The Clampdown; Shirley Sherrod & Ken Howell – UPDATED

Here we have the presentment of two job losses:Shirley Sherrod gives a speech; within the speech she indulges in a bit of roundaboutation, saying some things that seemed offensive, until the larger context was understood.Because the embrasure of "politically correct speech" has encouraged reactionary hyper-vigilance as to words, sentences or modes of reasoning that might steer too close to the movable line known as "hate," Sherrod's edited remarks were immediately received as such and … [Read more...]

Speaking of Nino & Other Things

Playing with the ongoing non-story of SCOTUS Nominee Elena Kagan's sexual orientation, Michael Kinsley has written a rather amusing satire about the sex lives of Supreme Court Justices:Why does Justice Antonin Scalia, by common consent the leading intellectual force on the Court, have nine children? Is this normal? Or should I say "normal," as some people choose to define it? Can he represent the views of ordinary Americans when he practices such a minority lifestyle? After all, having nine … [Read more...]

"I forgive the man who raped me…"

Recently, writing about the terrible scandals of the church and the need for the hierarchy (and others) to do penance, I added:The fullness of healing, of course, can only come when the victims finally feel capable of saying “I forgive you…” That moment -which cannot be compelled and does not mean forgetting- is the moment when a victim takes his life back. When a victim says, “I forgive you,” she confers her own power over the entire situation, and controls it. It is transformative; it brings … [Read more...]

Secular Sex Abuse Gets a Look – Poll Added

In New York, Queens Assemblywoman Margaret Markey routinely presents a bill which seeks to open a year-long "window" into the statute of limitations on child sex-abuse cases, allowing victims whose cases may go back as far as 40 years to bring suit for damages.Because the bill has -until now- been limited by Markey to impact the churches, exclusively, it has always either failed or been shelved. It is difficult to pass a bill that essentially finds some sexual abuse victims to be more worthy … [Read more...]

The Permanent Scandal of the Vatican

First Things editor Joseph Bottum has a long must-read of a piece showing over at the Weekly Standard.The day the Antichrist is ripped from his papal throne, true religion will guide the world. Or perhaps it’s the day the last priest is gutted, and his entrails used to strangle the last king, as Voltaire demanded. Yes, that’s when we will see at last the reign of bright, clean, enlightened reason—the release of mankind from the shadows of medieval superstition. War will end. The proletariat wil … [Read more...]

"No one wants to see Pope prostrate…"

As we've wondered about the impact of a Great Prostration, I remembered this discussion on In the Arena, the current-events panel show produced by NET-TV in the Diocese of Brooklyn: … [Read more...]

The Heart of the Matter

I was thinking about this:The fullness of healing, of course, can only come when the victims finally feel capable of saying “I forgive you…” That moment -which cannot be compelled and does not mean forgetting- is the moment when a victim takes his life back. When a victim says, “I forgive you,” she confers her own power over the entire situation, and controls it. It is transformative; it brings a victim into his or her Royal Priesthood.Forgiveness, I have learned, is essential to healing; wit … [Read more...]

John Allen; definitive on Benedict, Scandals

The great John Allen, perhaps the best English-language reporter on the Vatican beat, does yeoman's work in three different articles, to which I am linking today. Allen takes knowledgeable, sometimes devastating but always fair looks at Pope Benedict XVI and the crisis that has engulfed him over the past few weeks and has come to -rather unjustly- define his papacy.None of these pieces is fun to read. All of them are thoughtful, instructive and very valuable, particularly to anyone who wants … [Read more...]

Benedict, Off-the-Cuff – UPDATED

Rocco Palmo has early excerpts of some spontaneous remarks made by Pope Benedict XVI at mass, today:We must rather have the courage, the joy, the great hope that there is eternal life, that eternal life is real life and that from this real life comes the light that illuminates this world as well.The Pope noted that, when we look at things this way, penitence is a grace – even though of late we have sought to avoid this word, too.Now, under the attacks of the world, which speak to us of our … [Read more...]

Sex Abuse is about Control and Power

The Catholic League has taken out a full-page ad in the NY Times that tries to be a point-by-point rebuttal to the Times' reverberating prelude to Holy Week.As rebuttal it is a tad weak -that's what happens when your answer rightly requires 10,000 words and 350 is all you can manage in 18 pt Arial Narrow- but it hits its main targets; it manages to make one important point that is too-often ignored, that the church (and secular organizations as well) erred greatly in taking the advice of those … [Read more...]


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