Numerous American Muslim clerics guilty of sexually abusing children.

September 14, 2010 | By | 1 Reply More

Just imagine how incensed most Americans would be if they saw the above (untrue) headline on the front page of their daily papers. Do you have any doubt that they would quickly investigate and prosecute the offenders, then throw them into prison?

How amazing that when we substitute “Catholic” for “Muslim,” so many Americans forgive the rapists and lean upon their victims. This is a paraphrase of a line used by Christopher Hitchens in an Slate article where he describes the unwieldy Belgian “problem” of the Catholic church. Well, the Belgian criminal justice system is now starting to crack down and the Catholic clergy continues to condemn this intervention of government, all the while stifling the investigations by attempting to withhold the evidence. The Catholic clergy would much rather be left alone, of course, but Hitchens sees this new development–that of “earthly justice”–to be an important and necessary step.

If only this interest in those who have obstructed justice would happen with vigor everywhere. I would offer this suggestion: Dress up the American Catholic clergy as though they were Muslim clergy–tell people that they were Muslim sexual predators rather than Catholic sexual predators–and then watch the American media and justice system go at the offenders like attack dogs.  We might even see some action aimed at those numerous accomplices who have worked so hard to cover up the evidence. Hell, we might even see Americans tear down Catholic churches that were within 10 miles of ground zero, if only we could somehow convince Americans that the Catholic clerics were disguised Muslims.

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Category: hypocrisy, law and order

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Tony Coyle says:

    Erich

    Great post.

    My thought is that this works (again) because of our innate us/them dichotomy in relating to people.

    If we see someone as us then we'll see transgressions as mistakes – because obviously someone like me would never be evil enough to simply do that by choice!

    For those we see as other – it is clear – they are already close to demons. We don't understand them, and don't wish make ourselves unclean by trying. We're happy to believe they would do such vile things, because it fits our internal narrative of who they are.

    As much as I hate to say it – framing is definitely the issue here.

    Framing people as part of the in-group, garners them sympathy. Framing them as part of the out-group, garners loathing.

    Unfortunately, if you get your news from one source, or are already preconditioned to accept an authoritarian perspective, your frame is already well defined. Your in-group is pretty much set in stone, making it all but impossible to consider rationally any positive quality for those outside your ken.

    Welcome to our world.

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