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Monday, October 31, 2011

KC Star vs, the Catholic Church League: Score one for the Star and decency

Yikes. It's getting hot over at the Catholic League. It seems they wanted to put an ad in the Star to defend Bishop Finn and his actions total lack of action in and on the Sean Ratigan sexual misconduct situation and the Star said no. Yes, they turned down their $25,000.00 ad. To which I say, I can't believe it but GOOD ON YOU, STAR. It should have been turned down, I should think for at least this one reason--in some of the opening sentences, the Catholic League writes and admits this: "Last December, crotch-shot pictures of young girls, fully clothed, were found on Fr. Ratigan’s computer; there was one photo of a naked girl." The Catholic League has the nerve to write and admit the above, and then DEFEND BISHOP FINN and his total, utter denial of Ratigan's situation. Man, those Catholics and the Catholic League have chutzpah. That said, I think if I were the Star, I would have run the ad and for two reasons. First, they need the money and they need it badly. Then, it would have let the Catholics have their say. Fine. But then, I'd have run an editorial, probably the next day, answering the ad. For the Catholic League--and any Catholics--to defend Finn when they can admit the above--that a child's sexual parts or private parts or whatever you want to call them, were both photographed and then kept on a priest's computer and FINN DID NOTHING for at least 5 months? That's beyond inexcusable. By our Missouri laws, fortunately, it's illegal. It's also illegal BECAUSE OF THE LAST CATHOLIC SEX ABUSE SCANDAL THAT TOOK PLACE, too, if anyone needs reminding. There are so many things wrong with what the Catholic League claim in their proposed ad, it's nearly mind-numbing. They're either lying to themselves or to the world so badly, so completely, it's shocking. And the League's playing both Finn and the church as victims is not just ridiculous, it's insulting. So kudos and salutations to The Kansas City Star. You all didn't take this dirty Catholic money. Good on you. Someone should give you an award of some kind for integrity and doing the right thing. "...the ultimate goal is to have the Catholic Church cede its autonomy to the state." Right. What nonense. If Bill Donohue and all these die-hard Catholics weren't such lapdogs for Finn and the church, they would be ashamed of themselves for putting Finn and the church ahead of the children and their safety and protecting these pedophiles, instead, time and again. Clearly "They know not what they do." (Side note: thanks to Tony at TKC for bringing this to the city's attention.) Links:;;


Anonymous said...

Please don't assume Donohue and the Catholic League represent most Catholics. The Catholics I know are horrified at Bishop Finn's disregard of his obligation to protect children, not to mention breaking Missouri law. We want to see bishops held fully accountable for their coverup behavior.

Mo Rage said...

Oh, believe me, I don't assume any such thing. Having read some of the comments on some different Catholic pages out here on the internet, I know the opinions are on one side or the other but not that all think the way Mr. Donohue is, rest assured.

Anonymous said...

It is not true to say Bishop Finn did nothing. It is my understanding that the very next day the Diocese contacted a police officer and described the picture. A Diocesan attorney was also shown it. As deplorable as the situation was, because the photo was not sexual in nature it was determined that it did not constitute child pornography . This explains why the Independent Review Board was not contacted - there was no specific allegation of child abuse. When the priest in question discovered that the Diocese had learned of this , he attempted suicide. When he recovered he was immediately sent for psychiatric evaluation.
It is important to note that Bishop Finn , who never saw any of the photos, did this precisely because he was considering the possibility of removing the priest from ministry. After evaluation the priest (who was diagnosed with depression, but was not judged to be a pedophile) was placed in a spot away from children and subjected to various restrictions. After he violated them, the Diocese called the cops.
It seems the blogger avoided some crucial facts and failed to tell the whole story.

Unknown said...

The Catholic League ad, in the Catholic spirit of concealing truth about pedophile priests, left out most of the important details of the case of Bishop Finn hiding a pedophile. The Catholic church doesn't care about hiding the truth, or hiding pedophiles, but a newspaper has to.

Just a few examples of the Catholic League "lying for God":

- the ad completely omits the fact that a school principal wrote a 4 page memo to Bishop Finn about Fr Ratigan's pedophile behavior in May 2010, and Finn ignored it. Readers would think the evidence started in Dec 2010

- the ad talks about "crotch shot" photos being on Ratigan's computer. It doesn't tell the full truth, which is that Ratigan took those pictures, and he took them up the skirts of young girls.

- it also doesn't say that the diocese didn't contact the police. Instead, they called a friend that is an off duty police officer and described one photo over the phone, asking if it was child porn. They didn't tell the truth, which is that the computer was filled with child porn.

- it also doesn't say that they gave the evidence (a computer filled with child porn) to Ratigan's family instead of the police. However, they did "make a copy" of it.

- the ad says there was "one photo of a naked girl" on Ratigan's computer. There were hundreds.

- Ratigan was not reported to the actual police back in 2010. Instead, he was hidden, as Catholic bishops have hidden pedophiles for at least 60 years.

- Bishop Finn did not get "an attorney to do an independent investigation into this matter". The truth is that he hired Todd Graves, whose specialty is protecting the brand name of companies who are in trouble with the law.

There are a bunch of other inaccuracies in the article, but these are just some from the first 3 paragraphs.

The truth will come out over the next few months or years, even though Bishop Finn has 4 attorneys who will help him tell "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth" just like this ad by the Catholic League tells "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth".

So help me, God.

Mo Rage said...

And that's rich, too. To quote you (it reads as though reported in the Kansas City Star, too): "When the priest in question..." Sean "the rat" Ratigan "...discovered that the Diocese had learned of this , he attempted suicide. When he recovered he was immediately sent for psychiatric evaluation." And even though this is true, Ratigan pleads not guilty to charges.

If it weren't also and further disgusting, it would be funny.

But it's not.

It's far from funny, as even you surely agree.

Mo Rage said...


That's what I understood, too--that the St. Joseph school principal wrote Finn a year and a half before he was finally turned in by Finn and his office. Then, later, the pictures were found, covered up and then, again, later, finally turned in to the police, once the situation was squarely out of their hands.