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Identity politics serves to corrupt the notions of morality, common sense, and what it means to live in a society under the rule of law.  This is a brief examination of a twitter thread I stumbled across about the recent cases of Catholic Churches being burnt down as misguided retaliation for the residential school system that was in place in Canada.

” SASKATOON — A former Polish Roman Catholic church in rural Saskatchewan was destroyed by fire Thursday.

The church was located near Redberry Lake, which is about 80 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon.

Lynn Swystun, who lives about a mile and a half west of the church, says she noticed smoke from her yard around 12:15 p.m. then drove to the area and discovered the church engulfed in flames.”

(read the full story here)

Now here is where it gets interesting, this is a response to the story.

 

Wait, what?  Where exactly is the conflation happening?  Damage to places of worship, in my books, is damage to places of worship.  But apparently, in Nora’s world, your identity is also somehow a factor that should be used to categorize the level of violence, determining whether the violence is ‘valid’ or not.

If you’ve been with us here DWR you know that I’m not exactly the biggest supporter of organized religion and all the tomfoolery it is responsible for.  But, even being the anti-religious soul that I am, I wouldn’t attempt to order and rank attacks on places of worship into ‘worthy’ and ‘less worthy’ categories.

What kind of internal moral compass is Nora going by here?

The hell?  It isn’t a hate crime to burn down a place of worship because of a political/ideological motivation?  And, yes the actions of the Catholic Church are indeed pretty horrible, but burning down a church is not how we express our displeasure in a nominally civilized society that values the rule of law.

Just in case if you missed it.  This is the moral wasteland that much of identity politics leads to.  The level of oppression Catholics face in our society is irrelevant the crime that has been committed.  Burning down a church is arson.  Arson is against the law, for good reason, in our society.  There is no “good” or “valid” arson permissible if one wants to live in a reasonable law abiding society.

Do you see it there?  The bullshit notion that there are differing levels of ‘arsonability’ based on your identity in society (of course it comes from a pronouns bio *smh*).  Err no.   There is no fucking way this paradigm can work if we want society as we know it to work.  Past oppression does not mean a free pass when you break the law.

Is protest a part of a democratic society, absolutely.  It is our civic duty to keep our political class in check and in tune with needs of the people.  Arson, however, is not one of those methods that should not be considered acceptable in society as a path to change.

 

 

The RCC is corrupt.  Let’s acknowledge this, and then move to right the situation.  Neil MacDonald over at the CBC take a swipe at the papacy, but for all his erudite comments and justifications – one has to ask the question – ‘are they really necessary?’  As in, there is almost no moral ambiguity here, this is an ethical slam dunk.  The RCC ruling structure is rotten and needs to be jettisoned into space, the sooner, the better.

It is an unreal situation like Americans and their tragically farcical gun control debate.  One would reasonably think that the wholesale slaughter of innocents that is happening at a fairly regular interval in the US would lead to the sanction one of the primary tools that people use to enact mass murder.  Not rocket science.

In the same way, child buggery, has been a very catholic thing for decades if not centuries.  No ethical pining needed here folks – the catholic church’s superstructure needs to go away.  Not rocket science.

What these examples are a grim testimony to are the resilience of codified hierarchical structures/beliefs in society.  There is no tame liberal way of dealing with these problems, they must be torn from society root and branch, and that requires that people stand up and demand justice in society and be willing to raise hell until their demands are met.

But hey, talk of revolutionary action aside, Neil does a great job and poking the evil with a stick (enjoy?):

 

“The same goes elsewhere. Revelations of horrors in all the above-mentioned Western countries (here in Canada, there was documented abuse in Quebec, British Columbia, Ontario, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, where the church’s Mount Cashel orphanage was operated as sort of a prison for child sex slaves) resulted in dismissals of some church officials, some lawsuits and a handful of criminal convictions, but not much more than that.

Each time, the Pope or one of his high subalterns would lament human frailty, and drone on about the sacred duty to protect the most vulnerable, while privately fighting to thwart civil suits or conspiring to keep facts from investigating authorities.

Pope Francis, who enjoys the most saintly reputation of any recent pope (except for John Paul II, who was actually made a saint, despite all the ugly revelations on his watch) released an open letter to the world’s Catholics after the Pennsylvania revelations, basically repeating the company line: gosh, sorry, that was terrible, we must do better, God bless you all, go in peace.

Noting first that “most of these cases belong to the past,” (don’t all cases belong to the past?) the Pope banged on for 2,000 words about feeling the pain of the vulnerable, and the necessity of ensuring it doesn’t happen again (and again and again and again), but his central theme was expressed right off the top in a line from Corinthians: “If one member suffers, all suffer together with it.”

