November 15, 2011
November 15, 2011 @ 12:38 pm
One of our priests gave a homily last Sunday that was filled with outrage over Penn State. He also detailed the elaborate bureaucratic procedures now in place to prevent such things happening in the Church.
But it seems to me there is a common logical flaw in this combination. The root of the Penn State problem was deference to authority. If the person seen molesting children had been a nobody, he’d have been reported in an instant.
But to teach people to follow fussy rules is to also teach them to defer to authority. To teach them to set their consciences and common sense aside and just do what they are told. (No, I’m not advocating getting rid of those procedures–that’s not my point.)
The kind of person who would have reported that coach, even at the risk of being unpopular or ruining his career, is likely to be the cranky obstreperous SOB that smooth-running organizations, including the Catholic Church, either eliminate or hammer down. (That sort of independent and even mutinous behavior is also very masculine in character, though of course women can be that way too.)
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