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The Catholic Church is a Criminal Enterprise - Comments

keithapm's Avatar Comment 1 by keithapm

This does raise the issue of enforced celibacy, and question about how much it contributes to the abuse*

*Which in this case means mental and physical rape and torture

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 13:10:00 UTC | #453316

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 2 by NewEnglandBob

Who would have thought - the Roman Catholic Church is unethical and immoral.*

*Besides the entire world already knowing this.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 13:24:00 UTC | #453318

Alyson Miers's Avatar Comment 3 by Alyson Miers

defective, outmoded, basically unnecessary product.

Let's try that again, shall we?

defective, outmoded, absolutely unnecessary product.

If you're going to abuse adverbs, shoot for the moon.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 14:43:00 UTC | #453336

SaintStephen's Avatar Comment 4 by SaintStephen

3. Comment #473679 by Alyson Miers on March 28, 2010 at 3:43 pm


Sun, 28 Mar 2010 14:52:00 UTC | #453338

chuckg's Avatar Comment 5 by chuckg

Anybody get the slight dig at Hitchens in the last paragraph, calling him "Chris". I got the impression from his recent Bill Maher appearance, that Christopher Hitchens does not like being called "Chris", at least in official formal public dialogs.
Other than that Matt is, of course, spot on. I wonder what us regular irate citizenry can do to help accelerate the fall of the Church, through letter writing and discussions on blogs and social networking sites. Prosecutions need to happen, tax exempt status needs to end, and massive restitution needs to happen. The restitution needs to go both to the victims, and to society, as huge payments to child and family advocacy groups, and even to governmental child and family protective service organizations. Finally, a nice chunk of change should be taken to flood Africa and the world with condoms, billions of condoms.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 14:55:00 UTC | #453340

Bernard Hurley's Avatar Comment 6 by Bernard Hurley

Anyone who’s interested in losing his lunch should read the above-mentioned blog entry by New York archbishop Timothy Dolan in defense of Pope Benedict; the archbishop’s incredibly pompous and self-pitying rant is some of the most depraved horseshit I’ve ever seen on the internet, which is saying a lot.

These people are used to addressing audiences that lap up their every word, horseshit or not. TD's rant would seem like a quite reasonable defence of the church by many devout catholics who are in the habit of turning off their critical faculties every time an archbishop utters a word. as for any who might feel a bit uneasy about it - well they're not showing any respect are they?

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 15:07:00 UTC | #453345

jel's Avatar Comment 7 by jel

It would appear that at least one person has finally been put off the catholic church by all this.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 15:09:00 UTC | #453346

nwxi's Avatar Comment 8 by nwxi

I think the main point that Timothy Dolan forgets is that the role of Pope is such that, it cannot be compared to any professional vocation on the planet.

As Pope, he is (as far as catholics are concerned) The voice of God on earth. A voice therefore, that should be as "holy" and "pure" as their belief in God is supposed to be.

The pope is not just "another man on the bus, trying to make his way home", or why would he need all the pomp and authority.

To quote Spiderman's uncle, "With great power comes great responsibility".

Of course there is abuse elsewhere, maybe even more so - but no one else claims to be essentially God on earth.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 15:09:00 UTC | #453347

blakjack's Avatar Comment 9 by blakjack

Criminal in my book.

Anyway, “Jumping on the bandwagon”? So many people claiming after all these years that they were abused does make me wonder if they have seen an opportunity. Don’t misunderstand me. There is ample evidence for abuse by priests. But it’s almost getting to the stage where something is claimed about EVERY priest as if this is the route to bring the Catholic Church into even more disrepute. I detest the Catholic religion and would be delighted to see its demise. But with these continual claims of abuse, is there perhaps a danger of overplaying the anti-Catholic hand?

