‘The Darkest Two Years of My Life’: Popular Priest Describes Long Torment of False Abuse Accusation

Fr. Eugene Boland

"Walking on air": Rev. Eugene Boland is thrilled after being exonerated

Very few priests speak publicly about their horrifying ordeals of being falsely accused of child sex abuse, but Rev. Eugene Boland is doing so after a jury in Derry, Ireland, unanimously found him not guilty in June of the flimsy claim that he had somehow "inappropriately touched" a girl over two decades earlier.

The verdict brought an end to what the priest now calls "the darkest two years of my life."

From "a priest's worst nightmare" to victory

On March 31, 2010, Fr. Boland received the phone call that every priest fears. His bishop was on the line, and he told him to contact the diocese's child safeguarding leader the next day.

"That was a bleak day," Boland told the Irish Independent. "It just came out of the blue … I was shell-shocked. I'm sitting in my home on my own. I didn't know what the allegation was, or who was making it."

"I didn't sleep that night," says the priest.

The popular priest was eventually ripped from the ministry he so loved and forced to withstand screaming front-page headlines about his case, aggressive police tactics, and a high-profile criminal trial.

Throughout the ordeal, however, Boland felt a sense of "relief" over the fact that he knew he was innocent and there would be an opportunity to publicly make his case.

When the jury returned the unanimous "not guilty" verdicts, the priest could not have been more ecstatic. "I could have skipped down the street outside the courthouse. There was an overwhelming feeling of relief – that I had been heard and I had been vindicated.

"I have been walking on air ever since," says Fr. Boland.

And even though the priest's parishioners have been "extremely angry" at the accuser for lodging her completely bogus allegation, Boland has told the Derry Journal that he has "forgiven that person because to hold bitterness or anger would weigh me down … I always believed the truth would come out in the end."

Issues still unresolved

Although this story has a happy ending, there are still some aspects are troublesome.

Even though Rev. Boland was exonerated two months ago, he has yet to return to his parish assignment, as he still awaits official word from Rome for permission to return to ministry. Why the long wait?

In addition, the media still have not addressed the patent unfairness of Catholic priests being forced into having to prove that they didn't do something decades earlier. Think about it. How does one go about this? As Joe Maher, president of Opus Bono Sacerdotii ("Work for the Good of the Priesthood"), once said, "If you think it's tough proving an allegation from 30 years back, try disproving it."

The platform for accused priests is literally "guilty until proven innocent," yet very few people seemed too worked up about this unjust predicament, especially those in the media. And if there any evidence of men from other professions having to endure these same ordeals of trying to disprove allegations from so long ago, we haven't seen it.

Our world's priests remain very vulnerable targets, as this case amply demonstrates.


  1. jim robertson says:

    False accusations are unforgiveable.
    Remember if you will Chicago Cardinal Burnadin was falsely accused. What kind of amazes me is In Ireland, Wasn't Father Boland falsly accused on the BBC or TelErin?
    How odd two false accusations that both made a lot of news. News that eventually came down negatively against victims. Very negatively and very publicly. How extrodinarily convienent.
    Any victim would be appalled at false allegations. It's stealing both from the Church and from other victims. And more importantly it puts innocent priests in a horrific position.
    That two such high profile cases should prove false tells me something else though. If you've experienced the co-intelpro that the Church has created with VOTF and SNAP. You tend to look askance at what appears in front of you. If the oldest and largest victim's group SNAP is a fake, which it truely is.
    Why should I believe (or you) that what appears to be fraud on the part of 2 victims may in fact not be what it appears to be.
    When we found out about Tom Doyle's plan to "control victims and their families" through committees. And we activist victims know that SNAP and VOTF etc. fit the committees of control to the letter.
    I trust nothing that serendipitously appears on the horizon that makes all victims look bad.

  2. I am grateful for the outcome of Fr. Boland's case in Ireland. We should all take a cue from this that false allegations are very real and far more common than some would have us believe.  American Catholics must come to terms, however, with the reality of the Dallas Charter and what this means for accused American priests. Even if a priest is found not guilty in a criminal complaint, that alone does not prevent a diocese or a diocesan insurance company from providing a quiet out of court settlement to extinguish any related civil claims. This means that a priest can be found innocent in a court of law but a case is still declared "credible" because money has changed hands. This means that many Catholic priests who have never been convicted of any offense remain barred from ministry because their dioceses have found it easier to pay off claims rendering the priest no longer able to engage in public ministry. It is a sham, and the real solution lies in tort reform. I have learned a good deal about this process from Dave Pierre's two books and from the story of Father Gordon MacRae told clearly at http://www.TheseStoneWalls.com. Just have a look at his series, "When Priests are Falsely Accused" at "Special Reports" on his website. Just devastating!

  3. jim robertson says:

    I'd like to also say that we of the radical left in the victims' movement have been approched before by "supportive people" who wanted to connect us to, here's the list:
    ! The murderer of Father Geohgan.
    2. Satan Conspiritists.
    3. Fake victims
    4. Fake offers of compensation to victims who desperately need it.
    5. Barrages of personal attack.
    6. New fake victims' groups.
    Now why would the left, and those who put forth the most radical analysis of what happens to victims when they come forward i.e. SNAP is the Church, be handed so many odd opportunities. Opportunities that looked more like land mines for victims. Booby traps.
    Why would all that happen? Is it because we know and more importantly say that SNAP's the Church?

  4. Joann Richmond says:

    As of 2002, there were over 1000 allegations against priests that were not substantiated.  The book, Conspiracy by Monsignor McCarthy describes the five years it took for his name to be cleared and the toll it took on his body, mind and soul.
    What I do not understand is why Catholics are not outraged at the complete injustice of false allegations against our priests?  Why are we not outraged that some very evil people are making money by destroying innocent men?  Why are the books already written by David Pierre, James Valladares, and Monsignor McCarthy not discussed on Catholic Radio, EWTN or in the many Catholic magazines?

    • jim robertson says:

      Ms Richmond,
      With estimates of over 100,000 victims in America alone and 10,000 religious perps 1000 false accusations world wide, (if that's what you mean't.) is a miniscule percentage of false  accusations.
      Any false accusation is again unforgiveable and so is any abuse of a child.
      A " not substantiated" claim means to me no witness. Very different from a lying accusation.

    • TheMediaReport.com says:

      Keep in mind that dioceses are now using the term “unsubstantiated” to categorize even those accusations in which the accuser has recanted the allegation.