Yes. Of course. Let’s compare the spiritual suffering the Pope claims the revelations have caused him to that of a child being sodomized by an adult stalker in a clerical collar, a monster the boy probably doesn’t think he’s even allowed to complain about.

The right thing for the Pope to do would be to waive his sovereign privilege (he is a sitting head of state), and invite criminal authorities to freely and fully access church records worldwide, and drain the holy swamp. He might also consider at this stage ordaining women, because women are God’s creatures too, perfectly able to spiritually guide the faithful, and, umm, don’t tend to rape children.

But the privileged old men who run the church aren’t going to allow any of that. They’re a bit like gun control opponents, opposing an obvious solution on doctrinaire grounds.

There actually have been a few attempts to use the RICO statute against priests, notably in Cleveland, but jurors did not convict.

When former Oklahoma governor and former federal prosecutor Frank Keating, a practicing Catholic, compared the church’s obsession with secrecy to the Mafia’s, Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles demanded his ouster from a church board examining clerical abuse. Keating resigned from the panel.

Mahony, who covered up sexual abuse by priests in California, according to church records, retired peacefully at age 75. Only after a court order compelled the Los Angeles archdiocese to open its files on abuse was Mahony gently rebuked by the church

Pope Francis condemned priestly sexual abuse and its cover-up by the Catholic Church, in a public letter. In addition to demanding accountability, Francis begged forgiveness for the pain suffered by victims and said Catholics must be involved in any effort to root out abuse. 2:11

By any secular standard, the Catholic Church is a corrupt organization. It in fact sets the standard for impunity.

Cardinal Bernard Law, who presided over the coverup of the church’s famous Boston sex abuse scandals, was plucked and brought to Rome by Pope John Paul II, where he resided until he died at the Vatican, beyond the reach of American prosecutors.

Earlier this year, after Bishop Juan Barros of Chile was accused of covering up clerical abuse, Pope Francis denounced the accusers’ “calumny.” When it turned out that there was merit to the accusations, and that the Vatican had been informed of the problem, Francis claimed he’d been misinformed. A few weeks later, all 34 of Chile’s bishops tendered their resignations. Francis eventually accepted three of them.

And now, Catholic activist Susan Reynolds has gathered thousands of signatures on a letter demanding the resignation of all American bishops. It would be the right thing to do, but at a guess, the very notion amuses America’s bishopry, comfortable in their armour of piety.”

abortion_hypocrisyWell.  I’m glad to see the Catlicks coming around on such an important issue to women and their rights.  This is an object lesson for the deluded pro-life movement.  Your fetus worshipping is useful for whipping up the frenzy and getting people all frothy, but when serious issues come, its time for you to sit the frack down and shut the frack up on cue while the adults talk about the serious issues.

From the Alter.net article

[…]

And all of this—all of it—goes back to the Church’s insistence that life begins with your very first hell-worthy dirty thought and must be protected at all costs, despite all consequences, including, of course, the consequence of dead women, whose lives are not nearly as valuable as the “life” of an unborn fetus. In just the past year, the Church has called upon its faithful followers to march, to starve themselves, to go to jail, to even take up arms—all to protect those fetuses. No exceptions. None. Not if the fetus is already dead inside the womb. Not if the fetus is going to kill the actual living woman carrying it. No goddamned exceptions EVER.

Well, except for one: when it’s going to cost the Church money.

Turns out, when a man sues a Catholic hospital for malpractice because his wife and the twins she was carrying inside her died when she turned up in the emergency room and her doctor never bothered to answer a page—well, things get a little tricky. Yes, the Catholic hospital adheres to the strict Ethical and Religious Directives of the Catholic Church, as set forth by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. And yes, those directives include the claim that “[t]he Church’s defense of life encompasses the unborn” and a mandate to uphold “the sanctity of life ‘from the moment of conception until death.'” But come  on. That obviously does not apply when Catholic Health Initiatives, the Church-affiliated organization that runs the Church-affiliated St. Thomas More Hospital where a young woman and her two unborn fetuses died, is the lead defendant in a lawsuit:

Instead, they are arguing state law protects doctors from liability concerning unborn fetuses on grounds that  those fetuses are not persons with legal rights.

