A bill that would have made it easier for child sex abuse victims to seek justice was defeated in New York at the weekend – much to the delight of Catholic League President Bill Donohue.
According to this report, a “gloating” Donohue yesterday celebrated the defeat of the Child Victims Act in a vitriolic message emailed to his supporters.
The bill was sold as justice for the victims of sexual abuse, when, in fact, it was a sham.
And he blasted the legislation as:
A vindictive bill pushed by lawyers and activists out to rape the Catholic Church.
He described bill’s sponsor, Assemblywoman Margaret Markey, above, as:
The principal enemy of the Church.
Markey’s bill would have extended the timeframe in which a victim could bring a case by five years, opened a six-month window to revive old cases,
If the statute of limitations were lifted on offences involving the sexual abuse of minors, the only winners would be greedy and bigoted lawyers out to line their pockets in a rash of settlements. The big losers would be the poor, about whom the attorneys and activists care little: When money is funneled from parishioners to lawyers, services to the needy suffer.
The Catholic League is proud of its role in this victory.
The ferocity of his statements, particularly his contention that advocates were out to “rape” the Church shocked sex abuse survivors and even had the group representing Timothy Cardinal Dolan and the state’s Catholic bishops distancing itself from Donohue.
Said Catholic Conference spokesman Dennis Poust.
As Dr. Donohue often reminds us, the Catholic League is an independent organisation and does not speak for the Bishops of New York State.
Kathryn Robb, an advocate and child sex abuse survivor, called Donohue’s comments “poisonous”.
To call victims who have already been raped rapists is outlandish. This is completely contrary to the compassionate heart of Christ. Shame on them.
Melanie Blow, of the Stop Abuse Campaign, called Donohue’s use of the word “rape”:
Very offensive, but not surprising. Abusers tend to be very good at portraying themselves as victims. Sex offenders will say their victim ‘ruined their life’ by going to the police.
She also argued that the “victims’ lobby” Donohue referred to is:
Really the children’s lobby. Most victims of sexual abuse aren’t interested in large sums of money, nor could they possibly receive it from suing a relative, family friend, etc. Victims want to protect children by holding abusers accountable, and (statute of limitations reform) with a lookback window is the only way to accomplish that.