Boinkie's Blog

Universalis

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Abuse

you know that the reports are being used for political gain when even SPIKED! defends the pope.

and one item surprised even me:
The Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse, which was launched by the Irish government in 1999 and delivered its report last year, intensively invited Irish-born people around the world to report on incidents of abuse in Irish religious-educational reform schools, where the majority of clerical abuse is said to have occurred, between the period 1914 to 1999. For that 85-year period, 253 claims of sexual abuse were made by males and 128 by females.

that sounds too low. Why? Because the rate of abuse in civilians is actually a lot higher...

This JAMA article shows the rate (depending on what is called "Abuse") in American surveys is anywhere from 4 to 76 percent...and is higher when the boy is from a poor family, minority, or comes from a home without a father.

the NYTimes article seems to rely in the bias of Bishop weakland, who of course paid off a guy he date raped and was removed when the payment was revealed. A lot of the reports say it was consensual, and Weakland claimed he was in love with the guy, but a recent case I was involved with suggests that the gay man who forces sex on an intoxicated young man and then claims love is delusional or sociopathic.

The case in the NYTimes was a man removed from his job but not laicized; Weakland did nothing for 30 years, but then tried to push through a canon law case against the guy, who by then was elderly and dying. (One wonders if he continued to abuse as a layman, or if he repented; no one bothered to check I guess).

Blaming the pope for not rushing through a case that a gay bishop sat on for 30 years is getting a lot of us annoyed, if for no other reason that this seems like a political witch hunt: like all witch hunts, you have a problem, a real evil that needs to be addressed, but then start destroying more and more lives of those who are quite peripheral to the evil. One is reminded of the sexual abuse in daycare cases a couple years back.

Yet sexual abuse is a very terrible problem (although most of the cases I've treated have been girls).

A lot of the problem is exactly what is abuse?

CS Lewis hints about the horrors of his boarding school, yet one doubts he had been raped...and author Michael O'Brien writes about his similar emotional harm from an abuser who never touched him.

There has been a strange numbness in this area which may be owing to the fact that, in certain circumstances, superiors themselves might be capable of similar acts, or are infected with theological Modernism, which maintains that the only real sin is social sin and that no one is going to hell. When Jesus said, "Let him who is without sin . . . be the first to throw a stone." (John 8:7), he did not intend by these words that shepherds should become paralyzed, incapable of protecting the lambs entrusted to their care.

(read the whole thing...).

Alas, I'm old enough to remember in Medical school we were told the Freudian theory that most accusations were projection of a person's fantasy, that if the taboos against sex were lifted and children allowed to have sex with "caring" adults, then all mental illnesses would disappear. The Kinsey studies showing "normal" children were sexually responsive had a lot to do with this.

I also remember having to warn our kids to watch out for strangers in the 1980s, when California started outpatient treatment of "non violent" sexual offenders and let them out of jail under treatment...

So how common is abuse? Part of it depends on what is called "abuse".

This JAMA article shows that it is probably a lot more common than reported, and notes that many of those abused (even those where the abuse might be minor under the criminal definition) had problems afterward, including substance abuse.

One of my friends noted a lot of the guys in her AA meeting had turned to alcohol after such abuse. Sigh.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

OK Kiddies, let's all kill the "untermensch"

there are reports that a US cartoon show is planning to ridicule the starvation death of Terry Schiavo, a death so terrible that even Obama voted against it (before the pro death people in his party changed his mind).

On Sunday, Family Guy aired an episode featuring children in an elementary school performing "Terri Schiavo: The Musical," with lines such as "Terri Schiavo is kinda alive-o" and "(She's) the most expensive plant you'll ever see."


this is not only shocking and in bad taste, but approaches the hatred of the disabled similar to the propaganda tactics of Hitler, where schoolkids were given math tests to calculate how many bullets for soldiers could be bought with the money spent on caring for someone with neurological damage.

if all this sounds ominous, it should. As the Ethics for schools organization points out:

deja vu?

First, propaganda campaigns were prominent. Films such as 'The Inheritance' degraded and stigmatised handicapped patients; disputing their humanity, inflaming resentment against 'luxury' asylum conditions and advocating the 'natural' elimination of the weak.

yup. Family guy is doing just that, and Peter Singer has long had a soapbox in Princeton Univ to promote the second.

[11] Others promoted euthanasia as a merciful relase...

Numerous examples, the most glaring was awarding an oscar for a film that saw killing a girl who needed decent nursing care (and who should have sued for not getting it) as compassionate and the only way to help her..

The use of euphemisms distorted the facts and added a veneer of respectability to the proceedings....

start with "PVS" or persistent vegetative state, aka "Vegetables" for people with severe brain damage, even though 30 percent with the diagnosis are misdiagnosed, and now PET scans show that many more are aware of their surroundings.

An obsession with cost-benefit analyses was a third feature of Nazi medical deliberation. School children were given mathematics problems balancing the cost of housing units for young couples against the costs of looking after 'the crippled, the criminal and the insane'...

see my BNN rant on how the Obamacare bill's embrace of committees to decide "cost effective care" is ominous.

sigh.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

someone who dares to tell the truth

Gerald Warner at the UKTelegraph.

Should bishops be forced to resign? Oh yes – approximately 95 per cent of them worldwide. These clowns in their pseudo-ethnic mitres and polyester vestments with faux-naïve Christian symbols, spouting their ecumaniac episcobabble, have presided over more than sexual abuse: they have all but extinguished the Catholic faith with their modernist fatuities. They should be retired to monasteries to spend their remaining years considering how to account to their Maker for a failed stewardship that has lost countless millions of souls.