As Jason Langley, an attorney with Denver-based Kennedy Childs, argued in one of the briefs he filed for the defense, the court “should not overturn the long-standing rule in Colorado that the term ‘person,’ as is used in the Wrongful Death Act, encompasses only individuals born alive. Colorado state courts define ‘person’ under the Act to include only those born alive. Therefore Plaintiffs cannot maintain wrongful death claims based on two unborn fetuses.”

Thank you, counselor, for totally undermining everything the Catholic Church has ever said about women and health care and fetuses and the “sanctity of life,” just to save a buck, thereby confirming how very empty and meaningless all that rhetoric really is. Praise the Lord.

pro-full

Dead at 31 many thanks, Catholic Church.

I needed some time to digest this story…  Sorry folks but that is a lie.  I needed some time to come back to a (relatively) coherent state before I could write reasonably about what went down with Savita Halappanavar.

A post filled with nothing but white-hot rage and invective against the pustulant ass-pimples known as pro-lifers (anti-choicers, for the sake of veracity) and their equally pustulant,delusion friends, the Catholic Church would serve little purpose other than giving the other side ammunition about how nasty I am (Humourless Feminist, Too Sensitive, Crazy Socialist, Militant Atheist etc…the list is long ).  No, my ninnyhammerd-half-witted friends won’t get the pleasure because in Savita’s case there is nothing for me to add, the absolute horror and immorality of their position is chillingly clear –  and a young woman had to die because of it (and women are dying of it here in North America too).

Let’s just look at how our pro-life catholic friends “helped” Savita Halappanavar – Analysis from Dr. Jen Gunter (I’m referencing Jen’s post to make my point, she does not hold the same opinion as I). [ed. bold text mine]

This is what is known. Savita Halappanavar was 31 years old and happy to be pregnant with her first child. Then, at 17 weeks, tragedy struck and she was “found to be miscarrying.” Her husband reports that she was in “severe pain” for three days at the hospital and a termination was requested. He says this request was denied because Ireland is “a Catholic country.” He and his late wife were led to believe that the law would only allow her to be delivered when there was no fetal heartbeat.

What does the standard of medical care say about this treatment? Without access to the chart, “miscarrying” at 17 weeks can only mean one of three things”

A) Ruptured membranes

B) Advanced cervical dilation

C) Labor (this is unlikely, although it is possible that she had preterm labor that arrested and left her with scenario B, advanced cervical dilation).

All three of these scenarios have a dismal prognosis, none of which should involve the death of the mother

Okay, ground rules set.  There were no mysteries here, the medical playbook is straight forward.

The standard of care with ruptured membranes (scenario A) is to offer termination or, if there is no evidence of infection and the pregnancy is desired, the option of observing for a few days to see if the leak seals over and more fluid accumulates. If no fluid accumulates and by some chance the pregnancy manages to go beyond 24 weeks (the vast majority of pregnancies with ruptured membranes delivery within a week), survival is unlikely given the lungs require amniotic fluid to develop. I have seen the rare case where a woman with no infection (and no fluid) elects conservative management in the hopes that might make it to at least 24 weeks in the pregnancy, however, I have never heard of a baby surviving in this scenario. Regardless, if at any point infection is suspected the treatment is antibiotics and delivery not antibiotics alone.

The standard of care with scenario B involves offering delivery or possibly a rescue cerclage (a stitch around the cervix to try to prevent further dilation and thus delivery) depending on the situation. Inducing delivery (or a D and E) is offered because a cervix that has dilated significantly often leads to labor or an infection as the membranes are now exposed to the vaginal flora. Many women do not want wait for infection. A rescue cerclage is not without risks and is contraindicated with ruptured membranes or any sign of infection. Rescue cerclage is a very case by case intervention and well beyond the scope of this post. These decisions are difficult and the mark of good medical care is that all scenarios are discussed, all interventions that are technically possible offered, and then the patient makes an informed decision. All with the understanding that if infection develops, delivery is indicated.

Medically speaking, Dr.Gunter explains the outcomes of what these religiously addled doctors did, or more specifically did not do.

As there is no medically acceptable scenario at 17 weeks where a woman is miscarrying AND is denied a termination, there can only be three plausible explanations for Ms. Hapappanavar’s “medical care” :

1) Irish law does indeed treat pregnant women as second class citizens and denies them appropriate medical care. The medical team was following the law to avoid criminal prosecution.

2) Irish law does not deny women the care they need; however, a zealous individual doctor or hospital administrator interpreted Catholic doctrine in such a way that a pregnant woman’s medical care was somehow irrelevant and superceded by heart tones of a 17 weeks fetus that could never be viable.

