The Irish Catholic child abuse scandal is probably the best argument I have ever seen for ensuring that government and church do not mix. It is not to sort of thing that I see as being funny, so I am not even going to try on that score.
I am going to intersperse it with pictures that I have taken that give me a level of peace though – because this is exactly the sort of thing that makes me angry.
The story of the scandal is a disgusting one on a lot of levels, it involves the church going to court to remove children from parents whose only real problem was that they were poor, and then putting them in the care of sadists, paedophiles and people who told the children that their parents had abandoned them even as the parents did everything in their power to get their kids back.
It then covered up all of the abuse those kids suffered because the reputation of the church, much like filthy lucre, was more important than the wellbeing of children.
And it all started with what amounted to a scheme to maximise the amount of money the church got out of Ireland’s child welfare system. That is why the church wanted more kids.
Ireland was giving the church money that was intended for the purpose of looking after those children – and that money was not going to its intended target. Instead that money went to the Vatican – while the children, much like the“fallen” women the church had enslaved in its laundries, were nothing more than a source of cash.
It got away with it for years because Ireland’s government and the church have very close ties. Southern Ireland is officially Catholic, and when the scandal broke it was revealed that the Irish government entered into a secret deal to cap the amount the church would have to pay – meaning that the Irish taxpayer who was essentially ripped off by the church got to pay for the damages the said rip-off caused.
And of course, what was the political reaction to all of this? A law to make blasphemy illegal.
Ireland is a first world country. It is a country which has a highly educated population, a relatively strong economy, and this happened not because the Catholic Church is uniquely evil (It isn’t), but because that close relationship between church and state in a devout country made it possible.
Without that relationship the Catholic Church wouldn’t have been able to use the courts to take kids away from their parents. In a secular institution the major players would have landed in jail, not with a sweetheart confidentiality agreement, and the government would come up with laws that basically say “You can’t slam those people’s beliefs” afterwards.
The belief that the state should mix with religion, that secularism is a bad idea, is heavily expensive in every possible way, yet you still have politicians who seek alliances with religion as a political “in”. It is time for that to stop, we don’t want to be another Ireland.
Well, I generally agree with your comments and totally (share) with the anger you feel and the bit about the state and the church. However, I am disapointed about your comment
“…the Catholic Church is uniquely evil (It isn’t),:…”.
maybe because it has among its employees – priests, nuns, etc. – that are good decent people, I agree with you. As a whole, and from its inception to today this particular church track record is abysmal. If we were able to weight the good that it has done to the bad it has caused, the scale would “crash” towards the bad. Definitely and by far, not what ************ had in mind! By the way, I am a Latin educated according to the same church’s principles, and ashamed!
I am an atheist, so I totally disagree with religion.
You didn’t abuse anybody, you have nothing to be ashamed of, child abuse isn’t something your beliefs encourage – if you are a Catholic all this tells you is that you, along with those good nuns, priests etc… have a duty to clean house.
After all, isn’t redemption what Christianity is supposed to be about?