Well said, Vog. Really, especially American priests. If some kid in Malaysia gets touched by a trusted authority figure, meh, but NIMBY, am I right?
I know, Vog, I know. That's not what you mean. But, see, you think that the people are the problem, not the tradition. The tradition you seem to think is the strength of Catholicism has been to cover up misdeeds performed by religious figures. The tradition has been condemning birth control and damning homosexuals. More tradition seems to be synonymous with less tolerance. Making the rules stronger means they'll go ever further to make sure no one knows they've been broken.
What would be lovely is a Pope that cares not a whit about the dull tradition of the church, but rather its teachings of love, peace, tolerance, etc. A New Testament approach, you could say.
And maybe one that wasn't a Hitler Youth (Ratzinger, you rascal).
The problem is not the pedophiles. It's the culture that shields them. It's the environment where a known pedophile is whisked away from the legal ramifications of his crimes because of tiresome tradition. I think it's well past time for the church to look towards becoming a force for good instead of a justification for hate.
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