Double standards

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles ) | Aug 06, 2003

Reporters who have been clamoring for full disclosure of sex-abuse allegations against Roman Catholic clerics seem awfully quick to accept the blanket clearance offered to an Episcopalian cleric after an investigation that took less than 24 hours. Hmmm. How do the following statements fit together?

"Isn't it terrible that Catholic priests molest children? They should never be forgotten, never forgiven. Keep up the pressure!"
"Let's not get obsessed about allegationsagainst an Episcoplian cleric. Innocent until proven guilty. It's not such a big deal, anyway."
"Sexual abuse of children is unforgivable. Those guilty can never be accepted by society."
"Let's go out to the movies tonight. Maybe something by Woody Allen? Or Roman Polanski?"

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: - Aug. 10, 2003 3:41 PM ET USA

    I was just reading a news story at how the NYC school system has the worst track record of sexual abuse. Guess what? No one cares. Not the teachers, administrators, mayor or the governor. They can't fire the teachers preying on these children, because they are protecting by their union contract. No lega action has been taken, because no one cares. At least one child is abused every day. It disgust me when people say they care about the children. Right.

  • Posted by: - Aug. 06, 2003 9:03 PM ET USA

    Interestingly, everyone (Catholic laymen, Protestants, the media, atheists, pagans, Satan) hold our priests to high standards. Everyone--except our priests.

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Aug. 06, 2003 5:42 PM ET USA

    Dear Phil, Expecting consistency from the Devil seems to be asking a little much.

  • Posted by: - Aug. 06, 2003 3:05 PM ET USA

    Picture the scene: (1) A man kisses his male companion at an Episcopal liturgy/service. (2) A man, with wife and family in tow, lights up a cigarette at the same Episcopal liturgy/service. Both have committed physical acts. Which one has sinned? Which one will be kicked out of the church proper?

  • Posted by: - Aug. 06, 2003 2:35 PM ET USA

    The media moguls just have to be INSANE, or else they are hypocrites beyond description ! Daily they snipe at us over the 0.8 % of our clergy falling into perverted sexual acts, while they laud the appointment & APPROVAL of an openly perverted "bishop" living in sin [after abandoning his wife] with another person of his own gender. This double standard SCREAMS out to high heaven ! MONSTROUS !!! It must be a mortal sin to read the NYT, the LAT, or any of their satellite publications.