Reflections from Somerville Mass.

I don’t know who you are “Concerned Granny” but you’ve couldn’t have stated it better.

Stated what? You may ask.  The online edition of the NYT posted the final chapter in the sorry saga of the Penn State football coach; he was found guilty of 45 counts out of 48 of various charges of sexual abuse.  Sandusky’s reign of power over his enablers and control over his victims is over.  Many people chimed in their thoughts of the comments section, but the best comment so far took the larger association of the condition of our country, the suffering of so many as a result of it and the hypocrisy of those who’d rather waste their time and our time forcing theocracy on us.

Theocracy from a religion, I might point out and “concerned grandma” does even better at pointing out, that professes to care for the weak and the downtrodden as the first order of business.  Tell it grandma:

  • Concerned Grandma
  • Somerville MA

Is anyone else struck by the dreadful coincidence that the front page of tonight’s on-line edition of the NYTimes carries TWO stories about trusted and prominent figures who have been found guilty of charges involving sexual abuse of young boys?

To what extent are we all complicit in these crimes? What might those around these men have done to interrupt and halt their heinous offenses? I believe that the “righteous” citizens of this country who have focused so much vituperative energy, attention, and money on preventing abortion and contraception should take stock this weekend, especially if they exercise their right to participate in communal exercise of their faith. Perhaps it is time for them to devote greater attention and expressions of love to the many children living in our midst who attend terrible schools, have a troubled home situation, inadequate nourishment and minimal or non-existent health care, and who live in and know nothing but poverty.

Acknowledging the realities of poverty, deprivation and neglect that confront way too many children in our cities and rural areas and the places in between and doing something to reverse these shameful conditions might be a small step towards communal atonement for allowing those who prey on our children to do so with impunity.

We owe a great debt to those who brought these two to trial, and to the system of justice that held them accountable for their crimes.

It is a very sad state of affairs.

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2 thoughts on “Reflections from Somerville Mass.

  1. nelle says:

    It says a lot not only about power unchecked, but also imbalance. One cloaked his work in the local behemoth that is Penn State football, a sub-element of an institution given license to do what it will. The other found his way within the most patriarchal organisation extant in the western world, where they welcome women only as followers and as servants, and not at all as equal or in any place of decision making. I have to believe if women served as priests and if priests married, the tsunami of paedophile cases would be reduced to an isolated number.

    Yet, those of us in the lgbtq community saw how the Church would respond in the future. I recall almost a decade ago now engaging in discussions on how it would scapegoat us rather than make positive change to eliminate the conditions that fostered these horrid incidents.

  2. Yes, there is a lot to be said about the dynamics of patriarchy — extreme heirarchical control by using sex as a tool of power and how it enables and I think nurtures the development of pedophilia which really is like so many other abuses we see; an outgrowth of a worship of dominance by force.

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