Monday, March 29, 2010

Andrew Sullivan on George Weigel: They Still Don't Get That It's about Raped Children

I highly recommend Andrew Sullivan's posting today about the dynamic re: which I blogged earlier in the day--the circling of the wagons to defend Benedict in the face of damning evidence of his participation in covering up sexual abuse of children by clerics.  Sullivan aptly calls the dynamic the "digging in" of the theocons.

To be specific, he's responding to George Weigel, erstwhile defender of Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, who abused a string of minors as head of the Legionaries, and has now been found to have fathered a number of children whom he supported, along with their mother, secretly on the dole of his religious order.  As Andrew Sullivan notes, Weigel now wants to play the homophobic card and lay blame for the revelations about Benedict's cover-up of abuse cases at the feet of Rembert Weakland, who resigned as archbishop of Milwaukee after admitting having had an affair with an adult male.

It's the gays, you see, and the liberal media--notably the New York Times.  Out to get Benedict.

As Sullivan concludes--and this has to be said, over and over again--right at the heart of the dishonorable defense of Benedict by people like Weigel is a baffling willingness simply to continue overlooking what these stories are all about: the ongoing rape of children by priests protected, year after year, by Catholic pastoral leaders.  

Sullivan concludes:

Again, what matters is the reputation of the church, not the raped psyches and violated souls of children.

They still don't get it.

And those who put the prerogatives of power and institutional reputation over the lives of vulnerable children never will. 
It's a rotten system built on abuse--abuse that runs through the entire system.  And those hurt most of all by the rotten system, it turns out, have been the most vulnerable among us: children.   It's baffling--and, frankly, disgusting--to find Catholics like Michael Sean Winters defending a man who once fought just as hard to keep the ugly truth about Maciel at bay as he's now fighting to keep the truth about the current pope at bay.

As Andrew Sullivan says, they just don't get it.  And they aren't going to get it, as long as they remain infatuated with the kind of aberrant power that has resulted in the rape of children and its systematic cover-up by Catholic authorities.  Including the present pope.