Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on two news stories released today by the Associated Press:
One of the AP stories on priestly sexual abuse admits that "The overwhelming majority of the victims were adolescents. That means very few guilty priests were pedophiles, a term mental health professionals reserve for those who target pre-pubescent children." Fine. But then it says something which is positively remarkable: "Even though about 80 percent of victims were boys, the John Jay researchers and other experts on sex offenders say it does not mean the perpetrators were gay." So what would they be? Heterosexual?
The AP article relied on the extraordinary remark by Margaret Smith, a professor who worked on the John Jay study. She said that while Donohue "quoted the study's data correctly," I nonetheless "drew an unwarranted conclusion." What? That most of the molesters have been gay? Here is what she said: "The majority of the abusive acts were homosexual in nature. That participation in homosexual acts is not the same as sexual identity as a gay man." So if two men sodomize each other, no one really knows if this qualifies as gay sex. Now I must admit that when I was studying for my doctorate in sociology at NYU, they never taught me such logic.
Both AP stories say the reason why there were so many male victims is because the priests did not have access to girls as altar servers. Nonsense. There have been girl altar servers in some U.S. dioceses since 1983, and almost everywhere since 1994. The statistics actually show that the more priests have access to girls, the less likely it is for girls to be abused.
Here's the tally. As reported in 2004, between 1950 and 2002, 81 percent of the victims were male; in 2005, it stayed the same; in 2006, it dropped to 80 percent; in 2007, it climbed to 82 percent; in 2008, it jumped to 84 percent; and in 2009, it stayed at 84 percent.
In other words, even though priests have less access to males, homosexual priests are molesting them at a higher rate. It's time to end the gay cover-up once and for all.