  5. Publion says:

    You often see the suggestion made in the Catholic abuse matter that the priest should have to prove that the alleged action did not happen.
    But it’s a core principle of Western jurisprudence that the burden of proof is on the accuser.
    There are some good reasons for that.
    Logically it is not possible to prove a negative: there is no way of definitively proving that there are no pink elephants on the planet (and although there is a commonly-agreed upon shortcut presumption that there aren’t any, that doesn’t qualify as actual ‘proof’). But it is possible to prove a positive: if you make the allegation that a pink elephant accosted you at such and such a time in such and such a place and did such and such to you, then that is theoretically and logically provable, and such evidence can be presented – if the context arises – to a jury.
    So in the Western legal system – itself a huge improvement over the personal-vengeance justice and other such versions of guilt-finding of the barbarian tribes at the end of the Empire and the outset of the Dark Ages – the person claiming or allegating a crime must then prove that the crime positively did happen as stated and described (rather than the accused/defendant having to ‘prove’ that s/he didn’t do it).
    Tactically, if anyone could make a claim against you and the burden was instantly on you to prove the claim wasn’t true, then the legal system and the entire society would quickly be gummed up with charges and allegations which – since the accuser did not incur any burden of proof by making the allegation – would multiply like kudzu. So for tactical reasons, the principle is that if you make an allegation or file a Complaint or if the government files a Charge, then it is the Complainant or government/prosecutor that must prove the allegation or Charge.
    As many may have noticed, I have just described the dynamics of the vital Constitutional principle usually known as the Presumption of Innocence.
    And, of course, if a Situation were to arise whereby a person could i) make an allegation, ii) be assured that s/he would bear no burden of proof, iii) be further assured that s/he would not incur any legal responsibility for bringing false charges, and iv) stand to gain the Status and Role of ‘victim’ and v) quite possibly (if a civil lawsuit) a nice chunk of cash on top of everything else … well, you can see what possibilities might arise.
    Casinos around the country and planet are full of folks willing to gamble; and actually, in the casino they are facing far greater odds against a payoff than persons who might be participating in the hypothetical Situation I described in the foregoing paragraph.
    But under the influence of Victimism in the past few decades here, very substantial efforts have been made by certain elements to change the Presumption: what so-called Victimists have sought to do is somehow manipulate public opinion to presume the innocence of the accuser and the guilt of the accused, and to get this new presumption embedded in the public mind as a matter of ‘everybody knows’.
    Thus, the effort to induce public opinion to presume – much like the old Red-Scare tactics following both World Wars here – that there are indeed many secret and hidden ‘enemies’ all around us and if somebody makes an accusation, then that act of accusation or allegation merely constitutes an instance of one of the hidden-enemies finally and truly being discovered – in which case, of course, the only job of the legal system is to rubber-stamp the ‘discovered’ and presumed-true accusation and apply the statutory punishment.
    This dynamic is a very close relative of Lenin’s ‘revolutionary justice’: the job of the ‘revolutionary’ court is not to shilly-shally around with ‘proof’ but rather to speak for the masses and for ‘the revolution’ and whack the (already presumed-guilty) accused. Thus, as Lenin once irritably insisted: “Our revolutionary courts must shoot!” (as in up-against-the-wall). And as Felix Dzerzhinsky, head of the Cheka (the early Soviet secret police, great-granddaddy of the KGB),  put it: “The job of the Cheka is not to investigate but to strike”.
    Under such a Situation, much like pulling a fire-box, the person who pulls the box is the hero, since everybody presumes that a) there is always a danger of fire and that b) nobody would just go pull a firebox if there wasn’t a real fire.
    In fact, in 2006 Congress formally erected this Presumption Against Innocence into military law (which is far more susceptible to political interference than civilian criminal law), but only in the case of sexual charges : in 2006 in military sex-cases the burden of proof was formally and explicitly laid on the accused. This beloved daydream of the sex-victim movement has since wound up before the Supreme Court on direct Constitutional grounds and, responding to the threat of exposure, politicians are trying to backtrack without making it too obvious what they had gone and done.
    The Catholic priest-abuse crisis is a subset of this Victimist movement, which then blended with radical-feminism’s campaign against ‘men’ and secular-liberalism’s campaign against ‘belief’ (the Catholic Church being the biggest ‘belief-organization’ around, so the most necessary target; or as the early Soviets would have termed it: the Necessary Enemy).
    The result, dynamically-speaking, is a Situation in which: it is presumed unthinkingly that we are surrounded and infiltrated by sex-crazed Catholic priests / abetted by a Church that is primarily an enabling ‘rape culture’ / but brave accusers make allegations / which instantly place the burden of proof (and public suspicion) on the accused / and as a token of gratitude and sympathy, any serious risk of burden-of-proof or of responsibility-for-false-report is withdrawn from the heroic accuser (who has presumably  merely pulled the firebox warning the citizens of a fire).
    This, I would say, is essentially what has happened to the Church in this abuse ‘crisis’ and this is what should be of the most vital concern. Because on the basis of this sly and subtle overturn of first principles – especially after the Sue The Bishops Phase was inaugurated in January of 2002 – it became almost ludicrously easy to gamble in the ‘casino’ that was thus set up in 2002 and enjoy pretty good chance of a ‘score’ on a Church that had become a piñata overnight.
    Meanwhile, the belief-system and belief-home of all Catholics was subjected to – as I mentioned in prior comments on this site – an apparently unending ‘crisis’ campaign.
    For myself, I think that this past decade has been a tremendously gravid opportunity for the Church. Much like ‘urban garrison troops’ in the Roman Empire, too many among the clergy and the episcopacy had become much too comfortable with the routines that a large organization with a highly-developed sacramental and conceptual system can – if not carefully managed – induce.
    And from reading actual court documents, even after making necessary allowances for exaggeration and fantasy and irrelevance, it is repellently clear to me that there were some seriously unfit priests and Brothers out there and not enough was done – even on the basis of a basic concern for the integrity of ministry and the morale of the ministers – to get those unreliable aircraft off the flight-deck (you either ‘strike them below’ to the hangar deck for repairs or – as some might have noticed in old newsreels of the Pacific War – simply bulldoze or push them off the flight deck into the sea).
    This was – I would say – a clear indicator of an American Church that had at some level lost working touch with her most fundamental and genuine Source.
    I am therefore very pleased with the reforms formally adopted since 2002 (although I am still leery of lingering efforts to retain the Presumption Against Innocence which has already endangered priests and other accused persons in American – although not yet Canon – law).
    Committed and competent priests can now get on with their work unhampered by the genuinely unsuitable  among their  ranks. The Vatican might – as the Pentagon is, in my opinion, well-advised to do – start promoting competent field-commanders rather than career-concerned in-house-politics bureaucrats or the old ecclesiastical versions of the urban political Bosses of a prior era.
    The Church, I would say, can get back to being ‘the legions’ rather than the ‘garrisons’.
    This predominantly restorative development still leaves the question of ‘past allegations’ and those who make claims dating back well into the past (‘current’ allegation can be much more promptly handled in the post-2002 era; although even nowadays – as the John Jay Reports indicate – the majority of new allegations still deal with the long-ago).
    The options here are still not appetizing: a) continue to simply pay out large sums without challenging  any allegation; b) contest civil or criminal charges. Although the outcome of the recent Santa Clara Country trial – where the jury refused to return a Guilty finding even after the assailant (of a priest alleged to have molested him decades before) admitted to carrying out the Assault and Battery, indicates that the Victimist corrosions remain robust; and the conviction of Msgr. Lynn in Philadelphia now goes to appeal on hardly-minor Ex Post Facto grounds).
    It would help if some of the manipulations that have been worked on public-opinion begin to fade, allowing any allegation to stand on its own, rather than merely surfing the Cartoon/Phantasms that have been implanted in the public mind (e.g. that pretty much all Catholic priests are sex maniacs; that they get away with it because the Church is deliberately set up to enable sex-maniacs; that therefore it is highly probable that this particular allegation is mostly sorta true; and that therefore the accused priest should have to prove that – in the face of such a ‘high probability’ that he is a sex maniac – he isn’t a sex maniac). On top of which there may be overlaid: religion is the opium of the people and so therefore the less religion people get mixed up with, then – like with weaning oneself off opium – the better off they’ll be.
    Lastly, for anybody who might like to look at Victimism as it has mutated in this country over the past few decades, I could recommend a book I have just finished reading: Professor Roger Lancaster’s broad and deep study entitled “Sex Panic and the Punitive State”, published in 2011. Lancaster does not focus on the Catholic abuse matter, but rather looks at the larger Victimist movement; the Catholic abuse ‘crisis’ – which to Catholics might appear ‘sui generis’ – is actually only a subset of this larger recent American cultural movement. But the value of Lancaster’s study, I would say, is that it enables Catholics to get a more comprehensive perspective and grasp of the whole matter.

