 at 5:38 am

    “You’ll hear them muttering in corners these days about how that teacher’s aide in Thunder Bay was perfectly in her rights to cut off the hair of the 7-year-old First Nations child.”

    So outrageous, so outrageous. I don’t even have words yet for that one.

  19. 20 JJ Friday, May 22, 2009 at 6:02 am

    brebis

    “You’ll hear them muttering in corners these days about how that teacher’s aide in Thunder Bay was perfectly in her rights to cut off the hair of the 7-year-old First Nations child.”

    Unreal.

    If anyone laid hands on my kid like that I’d kick their motherfucking ass around the block. What do they think these kids are, property?? Dolls they can play with? It’s mind boggling.

    EDIT: I should add, this hair cutting thing is more than a kid’s personal space being violated by a teacher, it’s part of something bigger — cultural assimilation — the kid was growing his hair so he could participate in some first nations dances and ceremonies.

  20. 21 mouthyorange Friday, May 22, 2009 at 6:38 am

    JJ – “I’d kick their motherfucking ass around the block.”

    Yeah, then YOU’D get charged with assault! I can’t believe the Crown doesn’t think this is worth their time!

    I know several adults who had their hair forcibly chopped off when they were kids — in one case by an older bully kid. They were all traumatized by the incident and it became part of the psychological baggage that they had to bear for the rest of their lives. It can be really serious stuff. And that’s even without a racial component as part of it.

  21. 22 JJ Friday, May 22, 2009 at 6:44 am

    toujoursdan – As always, well and thoughtfully said.

    I should have said “catholicism” since that’s primarily what the post is about, and the catholic church, more than any other, seems to be a self-appointed arbiter of morality, while being the worst abusers.

    There’s been abuse in other churches and their residential schools, but nowhere has it been so widespread and the attempts to cover it up so self-servingly malevolent than in the RC church. Other churches, Anglican and United, took their lumps and moved on. The Catholic church OTOH seems to be continually more concerned with covering up or denying that abuse even happens on their watch. It seems to me that such an organization has lost any “moral authority”.

    I don’t doubt that there are good people of faith in the trenches, doing great things for the community and the world. I just think it’s unfortunate that these works wouldn’t be doable without the backing of a church that’s so corrupt. It sort of reminds me of Tony Soprano sponsoring his kid’s soccer team.

  22. 23 JJ Friday, May 22, 2009 at 6:49 am

    orange

    Yeah, then YOU’D get charged with assault!

    I don’t care. They wouldn’t touch my kid again.

    I can’t believe the Crown doesn’t think this is worth their time!

    I’m not surprised at all: if it does, as I suspect, have something to do with assimilation, that’s the government’s goal with first nations. They are quite upfront about it.

  23. 24 Cornelius T.Zen Friday, May 22, 2009 at 6:54 am

    Good morrow, all!
    I would recommend a movie. “Sleepers.”
    Four neighbourhood boys are sent to reformatory, and are abused by the guards. Years later, they take their revenge.
    Payback is a bitch, and Karma bites like a junkyard dog.
    Imagine what is in store for those abusing priests. Hell would be a welcome respite.
    Tastes best when eaten cold — CTZEn

  24. 25 JJ Friday, May 22, 2009 at 7:11 am

    CTZen – OMG, I saw that movie years ago. It was awesome. They all grow up to take different paths, then somehow get together and take revenge… oh yeah, it was great.

    I’ve often wondered how they square their belief in hell with what they do in real life — certainly if hell existed, that’s where they’d be going. Maybe they think their devotion to the church makes up for those transgressions?

  25. 26 Cornelius T.Zen Friday, May 22, 2009 at 8:00 am

    Good morrow, JJ!
    I can just imagine St. Peter at The Gates:
    “Yes, Father Flannagan…let’s see…oh, my…oh, dear…tsk, tsk…most unfortunate…ewww…Jesus Shagging Christ!…Holy Mother of God!…Simon? Paula? Randy?…thought so…Father, you’ve been voted off the cloud…have a nice trip…it’s a long way down…give my regards to Lucy…NEXT!…Ah, Father O’Reilly…let’s see…”
    Yippie-ki-yay mother…CTZen


  1. 1 JABbering Stooge :: I have a feeling… :: May :: 2009 Trackback on Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 12:14 pm

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