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April 02, 2010

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It seems his definition of post-pubescent means "puberty has started by that time"

"Over 13"? You are too kind. Donohue said, "twelve, thirteen years of age." So twelve is okay. Well, maybe not exactly okay, but at least you're too old to worry about child molestation anymore! (No such luck when it comes to rape, though. [Don't forget to ask the priest for absolution afterward. All is forgiven!])

Vile and disgusting. Check.

But why hasn't anyone mentioned the anti-gay smear he slipped in there?

There is no question that the church allowed homosexuals to enter the priesthood as Mr. Donahue asserts, on a don't ask-don't tell basis. I think it was done out of misplaced compassion. The pederasty was between adult male priests and teenage boys and not girls. Either would be heinous enough but I think most can agree that the homosexual contact was more so as the contact probably turned many boys to homosexuality. That I think is where the real outrage is coming from although most would not admit it, even to themselves.

This was definitely a homosexual problem and not a pederasty problem per se. Putting homosexual priests in a pastoral role near children was too much for too many of them to bear although I am quite sure that the incidence of sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents. Be that as it may, these actions hurt us all when a figure of moral strength like a Catholic priest commits such acts of filth and transgression against teenage boys. The Church succumbed to political correctness in allowing homosexuals into the priesthood and not taking accusations seriously (because they had been hitherto unheard of). And then trying to hide the embarrassment of accusations and trying to handle it internally because of the difficulty of proving the crime, was a BIG mistake to the extent that it happened.

I am ashamed of the way some of my church’s leadership handled this issue but I am not ashamed to be Catholic or of the 99% of priests that I have ever known. They are almost to a man, better men than any that write on these pages, including me. And I believe the Church is cleaning up its ranks. Homosexuals are being screened out. New reporting procedures are being put in place. And despite the pounding the likes of you are giving it, the Church will continue to thrive as a great fountain of goodness. At least the Church has standards to fall short of, unlike most of its haters.

Either would be heinous enough but I think most can agree that the homosexual contact was more so as the contact probably turned many boys to homosexuality.

You think wrong.  Please provide evidence that homosexual contact turned many boys to homosexuality. Also, evidence please that this would be more heinous that the effect this would have on young girls who are raped.

Putting homosexual priests in a pastoral role near children was too much for too many of them to bear although I am quite sure that the incidence of sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents.

You may be “quite sure” of that, but can you provide evidence to back it up?

And despite the pounding the likes of you are giving it, the Church will continue to thrive as a great fountain of goodness. At least the Church has standards to fall short of, unlike most of its haters.

Again, you’re going to have to show evidence that “the likes of” me did not already have the standard that raping children was wrong.  

"The pederasty was between adult male priests and teenage boys and not girls."

Methinks Matt is mistakenly asserting no girls were involved. I'm pretty sure there were.

"That I think is where the real outrage is coming from although most would not admit it, even to themselves."

This is Matt arrogantly assuming that others are secretly harbouring homophobia just like he does (not quite so secretly).

My outrage, and many others, is down to this criminal corporation, one that claims to be THE moral authority, behaving in such an immoral manner for centuries while using its veneer as a fountain of goodness as a shield.

This is what sets it apart from any other group. That and these other groups would be prosecuted more harshly for such heinous behaviour.

Speaking of which Matt, defending the organization which aided and abetted child rapists is just as heinous.

happy zombie jesus weekend

Donohue is certainly playing semantic games, but he is, strictly speaking, correct that pedophilia is not the problem in the majority of the cases. Pedophilia is attraction to prepubescent children, which 13-year-olds typically are not. Pedophilia is, as I understand it, usually an exclusive attraction. Something like 20% of the cases involved prepubescent children; these are the true cases of pedophilia. A strong attraction to pubescent children is called ephebophilia; my understanding is that, when so labeled, this is again an exclusive attraction. My guess is that the offenders here with the 12- and 13-year-olds are simply opportunists.

Donohue is confusing biological sexual maturity with emotional maturity. That is why the law is based on "age of consent" rather than "age of onset of puberty."

As an apologia, Donohue's argument is very weak.

As an ethical defense, it would make Jesus puke.

I think most can agree that the homosexual contact was more so as the contact probably turned many boys to homosexuality.
No, I think girls being raped is every bit as heinous as boys getting raped. If you seriously think that being raped by a priest turns boys gay, then you are every bit as fucked in the head as Donahue. There’s absolutely no evidence that homosexuality occurs as a result of sexual trauma. Welcome to the 19th Century.
That I think is where the real outrage is coming from
No, the real outrage is coming from the fact that the church was – and still is – more worried about its reputation than about protecting kids from getting raped by priests.
And I believe the Church is cleaning up its ranks. Homosexuals are being screened out.
Homosexuals aren’t the problem – child rapists are. I’m sorry you can’t see the difference.

