Thursday, November 16, 2006

Catholic Church Continues it's denial of abuse problems

I read another article today on how incredibly stupid and ignorant the leaders of the Catholic Church are. They're now hiring criminologists to study what the root of its abuse problem is. Duh. Is it not obvious?

US Catholic Church seeks to find root of priest sex abuse

BALTIMORE, United States (AFP) - The US Roman Catholic Church has asked a criminology school to delve into the darkest pages of its history by probing the causes of a priest sex abuse scandal.

At a meeting due to end Thursday in the eastern city of Baltimore, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops voted to disburse 335,000 dollars to fund the first three phases of a study by New York's John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

"It will be a groundbreaking study, never done before in the US, nor in the world," Bishop Gregory Aymond, who chairs the Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People, told AFP.

"We don't know what would come out of it, but we are going to tell the truth," said Aymond, of Austin, Texas.

In 2002, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice had made a list of complaints and pedophilia cases in the US Catholic Church since 1985, when one of the first scandals came to light with the case of a Louisiana priest.

The university will now look into the "social and historical context" of sex abuse to see if such cases are more frequent in the Church than in the rest of society, notably in schools and youth clubs, Aymond said.

The Church wants to "look at what is unique" in the priest sex abuse crisis, he said.

The first part of the study would be completed in 2008 and made public, although the names of suspected priests would be omitted.

In the second part, the university will evaluate the Church leadership's response to sex abuse cases.

"We want to see where we failed and made some mistakes, and learn from those who handled it well," Aymond said.

The study will also paint a psychological profile of pedophiliac priests by reviewing cases in treatment centers.

The review will aim to show "to what extent is a priest sexual abuser profile the same as the psychological profile of the non-priests who are sex offenders," Aymond said.

The university will also interview abuse victims and examine education at seminaries over the decades.

The majority of priests accused of sex abuse were trained in the 1960s and 1970s in seminaries where psychological tests and sexuality education have since been introduced.

A final phase of the study will make proposals on how to prevent sex abuse and help victims.

"Our goal is to ascertain the causes of the clergy sexual abuse crisis and if we need to change any method we have now," said Teresa Kettlekamp, the executive director of the bishops conference's Office of Child and Youth Protection, which was created in 2002, in the wake of the sex abuse scandal.

But the study would also be useful to schools and youth groups, Church officials said.

"The pathology of abusing children isn't unique; it's a societal problem," Kettlekamp said.

"We are hoping it will be a big, big help to the society in general," she said.

I'm amazed how blind the church is when it comes to what's going on. Here's the issue: The church REQUIRES priests to be celibate. Hence, suppressing a basic human need in these men. The church also says being gay is a sin. Since being gay is NATURAL for gay men, this represents a painful conflict for gay men who are raised as Catholics. So, in order to "escape" being gay, they enter the priesthood. Well, human sexuality is a pretty strong, natural urge to suppress for a lifetime. So where do these conflicted men turn to? Vulnerable children, who won't tell on them.

If the church would get its collective head out of its ass and start recognizing REALITY it might not have this problem. Yet, it continues to hold onto this ass backward belief of celibacy (why can't a married man be a priest? WHY?) and continue to promote hatred of gay people it can never get to the root of its abuse problems.

I have little hope these closeted old men will admit this.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Are Evangelicals and Ostriches the Same?

Like I predicted below, it was only a matter of time before Rev. Ted Haggard came clean and was expelled from his Evangelical empire. This whole situation is disgusting - not because of what he did, but because of how hypocritical these supposed Christians are. I was following the news reports over the weekend, heard his apology and what his wife said. I also saw what his "followers" were saying about him.

It's ironic that this guy was part of a religious sect that claims to live a peaceful life, follow the teachings of a fairy tale character of peace, yet promote such hatred and bigotry at the same time. This guy - who is clearly gay - was made to feel so ashamed of who he is that he was forced to live a double life. He was made to believe being a normal human being - who happens to be gay - is a sin. A crime, even. And now he's been expelled. Ostracized from the very movement he built up.

I'm still waiting for a real explanation on what made this man "sexually immoral." Because he pursued his true feelings? Sure it is a moral crime to deceive your wife and family. but any of these hypocrites would have done the same had the tables been turned.

