Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Sacred and the Obscene

I am old enough to remember when Richard Nixon stonewalled the federal prosecutors and the press over his crimes committed in the Watergate Scandal.

Having recently seen the movie Frost/Nixon, you see that Nixon said something to the effect that anything a President does is not a crime - The Nixon Defense so to speak. Nixon in the role of American King Richard I was a tragic figure worthy of a Shakespearian play.

As I see this VaticanGate sex abuse scandal unfolding at the feet of Benedict XVI, I cannot but help see similarities in the major hubris with which kings treat their crimes against the state and humanity. Benedict is stonewalling. He is running out the clock of his papacy because as a man of his age, he does not have much longer to endure or having to keep the modern world from his Ivory Tower world of fantasy and religion.

(click on start first, then click on screen to expand image)

With a mere lengthly papal letter of apology to the People of Ireland for the thousands of sexually abused children over decades of religious institutional authority – it got met with a big Irish YAWN. The Irish problem was that the state outsourced tens of thousands of orphans to slavery workhouse, sweatshop conditions of church institutions and the kids also got buggered as well in that bargain with the devil.

A letter from a lifelong bureaucrat in the Vatican does not hack it for the Irish or for the rest of Humanity as well.

This papal letter post scripts a long, concise and documented account of abuse by Irish clergy that was conducted by present day civil appointed authorities in Ireland. Those recent reports came to light in a secular day just as this sexuality problem, scandal, of celibate priests goes into its second decade, first in the United States and now leapfrogging to Europe.

The Ireland issue has triggered a Eurpopean bursting of the dam of silence over clerical buggery in many countries including the native Germany of the Pope. His deafness while at meetings about a certain German buggering priest that went on until last week was the hallmark of his Archbishop of Munich job done so well that they promoted him to the Vatican in the early 1980’s.

Sex abuse scandal in US, Italy taints papacy
Revelations that the Vatican halted the investigation of a Wisconsin priest accused of molesting some 200 deaf boys have eerie echoes in Italy, where 67 deaf men and women accused two dozen priests of raping and molesting children for years.

Only now — a year after the Italian case became public — is the Vatican directing the diocese to interview the victims to hear their testimony about the accusations, The Associated Press learned Thursday.

The two cases are the latest in a burgeoning abuse scandal on both sides of the Atlantic that now threatens to tarnish the papacy itself. The office charged with disciplining clergy was long led by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, and a church prosecution in the Wisconsin case was stopped after an appeal to Ratzinger.


On Friday, The New York Times reported that the future pope was kept more closely apprised of a German priest's sex abuse case in 1980 than previous church statements have suggested.

The case of the German priest, the Rev. Peter Hullermann, has acquired fresh relevance because it unfolded at a time when Cardinal Ratzinger, who was later put in charge of handling thousands of abuse cases on behalf of the Vatican, was in a position to refer the priest for prosecution, or at least to stop him from coming into contact with children, the Times said.

Cardinal Ratzinger was copied on a memo that told him that a priest, whom he had approved sending to therapy in 1980 to overcome pedophilia, would return to pastoral work within days of beginning psychiatric treatment, the Times said. The priest was later convicted of molesting boys in another German parish.
Priest 'abuse victims' speak out
Three deaf men who say they were repeatedly abused by priests as children have confronted an Italian church diocese about why it has not punished their abusers, saying they want justice.

The three men appeared on a prime-time talk show on Italy's state-run RAI TV, squaring off with the spokesman of the Verona diocese amid a swirling global sex abuse scandal that has inched closer to Pope Benedict XVI.

The spokesman, the Rev Bruno Fasani, said he hoped the confrontation would be constructive and he welcomed meeting the men for the first time.

But the former students of Verona's Antonio Provolo Institute for the Deaf refused to shake his hand during the show. One of the three, Dario Laiti, 59, said he couldn't bring himself to greet the prelate. …

Advocates for the victims, however, said the diocese investigation was fatally flawed because no one interviewed the former students.
The pope’s handling of German matters perhaps triggered a matter whereby the Vatican guy Joe Ratzinger squashed an investigation of an American priest that abused over two hundred deaf children in an institution of the deaf for many decades in the Milwaukee diocese.

The deaf in Italy are now talking out – out of frustration of not being heard – after the statutes of limitations have passed. The victims want closure and not forgiveness for their sin of tempting good priests to sin – or at least that is the medieval view from the Vatican on all this fuss about the mere abuse of children at the expense of the church’s prestige and “good” name.

Joe Ratzinger was the best of the best that John Paul II could put in charge of keeping the lid on this worldwide, decades - centuries long secret obscene behavior of the clergy.

Joe Ratzinger, the best of the best, has turned out quite mediocre and flat in light of victims who do not want a sacred letter of apology but instead want secular, human justice.

Real World – 1 --- Vatican – 0