Canukistani is correct when he says the priest sexual abuse was not exclusively homosexual. Reports vary but 90% homosexual abuse seems to be the right number. When considering that homosexuals, those that have a sexual identity disorder, comprise of only about 5% of the population but are responsible for 90% of the priest – child sexual abuse in the Catholic church one has to admit that homosexual priests are committing these crimes at a much higher rate than heterosexual priests. They are the problem for the church and need to be removed. One does not need to fear homosexuals, and I certainly do not, to see that parents need to watch their kids around priests they suspect are homosexual. Just common sense Canukistani. I cannot see how you can disagree. Is one anti-gay because they do not want their child sexually abused?
So I am not accusing others of harboring homophobia but their gut does tell them there is something not quite right about homosexual behavior.

You are right to be outraged. I too am outraged at the behavior of the church which is one of THE leading moral authorities. I am outraged that they allowed homosexual priests to be ordained. I am outraged that these homosexual men assaulted these children. I am outraged that the church tried to avoid embarrassment and handled these priests as if they were a teachers union managing teachers. As a higher moral authority they should have known better and they fell far short. But I am not going to allow a relatively few bad apples ruin my relationship with my Church and my God. Just like I am not going to give up on guys like you Canukistani.

There must be many paths to homosexual self identification. From what I have read most homosexuals had fathers that were either absent or abusive. And I am sure there are hormonal misfires that create gender confusion. We really have to have compassion for these guys because it has got to be tough being homosexual in a heterosexual universe and they certainly did nothing to cause it. As far as being "fucked in the head" as WSField so eloquently put it, (That is some argument WS) there is nothing like having an expert-intellect on board who is so learned that he can categorically state that “There’s absolutely no evidence that homosexuality occurs as a result of sexual trauma.” Because this is so obviously common sense, I will believe WS when he supports his contention with irrefutable proof. Or do you contend that homosexual behavior is so repugnant that one could not be traumatized into it WS? Regardless of the reality I believe this is public perception.

You guys talk about homophobia when what you really mean is homosexual haters. Homophobia is really such an unimaginative singsong cliché. It is intellectually dishonest to paint labels on people. Some people do hate homosexuals. (Although I believe there is a much higher rate of homosexual hatred of heterosexuals that vise versa. Partially because they suspect the heterosexual has disgust for the acts of the homosexual. Maybe they remind the homosexual that they are not “normal,” or maybe because they are wrongly self-loathing, which is the foundation of all hatred. ) But just because someone does not want homosexuals to have access to kids like priests have access, does that mean they hate anyone. No, they love the kid and the homosexual. They want the best for both.
You people have to develop some intellectual honesty. If there is such a proportionally high rate of homosexual attacks on kids, maybe they have a weakness that has to be dealt with by the individual? I mean “a man’s gotta know his limits.” I have already cast my disgust for the Church not dealing with this problem as soon as it was understood to be pandemic. And it is being dealt with. Homosexuals are getting the boot. The Church’s error of ordaining homosexual priests and the delay in effectively addressing the issue cost us plenty in treasure and support.

But you guys that just hate the Church, probably many former Catholics that are homosexual, let’s be honest. You hate the Church because it teaches that homosexual behavior was wrong and you look for anything to support your hatred of the Church. (It is especially ironic that you point to the acts of homosexual priests as further reason for hating the Church.) You really have to stop hating yourselves because you are a child of God and he loves you for all that you are, not all that you do necessarily. Self-hatred is the only path to other-hatred. We in the Church look at it the same way. We invite you back to the Church in brotherhood and Christ's love. No kidding. You have a difficult path in the Church to be sure because Christ's love demands a life of fidelity for singles because he spoke against fornication. But with sacrifice there are great spiritual rewards, a live of loving and not loathing. Let's be honest!!!!

Matt:

Questions arising from your earlier post, that you still haven’t answered:

  1. Please provide evidence that homosexual contact turned many boys to homosexuality.  And just FYI “From what I have read…” is not evidence.
  2. Also, evidence please that homosexual rape on young boys would be more heinous that the effect that heterosexual rape would have on young girls.
  3. You are “quite sure that the incidence of sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents” – please provide evidence to back that up.
  4. Also Please show evidence that “the likes of” me did not already have the standard that raping children was wrong. 

Back up your earlier claims please, or withdraw them.

According to Vatican law, Donohue is right. It is indeed homosexuality. That is because the legal age of consent in the Vatican State is twelve years of age.

