Posts Tagged “ct”

Archdiocese of Hartford (Connecticut) crestNote: See below for a “good-news update” about this case, as well as another update.

I’ve already blogged about the reprehensible defense offered up by the archdiocese of Hartford, facing a court case over one of its priests who abused children — which is that the youthful victims “liked it” so it was OK and no big deal. Never mind that a minor “liking” sex with an adult is not a legitimate defense. Never mind that the victim “liking it” at the time it happened does nothing to make it acceptable. Oh no. Those little facts carry no weight, in the eyes of the achdiocese. The Hartford Courant reports on the latest chapter in this bone-chilling judicial proceeding (WebCite cached article):

A psychiatric expert called to testify Tuesday in Superior Court by the Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford disputed an earlier diagnosis that an adolescent victim of sexual abuse by a priest would likely suffer from mental health problems for the rest of his life.

Dr. J. Alexander Bodkin testified that the most significant mental disorder suffered by the victim — depression — was not the result of the sexual abuse he experienced in the early 1980s, but is the result of stress caused 26 years later by litigation associated with the abuse.

This is truly precious. This “expert” is saying that the victim’s problem is not that he was abused by a priest … rather, it’s that he pursued a case against the Church over the abuse.

That’s right, folks. Bodkin is saying that the victim wouldn’t be having any trouble, had he simply “accepted” the abuse, kept quiet about it, and never made any attempt to hold the priest who abused him or the archdiocese of Hartford responsible for it.

Really. That’s what this guy said. Yes, this … from a “hired gun” working for an organization that dares set itself forth as an arbiter of morality and ethics.

In the words of every informercial you’ve ever seen, though … “But wait! There’s more!”

In fact, Bodkin testified that Doe’s experiences with Ferguson — which included being given pornographic materials and alcoholic beverages when he was 13, 14 and 15 years old — was a “positive relationship.”

“He was eager to keep up the relationship,” Bodkin said. “This was his choice. He was eager to see Ferguson. From his perspective, this was something he was looking forward to.”

So you see, because Fr Ferguson — an adult, and a clever manipulator — was able to convince a minor child, at that time, that having sex was just fine, then no harm could possibly have befallen the victim. It was all terrific fun!

Yes, that is precisely what the archdiocese’s “expert” said at trial.

Of course, Dr Bodkin at least made an attempt to distance himself from his own downplaying of the damage:

“It ain’t nice. I’m not approving any aspect of it,” he said. “But it is not the type of thing that is prerequisite to long-term mental illness, expecially 26 years later.”

So while Dr Bodkin claims he doesn’t “approve of any aspect of” child sexual abuse, he nevertheless doesn’t see that it can cause any harm. One wonders, then, what logical reason he’d have for saying he doesn’t “approve of any aspect of” it? If it causes no harm to a child, then there would seem to be no rational reason for him not to “approve of” it.

Just goes to show that you can pretty much find any “expert” who will say or do just about anything one wants him/her to do, if the check one writes has enough zeroes in it. (And yes, the archdiocese of Hartford can most certainly afford to pump lots of zeroes into the check it writes to Dr Bodkin.)

Really, the amount of evil the Roman Catholic Church has brought to the world, is staggering. But what’s even more staggering, is the amount of evil it continues to bring into the world … and the amount of it that it actually tries to rationalize and justify!

I’m not sure there ever was a Jesus Christ, but if he did live, I can’t imagine he could possibly have wanted to be represented by this hideous bunch.

I honestly hadn’t though the archidiocese of Hartford could possibly have stooped any lower than they already have … but they managed this immense feat nonetheless. I suppose they’re proud of themselves; but in reality, they have nothing to be proud of. With every word they speak, with every action they take, with their every step, they condemn themselves as amoral and despicable, in every conceivable way.

Update: The Hartford Courant reports the jury has found the archdiocese of Hartford reckless and negligent in its dealings with Fr Ivan Ferguson, and awarded “Jacob Doe” a million dollars (cached). I’m sure the archdiocese will appeal and continue litigating this case, stalling as long as they can. But at the very least, it’s clear the jury did not buy into the archdiocese’s horrific defense.

Update 2: The archdiocese brought its appeal to the Connecticut Supreme Court, asking that the statute of limitations be rolled back so it can’t be held accountable for its actions.

Photo credit: Archdiocese of Hartford.

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For the last few months, local radio has advertised a “Get Motivated” seminar to be held in Hartford (CT) in the 9th of September. Well, the seminar was held … and was successful … but it turned to have been in disguise, as the Hartford Courant reports (locally-cached article):

Laura Bush, Rudy Giuliani, Colin Powell and Joe Montana didn’t come to the XL Center Wednesday to pitch products or services. They just told stories.

But the celebrities — along with cheap ticket prices — helped draw an overflow crowd for “Get Motivated!,” a one-day event billed as a business seminar that, unbeknown to many attendees beforehand, doubled as a sales pitch for costly investment seminars and other products, and for Christian evangelism. …

Not everyone who attended the event, which flooded downtown Hartford with about 19,000 people, cared for the overt religious proselytizing.

“To be perfectly honest with you, it pissed me off,” said Bill White of Westfield, Mass., who helps manage a CVS store in Bloomfield. “I have my own beliefs and I don’t like it when somebody tries to shove it down my throat.”

White said he felt misled by the event’s advertisements, which emphasize business skill development, increasing profits and overcoming challenges, but make no mention at all of religion. “I almost feel like I’ve been lied to,” he said.

Event officials declined to discuss the event’s religious aspect.

That’s odd, because one of the event’s organizers said something else:

“The real superstar is Jesus Christ,” intoned Tamara Lowe, who with her husband, Peter, runs Get Motivated! Seminars Inc., the Florida company behind Wednesday’s event and similar events throughout the country.

If the real star of your shows is Jesus, Ms Lowe, why would you not have mentioned that in your ads? And why would your organization now be clamming up about the event’s religiosity?

Look, if you want to hold a revival service, fine. Hold one. It’s a free country. Have at it! Just don’t package it as something else, reel people in, then shovel a whole lot of religious propaganda at them. Deception isn’t very Christian!

I’m surprised to hear that Rudy Giuliani, of all people, would be involved with a scheme like this. He had once been the front-runner for the Republican nomination in 2008 … but his campaign had been torpedoed by the Religious Right, e.g. James Dobson, then head of Focus on the Family and commander-in-chief of the Protestant evangelical movement, who said he was unacceptable as a candidate. I would not have thought Giuliani would get involved in religiosity of this kind.

But he did anyway.

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