NY Times’ Frank Bruni Again Uses Old Sex Abuse Stories For More Anti-Catholic Bigotry

Frank Bruni :: anti-Catholic

Keeping the bigotry alive: The New York Times' Frank Bruni

If there is still any doubt that the New York Times' obsession with sex abuse in the Catholic Church has nothing to do with abuse itself and everything to do with bludgeoning the Church, one does not need to look further than the bigoted screed this past Sunday from Frank Bruni, an Op-Ed columnist at the Times.

This time Bruni attacks the Catholic priesthood by using the topic of decades-old abuse by priests as a cover for his angry bigotry.

Garbage in, garbage out

In order to advance his spiteful attack on the Catholic priesthood, Bruni turns to a long-time Church basher, Garry Wills, a writer who has long been known as an "anti-Catholic Catholic." Wills proudly supports abortion on demand, artificial contraception, and women's ordination. He also rejects and/or denies papal infallibility, papal authority, and the Real Presence in the Eucharist. In other words, Wills is not really a follower of the Catholic Church. He's a follower of the Church of Garry Wills. And his trendy views align nicely with those of the New York Times editorial board.

In his heralded 2004 book, The New Anti-Catholicism: The Last Acceptable Prejudice, Philip Jenkins cited Wills as a prime example of a modern-day Church basher. Jenkins opined it was "baffling" that Wills actually "chooses to call himself Catholic."

Most notably, Wills' scholarship – which Bruni mindlessly applauds – has been roundly trounced and discredited in many places. (See this, this, and this, for example.)

In the end, Wills' views on Catholicism are less about serious scholarship and more about a dissident academic pining that the Church conform itself to his politically correct thinking.

Not really about sex abuse, again

Bruni's wild-eyed barrage against the Church dredges up decades-old stories of abuse by Catholic priests in Los Angeles. The basic facts have already been well worn and widely reported, but Bruni presents them as if they were somehow new and revelatory.

Meanwhile, as we have repeatedly reported, according to a little-seen blog item at the Times last year, there were "248 complaints of sexual misconduct involving school employees" just in the first three months of 2012 in New York City's own public schools.
248 … in three months … Where have you been, Frank?

And the callousness towards victims of child abuse in public schools in New York is nothing new. According to a 1994 study examining 225 cases of known sex abuse by public school teachers in the state of New York in the early 1990s, zero were reported to the police.

That 1994 study also reported that only 1 percent of those abusive educators lost their licenses to teach, while "25 percent received no consequence or were reprimanded informally and off-the-record. Nearly 39 percent chose to leave the district, most with positive recommendations or even retirement packages intact." Unbelievable.

Apparently, the awful abuse of children is only bothersome to Bruni if the word priest or bishop is in the job title of the person who has committed the abuse. A search of the archive of Bruni's work at the Times reveals that while the writer has repeatedly cited abuse from decades past in the Catholic Church, he has turned a blind eye to the more recent, stomach-turning abuse practically in his backyard in New York City public schools.

Anti-Catholicism again at the New York Times? What else is new?


"When people wish to destroy religion, they begin by attacking the priest, because where there is no longer any priest there is no sacrifice, and where there is no longer any sacrifice there is no religion."
– St. John Vianney (d. 1859)


  1. Roderick says:

    "The NY Times obsession with sex abuse."  What a ridiculous thing to say.  Maybe one should obsess over sex abuse, it is criminal, and does life long damage to the victims.  However, the Times obsession with sex abuse pales in comparison to church's centuries of obsession with sex.  

  2. Guido says:

    You whiners at The Media Report should be ashamed of yourselves, and I am talking some good old fashion "catholic shame."  Is there really such a thing as an "old abuse" story.  A good friend of mine in his 60's was abused by a priest over 50 years ago.  The story is not old to him.  The abuse negatively impacts his life to this day.  

  3. Red says:

    This entire exercise of yours to "expose" the HBO documentary seems like the proverbial "picking the fly manure out of the pepper."  "Well yes Father so and so was guiltly of child abuse but it did not happen exactly the way the HBO documentary portrays it" This is pathetic.

  4. jim robertson says:

    If you think attacking a child raping priest is the same thing as "destroying a religion"; then your religion deserves to be destroyed because child rape would be endemic to it.

    If you defend the rapist as if he's the religion, that religion deserves to be burned to the ground.