Pedophiles in the Vatican can have sex with twelve year old children without breaking any laws. If the child claims they didn't consent to it, the burden of proof would be on them.

yakaru:

I didn’t know that – pretty sick IMO.  Regardless, the problem is not homosexuality.  The problem is rape of children.  Which in Ireland, for example (according to that list), would be sex with anyone under 17. (I’m sure you know that btw, but just for the benefit of Matt, who doesn’t seem to.)

The problem is rape, and, of course, the fact that they're trying to cover it up.

Even if schools and such are as bad as Matt suggests, at least those in charge generally don't try to cover it up.

Just adding the emphasis since Matt's social and moral instincts don't seem to be working, and he apparently needs these things explained to him.

In case there's any misunderstanding to my comment above, when I wrote "Donohue is right" I meant it to be utterly sarcastic. I think Donohue's tactics are the most disgraceful response from anyone yet. Abused children already feel enough shame, disgust, and often self-loathing and self-blaming, and Donohue is essentially saying that they will be outing themselves as homosexuals if they speak out.

The age of consent being 12 in the Vatican shows suggests the depth to which pedophilia is accepted, indeed expected and protected. I suspect it has been going on for centuries. The law age of consent law was passed in 1929.

Homosexuals are no more attracted to underage people than heterosexuals are. If the problem with this subset of the priest rape scandal that involves boys whose testicles have recently descended is due to allowing homosexuals into the priesthood, then the problem of all man-on-young girl rape (and there's plenty of both here, along with lots of other sorts) everywhere is due to allowing heterosexuals into any position.

The fact is that a position of authority (over minors or adults) which requires little in the way of qualifications, which carries with it the assumption of moral purity from subordinates, and which exists in an environment where unquestioning obedience is encouraged, is a recipe for crime. Some people will simply push the boundaries of their power farther and farther because they can, others will be attracted to the job because it provides power and a shield from criticism. What's not to blame is the sexuality of the people who take such positions.

The problem is exemplified by Matt's post. Why is the Catholic church "one of THE leading moral authorities"? What has it done to earn such a position? How can it maintain that kind of prestige in light of these severe moral failings, which, despite Matt's myopia, are not just "a few bad apples" unless "a few bad apples" includes the current Pope and the upper echelons of the church hierarchy.

And, speaking as someone with a little experience with teachers' unions, Matt is talking right out of his ass. If a teacher is accused of sexual misconduct with a child, the union doesn't step in to handle the matter internally by refusing to cooperate with police investigations and moving the teacher to a new school with little or no penalty. Quite the opposite, in fact. It would be the duty of the union to cooperate fully with any police investigation, and in many places just the accusation of sexual impropriety is enough to get a teacher fired (regardless of contract issues) and more or less blacklisted. The union's role in all that would likely be to negotiate the contract and pension issues that might come up, and it's possible that they would pay the teacher's legal fees. This bears no resemblance whatsoever to the tactics that the Catholic Church has used in covering up these crimes and ensuring that they would continue to occur.

From what I have read most homosexuals had fathers that were either absent or abusive.
Try reading something that's not anti-gay propaganda.
“There’s absolutely no evidence that homosexuality occurs as a result of sexual trauma.”
I don't know that there's no evidence that this occurs. What I do know is that sexuality is almost certainly determined by a combination of genetic, psychological, and hormonal factors. Twin studies bear out the genetic component (you can start reading here), and the rest is attested by other sorts of studies.

As far as "gender confusion" goes, I think you'll find that the vast majority of homosexuals and bisexuals are quite aware of what's between their legs.

Homophobia is really such an unimaginative singsong cliché.
Says the guy who thinks homosexuality is "gender confusion" caused by abuse and daddy issues, and that the Catholic Church is a bastion of moral superiority.
Partially because they suspect the heterosexual has disgust for the acts of the homosexual.
Really? And what are the "acts of the homosexual" that would be so disgusting to heterosexuals? Why, the vast majority of heterosexual women I know suck cock, just like gay men! And the vast majority of heterosexual men I know have engaged in fingering and cunnilingus, just like lesbians! As to anal sex, its prevalence in both hetero- and homosexual populations is actually fairly close. You can read about it here, but this is the money quote: "By way of comparison, seven times as many women as gay men engage in anal intercourse, a figure reflecting the greater overall heterosexual population."

But yeah, those "homosexual acts"--whatever they are--sure must be disgusting!

Maybe they remind the homosexual that they are not “normal,”
Define "normal."
If there is such a proportionally high rate of homosexual attacks on kids, maybe they have a weakness that has to be dealt with by the individual?
I love your argument: 1. Lots of priests rape young boys. 2. Priests who rape young boys must be homosexual. 3. Therefore, the problem of child rape in the church is due to allowing homosexuals to become priests. 4. Since so many children are being raped by priests, who must be homosexual, there must be a problem with homosexuals in general.