  6. Publion says:

    I’d also point out something that had been mentioned in comments somewhere on the Philly trial site a few months ago.
    A comment insisted that there were something on the order of 10,000 “pedophile priests” and “rapists” and then ‘estimated’ that there were at least 10 times that many unreported pedophile rapist-priests still running around loose.
    It was then pointed out by another commenter that apparently these numbers were reached in the following manner: each instance of allegation formally reported in the first John Jay Report was gratuitously presumed to have a) been an allegation of ‘rape’, b) committed in each instance by a separate priest, and then c) it was ‘estimated’ that for each allegation there were nine or ten un-reported allegations of similar gravity.
    Both (a) and (b) rely on very inaccurate presumptions: in the case of (a), that the allegations even back in the early ‘00s mostly dealt with rape; and in the case of (b) that each allegation dealt with a separate priest.
    In the case of (c), you wind up with a curious form of statistical manipulation: while it is impossible by definition to actually know how many crimes are not-reported (how do you knowledgeably count what is by definition unknown? – it’s like asserting that one can know how many angels can dance on the head of a pin), you might try to conduct a ‘survey’.
    Such a ‘survey’ is not actual research; basically you pick a group of people to contact, and ask them if they have ever been the victim of (fill in the blank). The persons – in a phone conversation with you, or by mailing back a questionnaire you have sent – simply answer your question, secure in the knowledge that there is no way you are going to actually do the real ‘research’ involved – which would require that you the researcher actually try to corroborate or establish the accuracy of the answer you are given in the survey.
    Naturally, if you then add ‘stories’ to those survey-answers, you can come up with not only ‘numbers’, but – literally – stories that would appear to put actual instances to the public, with the addition of all sorts of emotionally-arousing details . And if very little effort at corroboration is carried out, then things can become positively florid.
    On such a basis, you can – say for example – get nine or ten Yes answers: Yes, I was the victim of such-and-such although I never reported it. And on that basis you might go public and assert that while there have been only X-number of reported instances, there actually are X-times-9 or X-times-10 that number as you have ‘proven’ through your ‘research’ (i.e., that survey you conducted).
    This is a common gambit in situations where persons wanting to sell a product to the government can bolster the case for buying their product by jacking up numbers to make the need for their product seem much greater than can be demonstrably proven. (Some readers may recall ‘the bomber gap’ of the 1950s, or ‘the missile gap’ of the early 1960s – although we now know that the Soviets did not have anywhere near the bomber-force or missile-force ‘estimated’ by military-product contractors of that era.)
    I would say that this sales-stratagem migrated and mutated over time, and was later taken up by – among other special interests – the congeries of interests seeking to reduce the credibility and public influence of the Church.

  7. kmc says:

    I believe most men do not like to discuss their torture publicly, however, this priest may be suprised
    how positively he would be received @ speaking engagements.  These situations rise well above
    what would be considered typical "sacrificing for the sake of spreading the faith."   By the way,
    can the media be held  legally and financially  accountable for "everyone's favorite"…….

  8. jim robertson says:

    Victimism? Victimist? Who's" playing" the victim here? Those actually sexually abused or the Church. He who is "playing the victim" shouldn't be casting stones against those who really are the victims here.
    Do you see Black or Jewish ; or Gay people as examples of Victimism or were they simply victimized?
    Is there a place where one can become a Victimist?
    And are you the founder of Victimism?

  9. Publion says:

    I find ‘Victimism’ an easier term to write and pronounce than – say – ‘Victim-Rights-Valorization-ism’ or ‘Victimology’ (the term used in the title of a 1986 book supporting the development of this phenomenon). But I certainly didn’t invent the dynamics or the cultural phenomenon, however kindly it might be suggested that I did.
    I would define Victimism as a phenomenon that a) includes a congeries of assorted advocacy interests b) demanding i) that persons claiming to be victims be believed without further  question or examination or else they will be ‘re-victimized’ and such questioners will merely be ‘blaming the victim’; ii) that the claimed victimization should enjoy equal or greater status  - not only in public opinion but in legal process – than any rights traditionally accorded to the accused in the Bill of Rights; iii) that in support of (ii) fundamental legal and jurisprudential principles be changed in such a way as to reduce the difficulty of convicting the accused (who, as must be accepted by the uncontestable claim of the accuser, is already undeniably cast as the ‘perp’ or the ‘victimizer’); iv) that in the service of such an advocacy objective different standards of truthfulness apply to the accuser (who should be given great leeway) and to the accused (who must be held to the most stringent traditional standards of truthfulness).
    I would further say that the numbers of persons “actually sexually abused” (in the Church context) have not been demonstrated to be as high as is popularly imagined, although I do not deny that there have been cases of genuine sexual abuse (although here there is also a substantial problem with the elasticity of the definition of the term ‘sexual abuse’).
    Consequently, the Church is indeed on the receiving end of a rather strongly-orchestrated campaign, and this campaign is ‘justified’ largely by the circular reference to the numbers of those ‘abused’.
    To the extent that any advocacy participates in the dynamics of this phenomenon as I described it immediately above, then that advocacy participates in the phenomenon of ‘Victimism’.
    I would also point out that this phenomenon is not primarily orchestrated by individuals but by special-interests among assorted organized advocacies. So, to use an example often mentioned in comments on this site, the organized advocacy-interest known as SNAP carries on a program and agenda that is not necessarily approved by or in the best interests of all of those individuals whom it claims to represent.