  5. William B. Jackson II says:

    No doubt, the sexual abuse by deviant, sinful priests will always be [ab]used to try to silence the voice of the Roman Catholic Church. I agree that those like Gary Wills who “bash” the Church, don’t truly belong to the Catholic Church and should not hold themselves out as such when they don’t practice or believe in the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Is it wrong to point out wrongdoing by members of the Church? NO – so long as it’s “relevant” to the issue being discussed. Roman Catholics and its clergy are “human” too; and where there have been human failings, it is important that those failings be confronted, corrected, and acknowledged with a goal of seeking absolution or forgiveness for our sins. But for New York Times or Frank Bruni to desecrate the Catholic Church and ignore the “good” that it does in the name of Jesus Christ; is pitiful and absurd. Bruni and Wills love themselves, and for that reason deserve to be ignored
    Billy Jackson

  6. Delphin says:

    If you continue to attack the religion and the Church as though they themselves are the commiting the crimes, and not the endemic homosexuals, then the homosexuals, who are the "rapists", should be burned to the ground.

    Tough looking into that mirror of yours-

  7. Mark says:

    Very few newspapers with any self-respect would waste column inches on anything like Bruni's tired, bigoted garbage. It speaks volumes that the NYT would choose to do so.

  8. jim robertson says:

    Very few newspapers? How about all the major and lots of the minor newspapers all over the planet? You put yourselves in this moral cul de sac and shout at the paperboy. Now that's a real step up for the faithful. Pathetic!

  9. Delphin says:

    Again, it isn't about me, I love homosexuals as I am commanded to love all, but, I am a dutiful Catholic that is compelled to inform you when you are dishonoring God (as well as being out of sync with natural law).

    But, this IS about a dishonest media bowing to the shrill cries of their radical sychophants and lackeys whose only mission is to destroy the Catholic Church, and her faithful (and don't deny that the Catholic religion and laity are targets of the lefties), by any means.

    If we could all just come clean about our intentions (mine is to refocus the problem to where the problem is: homosexual deviants acting badly wherever they are), this dialogue could actually be productive.

    What happened, can't we use the lefts own illogic against them, now? I do wish someone would publish the Rules of Engagement for debating leftists, the rules do seem a tad eratic.

    I LOVE you, J-Rob, come on over from the dark side.

  10. jim robertson says:

    God didn't say word one against gay people and our expressing ourselves sexually.  As a matter of fact your God creates us from usually heterosexual parents,( 9 times of 10.) He creates us eon after eon.

    It was Leviticus, a man no god, who said we were bad. He also said in the same passage that eating shrimp was bad but I doubt if that passage ever crosses your mind when you chow down on a shrimp cocktail. Does it? I didn't think so.

    You also have the ever loving (irony) writings of St. Paul. A man who held the cloaks as the first Christian martyr was stoned. A man who persecuted his fellow man because they were Christian. A man who never even met Jesus, no not even on the road to Damascus. So set your standards by men if you want too.

    I liked what Jesus said about gay people: Absolutely nothing.

    • Mark says:

      Actually Jim, Leiviticus, according to tradition, was written by Moses. Leviticus is just the name of the book.

      Also, Jesus didn't actually say anything in favour of gay marriage either.

  11. Delphin says:

    Well, let's not be drawn into a biblical interpretation debate, suffice it to say that your focus now appears to be directly targeting the Christian, and in particular, Catholic dogma and doctrine. Have we succeeded in outing you? There are so many verses in the OT and NT that challenge your opinion on God/Jesus/Holy Spirit [Holy Trinity-remember?] commands as pertains to homosexuality that your "Absolutely Nothing" conclusion reflects your veracity, unfavorably.

    I do find it revealing that you felt the need to pile on St. Paul (what did he ever do to you?). The best response I can give to your diatribe against him is that it is never too late for sinners to convert and save their souls. That is the beauty of forgiveness and the gift of our religion.

    God creates all kinds of people, generation after generation; such as, murderers, rapists, thieves, scoundrels, cancer patients,  diabetics, quadraplegics, pedophiles, liberals and, homosexuals. He gives us all our cross to bear. How are you doing with yours?

    Are your HEARING this, J-Rob? It's a narrow door, not the Golden Gate Bridge you need to navigate to the Promised Land, Man.

    PS. I am a vegetarian, so, safe on the old shellfish thingie-

    • Charms434 says:

      Delphi, u say "have we succeeded in outing you?" First who are the we? And it shows how little you know because many many straight people like myself support gay rights. You say "natural" did you know there are gay animals all over the planet, so what is natural?

       By the way being gay and being a pedophile, a person who takes advantage of children are two separate things. 

       Growing up in about on I've had friends molested by priests who were supposed to be looking after us. Most of them now are drug addicts, Some because of the abuse and some because of the way the Church treated them when they told. 

       I feel sorry for you, still stuck In your Catholic guilt. There are churches near me closed. Because the church (supposedly) needed the money to pay lawyer fees for thier sick needs. When someone offered to help pay to reopen one of these churches the Church declined saying "it needs to stand as an example of what happens when people attack the church" STILL putting blame on the victims. 

       I also like how you mentioned the lefties (lol) do you realize as a Catholic most right winged Christians will always see you as left, maybe not to your face, but trust me they do

      OLD abuse scandals….. Shame on you

  12. jim robertson says:

    Mark I know Moses is "credited" with Genesis. I thought Leviticus was after the Babylonian captivity. If I'm wrong I'm wrong.