By assuming that all rape-happy priests are homosexual, you've invented out of whole cloth a "proportionally high rate of homosexual attacks on kids." A rate which only seems to exist in the priesthood, not in the general public, where the rates of child sexual abuse are roughly the same in heterosexual and homosexual populations. You should petition the Vatican to recognize this miracle: you've pulled an entire scandal out of thin air!

Or you've pulled it out of your ass, along with the rest of your argument.

But you guys that just hate the Church, probably many former Catholics that are homosexual, let’s be honest.
Yeah, the only people who could possibly hate an international organization who uses its power, influence, and hoards of money to protect and enable rapists and child abusers while belittling and dismissing the suffering of the victims, are disgruntled, gay ex-members.

As long as you're pulling things out of your ass, why not bring your head along with them?

Let's be honest!!!!
You want honest? Here's honest: 1. There is almost certainly no God. 2. If there ever was a guy named Jesus, he wasn't magical, didn't rise from the dead, and almost certainly didn't say most of the things attributed to him. 3. The Bible is a cobbled-together fiction book composed of ramblings from bronze-age and second-century zealots who knew next to nothing about the world, and has no more relevancy to life today than the Iliad. 4. The "love" offered by your God is imaginary. Even if it were real, "worship me or I'll burn you forever" is not love, it's a hostage situation. 5. The day I take moral advice from a "pro-life" organization that has caused the deaths of millions, through historical atrocities and current promotion of AIDS, an organization that preaches the virtue of poverty and charity from its gilded castle in its very own country, is the day I hang up my brains entirely. 6. The day I take advice on "normal" sexuality from celibate men in sparkly dresses who think consensual sex between members of the same sex is a mortal sin, but raping children is "petty gossip," is the day I lovingly shove a porcupine up my ass while fellating a cactus. 7. It's just a cracker. 8. You're a disgusting idiot.

Honest enough?

.....That, my friends, was a genuine tour de force.

Take a bow, Mr. Foss — better yet, take eight bows: one for each scintillating point above.

Tom Foss.

Thank you.

*STANDING OVATION* for Tom Foss!

I'm going to have to be on the lookout for the next time I can properly use the term "fellating a cactus".

BRAVO Tom Foss

"worship me or I'll burn you forever" is not love, it's a hostage situation.

This is going to be the new signature quote for all my comments and emails.

SKEPTICO!! Don’t worry I am getting to you….

You should really do your own research before lipping-from- the- hip. I really have better things to do. But since you asked I will fill you in.

I do not think there is some objective scale measuring which is more harmful, heterosexual teenage rape or homosexual teenage rape. That is why I said “I think most can agree.” I have not done a survey nor have I seen one, otherwise I would have said, “Most agree.” Since you said “I think” you obviously are not one of the “most” I referred to. But history and even current laws of consent in some states allow for teenage girls as young as 14 to marry older (usually) men. And consensual sex between a 14 year old girl and a 25 year old man would not be considered rape. I still believe such behavior is heinous but obviously there are legislatures that do not. I do not know what percent of priestly sexual misconduct was with children 14 and over and what percent was consensual in the state in which it occurred. My educated guess is that is the overwhelming percentage of contact was “consensual with teenagers 14 years and older. So when I say that “I think” most would agree that the homo sexual contact is more heinous than hetero sexual contact, our culture seems to support this hypothesis with some state laws allowing early “consensual” hetero sexual relations and as evidenced at the outrage against the homosexual priest misconduct.

Regarding homosexual contact from men turning young boys to homosexuality you have to ask yourself (assuming you are not a homosexual), would you want your son’s first sexual contact to be male or female? And why do you feel that way? You’re right I do not have the evidence and maybe clear common sense does not prevail here. But in the face of lack of evidence, we have to follow common sense. Right? Or show me the evidence refuting this.

Regarding the percentage of priestly sexual misconduct compared to others, for just NYC school employee’s incidence of child abuse, I would point you to an article at the NY Post regarding NYC school employee child abuse. The researcher states, “At least one child is sexually abused by a school employee every day in New York City schools.” Since you are probably not aware of the magnitude of this issue I am sure you and your readers would be interested in reading it. SECRET SHAME OF OUR SCHOOLS: SEXUAL ABUSE OF STUDENTS RUNS RAMPANT DOUGLAS MONTERO. https://www.nypost.com/p/news/item_IGmFG437dEYB9jg6CAY6TO/0#ixzz0k3N0gbwM .
So, one has to ask why some individuals go after priests and not teachers. Aren’t both terrible transgressions? Obviously this article lends strong evidence to my comment “I am sure sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents.” I have read plenty more about this issue and I am still “sure;” aren’t you now?

I would bet that you have some standards but you certainly lack even-handed journalistic ones at least. You are clearly an agenda driven individual and your nom de guerre would more appropriately be “Advocado.”

