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Commentary, sarcasm and snide remarks from a Florida resident of over thirty years. Being a glutton for punishment is a requirement for residency here. Who am I? I've been called a moonbat by Michelle Malkin, a Right Wing Nut by Daily Kos, and middle of the road by Florida blog State of Sunshine. Tell me what you think.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

I'm not the only skeptic

The latest Mark Foley news-

He never said a priest did it.

Yet Mark Foley's revelation, through his attorney, that a clergyman molested him when he was a teenager naturally led to both speculation about who may have abused him and protests about Foley's failure to say who did it.
I blogged in this post how I felt the molestation accusation was bogus. If what Foley claims is true, why not name the priest?

The popular and well-known Foley, who resigned from Congress on Friday in disgrace after the disclosure of sexually suggestive online contact with teenage congressional pages, is a devout Catholic who worshiped at Sacred Heart in Lake Worth and attended Cardinal Newman High School for one year. His faith and his relationship with the schools are well established in the community, causing some to wonder where the abuse occurred and whether it was at the hands of priest.

The molestation allegation was broadcast on national television during a news conference Tuesday by Foley's attorney David Roth.

"Let's hypothesize that Mark Foley was abused by a clergyman," said Bill Brooks, a former priest who has known Foley since Foley attended Cardinal Newman in 1969. "Then name him. Why should we cast a cloud of suspicion over the many good people who worked as clergy 35 years ago?"

If the person who Foley said molested him is a priest, it would be a "major black eye for the church," said Brooks, now a Palm Beach town councilman. The vagueness of the allegations, coupled with the common knowledge about Foley's local connections to the Catholic community, are unfair to Sacred Heart, Cardinal Newman and the Diocese of Palm Beach, Brooks said.

"Name the person," Brooks said. "Don't cast aspersions at a wide party of people."
Good for you Mr. Brooks. The public needs to know so children can be kept away from this molestor. Not just because it tars many innocent priests, which Mr. Roth's statement does.

Palm Beach Gardens attorney Ed Ricci, a prominent Catholic and frequent critic of the church, said Foley made himself part of the overall coverup by the Catholic Church by remaining silent when a sexual abuse scandal rocked the Diocese of Palm Beach in 2002. Bishop Anthony O'Connell resigned that year, admitting he had abused a boy 25 years earlier.

"If Mark Foley claims to be the leader he was, back in 2002, when his constituents needed help, he should have come forward to help them," Ricci said. "There were hundreds of people in his district who were shunned. He should have swallowed his pride."

Ricci said he is outraged at Foley's disclosure, calling it a "self-serving manipulation of the media and the public."

Mr. Ricci has his own axe to grind with the diocese. Dear wife knows the story, but she is safe at her family home in the Philippines. Besides because of her employment with the diocese, I can't disclose some information even If I knew the details.

Funny but no mention is made in this Sun-Sentinel article of the 1998 scandal where Bishop Keith Symons had to step down over a sex scandal. Why is that?

Again Mr. Ricci may have something to do with it. His anger with the diocese is closely related to the people running the diocese in 2002. The Sun-Sentinel and its reporter(and the rest of the local MSM) should really be more careful when choosing someone to comment on any controversy involving the diocese.

Roth said Tuesday that Foley "very much" wanted to release the name of the individual and church affiliation but is delaying that decision until he completes treatment for alcoholism, upon advice of his civil attorney. Roth said he could not comment on whether the individual was a priest, minister, imam or rabbi.

Officials with the Catholic Church say they are taking no action yet because no one in the priesthood has been accused.
This does not even need to be reported. How can any action be taken when no details were given?

Foley "didn't refer to a denomination or where or when or who," said Teresa Martinez, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Miami, which included Palm Beach County parishes until 1984. "Until Foley is more specific, the story is all speculation. When he names names, we'll revisit this."

Foley should report the crime to police, said David Clohessy, executive director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

"The overwhelming majority of abuse allegations regarding clergy prove to be true," he said. "I understand the timing would make some people skeptical, but there never is an ideal moment."

Ditto what Mr Clohessey says. Like with Mr. Brooks, he validates what I been saying since the news broke. Name the priest or clergyman.

He said it isn't surprising that Foley did not specify the clergy member or the denomination.

"Most victims report gradually," he said, because they want to maintain some control and are afraid their behavior will undergo additional scrutiny.
But if Mr. Foley really is seeking help for his problems, full disclosure would seem the best course. Over 30 years has passed, its time to tell the truth.

That's if the molestation accusation is true. TFM still remains highly skeptical.

Full disclosure- My wife has been a Diocese of Palm Beach employee since 1993. Through her work she met the congressman's parents who were active parishoners at the church my wife works at and where we attend mass and are also parishoners.

Linked to- Third World County, Bright & Early, Stuck on Stupid, Right Wing Nation,

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