Benedict XVI should take advantage of a popular wave of revulsion against the failed episcopate to sack every 1960s flared-trousered hippy who is obstructing Summorum Pontificum. It is a unique opportunity to cull the hireling shepherds and clear away the dead wood of the Second Vatican Catastrophe. It is time to stop the apologies and reinstate apologetics; to rebuild all that has been destroyed in the past 40 years; to square up to liberals and secularists as so many generations of Catholics did in the past; to proclaim again the immutable truths of the One True Church ...

Father Z has more with commentary
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here in the Philippines, the problem is lukewarmness, which is why those serious about Jesus turn to evangelicals, who are more straightforward on how to live and serve Christ...

me, I'd just be happier if I knew that the Bishop or one of the priests had talked to the mayor and told him and his wife to stop stealing money to keep him out of jail, but instead to repent for hiring hit men to kill his opponant in the last election (along with our nephew).



Tuesday, March 16, 2010

compare and contrast

my rss feeder has these two headlines in the NYTimes.

By By NICHOLAS KULISH

Peter Hullermann, the priest at the center of a German sex-abuse scandal that has embroiled Pope Benedict XVI, was suspended.

By By DENNIS HEVESI

Father Carter, a professor and social worker, helped establish the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the New York chapter of DignityUSA.

want to bet the first is trying to smear the pope, and the second won't bother to notice how the liberal helped destigmatize gay sex with 14 year old boys by making male homosexuals comfortable with their sins?

US President pushing abortion in health care bill

Archbishop Chaput comes down hard on "catholic" groups who are not representing the catholic church.
From the cornerBlog:
rites, in part:

Groups, trade associations and publications describing themselves as “Catholic” or “prolife” that endorse the Senate version — whatever their intentions — are doing a serious disservice to the nation and to the Church, undermining the witness of the Catholic community; and ensuring the failure of genuine, ethical health-care reform. By their public actions, they create confusion at exactly the moment Catholics need to think clearly about the remaining issues in the health-care debate. They also provide the illusion of moral cover for an unethical piece of legislation.

Do not be misled, in other words, by a Speaker’s lies or by anyone claiming to speak for the Catholic Church telling you a Catholic's conscience will be clear if he supports this legislation.

Chaput concludes:

The long, unpleasant and too often dishonest national health-care debate is now in its last days. Its most painful feature has been those “Catholic” groups that by their eagerness for some kind of deal undercut the witness of the Catholic community and help advance a bad bill into a bad law. Their flawed judgment could now have damaging consequences for all of us.

Do not be misled. The Senate version of health-care reform currently being pushed ahead by congressional leaders and the White House — despite public resistance and numerous moral concerns — is bad law; and not simply bad, but dangerous. It does not deserve, nor does it have, the support of the Catholic bishops in our country, who speak for the believing Catholic community. In its current content, the Senate version of health-care legislation is not “reform.” Catholics and other persons of good will concerned about the foundations of human dignity should oppose it.

lots of reports about the head of the Catholic hospital association saying the bill is okay...but there is no reference to an official statement, and it was claimed that she did so on Saturday, when of course their offices aren't open.

Even Mother Jones notices the deceit, when they added community health centers to not be under the Hyde amendment.

They claim it is a mistake, but I'm not so sure, because a lot of "Planned parenthood" clinics that promote and do abortions are considered "community health clinics" under a lot of definitions...

I wrote about it HERE:

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Saturday, March 06, 2010

God's presence?

The anchoress often runs links about the spiritual life, but some of us don't find them very helpful.

Take this one:
Fr. Jim responded:

What a great question! Let me unpack that one a bit. First of all, I think that anyone can become aware of God’s presence in the day by simply paying attention. One of the techniques I speak about in my book is St. Ignatius Loyola’s “examination of conscience,” a brief review of the day, when you recall when you felt God’s presence. Now, we can be aware of God’s presence as it’s happening or in retrospect (often it’s easier in retrospect, when we’re less distracted).

But either way, as you say, we can experience God’s presence through a variety of modes–deep emotions that move us to compassion or pity, surprising memories that heal or console us, insights that solve a difficult problem in our lives–as well as more “traditional” ways, say, while reading Scripture or during the Mass.


very good advice, of course.

Except that none of the applies to me.

As I told one nun who bragged that she "only prayed when she felt like it":

If I only prayed when I felt like it, I'd probably only pray once a year.
Sigh.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Bishop Chaput on Christians in politics

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Martyrs

Religious persecution, an article in DasSpiegel...
presumably it doesn't include that Christian villages attacked by Alqaeda here (because a Muslim villager was caught in the crossfire) or ethnic clashes in Africa, where Christians retaliated against being attacked...religion and ethnicity are involved in most of the carnage, but radical groups are making things worse.

Librivox has Bengali poet Tagore's poems Gitanjali, for download. an excerpt:

"On many an idle day have I grieved over lost time. But it is never lost, my lord. Thou hast taken every moment of my life in thine own hands.

Hidden in the heart of things thou art nourishing seeds into sprouts, buds into blossoms, and ripening flowers into fruitfulness.

I was tired and sleeping on my idle bed and imagined all work had ceased. In the morning I woke up and found my garden full with wonders of flowers."
-----81, Gitanjali

One anecdote: Baroness Catherine DeHueck (later Doherty) met him while on a lecture tour, and asked him why despite his piety he never became a Christian. He answered back: why did you never become a Christian?
Catherine later became a social activist, started Friendship house in Harlem during the 1930's, and later pioneered Madonna House in Canada (after marrying reporter/screenwriter Eddie Doherty).

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