Church Criticised In Abuse Probes

Discussion in 'Religions & Cults' started by ramonmercado, Oct 26, 2005.

  1. JamesWhitehead

    JamesWhitehead Piffle Prospector

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  2. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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  3. Coal

    Coal Gentleman, scholar, acrobat.

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  4. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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  5. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    How on Earth could so many babies die in that place? Unless there was serious negligence on a large scale.
    The Catholic church has blood on its hands.
     
  6. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    There was and they have.
     
  7. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    I'm just struggling to comprehend, that's all.
     
  8. Coal

    Coal Gentleman, scholar, acrobat.

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    I think it's a combination of group think and the idea that it's OK to use 'redemptive' violence against 'evil'.

    There's a link between the use of violence and the belief in evil as an agentic force as a 'thing' if you like.

    In essence, Catholic church doctrines and teachings, with their emphasis on 'sin' as a thing that can be 'removed', i.e. it's a 'thing' inevitably (imo) leads to violence against the 'sinner' being normalised. This example above is extreme, but I bet at the heart of it, the perpetrators thought they were 'good' and were doing 'good'. Stick a whole bunch of those like-minded folk in an enclosed institutional space and you're doomed from the get-go.

    This dovetails with the use of violence at (say) some religious schools, even at a 'low' level i.e. strong corporal punishment.
     
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  9. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Have to admit that the Irish Daily Mail has an honourable record on this.

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. RaM

    RaM Abominable Snowman

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  11. Belshazzar

    Belshazzar Ephemeral Spectre

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    Can anyone remind me which issue of Fortean Times had a rather excellent (but grim) article about the abuse inflicted by nuns in Catholic homes for children? I think it was perhaps based on testimony from some Australian homes, but I'm not sure now.
     
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  12. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Responses, Poetic and Otherwise, to Ireland's Mother and Baby Home Tragedy
    by Susan Millar DuMars MAR 12


    The Tuam Mother and Baby Home operated between 1925 and 1961 in Tuam, County Galway, a small town just down the road from where I live now, on the west coast of Ireland. The Home, run by Catholic nuns, was for unmarried pregnant women and their offspring. Many of the babies born there ended up being more or less sold to American couples. Others were fostered and/or adopted within Ireland, while others when old enough were sent to industrial schools; the abuse suffered by children in these schools is now a matter of public record.
    In 2014, amateur historian Catherine Corless announced she had found documentary evidence that 796 babies and young children died in the Tuam Home during the thirty six years it was open. Some in the media treated her claim with scorn. If her numbers were correct, it would mean the infant mortality rate at the Mother and Baby Home was several times the average in the country at the time.

    On Friday, March 3rd of this year, the Irish Times reported an excavation at the site of the Home had discovered a large number of human remains disposed of in disused septic tanks. The remains appear to be those of infants and toddlers. (http://www.irishtimes.com/news/soci...-human-remains-found-at-former-home-1.2996599 ) The bodies were wrapped in cloths and stacked in the tanks. An inventory of the site is continuing.

    And now there is grief. Now horror. Now the naysayers are silent and the voices being heard are those of the people who were born in this place, and survived. They are telling us stories of such savagery that it's hard to believe they are true. Yet we know they are. Really, we did anyway. But now we have the physical evidence so we can't pretend we don't know. No one can pretend anymore. This is an excruciating moment in Ireland's nationhood.
    There will be more excavations, on sites across the country. It is believed there are thousands more baby bodies, hidden away.

    Many poets have been moved to respond. My husband Kevin Higgins was one of the first. In recent days, poets Elaine Feeney, Liz Quirke, Jess Traynor, Deborah Watkins and myself have all published or republished poems that try to respond to the tragedy (Jess lives in Dublin; the rest of us are right here, in County Galway). The poet Chris Murray has used her wonderful website Poethead to draw attention to these works. (Chris does incredible work for women and for poetry; what a debt we owe to her.) Here is the link to my poem, Sunflower, on Poethead: https://poethead.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/sunflower-by-susan-millar-dumars/ . It's a short poem, and I hope you will read it and explore and enjoy the site.