I'd like to second what Beryl wrote. "Pedophilia" is used as a synonym for "child abuse" in common parlance, but it's incorrect as far as biomedicine is concerned. If you apply the principle of charity, he probably didn't mean that the actions of priests don't count as child abuse or rape. It's easy to misunderstand, though, and the part about homosexuality is just a slur. In any event, I'd expect the author of a blog about scientific skepticism to check these things before posting.

I love when they do this:

You should really do your own research before lipping-from- the- hip. I really have better things to do. But since you asked I will fill you in.

Really? Really? When I ask you a question about something you believe in, it's my responsibility to go look it up?

One reason I stopped blogging is to avoid people like Reinis whose desire to nit pick resulted in him missing his own point:

..."Pedophilia" is used as a synonym for "child abuse" in common parlance, but it's incorrect as far as biomedicine is concerned...

Which is fine, but you missed the point of the article. I'll make it easy - "Bill Donohue said a bunch of bullshit and got called out on it."

See, Bill said it, not the author. He even quoted it in bold so you wouldn't miss it. So the idea that

...I'd expect the author of a blog about scientific skepticism to check these things before posting...

is funny to us who utilize "scientific skepticism".

Matt, Matt, Matt
People do not commit acts of pedophilia, people commit sexual assaults and sex crimes; pedophilia is a diagnostic term, not a criminal one. If an adult has sex or engages in a sexual act with a minor who is under the age of consent (In the U.S. typically 16 and in some states 15 or 17) then the willingness (or gender) of the victim is not germane, the act is wrong and criminal. The Catholic Church has a clear history of not dealing with these crimes and in fact they have a history of protecting the offenders and ignoring the plight of the victim. That is the issue and when Bill Donohue made his pedophilia comment it was clearly intended to muddy the waters and make the criminal and immoral acts of the priests seem less heinous. Bill was and is an idiot and he failed, you sadly are not doing much better when it comes to dealing with facts and aspersions.

Also to the person who said the age of consent in the Vatican is 12 they need to check their facts and not rely on some arbitrary website with lists of ages that appear authoritative.

You should really do your own research before lipping-from- the- hip. I really have better things to do. But since you asked I will fill you in.
We have better things to do than to correct your "common sense" and "[mis]educated guesses," so maybe you should follow your own advice.
Since you said “I think” you obviously are not one of the “most” I referred to.
The point is that you referred to a "most" with no evidence to support that "most" would do anything. If most of the people agree with Skeptico, then what you "think" is wrong.
But history and even current laws of consent in some states allow for teenage girls as young as 14 to marry older (usually) men.
See, like this. When we suggested you do some research, we didn't mean digging around in your hindquarters again. In the United States, age of consent laws vary between 16 and 18. There are various close-in-age exemptions in some states, but no state allows "teenage girls as young as fourteen" to have sex with older people.

Regarding marriage, most states require both parties to be 16-20, and the ones that will marry people below that age require signed parental consent forms and, in some cases, court approval.

Tell me, Matt: how many of the boys molested by their priests did so with signed consent from their parents?

Of course, all this is beside the point: when a person uses their position of authority over another person to pressure them into sexual acts, that's sexual abuse, whether it's a teacher and a student, a boss and an employee, or a Priest and an Altar Boy. In such a situation, mutual consent can't reasonably be obtained because one person is subordinate to the other.

you have to ask yourself (assuming you are not a homosexual), would you want your son’s first sexual contact to be male or female?
Not only is this stupid, it doesn't address the issue. A person's sexuality isn't triggered by the first person they have sexual contact with. If that were the case, all virgins would be bisexual. I don't know about you, Matt, but I knew which gender turned me on long before I had sexual contact with anyone. Maybe you're the one who's confused.

As to my son, I'd want his first sexual contact to be with someone he cared about and had a healthy consensual relationship with. I'd want my son to be happy and healthy regardless of his sexuality.

I certainly wouldn't want his first sexual contact to be as a child with a priest, teacher, nun, or youth group counselor.

You’re right I do not have the evidence and maybe clear common sense does not prevail here. But in the face of lack of evidence, we have to follow common sense. Right?
No. "Common sense" is a worthless jumble of prejudices and preconceptions, not a useful set of tools for evaluating the world around us. In the absence of evidence, we say we don't know and refrain from making claims until we have evidence.

But I already linked to an article on the biological influences on sexuality, which knocks serious holes in your "abuse" claim.