  10. Jay McNally says:

    Jim Robertson, if are referring to the statement of Stephen Cook in 1993 regarding Cardinal Bernardin, Cook never retracted his accusation. There is no evidence of a "false accusation."
    Quite a bit has been written about Bernardin and his history of being associated with pedophiles throughout his career. Paul Likoudis wrote about this in his book, “AmChurch Comes Out.”
    The article linked below has some information about the Bernardin situation. It has been reported that Bernardin spent $ 3 million in payouts to buy silence from Cook and others.

    • TheMediaReport.com says:

      Jay, Jay, Jay -

      We welcome your comments, but if you are going to come on here, you need to get your facts straight.

      Steven Cook DID retract and apologize for his bogus accusation as news reports relayed shortly after the incident:

      http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1995-01-05/news/9501050333_1_cardinal-bernardin-steven-cook-rev-ellis-harsham :

      Cardinal Joseph Bernardin on Wednesday disclosed details of a private, emotional and redemptive encounter he had last week in Philadelphia with his former accuser, Steven Cook, describing their two hours together as a “grace-filled meeting which brought closure and peace to both of us.”

      At the meeting in a Roman Catholic seminary, which was initiated by Bernardin and arranged by intermediaries, Cook apologized to the cardinal for accusing him of sexual abuse in a lawsuit that was filed in November 1993 …

      Dropping the charges three months after he lodged them, Cook declared as “unreliable” his memories of the abuse, which were induced through hypnosis some two decades after Cook said it occurred.

      Cook now goes beyond that statement, asserting that he is absolutely convinced of Bernardin’s innocence.

      In the interview, Cook said: “When we met, I told Cardinal Bernardin that I was 95 percent sure he hadn’t abused me, but I would like to be 100 percent certain. I said to do that, ‘I need for you to look me in the eye and tell me you didn’t do it.’”

      Cook said Bernardin did this.

      Surely if this were a nationally publicized lie, Cook or his lawyer, Stephen Rubino, would have said so.

      See also: http://www.annenberg.northwestern.edu/pubs/guilt/default.htm


  11. Julie says:

    jim robertson, It's not either or. It is OK to understand that an innocent priest who is falsely accused (and one I know of is serving a term in prison) is a victim. And especially since all accused priests are crucified in the press whether they are guilty or not. If you are interested, These Stone Walls is the blog of a priest who has been in prison for many years. You can decide for yourself if he is guilty. It didn't take me long to decide for myself.

    • jim robertson says:

      Julie,This era of non news news is awful. If it bleeds it leads journalism, controlls viewers through fear. Local T.V. news is a prime example. They consistantly hold viewers attention by promoting the possibility of DANGER to the watchers. (I use television "news" as an example since most Americans now get their news from T.V.) Fear sells. So in my opinion it isn't just Catholic priests who are singled out in the fear reports. it's anybody accused.
      I think you may seem Catholic priests as "crucified" simply because of the flock of news reports made; but since fear sells and fear for the safety of children really sells you have much "reportage". Let's not forget the massive amount of attention directed at the McMartin nursery school in Manhattan Beach, California. A non religious scandal that just wasn't true.
      I will go today to "Stone Walls" thank you. But I still don't get why real victims of priest sex abuse are put in the same camp as fake victims. The very tone here suggests that priests are somehow more valuable and there for more in need of protection or defense than the people who were truely harmed.

  12. jim robertson says:

     FYI, Steve Rubino was also my lawyer. I didn't choose him. I was handed over to him by the lawyer I hired Kathy Freiburg. I talked to him on the phone but never met him.

  13. jim robertson says:

    Pub, I don't know why you think victims or anyone claiming to be a victim, hasn't gone through as much if not more scrutiny that the accused. We did. Believe me we did. I'm sorry if the reality of priests sex lives compared to the celibate pose has upset you. Imagine how that part of that reality upset me as a victim. If fake victims and false accusations are made, that's horrific but 9.5 out of 10 are valid claims and to deny that is also unforgiveable.
    It seems interesting to me that right wing Catholic and Protestant politicians have posed a non-existant attack on "religion" at a time when real victims are coming forward about their real abuse. Do you wonder why we see it as a pose to take the Church off it's self created hook by making itself the "real" victim?