I too was abused as a child but not in any physical sense. My (non-Catholic) parents sent me to the local convent (I have little idea why they did that). I found the indoctrination, particularly about hell, complete with terrifying images, scared the living daylights out of me. The brain washing was certainly a form of abuse, albeit mental abuse. However, at the age of about seven or eight, an event occurred that with hindsight was my own moment of revelation. The Chief Nun died and we children were led into the church to see her lying there. I piped up in a shrill voice: “Why is she still here? I thought she should be in heaven.” “Sssh! She will go to heaven in a couple of days.” There were numerous subsequent events that reinforced my view that Catholicism and other faiths are ridiculous but today more than 60 years later, I realise it was that dead Mother Superior lying on the slab that was the moment when I first began to see through the whole nonsense called religion.


Sun, 28 Mar 2010 15:53:00 UTC | #453362

chawinwords's Avatar Comment 10 by chawinwords

I read this sentence and laughed, as if it only was and has been the Catholic Church making money off of sex. When, in fact, many religious institutions make more money off of sex than all the porn sources in history. It's one helluva tax exempt racket. But as Barnum, the America circus king once said, there is a sucker born every minute and a carny (carnival person) born to sucker the suckers:

There are good and decent people working as individual priests, but the institution as a whole is a gang of cheap charlatans preying on peoples’ guilt feelings (which of course are cultivated intentionally by the church, which teaches children to be ashamed of their natural sexuality) in order to solicit a lifetime of contributions.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:13:00 UTC | #453373

AFTER's Avatar Comment 11 by AFTER

The horror and scope of the systematic rape of children cannot be exaggerated. It goes on in every country today and it has always been that way.

But as horrible as these crimes are the full scope of the problem is more egregious than the sum of of the individual rapes. These rapists and their pimps (this is probably not the best term, but another adequate label escapes me) are people who have been given authority over other people and particularly are bestowed a moral jurisdiction. A not insignificant number of people around the world turn to Catholicism to inform the way they live, particularly in moral terms.

The emperor (or in this situation the pope) has no clothes. When are we (the over 1 billion Catholics and billions of apologists) going to see that the Catholic church (and arguably religion) is a failed social experiment unmatched in human history.

If the environment changes significantly enough a gene can die out. If this scandal (and lets be honest to call the recent events a scandal is to dismiss the unimaginable sufferings of these children) shifts public perception and awakens a degree of rationality, then the Catholic meme can die and die quickly. Only then can we truly move on.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:33:00 UTC | #453380

TIKI AL's Avatar Comment 12 by TIKI AL

My Catholic neighbor is a very nice caring person.
But he has hung a jar with a picture of a saint in it from a sick tree to bring about a miracle cure.

Should I be afraid? At least he doesn't stick pins in dolls.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 16:58:00 UTC | #453398

Bernard Hurley's Avatar Comment 13 by Bernard Hurley

Comment #473725 by chawinwords

There are good and decent people working as individual priests,

This is undoubtedly true and this is one reason we must keep the pressure up. By doing so we ensure that these same priests are asked difficult questions by their parishioners and find that there is nothing they can say with integrity that would excuse the actions of their church. They might start to find it a bit embarrassing to be catholic priests at all. I know of one priest who has stopped wearing his dog-collar in public. A small step but in the right direction.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 17:36:00 UTC | #453420

Carl Sai Baba's Avatar Comment 14 by Carl Sai Baba

keithapm on March 28, 2010 at 2:10 pm
This does raise the issue of enforced celibacy, and question about how much it contributes to the abuse*

I am not aware of any good evidence for that (I haven't looked hard, but I never see it presented by people promoting the theory).

I also have some logical objections. It's not like non-priests are somehow allowed to have "consensual" sex with children. I also doubt that not being allowed to have sex with women makes someone get an erection for 8-year-old males.

Even without any hard evidence, I think there are far more likely guesses available. At the top of my list would be the assumption that being a good spiritual leader in any way qualifies someone to act as a guardian of children. Then we have the question of whether or not there actually is an abnormally-large number of pedophiles in the Catholic organization. The only notable and certain fact I am aware of is that they have avoided legal action against the rapists, not that there was an especially high number of them.

As for psychological abuse, it depends on exactly which kind. Telling kids that sex is a path to eternal suffering may well be caused by forced celibacy, since it is basically just repetition of what the priest was taught.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010 22:00:00 UTC | #453513

JamesR's Avatar Comment 15 by JamesR

In the US it is called RICO.