3) Irish law allows abortions for women when medically necessary, but the doctors involved were negligent in that they could not diagnose infection when it was so obviously present, did not know the treatment, or were not competent enough to carry out the treatment.

What we do know is that a young, pregnant, woman who presented to the hospital in a first world country died for want of appropriate medical care. Whether it’s Irish Catholic law or malpractice, only time will tell; however, no answer could possibly ease the pain and suffering of Ms. Halappanavar’s loved ones.

This is what we get when we allow insipid religious prevarication into important parts of our society.  Mythology and magic have no place in secular institutions, not now and not ever.   Yet we still allow the bullshite in despite the injuries, deaths and pain it causes.  Religion poisons everything and everyone it touches and yet Religion is just one head of the hydra that conspired to end Savita’s life.  By now the ironically named “Pro-life” band of fetus fetishists need to take their bows and unsuccessfully try to wipe their bloody hands of this uncomfortable case.

Savita’s death is on their hands because this is what you get when you don’t value women as people and see them only as incubators.  Savita and other women are dying because of the batshite-insane anti-choice nuttery that goes on that somehow makes it okay to take women out of the  pregnancy equation and deny her rights.  So have your prayer vigils, your fetus-porn, your 40 days of fuckwittery –  all so you can feel fucking morally superior(?) when a women like Savita Halappanarvar dies?  Your fetid morality is repugnant and has no place in a civilized society… none whatsoever.

You know what the best tell is from these anti-woman fetus worshipping zealots is?   The absolute fucking silence from the pro-life side of things when details of Savita’s death rang around the world.   The author(s) over at Reasonable Conversation nailed it with this post which I excerpt here. [ed. bold text mine]

The fact of the matter is, these people can only thrive when the deaths are anonymous. The moment we had a name for one of the victims of their horrible and irrational beliefs, they needed to shut up and hide so nobody could ask them if Savita Halappanavar should have died, if it was god’s will, if they should have allowed her to be treated. They can’t answer these questions because the answers they would give would make them look like monsters if they were honest and undermine their message if they lied.   

   This. A thousand times  just this.

This is why we fight for the rights of women because the regressive religiously addled view women as second class citizens not worthy of human rights or treatment.  Your torpid bronze age shenanigans have gone on for much too long and hurt too many people.  Where is the apology from the pope?  Where is the outcry from the anti-choicers?  There is none because they cannot or will not see the monstrous evil of their positions, better to whip up some more fetus porn or get some more red duct tape and pray to your imaginary sky-daddy.

When the consequences of your bullshite come to light the religiously anti-choice zealots scurry away from the light of reason(rule one in the nutter playbook), when the unnamed become named and the travesty of your rotten ethics is bared to light you offer no defense, because there is no defense for your untenable immoral position.

Oh that answer of course is “No”.  “No” a million times over.  But its always fun to watch the deluded try and justify the rotten foundations of the RCC or as in this case yell at themselves while on hold.

The Roman Catholic Church is a corrupt institution that continues to support the rape and molestation of children on top of preaching bat-shite crazy baffle-gab to the deluded.  Such malignant evil has no place in the 21st century.

Friends, country men lend us your chil...errrr... ears.

The insipid organization known as the Catholic Church continues to fumble along now begging forgiveness for violating children and destroying their lives.

“Pope Benedict XVI has begged forgiveness from clerical abuse victims and promised to “do everything possible” to ensure priests don’t rape and molest children ever again.”

Well that is nice, but as the CBC reports it is too little, a lot too late.

“Benedict made the pledge during a Mass Friday in St. Peter’s Square, marking the end of the Vatican’s Year of the Priest, a celebration of the priesthood that has been marred by revelations of hundreds of new cases of clerical abuse, coverup and Vatican inaction to root out pedophiles.”

I’m sure that now, he means business.

“On Thursday, Benedict strongly defended celibacy for priests as a sign of faith in an increasingly secular world, insisting on a church tradition that has come under scrutiny amid the clerical sex abuse scandal.”

Well, it would seem there is a correlation of sorts between sex starved priests and the innocent children they systematically and repeatedly target.  One might, if possessing even a moderate grasp of reality, ascertain that the policy of Celibacy for priests is not working very well.   Will the pious make a decision based in the real world?  Wait for it.

“The pope called it “a great sign of faith, of the presence of God in the world.”

The Vatican has long denied that its celibacy requirement was the root cause of priests who rape and sodomize children.”

OH SNAP! Celibacy is the presence of GOD in the world let the rape-train continue full steam ahead!

When people talk to me of religion and morality they wonder why I look at them funny.

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