“At least one child is sexually abused by a school employee every day in New York City schools.”
And then you go on to equate "school employee" with "teacher." Again, talking out of your ass. Even small schools employ custodians, coaches, aides, counselors, psychologists, bus drivers, tutors, principals, secretaries, receptionists, cooks, hall monitors, crossing guards, security guards, lunchroom attendants, and so forth. In New York City, that represents tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of people. I'm curious what percentage of those cases are teachers, and I'm further curious how that percentage compares to the percentage of priests--who are a rather small subset of the employees of a Catholic church, which is a rather small subset of all churches available--who molest children. When we expand the priest scandal to include nuns and other Catholic church employees, and further expand the scope to include pastors and youth group leaders from other denominations, the numbers become fairly large fairly quickly.

The reason--which you keep failing to understand--that we focus on the Catholic priest abuses over the abuses of other denominations and vocations is that only the Catholic Church has a decades-old stated policy of covering up such abuses, intimidating victims into keeping quiet, obstructing police investigations, and moving accused priests to new parishes to continue their abuses. You won't see the National Education Association dismissing allegations of abuse by teachers as "petty gossip;" you won't see NEA President Dennis Van Roekel sending a memo to all schools to threaten abuse victims with expulsion, as the current Pope did. If the Church treated this problem the way most legitimate organizations do--by cooperating with police, supporting victims, and severing ties with abusers--there wouldn't be a scandal. Instead, the Church engaged in intimidation, obfuscation, and denial, and now the whole situation is finally cracking open. Yes, there are child abusers in other churches and other professions; none of them have the policies or the funds that make the Catholic Church the center of this scandal.

Again, Matt, you're a disgusting buffoon. Please continue being a shining example of what the Catholic Church has to offer; you fit in so well.

James Fox:

Also to the person who said the age of consent in the Vatican is 12 they need to check their facts and not rely on some arbitrary website with lists of ages that appear authoritative.

Perhaps you could provide us with an authoritative source. This is what Wikipedia says:
There is an equal age of consent set at 12 years of age in Art. 331 (1). When there is a relationship of dependence (like teacher/student, etc.) the age of consent is 15 years in Art. 331 (2).

I looked through what I could of Vatican Law, but the closest I could find was this rule about marriage consent:
Can. 1096 §1. For matrimonial consent to exist, the contracting parties must be at least not ignorant that marriage is a permanent partnership between a man and a woman ordered to the procreation of offspring by means of some sexual cooperation.

§2. This ignorance is not presumed after puberty.

The best source I can find--the official Vatican City State website--has its legal information in Italian, which I can't read. So if the claim is inaccurate, please give us a source so we can check the actual facts.

Matt:

You should really do your own research before lipping-from- the- hip. I really have better things to do.

No, that’s not the way things work.  You made the claims so it’s your job to back up those claims, not my job to do your research for you.  You do realize you were describing yourself there:

  • lipping-from- the- hip: check. 
  • really need to do your own research: check.

Not a great start, Matt.

But since you asked I will fill you in.
I do not think there is some objective scale measuring which is more harmful, heterosexual teenage rape or homosexual teenage rape. That is why I said “I think most can agree.” I have not done a survey nor have I seen one, otherwise I would have said, “Most agree.”

Well, thanks for admitting you have no reason to make the claim you did except for your own bigotry.  Fortunately we don’t have to rely on what you think most other people would think – read this scholarly study in the Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, Volume 13, Issue 3 Winter 1984 , pages 294 – 297 (with my added bold):

A total of 81 reported cases of male sexual abuse over a 3 year period were matched to 81 females sexually abused during the same period. Although it was hypothesized that there would be significant differences between boy and girl victims of sexual abuse, this study revealed surprisingly few differences between factors associated with the abuse. The sex of the victim was not related to the relationship of the abuser, who referred the child, the number of abusers, the incidence of sexual abuse of other children or siblings, chronicity of abuse, the use of bribes or threats, or concurrent physical abuse. There was a greater incidence of physical evidence of sexual abuse among girls, and among boys there was a greater incidence of oral-gential contact. The lack of major differences between boy and girl victims suggests that offender variables, such as power over a helpless victim, may be more influential in choice of victim than sex of the child.

So you, and the people you imagine agree with you, would be wrong.   

Since you said “I think” you obviously are not one of the “most” I referred to. But history and even current laws of consent in some states allow for teenage girls as young as 14 to marry older (usually) men. And consensual sex between a 14 year old girl and a 25 year old man would not be considered rape. I still believe such behavior is heinous but obviously there are legislatures that do not. I do not know what percent of priestly sexual misconduct was with children 14 and over and what percent was consensual in the state in which it occurred. My educated guess is that is the overwhelming percentage of contact was “consensual with teenagers 14 years and older. So when I say that “I think” most would agree that the homo sexual contact is more heinous than hetero sexual contact, our culture seems to support this hypothesis with some state laws allowing early “consensual” hetero sexual relations and as evidenced at the outrage against the homosexual priest misconduct.