Why our gov doesn't prosecute is beyond me except the prosecutors don't want this on them.
See Santa Rosa CA 2007 What an asshole' I purposely left it vague. More tomorrow.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 01:09:00 UTC | #453544

flistr8's Avatar Comment 16 by flistr8

Goddamn I like Matt Taibbi. One can't be too harsh in the description of the catholic church as this issue continues to unfold. A male high school teacher was recently sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for a 9 month relationship with a 16 year old female student. Our society finds this type of behavior reprehensible and punishment is severe when discovered. How is it there isn't total rebellion from the catholics? How can they sleep at night knowing their church is involved in such despicable behavior at the highest levels of the organization? Matt's right, maybe in the next life.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 01:56:00 UTC | #453550

Big T's Avatar Comment 17 by Big T

The Catholic Church (in which I was raised) has failed the reality test. It is becoming more and more difficult (almost impossible now) to argue that being a believing Roman Catholic is a good idea. They would appear to have engineered their own downfall. Married priests were okay centuries ago - then the church adopted the rule of mandatory priestly celibacy. Now the church attracts pedophiles to the priesthood because normal men do not want to be celibate all their lives. Well, any institution that opposes normal behavior is probably destined to fail. So be it.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 05:01:00 UTC | #453578

djewlew's Avatar Comment 18 by djewlew

Sure, I have no doubt that the pope and his sinister agents are hiding terrible secrets that in a normal society would be declared gross crimes!
I pray for the demise of that sinister CULT in the Vatican!!

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 05:25:00 UTC | #453580

walthecat's Avatar Comment 19 by walthecat

An interesting alternative angle on this from the Daily Mash:

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 10:35:00 UTC | #453619

blitz442's Avatar Comment 20 by blitz442

17. Comment #473943 by Big T

Now the church attracts pedophiles to the priesthood because normal men do not want to be celibate all their lives.

If pedophiles seek out contact with little children, then I don't see how doing away with the celibacy requirement would not attract pedophiles, unless the Church gets out of the brain-washing of little kids business.

And since celibacy almost surely does not make a heterosexual male stop desiring adult females and start desiring little boys, doing away with celibacy could only indirectly decrease the number of pedophiles in the Church by having more of the priest slots taken up by "normal" heterosexual males. Is that what you meant?

I'm not trying to be pedantic here, but I don't think that celibacy is at the heart of this issue. A non-celibate priesthood would still have its fair share of pedophiles.

The main issue is how the Church actually deals with child abuse when it comes up, and how the faith-based values that the Church claims are so important have actually prevented the Church from behaving morally.

Many articles so far have talked about how depraved the leaders of the Church are turning out to be. But Catholics can always respond that the fallible human leaders are the problem, not the Church or its core values.

I would like to see an article going for the throat and developing more the theme that Richard pointed to in his brief broadside, that these actions (the failure to deal with the problems, the lies, the blaming of others) are the logical outcome of the Church's core values. It's not just bad people, its a fucked up set of beliefs and a backward understanding of morals and ethics.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 11:51:00 UTC | #453629

Kmita's Avatar Comment 21 by Kmita

I have to say, I'm curious as to whether or not catholic priests wear condoms whilst doing the deed. Do they say to themselves, "god couldn't possibly forgive TWO sins at the same time!"

Or perhaps it's "what the heck, we'll just attach the sin of wearing rubber to child buggery and god can wish away how horrible it is in one fell swoop!"

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 17:21:00 UTC | #453725

prettygoodformonkeys's Avatar Comment 22 by prettygoodformonkeys

21. Comment #474105 by Kmita

That's interesting. For one, I'm not sure what the second sin would be (which probably exposes me as a vile human being).

For two, it occurs to me that buggering boys might be an open possibility to these (pardon the expression) fuckers because there is no need of condoms: no pregnancies to trace back to the 'donor'. But of course it comes down to deprived, celibate men being surrounded by bodies that happen to be boys.

