Yesterday was a challenging day for the Wager family. Baby Wager had a minor surgery to remove his adenoids which will hopefully be beneficial to his overall health. There was a lot of crying and fussing, but that was by Mrs. Wager. Baby Wager did really well overall. Anyway, I took the day off from work to help out and Baby Wager wound up sleeping for eighteen hours following his surgery. I finally had some time to watch a movie I had laying around the house. Mrs. Wager and I decided to watch “Deliver Us from Evil”.
The movie is a documentary that covers the Catholic Church’s cover up of the pedophilia scandal. It was well done, interesting, the people who volunteered to be in the movie were definitely courageous, but overall it left me depressed. The producers lay out a reasonable case that the cover-up goes all the way to the current pope.
After spending all day thinking and worrying about our own child, I looked at my wife when the movie was over and asked her, “It was a good movie, but now that I’ve seen it, what exactly am I supposed to do with this knowledge?”
My wife answered that we need to make sure that Baby Wager has the ability to stand up to authority. It turns out, it’s not easy. See the Milgram Experiment. We are biologically programmed to listen to authority figures which is a shame that the church uses this to enslave us.
Another interesting point in the movie was the issue of clerical celibacy. One theory was that the moral absolute that priests remain celibate made all sex by priests equally bad. I may be a moral relativist but come on! A priest having an affair with an adult woman (or man for that matter) is wholly different from a priest RAPING a six month old infant (this actually happened and the priest got promoted). This absolutist mentality is causing far more harm than good. Kind of says something about the whole absolutist philosophy, huh?
Some additional fun facts from the movie:
* 10% of the seminary graduates are pedophiles
* There are 100,000 cases of clergy abuse now pending in the US
* 80% of sexual abuse cases do not get reported, therefore there have probably been 500,000 cases of abuse
* There are currently 556 priests under investigation in the Los Angeles daises alone
* The Catholic Church has paid out over $1 billion since 1950 in sexual abuse hush money. Think about where your money goes if you are a Catholic and the plate comes to you.