|Happier Days? Photo credit.|
Personal responsibility is definitely taking a hit this week, since it turns out that pedophile priests are not responsible for their actions, and the church was not responsible for supervising them. No, it's what you suspected all along: the collective power of queers and fornicators to ruin innocent lives is too powerful, even for God! According to a five year study commissioned by the Catholic Church, the sexual abuse of children and teens by priests rose dramatically in the 1960's "because priests who were poorly prepared and monitored, and were under stress, landed amid the social and sexual turmoil of the 1960s and ’70s." The report, commissioned by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, and executed by a "research team" from John Jay College to the tune of $1.3 million, must be a great relief to the Universal Church. "The bishops," so reporteth the New York Times, "have said they hope the report will advance the understanding and prevention of child sexual abuse in society at large." Probably not. It probably won't advance the understanding of sexual abuse in the church either.
If it is true that it never occurred to priests to abuse children until they were put under such intense psychological pressure by other people having sex, that would mean it could never happen again. How do I know this? I'm a historian, of course. My analysis of the data (done for free, just this morning, and I offer it to the Pope out of shame for how queer people hurt these poor priests) has revealed the 1960s are not only over, but will probably never happen again. Only the law of circular time, which governed Aztec history prior to their conquest (and conversion to the One True Faith) by Spain in the early 16th century, would suggest otherwise, and everyone knows that in the United States we live in linear time.
And the Church wants to know why people don't take it seriously anymore? Mary, please.
In other news, Dominique Strauss-Kahn has resigned as head of the IMF following charges that he tried to rape a chambermaid. Strauss-Kahn, whose nickname is "Hot Rabbit," according to the New York Daily News, is in Riker's Island, asserting his innocence. 57% of French citizens also think he has been set up by his political enemies.
I would take this even possibility even semi-seriously except for two things: one is that French people think Americans are too hysterical for words about sex, which is true, but I doubt that the NYPD would have walked into this $hit $torm unless they believed the woman (and why would an immigrant woman and a single mother call attention to herself in this way unnecessarily? I ask you.) More important in my calculus is the number of powerful American men who have firmly asserted their innocence and/or threatened to bury people for spreading rumors about them that turned out not only to be true, but part of a pattern of out of control and/or criminal sexual behavior. For example, Ah-nohld and his campaign staff responded viciously to charges of sexual harassment: in 2003, one woman sued then-governor Schwarzenegger, charging that he and his staff had spread false rumors that she was a convicted felon. And do you recall that president who did not have sexual relations with that woman -- except that, actually, it turned out that he did? And John Edwards, who first lied about, and then finally admitted, having had an affair with videographer Rielle Hunter, but denied being the father of her child -- except that it turns out he is?
There seems to be a certain kind of man -- and not surprisingly, he is usually a rich and powerful one (The Council of Bishops, The Leader of the Free World or Aspiring LOTFW, The Governor, The Banker Of The Planet) -- who thinks that if he just asserts something is so the rest of us are bound, by some strange compact, to believe him. Surely this is a much more interesting topic for historical analysis than the strange theory that priests crumbled under the weight of birth control, gay liberation and abortion, and were forced to calm their nerves by diddling children.