Which is why I think religion is sicker than pedophilia.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010 23:56:00 UTC | #453835

Art Vandelay's Avatar Comment 23 by Art Vandelay

I left a comment on the archbishop's blog, which does not seem to have made it past the moderator. Don't know why, it was perfecly clean and civil. Maybe I shouldn't have used the word "rape"

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 13:44:00 UTC | #454012

Raiko's Avatar Comment 24 by Raiko

I have yet to hear of any non-religious school, of any profession being part of an organization that actively, repeatedly and apparently without any shame spends so much energy and criminal intent on covering for its members' crimes. Not just any crimes, no, we're talking about raping children. It seems high-ranking officials in the Catholic church have dealt with this so much that they've numbed to the terms abuse and rape. It's one of the most disgusting crimes one can imagine, and in way too many cases the church is not even slapping the culprits' fingers.

"Others do it too" is a hideous apology to defend such a crime. Yes, others doing it too is just as bad as every single priest, bishop, religious school teacher and catholic rape-enabler (a category that Joseph Ratzinger most certainly occupies) who ever abused any single child or facilitated it. That doesn't make what so many men in their church made their little dirty hobby any less horrible. And we shouldn't ever forget that other child abusers don't have an entire organization behind them to help them, cover up for them and give them access to more victims.

And no, the Catholic church is not responding properly to this scandal, either. A model as to how to respond would be to hand the culprits - all of them - over to real authorities - not those who have a leg in the scandal. IF the church was responding properly, Ratzinger and many others would dwell in jail right now.

What is sad and sickening is Timothy Dolan's blog entry. But since this blog only posts affirmative comments or very mild criticism, I suppose mine wouldn't go through, anyway.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 15:27:00 UTC | #454048

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 25 by SaganTheCat


I'm curious as to whether or not catholic priests wear condoms whilst doing the deed.

probably not. you could get excommunicated for something like that

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 15:32:00 UTC | #454051

hungarianelephant's Avatar Comment 26 by hungarianelephant

25. Comment #474462 by CaptainMandate

Post of the day. Congratulations, sir.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 15:46:00 UTC | #454058

blitz442's Avatar Comment 27 by blitz442

This whole fiasco is yet more evidence that religious institutions usually need to be dragged kicking and screaming by secular forces out of their dangerous behavior and lunatic beliefs.

When does it ever come from within? The Protestant reformation might be an example that took some power away from the RCC, but that just seemed to spawn a whole new set of lunatic beliefs.

I'll bet the house that if the RCC does manage to negotiate this scandal by making some fundamental, survival-mode changes, such as widely exposing its wrongdoers to civil authority, changing the culture to encourage and enable children to report abuse to parents and outside authorities, opening up the priesthood and church leadership to women, etc., then the Church will never acknowledge that this was done BECAUSE of secular outrage and IN SPITE of religous faith.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010 17:25:00 UTC | #454095

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 28 by SaganTheCat

Hungarian: I thank you! (I'm here all week, make sure you try the lobster)

blitz: agreed. so often I hear the argument about how progressive the church is because of some change it had forced upon it long after the rest of the world had grown up.

you wait, if it's still about in 50 years they'll be using the argument that the pope introduced an order that any priest accused of breaking the law can be reported to the police as proof it's up with the times

Wed, 31 Mar 2010 08:45:00 UTC | #454314

blitz442's Avatar Comment 29 by blitz442

28. Comment #474741 by CaptainMandate

you wait, if it's still about in 50 years they'll be using the argument that the pope introduced an order that any priest accused of breaking the law can be reported to the police as proof it's up with the times

It will be, in some form or another.

Lay Catholic people do not seem particularly upset about or interested in this whole incident. I have nothing other than anecdotal evidence to back this up, so feel free to call bullshit on me. But I have broached this (carefully) with some Catholic friends and colleagues, and have received replies along the line of "other religions do this too", or "yeah, but it's not as bad as it used to be", or just plain disinterest. Let's put is this way, no one was writing letters to the parish or considering pulling kids out of school or withholding contributions.

I got the impression that the NCAA tournament was much more important. Perhaps this apathy will eventually lead to the Church's irrelevance, but it will take a long time.

Wed, 31 Mar 2010 11:48:00 UTC | #454360