By Larry Imhoff, May 16, 2010
Tim Hutten’s column (Friday Tribune) addressed the Catholic Church’s latest scandal but missed several key points. He praised Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI for not accepting a bribe – a “cash-stuffed envelope.” I see no virtue in this; multiple public records reveal that Ratzinger has been covering up pedophilia since at least the 1970s.
Hutten also ignores the time element. How long has the pedophilia been going on? Decades, certainly. Centuries, probably. What has the church done other than browbeat victims and their families into silence? Nothing, except move these priests to greener pastures or, in the case of Boston’s Cardinal Bernard Law, whisk him off to the Vatican hours ahead of the subpoenas. In 1985, Ratzinger refused to defrock a pedophile priest citing concerns for “the good of the universal church.” De facto church policy?
All this is from an organization professing love and compassion. What hypocrisy!
Hutten glosses over the situation’s criminal aspect. Child rape is a felony; covering up a felony is also a felony. Justice demands that accused priests be tried in criminal courts and, if convicted, sentenced to appropriate prison terms and registered as sex offenders. This holds for all participating church hierarchy, including the pope.
A quick look at Catholic Church history confirms pedophilia to be only the latest in a very long list of atrocities. Start with the Crusades and then the Inquisition or maybe the witch burning, but wherever you go you will find that the Catholic Church and its apologists have a lot to answer for!