Recently, I wondered aloud if the Catholic Hierarchy – faced with the child molestation scandal and tin-eared towards PR – could have their reputations sink even lower? Could they have come up with a worse crime to commit and cover up?
Yup. Trigger warning: Don’t read this if you don’t want to be angry for the rest of the day. Please enjoy this baby numbat instead.
From BBC News:
Spanish society has been shaken by allegations of the theft and trafficking of thousands of babies by nuns, priests and doctors, which started under Franco and continued up to the 1990s. [...]
The scale of the baby trafficking was unknown until this year, when two men – Antonio Barroso and Juan Luis Moreno, childhood friends from a seaside town near Barcelona – discovered that they had been bought from a nun. Their parents weren’t their real parents, and their life had been built on a lie.
Juan Luis Moreno discovered the truth when the man he had been brought to call “father” was on his deathbed.
“He said, ‘I bought you from a priest in Zaragoza’. He said that Antonio had been bought as well.” [...]
The practice of removing children from parents deemed “undesirable” and placing them with “approved” families, began in the 1930s under the dictator General Francisco Franco.
At that time, the motivation may have been ideological. But years later, it seemed to change – babies began to be taken from parents considered morally – or economically – deficient. It became a money-spinner, too.
The scandal is closely linked to the Catholic Church, which under Franco assumed a prominent role in Spain’s social services including hospitals, schools and children’s homes.
Nuns and priests compiled waiting lists of would-be adoptive parents, while doctors were said to have lied to mothers about the fate of their children.
But the summary is bad enough. Seriously, don’t read if you are on blood pressure medication. It looks like a less violent but larger version of Argentina’s “missing generation.”