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creepy narcissism oppressed men pedophiles oh sorry ephebophiles rape rapey reactionary bullshit victim blaming

Father Benedict Groeschel: In “a lot of the cases [of sexual abuse by priests] the youngster is the seducer.” Friars: He didn’t mean to blame the victims.

Father Benedict Groeschel

It’s victim-blaming at its worst. Last week, Father Benedict Groeschel, a fairly prominent religious figure who is, among other things, the director of the Office for Spiritual Development for the Catholic Archdiocese of New York, said some utterly appalling things about the victims of sexual abuse by priests.

In an interview with the National Catholic Register, Groeschel declared that some of the victims were likely “seducers,” and expressed sympathy for ”poor” Jerry Sandusky, and suggested that abusers “on their first offense … should not go to jail because their intention was not committing a crime.”

After the comments spurred outrage, the NC Register took down the interview. Here are the relevant sections, which I found reposted by an appalled columnist on the right-wing RenewAmerica site.  The whole thing is awful; I’ve highlighted some of the worst parts.

[Interviewer]: Part of your work here at Trinity has been working with priests involved in abuse, no?

[Father Groeschel]: A little bit, yes; but you know, in those cases, they have to leave. And some of them profoundly — profoundly — penitential, horrified. People have this picture in their minds of a person planning to — a psychopath. But that’s not the case. Suppose you have a man having a nervous breakdown, and a youngster comes after him. A lot of the cases, the youngster — 14, 16, 18 — is the seducer.

[Interviewer]: Why would that be?

[Father Greoschel]: Well, it’s not so hard to see — a kid looking for a father and didn’t have his own — and they won’t be planning to get into heavy-duty sex, but almost romantic, embracing, kissing, perhaps sleeping but not having intercourse or anything like that.

It’s an understandable thing, and you know where you find it, among other clergy or important people; you look at teachers, attorneys, judges, social workers. Generally, if they get involved, it’s heterosexually, and if it’s a priest, he leaves and gets married — that’s the usual thing — and gets a dispensation. A lot of priests leave quickly, get civilly married and then apply for the dispensation, which takes about three years.

But there are the relatively rare cases where a priest is involved in a homosexual way with a minor. I think the statistic I read recently in a secular psychology review was about 2%. Would that be true of other clergy? Would it be true of doctors, lawyers, coaches?

Here’s this poor guy — [Penn State football coach Jerry] Sandusky — it went on for years. Interesting: this poor guy — [Penn State football coach Jerry] Sandusky Why didn’t anyone say anything? Apparently, a number of kids knew about it and didn’t break the ice. Well, you know, until recent years, people did not register in their minds that it was a crime. It was a moral failure, scandalous; but they didn’t think of it in terms of legal things.

If you go back 10 or 15 years ago with different sexual difficulties — except for rape or violence — it was very rarely brought as a civil crime. Nobody thought of it that way. Sometimes statutory rape would be — but only if the girl pushed her case. Parents wouldn’t touch it. People backed off, for years, on sexual cases. I’m not sure why.

I think perhaps part of the reason would be an embarrassment, that it brings the case out into the open, and the girl’s name is there, or people will figure out what’s there, or the youngster involved — you know, it’s not put in the paper, but everybody knows; they’re talking about it.

At this point, (when) any priest, any clergyman, any social worker, any teacher, any responsible person in society would become involved in a single sexual act — not necessarily intercourse — they’re done. And I’m inclined to think, on their first offense, they should not go to jail because their intention was not committing a crime.

In the place where the interview originally ran, the National Catholic Register posted apologies from the paper’s editor-in-chief, the The Community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, and Groeschel himself. The statement from the Friars was at best a half-apology, and offered this “excuse” for his comments:

About seven years ago Fr. Benedict was struck by a car and was in a coma for over a month. In recent months his health, memory and cognitive ability have been failing. He has been in and out of the hospital. Due to his declining health and inability to care for himself, Fr. Benedict had moved to a location where he could rest and be relieved of his responsibilities. Although these factors do not excuse his comments, they help us understand how such a compassionate man could have said something so wrong, so insensitive, and so out of character.

I’m pretty sure getting hit by a car doesn’t make you think that victims of sexual abuse are the ones responsible for that abuse. It doesn’t put that attitude in your head, though it might make you think it’s acceptable to say such things out loud in an interview.

And if Groeschel is indeed so cognitively impaired that he can’t be held fully accountable for the words coming out of his mouth, why was he giving interviews to the press in the first place? How was he still capable of running the Office for Spiritual Development for the Catholic Archdiocese of New York? And why did the editors of the NC Register publish the comments without challenge in the first place?  Presumably none of them have been recently hit by a car.

In their apology, the Friars also said:

He never intended to excuse abuse or implicate the victims.

Really? How exactly is suggesting that 14 year old boys are “seducers” preying on the weaknesses of old men NOT intended to “excuse abuse [and] implicate the victims?”

They also say:

We hope that these unfortunate statements will not overshadow the great good Fr. Benedict has done in housing countless homeless people, feeding innumerable poor families, and bringing healing, peace and encouragement to so many.

