We close out our great year at TheMediaReport.com with our Top Five posts of 2012! Again, thank you so much to everyone!
For years now, Church-suing lawyers have attempted to use the novel psychological theory of "repressed memory" as a way to circumvent the statutes of limitations in many states in order to file big-money lawsuits against the Catholic Church.
However, in July, the Minnesota Supreme Court flatly rejected the theory as bogus. The Court declared that scientific studies that have tried to prove the bogus theory have "lacked foundational reliability." Yet – not unexpectedly – the media was nowhere to be found reporting this important story.
Regular readers of this site have long known that "repressed memory" is a complete sham. Yet once again, when the facts do not fit the accepted media narrative, the facts are ignored. Kudos to the Minnesota Supreme Court, however, for telling the story that the media will not.
One cannot help but wonder when a misdemeanor conviction (with a suspended sentence) has ever warranted two front-pages stories, an editorial, and a breathless op-ed in the New York Times.
While the suspended sentence in the trial of Kansas City-St. Joseph Bishop Robert W. Finn was in some sense historic, any sense of perspective was lost in the Times' coverage. The diocese delayed in reporting that a priest had lewd photographs of children on his computer after two computer technicians, a diocesan lawyer, a monsignor, a vice-chancellor, a psychiatric doctor, and a deacon all allegedly saw the images, but none of them officially alerted law enforcement.
Yet it was Bishop Finn who took the fall and became a victim of a publicity-hungry prosecutor, even though he never even saw the images.
Meanwhile, while the Times hyperventilated over Bishop Finn's suspended misdemeanor sentence, the paper has continued to turn a blind eye to massive sex abuse and cover-ups occurring today right in its own backyard. As we have relayed several times before, it has been reported that just in the first three months of 2012 alone in New York City public schools, there were "248 complaints of sexual misconduct involving school employees."
Where's the outrage from the Grey Lady over this?
Ten years … Three grand jury reports … One trial … 11 weeks of testimony … More than 60 witnesses … A trial judge who favored the prosecution so much that she was actually described as "often mistaken for a member of the prosecution team." … 13 days of jury deliberations.
Yet after the expensive, months-long Philadelphia criminal trial of seven criminal charges against two Catholic priests, the jury returned a guilty verdict on just a single count against one of the priest defendants.
The media predictably went apoplectic over the lone, class 3 felony conviction, yet it buried the real story about the verdicts: the jury flat-out rejected Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams' wacky claims of an abuse "conspiracy" by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia – a conspiracy which the media widely trumpeted for well over a year.
TheMediaReport.com was the first to obtain a copy of the high-profile but carefully guarded deposition given in January by David Clohessy, the national director of the anti-Catholic group SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests), in the case of an accused priest in Missouri.
For years, Clohessy has been incessantly railing against Catholic Church officials for alleged "lack of transparency," "hardball tactics," and "avoiding tough questions." Meanwhile, it was those very traits that characterized Clohessy's deposition appearance.
The deposition exposed Clohessy as steadfastly refusing to answer many of the important questions asked of him and contumaciously refusing to hand over relevant documents that had been ordered by a judge. Clohessy persisted in his hardball defiance despite losing a number of previous appeals.
David Clohessy's deposition once again exposed SNAP's inherent hypocrisy and dishonesty.
Rev. Gordon J. MacRae, sentenced to 33½ to 67 years, has been in the New Hampshire State Prison For Men since 1994 on abuse charges. Yet TheMediaReport.com compiled an exclusive report in February showing that newly released signed statements in a court motion reveal that Fr. MacRae's primary accuser, a man named Thomas Grover, totally made up the abuse accusations in order to extract money from the Church.
These signed statements include stunning declarations from individuals who have been very close to Grover. One such declaration is from the accuser's stepson, who wrote, "On several occasions, Grover told me that he had never been molested by MacRae."
Then there are the words of Grover's former wife, who said that Grover is a "compulsive liar" and a "manipulator" who "can tell a lie and stick to it 'til its end." Most notably, the former wife also said that Grover "never stated one word of abuse by [MacRae]."
The statements also include one from a former friend of Grover who was slated to accuse Fr. MacRae of abuse but recanted. "[I knew] full well that it was [all] bogus … I did not want to lie or make up stories," the man wrote.
The National Center for Reason and Justice is sponsoring Fr. MacRae's case, and TheMediaReport.com continues to keep an eye on this important and compelling situation of a man serving very hard time for a crime for which convincing testimony pronounces his innocence. Stay tuned for any future developments.
(Pictured far right in the photo collage at the top of this post is Arthur Brennan, the New Hampshire judge who oversaw Fr. MacRae's trial and sentenced the priest in 1994. Brennan is now retired and has since become a leading member of the radical "Occupy" movement. The picture of Brennan was taken when he was arrested during a protest at the Hart Senate Building in Washington, D.C., in October 2011.)
On we go to 2013!