    Did I say he did say anything about gay marriage?

  13. jim robertson says:

    Oh ye of little faith.

    Delph, What did St. Paul ever do to me? He stole Christianity and turned it from a "judge not lest ye be judged." construct to a, judge everyone who doesn't believe as I do, construct.

    You are so full of judgement, most of it wrong. Lumping in gays, liberals; diabetics and cancer patients with murders rapisits and thieves. Astounding! You have the reasoning ability of a piece of toast. 

    I don't believe in a life after death. You do great; but telling me how to gain your imagined paradise means less than nothing to me. Just to me. You believe, groovey; but don't attempt to control my life with your imaginings. I believe in freedom from religion as much as I believe in freedom of religion. I know you think controlling gay people's lives is your divine right. but you wrong.

    How about that military career of yours? Any answers yet to my questions?

    P.S. I'm not against people of faith. Your faith is none of my business. You've shared your imaginings; thank you for sharing. Now keep it to yourself. I know all your "reasoning".

  14. Delphin says:

    Someone's got an awful lot to say about religion, Catholics in particular, for such an irreligious vessel. It must be tough focusing on your target when it keeps moving and morphing as it does. Is it the Great Church-SNAP Conspiracy of the Century, or is it those annoying believers themselves- I can't decide, dammit!

    Mine has been a mere fun-filled exercise to simply reveal your intense hatred and hostility, and most importantly, your pathological dishonesty, about a easy-read topic that doesn't muddy your true intentions which are to destroy the Catholic Church and cannibalize her faithful.

    You were reeled in like the greedy largemouth bass that you are, with just enough bait (you need to worry less about my career and a little more about your crimespree against the Church and how to squeeze her for your next buck), so that your unrelenting ego would not deny the bite. Unfortunately, you turned out to be a throwback.

    Meanwhile, while you contribute nothing of substance to the debate (other than toss out more red herring garbage), others on the site have done yeomans work (that's an honest living, in case you're wondering) digesting and dissembling the latest bile published for the unwashed ever-craving/craven (like back-alley junkies, I'd say) masses.

    Your can no longer obfuscate the real issue: deep and prolonged corruption of the legal system and activist journalists exploiting the Catholic Church deviant homosexual problem, while ignoring those same deviants eruptions in all other places.

    Also, more importantly, those over thirty are prohibited, mercifully, from ever saying GROOVY or COOL. If you get nothing else (intentionally or otherwise), please do get that.

  15. Delphin says:

    Just for a break and some fun (and perhaps a bit-o-revelation for those still dwelling in caves) about the media's lefty bent, link below might be of interest.

    Since the slime of politics is all over the prosecution (has anyone published one-stop shopping comprehensive analysis of the political leanings of the Church's prosecutorial-judicial entities?) and media coverage of the Catholic Church's deviant (note distinction between bad homosexuals vs. good) homosexual abuse scandal, it is appropriate to apply the Pew Center analyses of the 2012 presidential election coverage to that same media's treatment of the Catholic Church (which is certainly and always in the leftists crosshairs).

    Summary: 2012 coverage of lefty candidate was oh-so schmoozy, while coverage of righty candidate was not. And, the 2012 media lovefest was far less loving than the 2008 media lovefest (which should have required the use of a private room), yet, this election cycle they still managed to bring it home for their guy.

    I venture to say that it isn't any stretch of anything (mind or matter) to conclude, with scientic certainty (for those so inclined), that anything that comes out of the media (such that it is) is similarly tainted against the Church. The very same selective manipulation of facts, editing (think NBC's scandals here), and editorial contrivances (think NYT scandals here) and omissions of any good news are evidenced upon the Church.

    Ok, for the lefties; now back to your weak (baseless, embarrasing, non-existent, ridiculous, did I leave anything else out?) defense of your media cronies-


    PS. Anyone seen the good Senator D-NJ (potential contemporary child abuser extraordinaire), lately, such as on the front page or lead story on/in anything even remotely resembling "mainstream media"?


  16. Eric Bergerud says:

    I teach history for a living and can think of no culture of which we have written records prior to the industrial West in that late 20th century that even considered the possibility of gay marriage. Homosexuality has been written about often (usually but not always negatively) and every culture has a means of interperting it. But gay marriage? No one in the ancient world would have considered the possibility – the idea would have been considered mad. You could say the same thing about Europe or the USA as late as WWII. So don't look for condemnation of gay marriage in scripture – anybody's scripture. It would not have passed the mind to condemn something that could not be imagined. It would be like looking for commentary on cell phones. (Might note that it would be hard to find a culture before ours that would have considered abortion a morally valid "choice." Progress. Even cultures that condoned infanticide did so only when circumstances were genuinely dire.)