They might as well have replaced their entire “apology” with this sentence, which reflects what seems to be their main concern here – that is, Groeschel looking bad, and making them look bad.

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aworldanonymous
9 years ago

Where’s Tommy, I bet he’d like to read this.

wordsp1nner
wordsp1nner
9 years ago

Sand cats and sand kittens:

Viscaria
Viscaria
9 years ago

Aww, sand kittens! Many thanks to Wordspinner for brain bleach before anybody even asked. I know I needed it.

cloudiah
9 years ago

I feel so sad that victims of abuse might see that interview and internalize all that blaming… (I don’t mean here, since there are trigger warnings and you point out how TERRIBLE AND WRONG he was to say those things. I wish Steele hadn’t ruined the word vile for us.)

cloudiah
9 years ago

I know I already posted this on another thread, but it is now my “go to” brain bleach. (Sorry you now have to wait through a short commercial for kitty litter.)

Pam
Pam
9 years ago

Where’s Tommy, I bet he’d like to read this.

Hell, if they both have Facebook accounts, they’ll be Friending each other!

Freitag
Freitag
9 years ago

Yes and now I feel quite nauseous and for the record I was hit by a car as a kid and have never blamed victims of sexual assault for the crimes committed against them.

Thank you for the kittens. Kittens are good.

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
9 years ago

The ears on those kittens are like a million times bigger than they are. O.O

thebewilderness
thebewilderness
9 years ago

If you go back 10 or 15 years ago with different sexual difficulties — except for rape or violence — it was very rarely brought as a civil crime. Nobody thought of it that way. Sometimes statutory rape would be — but only if the girl pushed her case. Parents wouldn’t touch it. People backed off, for years, on sexual cases. I’m not sure why.

Gee, could it possibly be because “spiritual advisers” like this one have been telling children and their parents for years and years that they asked for it?

I think I mentioned before that in an interview with a man who raped a three year old
HE SAID THE SAME SHIT THAT THIS PRIEST JUST DID.
The members of the clergy have been telling rape and incest victims this forever.

Hesster
Hesster
9 years ago

Someone in the comments on the Renew America site dug up a thread at Free Republic from 2003 about this guy. The original source is a story in the New Jersy Herald. Seems he was instrumental in getting a pedophile priest reinstated back in the 80s.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/857021/posts

Who knew auto accidents cause pedo enabling years before they happen?

nwoslave
9 years ago

All the more reason to keep gays away from young boys. Since ebophelia and pedastry are the exclusive domain of gays there is only one group to blame. Underage prostitution runs 50/50 boys and girls. Gays make up a miniscule portion of the population, 1 to 2% at the most, which means gays are 5,000% to 10,000% as likely to engage in this vile practice.

Feminists are up in arms about gays not being allowed in the boy scouts. I wonder why? One must conclude that feminists want boys to be molested when the odds are so likely they will be molested by gays.

Hesster
Hesster
9 years ago

So only gays molest children of both genders, and feminists want gays in the Boy Scouts so they can molest more boys?

That’s got to be a low point of both stupidity and repulsiveness, even for you.

hellkell
hellkell
9 years ago

Yes, NWO, that’s exactly what feminists want. JESUS TITTYFUCKING CHRIST, do you even read what the fuck you type out?

I don’t know who’s worse, this asshole priest or NWO.

clairedammit
clairedammit
9 years ago

A lot of the cases, the youngster — 14, 16, 18 — is the seducer.

Oh for fuck’s sake, an 18-year-old having sex with his (or her) priest is unethical as hell, but it’s not a crime. Talk about straw-victims…

Pam
Pam
9 years ago

Since ebophelia and pedastry are the exclusive domain of gays

I guess you ought to be believed since you are obviously quite an authority on that subject, evidenced by your lack of even knowing what the actual words are that you are pronouncing as the exclusive domain of gays.

Anathema
Anathema
9 years ago

All the more reason to keep gays away from young boys.

Oh, goodie, the same old homosexuality-and-pedophilia-are-totally-the-exact-same-thing nonsense again. Because some people just can’t be bothered investing in a dictionary, I guess. And because googling an online dictionary would just be to hard.

You’re off to a great start today, Owly. Nice to see that you still don’t understand the concept of consent.

Since ebophelia and pedastry are the exclusive domain of gays there is only one group to blame.

Well, except for the fact that they’re not.

Underage prostitution runs 50/50 boys and girls.

I have no idea whether or not this number is accurate. (In all fairness, I’d be willing to bet that it’s completely and totally wrong, based on your track record with providing accurate statistics alone.) But even if it is accurate, so what?

Many pedophiles will rape/molest whatever child they can get access to, regardless of gender. The fact that these children are often boys doesn’t prove anything.

(Should I point out to Owly that women can be pedophiles too? Or would that make his brain explode?)