  14. Publion says:

    As a rule, self-proclaimed victims have not been examined carefully in front of juries.  In the first place because compared to the number of allegations there have been very few criminal trials or civil trials, especially of individual priests. And in court trials for which there are transcripts, the dynamic is that the ‘story’ is told but it is not examined.
    This is glaringly obvious in the recently-concluded Santa Clara trial – where the accuser was (inappropriately, to my mind, as I said in comments on this site at that time) simply allowed by the court to tell his story about the alleged assault of 1975 without any examination in front of the jury; thus the story was allowed – through a jurisprudential ‘reform’ mentality I have mentioned – as if it were demonstrated and proven evidence, although it was never itself subjected to actual adversarial scrutiny and examination.
    The Grand Jury presentment does not require or permit adversarial examination – to say the least – and hence in that venue all of the stories presented by the prosecution are simply that: stories (meaning that they were not subjected to examination). Thus in the ensuing Philadelphia trial of Msgr. Lynn (et al.) the unproven stories were lodged in the public mind as if they were demonstrated evidence; as we saw in that trial, when the stories of rape or attempted rape were presented and actually examined, they largely failed.
    “Upset” does not begin to reach the gravamen of my concerns. The legal and Constitutional derangements are nothing short of ‘alarming’, in my opinion. And the damage done to the Church by so widespread a campaign based on so much unproven material simultaneously raises serious concerns for me not only about the integrity of the legal and legislative systems, but also for the well-being of any society and culture where such campaigns can be carried on against any religious organization by any congeries of special-and-hostile interests.
    To envision my concern as being in essence anything less than that – e.g. I am personally miffed that priests are being dragged through the mud or that my favorite religious organization is getting a black eye in the public mind – falls substantially short of comprehending the source and cause of my alarm.
    I would have to see far more evidence than anything I have seen published or in comments here to credit the assertion that in the matter of Catholic clerical abuse allegations “9.5 out of 10 are valid claims”. And I would submit that there is nothing morally or theologically “unforgivable” in refusing to accept such an assertion whole-hog; and rather, indeed, I would say that it would be conceptually and morally an egregious failure of integrity if I were to accept such types of assertion without sufficient validation.
    And I would submit further that the weirdly-sustained and cyclically-repetitive nature of this ‘crisis’ could not have gone from a storm to a tornado – and a weirdly repetitive tornado – if more people had done more thinking-through of the stories presented as proof and evidence and justification of the whole Thing. Just as a large and steady supply of warm water can feed a tropical storm to the point where it engorges into a hurricane, so too a steady supply of public gullibility or lack-of-skepticism can feed a Problem until it engorges into a Deep and Permanent Crisis.
    Thus too, the assertion that “real victims are coming forward about their abuse” seems not to reflect available facts: in the Church matter, allegations have dropped off significantly. Although, as the economic downturn has continued, there has been now a slight uptick again, but not approaching anywhere near the levels of a decade ago and – unsurprisingly – most newly-lodged allegations a) have to do with some behavior other than rape and b) have allegedly taken place in the long-ago  (a trend which might continue to be fed by the ineluctable reality that priests in active ministry four and five decades ago are now approaching senescence or have already died).
    I stand by my extended analysis on this site as to the synergy between various proponents of secularism among certain influential political elites and various movements for radical change within the Church, all of which have found Victimism (a long-recognized and proclaimed phenomenon going back politically at least to the beginning of the Reagan years or conceptually at least as far back as 1971’s influential book ‘Blaming the Victim”) to be a very useful pretext for their own larger objectives.
    Hence the effort to reduce all of this complex reality to the Church’s sudden current attempt to “get itself off the hook” fails rather completely. The Church is clearly on the receiving end of an orchestrated campaign; the fact that victims – genuine or otherwise – have been so concerned for their own position that they did not notice the much larger Issues moving this whole Thing all around and beneath them like flotsam on a flood tide is a regrettable but undeniable reality.
    As some comments have consistently insisted on this and other sites – although without sufficient insight as to what they had dimly but accurately perceived – this ‘crisis’ has never been primarily about its victims (genuine or otherwise) but about the damage the sustained impetus of this ‘crisis’ could cause to a Church whose very existence obstructs various very large and deep political and cultural agendas.
    If anything is “non-existent” in all of this, it is the abiding and primary concern for victims – genuine or otherwise, among the accusers or the accused. Rather, the ultimate objective has always been the sustained Game of Keeping The Ball Rolling in the hidden interests of  those larger political and cultural agendas, within and outside of the Church. I will go so far as to say here that for the purposes of these large and deep special interests, SNAP is merely a kept pawn and the genuine or not-genuine victims – to use (but not approve of) Lenin’s vivid phrase – are to those interests nothing more than “useful idiots”.
    That’s a sad thing, but there it is.

  15. jim robertson says:

    Victims have not been put in front of juries because theChurch and it's insurors find it cheaper to settle. If you really want to believe that real sexual abuse and real damages from that abuse over all and to a great majority of cases is untrue. Feel free.
    I guess they also settled so that the truth of the lack of celibacy among some priests would indeed blacken The Church's eye. Especially since the Church has confused sexuality out side of the sanctity of marriage , with morality.

  16. Publion says:

    The ‘JR’ comment of August 30 at 5:41 PM is very useful.
    It is not a matter of ‘choosing to believe’ – as if all there was to differing positions is a matter of who likes vanilla and who likes chocolate-chip. This, I think, is a decisively clear indication of a far more fundamental difference in how one goes about coming to conclusions that ground the position one takes.
    The ‘bundled’ lawsuits are not accidents; they are shrewd legal moves that almost guarantee that no prudent Defendant (the Bishops or Dioceses, not the individual priests who – not being named Parties Defendant – have no say in the disposition of the lawsuit) or defense counsel or Insurer could possibly risk the expense and effort of defending each Charge by each Plaintiff. The Church and its Insurers “find it cheaper” because the way the lawsuits are structured there is no possible prudent way to do anything else; there is very little element of ‘choice’ in it.
    And in regard to my ‘wanting to believe’ that “real sexual abuse and real damages from that abuse” is largely untrue “in the great majority of cases”: I find myself constrained by the extant evidence, such that to actually ‘choose to believe’ ‘JR’s assertion would necessarily involve disregarding the rather stunning lack of evidence (as distinct from ‘stories’) and  – yes – literally ‘choosing’ to believe otherwise despite the serious lack of evidence. Once you commit to the principle that evidence is necessary to justify allegations, then you no longer have the simple choices confronting a kid in an ice-cream shop.
    It is precisely on this point, I have been saying on this site, that the Victimist playbook as it has mutated here shrewdly and yet also lethally has worked to undermine traditional evidentiary first principles of American and Western law (through what are commonly spun as ‘victim-friendly’ or ‘victim-sensitive’ ‘reforms’). It was clear to any careful thought from Day One that the traditional and well-established evidentiary principles underpinning Western jurisprudence would quickly stifle any momentum toward the type of ‘crisis’ campaign we have seen mounted and sustained against the Church.
    For that matter, the radical-feminists realized exactly the same thing and mounted their own campaign as discussed and explained in great and revealing detail by law professor Catharine MacKinnon in her 1989 book “Toward a Feminist Theory of the State”. That synergy worked powerfully especially in the 1990s, and was well-established by January 2nd, 2002.
    The settlements of those bundled lawsuits did not formally establish any truth whatsoever about any of the allegations that were settled for cash. Indeed, because the strategy of the bundled lawsuits pretty much forced an out-of-court settlement for cash, it almost guaranteed that none of the covered allegations would ever be formally examined. One can claim that thus they would never be proven, or that thus they would never be disproven – but the incontrovertible and ineluctable fact remains that there remains precious little evidentiary-grade proof of most of the allegations.
    I can’t make sense out of the final assertion about morality and marriage, and I leave it to others who might perceive its meaning and its relevance to the subject at hand.
    I again make two of the points I made at the end of a prior comment on this TMR article: 1) Genuine scientific investigation and analysis requires the researcher to forego his/her personal preferences and follow the actual evidence. Einstein – since his name was raised in comments by ‘JR’ on this site – did not rest easy until other researchers were able to confirm his 1905 (Special) and 1915 (General) Relativity Theories; he specifically designed three tests that would have to be conducted by astronomical field research in order for his theories to be proven and he specifically stated that unless those tests were successful then he would consider his Relativity theories as “untenable”. It took until 1923 for all three of his conditions to be met and successfully demonstrated.
    Meaning that a genuine researcher doesn’t simply ‘choose’ the results s/he would like to see. What has been called ‘advocacy science’, however, precisely does seek merely to assemble whatever theorems, factoids, stories or whatever other material might create the impression of ‘scientific proof’ (thus, as I mentioned in earlier comments on this article, the rise of the ‘survey’ as if it were actual scientific research).
    And 2) the operating dynamics of this entire Thing long ago left individual victims – genuine or otherwise – in the dust, treating them merely as pawns and – to use Lenin’s brutal but lucidly relevant phrase – “useful idiots”, somehow trying to work their own outcomes in a Game that was actually taking place far beneath and above them. And that dynamic – required from the outset, in my opinion – remains active to this day. Nor was any of this the work or strategy of the Church, which can hardly be said to be ‘controlling’ the course of this Thing as it makes its destructive way through the nation’s current events and recent history.