Irrelevant drivel.  Just because some societies allow marriages between old men and little girls, this (1) doesn’t make it right and (more relevant to this issue) (2) has no bearing on whether boys suffer more when raped than girls do.  All it is, is a comment on how certain societies view women (and girls).

Regarding homosexual contact from men turning young boys to homosexuality you have to ask yourself (assuming you are not a homosexual), would you want your son’s first sexual contact to be male or female? And why do you feel that way?

It would depend on whether my son was gay or straight.  I note you have not provided one shred of evidence that homosexual contact has turned many boys to homosexuality, as you claimed.  So that’s another claim you cannot back up.

You’re right I do not have the evidence and maybe clear common sense does not prevail here. But in the face of lack of evidence, we have to follow common sense. Right? Or show me the evidence refuting this.

No, you are the one making the claim, so it’s your job to back it up, not my job to prove it wrong.  You admit you have no evidence to support your claim.  Yet again you fail.

Regarding the percentage of priestly sexual misconduct compared to others, for just NYC school employee’s incidence of child abuse, I would point you to an article at the NY Post regarding NYC school employee child abuse. The researcher states, “At least one child is sexually abused by a school employee every day in New York City schools.” Since you are probably not aware of the magnitude of this issue I am sure you and your readers would be interested in reading it. SECRET SHAME OF OUR SCHOOLS: SEXUAL ABUSE OF STUDENTS RUNS RAMPANT DOUGLAS MONTERO. https://www.nypost.com/p/news/item_IGmFG437dEYB9jg6CAY6TO/0#ixzz0k3N0gbwM .


So, one has to ask why some individuals go after priests and not teachers. Aren’t both terrible transgressions? Obviously this article lends strong evidence to my comment “I am sure sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents.”


Another fail.  Your article reports abuse of children in New York City schools.  But I never said that no children were abused in school, and I did not ask you to show that children were abused in school.  I asked you to back up your actual claim, which was, and I quote: “I am quite sure that the incidence of sexual child abuse is much higher involving teachers, coaches and parents.”  Your own words - higher involving teachers etc.  That article does not compare schools to priests and show that one is higher, does it?  So, one more time, how are you so “sure” since you still, even after asking twice, can’t support this claim either.

I have read plenty more about this issue and I am still “sure;” aren’t you now?

No.  Obviously not, since you haven’t even remotely demonstrated what you claimed.

I would bet that you have some standards but you certainly lack even-handed journalistic ones at least.

Go fuck yourself.  I’ll remind you what you wrote – the piece I was asking you to back up:

“At least the Church has standards to fall short of, unlike most of its haters.”

You were insinuating that the church “at least” has the standard that raping children was wrong (although they fell short of this standard), unlike “the likes of [me].”  You insinuated, you piece of shit, that the Church’s critics, such as me, did not even have the standard that raping children was wrong.  And when I called you on that, and asked you to back it up or withdraw it, you weaseled that, well, maybe I have “some standards,” (although clearly not standards that would be against rape), and then you weasel further about “journalistic “ standards, as though that is the same thing.  And you have the fucking nerve to write “You people have to develop some intellectual honesty”?  You dishonest sack of shit.

You are clearly an agenda driven individual and your nom de guerre would more appropriately be “Advocado.”

Actually, that would be “Advocato.”  Your lame attempt at a joke might actually have come close to being funny if it were not for the fact that you’re describing yourself again.  Let’s examine your own actions here.  You come here as a admitted Catholic, to mount some sort of defense of Donohue or the Church.  In doing so you make numerous claims that are clearly based on your own religious/anti gay agenda, claims that you clearly hadn’t researched and can’t back up and are in many cases provably false.  You then claim it is my job to do your research, and you dishonestly equivocate about what you actually wrote, in an attempt to weasel out of yet another dishonest and disgusting attempt to slime your opponents.  And all the time you are ignoring the real problem here, which is that an institution that claims great moral authority, for years harbored many people who abused the positions of power they had over young and vulnerable people and raped them repeatedly over many years, and then covered the whole thing up, and even now don’t seem to realize that what they did was wrong, dismissing the whole sorry affair as “petty gossip.”  Advocado?  Go look in the mirror, Mr. child rapist advocate. 

Reinis:

"Pedophilia" is used as a synonym for "child abuse" in common parlance, but it's incorrect as far as biomedicine is concerned. If you apply the principle of charity, he probably didn't mean that the actions of priests don't count as child abuse or rape.

Oh give me a break.  Donohue was trying to muddy the waters, to confuse naive people into thinking that these crimes were not all that bad.  Although I agree it seems that, with you, he succeeded.  

I love this blog. I can read it all day and never get sick of listening to Tom Foss or Skeptico drop knowledge on folks like Matt. I just wonder how these people can't see that their argument is nonsense after such clear explanations. Mind blowing! Thanks for the education and entertainment guys.