I began to wonder maybe this would force thee head-in-the-sand sheep to re-evaluate some of their outdated beliefs. But, after seeing some worshipers at his "church" it became clear that they are so brainwashed and close-minded into following this Evangelical path of bigotry and false teachings that not even their leader coming to terms with WHO HE IS DESPITE BEING TOLD OTHERWISE can make them see the light. How pathetic. What would Jesus do, indeed. I don't recall hearing any stories in the Bible where Jesus turned into a gay basher.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Evangelical Hypocrisy

Did I ever break out in laughter last night as I watched CNN last night. A leader of 30 million head-in-the-sand Evangelical Christians is exposed for being a closeted gay man. Rev. Ted Haggard resigned as head of the National Association of Evangelicals after a gay escort went public with his relationship with Haggard. I probably would have given Haggard the benefit of a doubt on this one had he not immediately resigned and said he would be seeking "spiritual guidance" on this. (I am just now reading he HAS confessed to "some" of the allegations, so we know where this is headed)

I didn't laugh at the fact he's gay inside. In fact, I think it's sad he was forced to hide his true feelings and nature because of the giant cult he belongs to. I laughed because the more Evangelicals become involved in politics to pursue a 17th century moral agenda and force their ass backwards belief systems on the rest of us free-thinking folk, the more they are exposed for...being human.

A close friend of mine once told me that whenever you see someone fighting so hard against something in public - be it pornography, homosexuality or other sexual-related issue - more often than not that person is doing so out of guilt. There was a prosecutor in Texas a few years back leading a charge against the sale of porn in Texas. Guess what? He was carrying on an affair behind his wife's back. Mark Foley championed going after Internet pedophiles and sex predators. We all know where that ended up. Snake salesman TV preacher Jimmy Swaggart lead a moral crusade against every vice imaginable. Guess who got caught banging a hooker? And now we have anti-gay crusader Ted Haggard. Leading a bogus charge against gay marriage and brainwashing his flock that gays are immoral, evil people - yet he's been with men for years.

I wouldn't mind this whole evangelical thing if these people would stay out of politics. Frankly, I don't care how my neighbor lives his or her life. As long as they aren't killing, raping or selling drugs, they can do whatever they want. That's one of the great things about the US. If you want to live by a book of fairy tales called the Bible, be my guest. If you're happy, I'm happy. But what I sure as hell will not stand for is when you force your asinine belief system on MY life. I don't want people who are brainwashed by religion to decide what I read, what I watch, what I say, what I think.

Gay marriage has NO effect on my life. If Steve and Dan want to marry, have a commited relationship and raise kids, go right ahead. There is ZERO threat to my marriage. If you're so worried about the sanctity of hetero marriage, then why aren't you doing something about the 50%+ divorce rate among straight couples? Why? because that's not scary enough for you. It's easier for politicians to get you all riled up about gays because many of you are sexually insecure or have been brainwashed into thinking gay people are bad.

Abortion has no effect on me. It's not my decision to make when a woman gets pregnant. It's not your either. Yet, it's a scary issue because you talk about dying babies and it works when politicians use your narrow-mindedness against you to get you to vote for them. Never mind the fact they have sold our country to large corporations, let millions of jobs go overseas, allowed corporations to pollute like no tomorrow (aren't you all supposed to take care of God's creations?), allowed lobbyists to make decisions how your hard-earned tax dollars are spent and sent more than 2,800 of our soldiers to die in a desert for no justifiable reason. You evangelical sheep ignore the IMPORTANT issues in favor of ONE completely irrelevant issue election after election. You can't see you are being completely used. You can't see you live in the 21st century. You can't accept normal human sexual behavior.

So when one of your "leaders" is exposed for who he is - which is simply HUMAN - I have to laugh because your bubble of "reality" is burst. I'm hoping that some day you all will wake up to that. We're all human. We don't all see eye to eye. We all don't worship the same "god" or religion. We have needs - emotional, sexual, physical, intellectual. And just because a 2,000 year old book says something doesn't make it true nor does it make it right for you to force others to live the way you see fit. This is America. Home of the free.