Wednesday, January 23, 2013

More on the Archdiocese of Los Angeles' Protection of Child Rapists

Recently this blog looked at the incredible filth the Los Angeles Times exposed to have been a matter of routine policy within the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles where covering up crimes against children and protecting sexual predators was the norm.   The absolute disregard for the victims of abuse underscores a blood chilling amorality of those who strut around seeking deference and pontificating to others about morality.  It is hard to describe Archbishop Mahony (pictured above) and his minions as anything other than monsters.  And it makes one ask again, what is wrong with the Catholic laity that they continue to financially support such a criminal organization and kiss the asses of men who ought to be behind bars.  As noted in the prior post, if one is looking for decency and true morality, the last place to look is within the Catholic Church and conservative Christianity in general.  A piece in Salon takes a further look at the cesspool which is the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles.  Here are excerpts:

It’s been a good 10 or so days since the last time the Catholic Church revealed itself to be somewhat less than forthcoming about the decades of sexual abuse perpetrated by trusted members of its own ranks. So it should come as a demoralizingly thorough non-surprise that it’s time again for another revelation of harrowing behavior – and systematic deceit. 

The memos, which the L.A. Times notes “the Archdiocese fought for years to keep secret,” show, in sickening detail, how the local church authorities endeavored to make sure to attract as little legal and public attention for three men they knew to be abusers. In a June 1987 memo, for example, Curry writes of Rev. Michael Baker, who admitted his sex abuse to Mahony in 1986. In it, he suggests Baker avoid meeting with a psychologist or psychiatrist, because “if he were to mention his problem with child abuse it would put the therapist in the position of having to report him,” and adds, “he cannot mention his past problem.” Mahony replies with a handwritten “Sounds good – please proceed!”

In another document, Mahony writes to a New Mexico treatment center about Msgr. Peter Garcia, who was known to have had “perhaps 15 to 17 relationships with youngsters in the age range of 12 to perhaps 17 or 18.” He tells the staff there, “I feel strongly that it would not be possible for Monsignor Garcia to return to California … The two young men who were involved with him and their parents have switched attorneys on several occasions, and I believe that if Monsignor Garcia were to reappear here within the Archdiocese we might very well have some type of legal action filed in both the criminal and civil sectors.”

There’s also a memo from Curry that describes the actions of Father Michael Wempe, and of how “we discussed the possibility of his consulting a lawyer who would refer him to therapy, thus putting the reports under the protection of privilege.” Man, these guys were slick. As the L.A. Times notes, “Two decades would pass before authorities gathered enough information to convict Baker and Wempe of abusing boys.”
What’s astonishing now, in light of a continuing deluge of new information, isn’t that the local Catholic Church administration would put protecting its own ahead of considering the nightmare it was perpetuating for the victims — that’s pretty much a given.  .  .  .  .  It’s the apparent total lack of empathy that had to exist to describe a relationship between a priest and a 12-year-old child in terms of “surrogate father but also sex partner.

In the coming weeks, more church files will be made public. They involve “at least 75 more accused abusers” — and over 500 victims.

I for one will never set foot in a Catholic Church again for any reason - to do so would leave me feeling literally dirty and morally deficient.  I simply cannot understand those who continue to support such a morally bankrupt institution.  Are they indifferent to the crimes committed and covered up or are they too lazy to bestir themselves to walk away and find a less disgusting denomination?

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