There's a difference between pedophilia, hebephilia, and ephebophilia. Most cases reported as "pedophilia" (which often has no more facts behind it than sexual conduct with a minor) are in fact ephebophilia, and it appears that many of these priests were actually hebephiles or ephebophiles. Many, many fewer cases of pedophilia have been reported or demonstrated.
Don't act like there's no difference between molesting an eight-year-old and a fifteen-year-old; there very clearly is, both for the condition of the molester and the expected effect on the victim.

All of this is aside the real issue, which isn't so much about the molestation of minors by priests but rather about the Church's deplorable conduct covering up and facilitating this conduct.

I can't believe the guy actually said he had no evidence to back up his claims, then tried to defend them further with...words that resembled sentences and a newspaper article with no sources.

Two things:

1) I am not at all surprised anymore by the reliance on "common sense" by religious as a basis for argument. It doesnt matter if "common sense" flies right in the face of data, it doesnt matter if common sense directly causes suffering, bigotry, enslavement, they will continue to revere their institutionalized biases (otherwise known as common sense to them)over actual data time and time again. Matt clearly showed this.

2) when you lose your temper, they think they won. Its not about who actually made a better claim, who supported their arguments with actual data. If they pressed a button, said something clearly awful, and you flip out, you can almost see the smug smile on the other side of the keyboard. I've seen this dozens of times. I'm not sure why they call that a win, but they do.

Just fyi, I didn't lose my temper. I wrote that and left it for half a day before posting. I just felt it needed saying in the strongest language possible. I gave the little creep the opportunity to say that he hadn't meant to imply that my standards were not that rape wasn't allowed. (Sorry for the double or triple negatives there.) He decided to reply in a way whereby he had enough plausible deniability, but while not actualy correcting the original sleazy claim. My question was quite clear:

"Also Please show evidence that “the likes of” me did not already have the standard that raping children was wrong"

- all he had to say was, "oh no, I didn't mean that, I meant you don't have journalistic standards" or whatever. Different thing. He didn't take that route.

I'm sure you didn't lose your temper, and I agree with every word, but it reads that way, and he will still score a win.

Then he will go back to his church buddies and say "every time I talk with one of these atheists, they lose their temper and start calling me a piece of shit" and completely ignore the disgusting conclusions he had made during the conversation. It's likely he doesnt even recognize them at all as such.

It's your blog, I dont care what you do, I like to read your posts and your responses. I like the smackdown these dorks typically get. I hate what I know will be the result of it.

Tech, I think Matt would say that regardless.

LOL, perhaps.

I don't blame you in the slightest for dipping into Anglo-Saxon demotic there, Skep.

It is downright offensive to suggest that without a book to tell one otherwise, one must be a child-raping murderer.

And how come none of the Ten Commandments says, "Thou shalt not molest kids, thou pervert", or "Thou shalt respect a woman's right to say yes or no in any matters concerning her body, which are none of thy business"?

I reject the Bible as a pernicious fiction, and yet I have never raped, molested kids, stolen or committed murder, and I feel repugnance at the concept.

And before anyone says, "That's because you were brought up with the Bible and the commandments", why does taking the Lord's name in vain or keeping the Sabbath holy not bother me in the slightest? Those commandments are just as drilled-in as the others.

Umm... I suppose I answered my own question there. It's because the Ten Commandments don't say anything about child abuse that these poor priests can't help abusing them.

Stands to reason, after all.

I agree with Yakaru. Matt is the most unsinkable of rubber ducks, having already decided on no evidence that we're all gay ex-Catholics (and thus have nothing valid or valuable to say) and that the problem is all due to "a few bad apples" who are all gay and engaging in consensual gay relationships with parishoners. Nevermind the physical abuse accounts from Ireland, nevermind that many (if not most) of the victims weren't legally capable of consent, nevermind that being propositioned by an authority figure is coercive, and certainly nevermind that there's a paper trail going back decades, with signees including the current Pope, describing the official policy of cover-up, denial, and victim-blaming. No, the church is handling this situation just like the National Education Association would, and they have a much bigger problem with child molesters.

This is one of those situations where those benefiting from the argument are not the debaters, but any onlookers and other readers. People like Matt might see curse words and think "clearly he touched a nerve!" and walk away, but any reasonable person can see, regardless of language, which side has the cogent arguments and the evidence, and which side is made up of bigoted ideologues.

A small off-topic question for Matt:

What would you do if one of your children told you he is a homosexual?

Actually cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the pope's right hand, officially said that the problem with the molestations and rape in the catholic church is because of homosexuality.
That's probably where Donohue got his ideas from.

Amazing how everything can be blamed on the gays!

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