Oh, and the reason the Catholic Church has needed to so doggedly defend itself for so long against such wide-spread, baseless accusations is because it opposes abortion, gay marriage and women as clergy. Welcome to the twisted world of uber-right-wing, self-appointed president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, Bill Donahue.
“Let’s face it, said Donahue, “if its (the church’s) teachings were pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage and pro-women clergy, the dogs would have been called off years ago.”
These statements appeared Monday in a pricey New York Times ad placed by the Catholic League that fired salvos at “those who are distorting the truth about priestly sexual abuse.” The ad lays the blame for wide-spread Catholic sex scandals and decades-long cover-ups squarely on “homosexuality, not pedophilia.”
According to Donahue, “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 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)… 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.”
Marianne Duddy-Burke, executive director of DignityUSA voices exception to Donahue’s claims, which completely ignore the fact that half of the claimants are female. “He avoids what is in many ways the larger sin — the cover-up and enabling of abuse,” says Ms. Duddy-Burke.
So much for the homosexuality claim. It’s so much easier to make a point if one simply overlooks inconvenient facts or doesn’t mind ignoring sticky little details like the truth.
Phil Attey, executive director of Catholics for Equality said, “all of the arguments we see in this ad are scapegoating attempts.” He continued, “We’re disappointed that Bill Donahue refuses to look at the long-term well-being of the Catholic Church by joining the overwhelming majority of American Catholics who see the only path toward fixing the problem to be the establishment of permanent structures for the laity to be involved in the running of the church.”
As a practicing Catholic, I find Mr. Donahue and his lying gaggle of hard-right wing-nut perv apologists even more loathsome than priests actually found guilty of this ugliness. The priests after all, are deviants. They needed to be punished but were instead aided and abetted by an institution more interested in protecting its reputation than its congregation. They also needed counseling. Donahue and his lackeys are simply manipulative, deceitful pricks. Among other things, they need to be pimp-slapped.
These victims aren’t conniving homosexuals and painting them as such is simply hideous–not only because it defames hapless victims, but because it also fans flames of bigotry and hatred against homosexuals. How Christian. Way to go, Bill.