  17. Publion says:

    I would also add this further development, which I think I already discussed in comments on this site, and which was well-made somewhere in some comment on the Philly trial site a few months ago: the practice of what is called in the trade “law office history”.
    When an attorney finally decides on a theory of the case s/he will present, s/he then sends the law office research elves to come up with any historical or other material (case precedent, expert or professional articles and books, legislative history and laws, and so forth) that will specifically support that theory of the case that s/he has already decided upon.
    Clearly, this is a very particular type of ‘history’ and is not the type of historical research and analysis commonly understood as formal historical research. It is – actually and really – ‘advocacy history’, since the attorney is specifically trying to come up with historical and conceptual material that will support his/her theory of the case, and only that material. (It is up to the other side to come up with contradictory historical and conceptual material.)
    I put it to the readership that it is this very slanted ‘law office history’ that is presented to victims and victim-supporters in meetings and conferences, by persons with the educational and professional degrees and credentials that would impress less professionally educated and trained individuals. Thus showered with such ‘law office history’, presented as if it were actual fully researched history, those susceptible individuals then rush to their keyboards and other activities, convinced that they have the full Picture and are thus in possession of all the necessary facts and – through the osmosis of hearing it from ‘professors’ and ‘experts’ and quite possibly ‘lawyers’ – the competence to wield these ‘facts’.
    Thus we so often encounter persons who seem to have no large or deep grounding in history making historical assertions; and ditto in law; and psychology; and theology and doctine; and all manner of other areas of complex expertise and knowledge. And further, are both befuddled and angered when what they expected to be quick-trumping ‘facts’ are demonstrated to be not quite what they had come to so eagerly believe.
    From what we have seen of, for example, SNAP conference addresses by this or that credentialed speaker, I would say that there is a great deal of ‘law office history’ and ‘advocacy history’ that has been downloaded into the various hearers, whose efforts then appear on the web in comments. And which are then taken up by far too many media outlets as being both compellingly personal and utterly accurate ‘history’.
    This dynamic has played a great role, in my opinion, in keeping this ‘crisis’ going for as long as it has, through all the Phases we have seen over the past quarter-century or so.

  18. Jay McNally says:

    Facts in my previous post are correct, and I appreciate your linking two articles about the case in your reply.  I read both articles. I probably read the Tribune article when it was publsihed in '94, but was unaware of the conference at the journalism school.  
    In the article about the conference it seemed all the panelists conveniently avoided the most significant fact of the Bernardin/Cook controversy: Cook dropped the lawsuit AFTER a secret financial settlement (estimated to be about $3 million) was reached with Bernardin. Conference panelists did mention, however, that the court files are sealed, apparently at the request of Bernardin. Thus, I think you will have to admit that the complete truth of what happened regarding the court case is unknown.
    Nor did the Chicago Tribune article mention the settlement between Bernardin and Cook.
    Dave, wouldn’t filing an FOIA request to get these court files unsealed be an excellent project for you and Media Report? That way there would be no question as to what happened in the case.
    In his book, “AmChurch Comes Out,” Paul Likoudis discusses both the Cook lawsuit as well as the  Bernardin's relationship with priests who were pedophiles.  Likoudis states that he did see the secret settlement between Cook and Bernardin, and is adamant that Cook did not retract his accusation. Below is an excerpt from Paul’s book:
    “… in February 1994, Cook dropped Bernardin from the suit, saying he couldn't trust his memory. Cook never retracted his charges; nor did he say they were inaccurate — contrary to the accepted party line that Bernardin had been exonerated, which persists to this day.”
    You can read the Likoudis viewpoint at this link: http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/110419
    In this case, as in much  this sex-scandal mess, there has too much secrecy and too much money spent by the Church to pay off victims to keep quiet.  The Cook case is part of it.

    • TheMediaReport.com says:

      Thanks, Jay -

      1. The Tribune article was from Jan. 1995, not 1994.

      2. Paul wrote, “Cook never retracted his charges; nor did he say they were inaccurate — contrary to the accepted party line that Bernardin had been exonerated, which persists to this day.”

      Very interesting, but Paul provides zero evidence or support for this startling claim. Nothing. What is his basis for claiming this?

      3. I am aware that the Archdiocese of Cincinnati reached an out-of-court settlement with Cook regarding abuse by former priest Harsham, who reportedly was accused by a number of others for criminal and “questionable” behavior. 

      I think it is a stretch to conclude this was a settlement “with Bernardin,” as you and Paul claim.

      Yes, Harsham, may have been “thrown under the bus,” but Harsham was accused by a number of people, unlike Bernardin. And, if I’m not mistaken, Cook actually accused Harsham first, and then oddly added the accusation against Bernardin months later. And the reason for this … (see #4)

      4. Left out in all of this is the fact that Cook only made his accusations following hypnosis therapy, which has been thoroughly and completely debunked. From the outset, Cook never should have been deemed credible.

      5. Even bishop-accountability.org, which posts every allegation under the sun, does not list Bernardin on its list of accused clerics.

      I am an admirer of Paul and The Wanderer. Indeed, Cardinal Bernardin created tremendous damage to the Church here in the United States with his policies and profile. In fact, we are certainly still feeling the ill effects of Bernardin today. The clean-up continues.

      Surely, Bernardin was a damaging leader, and he was very close with people who were eventually labelled as pedophiles. But that does not make him guilty of abusing Cook – or anybody.

  19. jim robertson says:

    I wonder where Pub "often encounters such persons" as he implies above. The bar in Star Wars?

  20. jim robertson says:

    When truth becomes "harmful" to the Church then somethings wrong with the Church not the truth.
    No lawyer I have met and worked with ever "coached" me or any victim I know. We were simply asked to tell the truth and we did.
    This worry of yours is like the non-existant voter fraud the Republicans have been using to cut minority and poor people from the voters' rolls.

  21. Publion says:

    What "truth"?
    Who ever said victims were "coached"?
    Thus the assertion that my worry doesn't exist is also wide of the mark.
    And the use of the Republicans is a red-herring to distract people from the essential emptiness of the claim.

  22. Jay McNally says:

    Paul Likoudis wrote that he saw the secret settlement agreement between Cook and Bernardin. That is pretyy good evidence to me.

    Why not file a requwst to see the court documents? There is no good reason to keep them secret. Both Cook and Bernardin are dead.

    • TheMediaReport.com says:

      1. Well, I don’t know how someone “sees” a settlement that is “secret.” The bottom line is that no mainstream outlet has ever reported such a settlement. And where can I read about Mr. Likoudis “seeing” this agreement?