    On Thursday, March 9th, I was a guest on The Eileen Keane Book Show, on Connemara FM. I read Sunflower and two of my other poems, and Eileen and I conversed about the Tuam Home, among other things.
    Here is the link to the podcast of the programme -- I'm on first, followed by some wonderful music and thoughtful book reviews from Tim Heanue, Caroline Kai and Eileen herself. http://connemarafm.com/Audio/Eileen-Keane-Show.m4a . (Eileen and I agreed that Little Green, the Joni Mitchell song about giving up a baby for adoption, was a suitable track to play directly after our chat.)

    It was a difficult interview for me; not because of Eileen, a welcoming host who is an accomplished poet in her own right. It's difficult being an American living in Ireland and commenting on this situation. Is it my place to comment at all? At such a fragile potential turning point for a country I love, what can I say that will help?

    Well, here are three things:

    As a woman, I hope we can all finally understand, now, that anti-abortion laws are not about protection, but control. I hope that 796 small corpses in septic tanks will end, once and for all, the idea that the Catholic Church and the Irish State have anything to teach the rest of us about the sanctity of human life. I think that ends here.
    I hope that those who were contemptuous of Catherine Corless' work will be treated in the same way the world treats Holocaust denyers. Because that is what they are.

    Finally, I hope that all who are affected by this tragedy -- the living and the dead -- find peace.

    http://susanmillardumarsislucky.blogspot.ie/2017/03/responses-poetic-and-otherwise-to.html
     
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  13. Coal

    Coal Gentleman, scholar, acrobat.

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    I want to 'like' the post, but that doesn't cover it. :(:( & :mad:
     
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  14. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    I know what you mean.
     
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  15. JamesWhitehead

    JamesWhitehead Piffle Prospector

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    Was it a kick in the head?

    "Carr had died of a brain haemorrhage but there was no evidence in the postmortem linking that to an assault. Medical evidence suggested instead that Carr may have had a fungal brain infection, perhaps brought on by malnutrition."

    Just malnutrition then - fine!

    A six-year-old boy in the not-so-tender care of the nuns of Smyllum in Scotland.

    Grim reading.

    All the usual caveats apply to testimony where compensation may be the order of the day.

    Survivors of Catholic education in those decades will have seen enough of their methods to know that a lot of this abuse is all-too-plausible, alas. :(
     
  16. PeteS

    PeteS Ephemeral Spectre

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    About time those responsible people were prosecuted- I don't care whether they are nuns priests or whoever. Lapsed time shouldn't come into it.
     
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  17. Dr_Baltar

    Dr_Baltar Justified & Ancient

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    It seemed to be a theme of a number of films/books when I was a kid; terrified children being sent to scary orphanages (often run by nuns). Turns out the reality in many cases was much worse.
     
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  18. PeteS

    PeteS Ephemeral Spectre

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    I have known people who have been "looked after" by nuns, their stories were shocking.Their so called carers behaviour has got to be due to some form of repressed characteristics. I can think of no other explanation.
     
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  19. Coal

    Coal Gentleman, scholar, acrobat.

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    Notwithstanding that, you've got an enclosed strictly hierarchical community which is by definition a 'morally superior' in-group. If you wanted to create an environment for the study of group-think, the development of the 'normalisation of deviant behaviours' and how the in-group treats non-conformists (out-group members) you couldn't design it better.

    Such an environment would be at the "not us so against us" and "most worthy or good" stages, from conception (we worship God, right?) and would (I'd argue) inevitably tip into the suppression or even 'removal' of the out-group members as a virtuous defence of the in-group values and in-group social identity.

    It neatly illustrates the flaw in (especially) left-wing political thinking, the notion that if one is "good", then one is "right" and it's OK to make everyone "do it your way". It's still tyranny and it still leads to atrocity.
     
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  20. PeteS

    PeteS Ephemeral Spectre

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    And this is one of the reasons why the Church (of whatever denomination) is no longer in any position to take the moral high ground on any issue whatsoever.
     
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