Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

The Catholic Church is complicit in sex abuse

Last week, The Crimson White editorial board printed an opinion that seemed so straightforward as to be impossible to argue against.

The Catholic Church, they pointed out, seems to value affiliation over justice, and needs to stop pointing the finger at secularists and start giving potential pederasts something to fear.

Someone logged in as “klynn” then volunteered in a comment on the Web site that The CW was spewing hate, needed to do research, and should realize that this is all the fault of psychiatry and liberalism. Here’s a little research, from me to you.

According to the anonymous poster, the Catholic Church was just following the pop psychology of the day when they let felons continue to be felons.

Freudian psychoanalysts of the 1960s claimed to be able to cure pedophiles, the commenter claims, and the church went along with them. Once academia saw the light, the church started cracking down. That’s wrong on two counts.

Take the recently revealed case of Peter Hullermann, a German priest in Essen, Germany, who was accused of abusing three boys in 1979 and sent to therapy. The psychiatrist who treated Hullermann found him to be an unrepentant alcoholic in denial who saw himself as a victim and showed no serious desire to change. The psychiatrist recommended that Hullermann be monitored at all times and unambiguously told them to never let him near children again.

Instead, he was offered a new job in Munich. He continued to drink, show pornography to minors and abuse them. Then he was caught and fined. Then he went back to work again.

One of the officials to whom the Hullermann memo was addressed was none other than Joseph Ratzinger, who is now the man in charge of definitively doing something about the church’s warped methods for dealing with sex offenders. The Pope continues to say he knows nothing of any of these cases, and every official interviewed who is not still directly working for the Vatican says that, given Benedict’s micromanaging style, there’s no way he didn’t know.

A former Catholic theologian also testified that Benedict knew of the sexual abuse at a boy’s choir school where the Pope’s brother was choirmaster. The head of the church in Ireland attended a secret tribunal in which victims were sworn to secrecy. No one has asked for his resignation.

If you think this attitude is conveniently located in the past, may I direct you to the memo that the current Pope himself sent out that is dated 2001.

He claimed that recently surfaced allegations should be dealt strictly within the church “in the most secretive way,” and threatened excommunication to those who told.

May I then direct you to the case of Oliver O’Grady, a California priest who was pinballed from one job to another until as late as the 1990s while he violated around 25 children. KLynn, if your friend is reading this to you, and you tuned out while he or she read all of those pieces of evidence, please tune in long enough to hear this one: Victims’ groups around the world have asked the Pope to throw these guys in jail, and he won’t respond.

This isn’t about homosexuality, nor is about the psychiatry of pedophilia. The Catholic Church believes it has a direct line to the most powerful being in the universe, and they think this puts them above the law.

It is revealed through the Vatican writing its own “statute of limitations” for sex abuse cases.

It was revealed when Mother Teresa took money from Charles Keating and refused to give it back to the people whom Keating stole it from, even when a district attorney personally asked her to.

Why would these carriers for divine truth need to subject themselves to or even bother looking into the Aristotlean deference to rule of law that keeps the rest of us from robbing a liquor store? After all, they hold in their hand the power to rid people of sin, a far bolder claim than even the most enthusiastic Freudianist.

But maybe I underestimate the blinding hubris of the “liberalism” that I, along with 22 percent of Americans ascribe to. Maybe rampant and systematic pedophilia is the result of cocky scientists, Sigmund Freud, and the “Will and Grace” generation.

But, liberal or conservative, this is what angers the average American about the Catholic Church: If the pastor of a local Baptist church walked in on his associate pastor fondling a child, he would pull out his cell and call the police.

Josh Veazey is a senior majoring in telecommunication and film. His column runs on Wednesdays.

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