First, Listen! Then Respond With Justice

The editorial below was written in response not to Church-based Sexual Abuse, as horrific as that is, but in response to the flood of revelations coming from Hollywood and Washington DC in recent times. Yet what is written is applicable to the Church and the crisis facing it as it is to the current revelations in the media/entertainment industry and the world of politics.

It’s worth reading, pondering and, eventually, responding.

The Puritan impulse to cast out the evildoer as the sole response to his transgression seeks catharsis rather than justice. Justice requires not only the past and future victims be made whole and safe but also that the strutures that protect the privileged rather than the powerless be reformed. And justice also recogizes and encourages the possibility of redemption, after repentance and penalty.

Responding to sexual abuse will take years-and it should

The flood of revelations about sexual harassment and assault, whether in Washington or Hollywood, is unlikely to stop anytime soon. The walls of denial built up by position and self-protective ignorance have been breached. If the tragic revelations of the Catholic Church’s sex abuse crisis are any guide, the process of reckoning with problems that have been avoided for decades will itself take decades.

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Article by Andrew Doohan

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