      I also remind you:

      a) Neither Mr. Cook nor his lawyer ever contradicted the report that an apology took place.

      b) Mr. Cook only accused Bernardin after undergoing “hypnosis therapy,” a thoroughly discredited practice. You and Mr. Likoudis have consistently ignored this important fact.


      2. I already have two FOIA-type requests out there and a third one on the burner. Because of the nature of the records I am requesting, I am meeting a lot of resistence.

      I am not ready to do a fourth. In addition, such a settlement would likely not be a public record, making any such request for the agreement futile.

  23. Jay McNally says:

    1) I read about this specific situation in Paul's book, "AmChurch Comes Out."
    The Church's secrecy on these matters has destroyed its credibility. This point was made only a few days ago by Bishop Daniel Conlon of Joliet, chairman of the US bishops’ Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People. See this:
    “For the last few years I operated with the conviction that consistent implementation of the ‘Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,’ coupled with some decent publicity, would turn public opinion around,” he said at a conference of safe-environment and victims’ assistance coordinators. “I now know this was an illusion … I was wandering in a hall of mirrors.”
    Stating that bishops’ “credibility on the subject of child abuse is shredded,” Bishop Conlon said that the lay diocesan employees “may have a better chance. People–in the Church, outside the Church, and hanging on the edge–need to know that real progress is being made” in the “daunting task of repairing the damage.”
    Dave, as you work so hard to defend the (in my mind, the indefensible) handling of this mess by bishops, you would be in a good place to ask that these documents be made public and that the Church quit making secret deals.

    • TheMediaReport.com says:

      1. I actually read the entirety of Bishop Conlon’s speech a few days ago. While I was expecting a broadside against the bishops because of the “hall of mirrors” and “shredded” comments, the speech was not that way at all. He acknowledged that a lot of progress has been made with regards to the scandals, but that message needs to come from the laity.

      2. As far as “secret deals,” let me refer you to Judge Patrick J. Schiltz, who probably has about as much experience as anyone in dealing with abuse cases (500+ cases, Catholic and Protestant). He wrote his comments in 2003:

      Finally, a few words about “secret settlements.” Here is the story that we have all heard many times: When churches would pay settlements to victims, we are told, churches would insist on secrecy agreements, prohibiting victims from disclosing any details of their abuse, saving churches from embarrassing publicity and, in some cases, allowing pastors to go on abusing. Many media outlets have run such stories, often carrying quotations from plaintiffs’ attorneys condemning this practice, and sometimes featuring victims who, after being paid to keep quiet, broke their word and essentially dared the church to try to take back its money.

      In the fifteen years I have been advising churches, I have always considered these secrecy agreements to be worse than useless. As far as I can remember, I never asked for one (although my clients were on a few occasions parties to secrecy agreements that had been requested by others). That said, let me make three points about secrecy agreements.

      First, in many cases-perhaps a majority of cases-it was the victim who asked for the secrecy agreement. There is a reason why victims often sue as “Jane Doe” or “John Doe” and often seek protective orders from courts. Victims are understandably concerned to protect their privacy. That concern does not go away when the case is settled.

      Second, even when it was the church that asked for a secrecy agreement, in the vast majority of cases that agreement extended only to the amount of the settlement. I have been involved in hundreds of settlements, and I literally cannot recall one that required the victim not to talk about his or her abuse. Such clauses are uncommon.

      Finally, even with respect to these uncommon clauses-that is, clauses insisted upon by churches that required victims to remain silent about their abuse-what happened to the other half of the story? If it was wrong for defense attorneys to buy secrecy, why was it not wrong for plaintiffs’ attorneys to sell it?

      After all, it was plaintiffs’ lawyers who would sometimes call church attorneys and say that, unless they were paid an outrageous amount, they would file a complaint against the church and call a press conference to publicize it. It was plaintiffs’ lawyers who would sometimes make two settlement demands-a lower demand that did not include a secrecy agreement and a higher demand that did. It was plaintiffs’ lawyers who would happily sell secrecy and happily take their 40-percent cut of the price of that secrecy. And yet some of these same plaintiffs’ lawyers now tell reporters how very, very wrong it was for churches to buy what they were selling. With just one or two exceptions, I do not know of a reporter who has paused to contemplate the obvious hypocrisy of these lawyers.

      3. I would also like you to provide a specific example of me “defending the indefensible.”


  24. jim robertson says:

    Here's how that works Dave. The Church can no longer ask for secrecy but the victim can.
    My friend was told this by the Church only this year. In other words in order to get the settlement get the victim to ask for secrecy.
    I have another friend , a woman who in the '90s turned down 3 million because she refused to remain silent.

  25. Jim Robertson reported above that there is "evidence" for 100,000 victims of sexual abuse by priests and 10,000 priestly perpetrators.  As a Catholic writer who has researched and written of this story extensively, I would like to know the exact authority for such figures.

    • jim robertson says:

      Either The David France book and or John Jay report? I "reported" nothing; because I am not the press.
      I answer you with as much honesty I have. I know Pub will drub most of what I say and since my responses are not published here to him. The debate is fixed. I see free speech as more important that being nice but pub implies and or directly states over and over how incompetent; how cartoony my opinions are and worse. yet you get very little of my responses to him.

  26. Publion says:

    And once again with a motherlode.
    The key matter is accuracy, not "honesty". The latter is – neatly – completely self-referential while the former requires conformity to some external standard of fact. I point out inaccuracies or illogical elements in what you say; you think that's being 'drubbed' – which is a phenomenon I pointed out in comments on the Colorado Planned Parenthood editorial piece: if you don't agree with everything I say then you are attacking me. That sort of thing.
    I now see a new twist here: your "responses" to me aren't being published so the "debate is fixed". I have nothing to do with what comments get published or not. But I will say this: what you publish sequential to my comments cannot be classified as "debate" because you don't respond to any ideas or objections nor do you put up further evidence of any contested assertion. You simply change the subject or try throwing a fresh pile at some other point on the screen. This is neither "debate" nor 'conversation' nor 'exchange'.
    And if you are inferring that all of your rather sophomoric comments are being published (obscenties included) but all of your acute, insightful, and discussion-furthering masterworks are not, then say so – because that's the corner you have now gone and painted yourself into.
    And while I have nothing to do with the editing of comments process on this site I will venture this supposition (which I hereby clearly lable as such): if there is any truth to the matter that some of your material consequent-to-mine is not published, and from what I've seen of your material and what I've said in the foregoing paragaraph, then I would – until I see demonstrable evidence to the contrary – expect that what hasn't been published (if there is any such material) is not a 'response' in furtherance of the ideas involved, but rather simply a) sophomoric or distracting (and possibly obscene) or else b) material which might reasonably be construed to be seriously embarassing to you in the eyes of other readers (a possibility that may never have occurred to you, I admit).
    So to any implication or insinuation that you are ready-willing-and-able to respond to my thoughts, and have been doing so all along, and it's merely a matter of your rather competent and effective commentary not being published … to any such implication or insinuation I would respectfully opine: Not likely.
    I also point out that this is not a matter of "freedom of speech" being suppressed. From what I have seen of your your published comments you have enjoyed a large freedom on this site and the record of how you have used that freedom is up there for everybody to see (unless you also want to insinuate that parties unknown are putting up obscene or sophomoric comments in your name).
    People are entitled to their own opinion; but they are not entitled to their own facts. You are free to say whatever you want; but to point out the cartoonishness of what you say is not an abrogation of your free speech rights – it is a comment on the quality (or lack of it) of the material you produce under the aegis of that right.
    So trying to smear this site just because you don't feel you are appreciated the way you fancy you should be or your comments aren't given the reception you would prefer … I would simply opine that that's not how the game is played on the varsity level. If you're swinging and not hitting, then the only varsity solution is to work on your batting – don't blame the ump, the bat,  the stadium, the other team, or parties-conspiratorial, known or unknown.

  27. jim robertson says:

    How dare I even breathe? My responses are my responses; to critique what you've never seen is extraordinary.
    Again because I don't apparently respond to your questions or statements doesn't mean I haven't.
    And I have no intention of working for hours on a response only to have it disappear ;I work very hard as do you on your posts. Yours are posted and mine are not.
    I write for the readers here as I suppose do you As well as for myself.. I don't know how to play on an unequal playing field. And besides I am not in competition with you. I telling you my point of view. I didn't ask you to tell me how stupid or wrong I am. I disagree with your analysis you disagree with mine. If the readers here find you or me or both of us as correct or incorrect. fine.
    I think both of us love having the last word.
    You can't quit because you must be right about me. O. K. I'm a moron: my thinking sucks and I'll be just what ever you want. It's awfully hard on my part to become what ever pub wants me to be. It makes me feel very bad. But screw me. My thinking is wrong and I must be only doing it to spite him and any intelligent person. Pub I am gay clay in your hands. Make me what you want.
    Baseball imagery how I so relate to that. LOL And varsity?LOL. Poor American males limited by their false gods. themselves.

  28. Publion says:

    It seems not to have occurred to you so I will say it clearly: I am not personally interested in your positions or in ‘having the last word’ with you. As I have said before in comments, to the extent that your material offers useful examples of one thing or another relevant to the Catholic clerical abuse matter, then I make comments, which may often include analysis of your comments. I make my analysis of your comments simply because they exemplify so many elements often seen in comments about this Catholic clerical abuse matter and this site is a great spot for providing some analysis of things people interested in the Catholic clerical abuse matter are going to run into all over the place.
    So then, to your comment of 12:10 AM today.
    You exaggerate rather largely (I never suggested you don’t have a right to exist or to “breathe”), which neatly paints you as a victim and avoids the actual gravamen of my comments: that I find a great deal of the logic and thinking in your comments insufficient to the assertions that you make.
    Further, you – as best I can make out from the vague wording – seem to think that since I have never “seen” something, then I have no right to “critique” it. But I most certainly have seen your comments.
    Or if you are trying to imply that since I have never seen victimization then I have no right to comment upon it, I would respond as follows. A) How on earth do you conclude that I have never experienced victimization? B) Victimization is a rather wide-spread human phenomenon and human experience, so on what grounds do I – as a human being – not have the right to comment about it? C) On the basis of one’s own personal and thus arguably ‘private’ victimization, you and a number of other self-declared victims are demanding public attention, public recognition and acceptance of your stories and claims, public resources, public funds, and very very substantial and significant action on the part of legislators, policy-makers, law-enforcement, and judicial personnel; so by ‘going public’ you and all such other persons have yourselves opened your experiences to public attention (which includes examination, analysis, discussion, and so forth).
    Since this clearly is a site designed for comments, then  of what use is a comment where you do not to all appearances respond to a comment? How can you claim to have responded to a comment although nobody appears to have seen any response in your response? Is your answer or response somehow there but invisible?
    And again you repeat by inference your assertion that your best and most masterful responses are not being published (while apparently your sophomoric and sometimes obscene comments are being published). How could this conceivably be and why would it conceivably be? And are you trying to infer that while you make logical and effective responses if you take hours to think about it, yet if you simply bang off a comment off the top of your head that putative competence for logical thought somehow disappears and your sophomoric and obscene mentality suddenly kicks in? This is like turning in a 2-page, half-baked term paper and insisting that you have a much better 10-pager back at home but you didn’t think it was worth bringing it in.
    And you again blame external forces for your failure to produce anything worthwhile at bat: this time it’s an “unequal playing field” – whatever that means in this context.
    You are welcome to tell everybody your point of view. But it’s a public comment site, you have chosen to publicly make comments (and some very serious claims and assertions), and you have chosen to do so on a matter of very large public import, to which – on top of everything else – your assertions indicate that you think you have the answers pure and simple. And when difficulties are pointed out and explained at some length, with the material that you produce, you claim to be some a victim of disrespect or of some conspiracy against you. Give that some thought – it seems to be a rather clear and sustained personal pattern.
    So I can very easily quit in the sense that I am not really personally involved with you or your material at all. I am, however, personally involved with the type of thinking (or lack of it) that has in my estimation driven a great deal of this whole Catholic clerical abuse matter; you just happen to be a continuous example of what I think has been going wrong for quite a while – and that constitutes the only basis of my interest in your comments.
    As for the rest of the self-indulgent and self-pitying mischaracterizations in the service of making you look like the victim in all this, they’re up there for anyone to see.
    And lastly, in regard to the baseball bit that somehow appears to you connected to American males: I submit that your biggest “false god” is your own self. And in trying to protect that false-god you will quickly revert to covering up its short-comings by claiming to be victimized and conspired-against. I suggest you give that some serious thought – nor do you have to avoid doing so because any comment you make about it won’t be published here … rather, keep a personal log of your thoughts for your own private reference.
    It’s a public site, about a public matter. If you choose to have an at-bat, then fine. But don’t blame everything and everyone but yourself if you don’t seem to hit the ball.

  29. jim robertson says:

    Lay off!
    You're a psuedo-intellectual bully and bore. 

  30. Julie says:

    Jim, I don't get the point of your posts. Your aim seems to be to insult the commenters on here because they are Catholic.

  31. Publion says:

    In regard to your comment of 4:19 PM:
    Remarkably, if I were to indulge myself in quickie one-liner epithets, that would be exactly the advice I would give you.
    If you care to provide an example of my "pseudo" intellectuality, I'd be happy to respond.

  32. TheMediaReport.com says:

    Thank you everyone for your contributions and comments.

    I think the time has come to put this thread to rest.

    Thank you.


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