Gays make up a miniscule portion of the population, 1 to 2% at the most,

Well, not really. It depends on how you count. Are our criteria based on behavior or self-identification? Are we counting only people who call themselves gay? Anyone who has ever had some sort of sexual intercourse with a member of the same sex? Anyone who has ever any sort of sexual/romantic attraction to a member of the same sex? Only people who have never felt any sort of sexual attraction or been in any sort of romantic relationship with a member of the opposite sex?

Human sexuality is complicated. You can’t simply divide people cleanly into the categories of gay and straight. It’s really more like a sliding scale, where you have some people who are completely heterosexual and some people who are completely homosexual, and a lot of people who fall at various points in-between. The number of gay people you find in a population depends on how you define the term.

which means gays are 5,000% to 10,000% as likely to engage in this vile practice.

D’awww. Slavey’s learned that there are percentages out there other than 1%, 99%, and 100%. Unfortunately, he still doesn’t know exactly what those percentages are. And he still doesn’t know how percentages work at all.

Slavey, you are as good at math as Steele is at writing.

Polliwog
Polliwog
9 years ago

In fairness, Father Groeschel is the founder of the Office for Spiritual Development. I don’t know if he’s also its director, but if so, it may be because there’s no one to demote him but himself. It appears from a cursory Google search that most of his roles in Catholic organizations do not involve any actual responsibility at this point, although I could be wrong about that. Still, he was almost certainly being interviewed not because he’s an actively important figure in the Church but because he had (has?) a TV show and has published a bunch of books, and thus is still pretty well-known.

That doesn’t mean anything he said isn’t horrifying, or that it isn’t reflective of attitudes that are all too common among Catholic leadership, but just that I’m not sure the “if he’s really so cognitively impaired, why is he still important in the Church” argument works when the guy in question doesn’t appear to be important in the Church these days so much as “still famous from when he was moderately influential, back before he had a stroke and such.” Groeschel is an asshole and deserves to be pilloried for it, but I’m not sure he’s the best stick with which to beat the Catholic Church at this point. (Now, the fact that he was influential in the first place – that’s a problem.)

Cliff Pervocracy (@pervocracy)

How can NWO say that ephephbophe…pedophilia is only about gay men, when he himself has told us many times that he finds fifteen-year-olds in ordinary fifteen-year-old clothing unbearable temptresses?

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
9 years ago

You guize, I think you’re forgetting that Owly has -1,000,000% the concern for facts and science that most people have (which isn’t even very much to begin with).

BigKitty
BigKitty
9 years ago

There is not enough brain bleach in the universe to make me feel less hideously grossed out by this evil excuse for a Catholic priest. He actually makes me wish I believed in Hell, because I’d feel much better believing he would end up there.

Steele
Steele
9 years ago

Appalling. This is the kind of attitude that the Movement fights against; we have met significant resistance from feminists.

cloudiah
9 years ago

Bullshit, Steele. Citation needed.

BigKitty
BigKitty
9 years ago

Cliff and Tulgey – um, actually, Owly has complained about the seductive temptations of 8-year-olds in bathing suits. At the beach, with their moms and dads. But he is Very! Very! Concerned! about how gay men might theoretically be pedophiles.

(Or “ephebophiles'” a distinction without a difference, since it’s still about kids. Kids, who at 14 have every right to experiment sexually with other young teens, but ALSO have the right to be protected from the molestation of creepy grownup monsters like Owly.

(Owly and lots of his icky MRA buddies think “ephebophilia” is a thing, but it is NOT A THING. Too young to be able to consent to adult sex is exactly the same thing, whether the child victim is 4 or 14; the molestor’s methods might differ, but the evil doesn’t.)

Pam
Pam
9 years ago

Oh fuck right off, Steele, you are so full of shit!!

nwoslave
9 years ago

@BigKitty
“(Owly and lots of his icky MRA buddies think “ephebophilia” is a thing, but it is NOT A THING. Too young to be able to consent to adult sex is exactly the same thing, whether the child victim is 4 or 14; the molestor’s methods might differ, but the evil doesn’t.)”

And gays are 5,000% to 10,000% more likely to commit that evil. Feminists support, endorse and encourage that sickness. Good for you.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
9 years ago

Appalling. This is the kind of attitude that the Movement fights against; we have met significant resistance from feminists.

Lying again, eh, rustbucket?

blitzgal
9 years ago

Since ebophelia and pedastry are the exclusive domain of gays there is only one group to blame.

Says the guy who has discussed the sexuality of 14 year old girls several times right here on this fucking blog. Let’s also ignore that whole messy Reddit child-porn problem, too. Yup, only gays.

Steele
Steele
9 years ago

Bullshit, Steele. Citation needed.

I’m sorry? Feminist spaces such as Boobzland – as I’ve repeatedly stated – make a hobby out of laughing at men’s issues and denying misandry; this naturally has the (intended) effect of trivializing male victims. And since most of the victims of pedophile priests have been male – for a variety of reasons – this issue has been gendered male as a whole.

Yes in point of fact, Boobzland is a little fish in a big pond; nonetheless, more influential voices – such as the second-wave feminists who control the mainstream American media – echo your vile sentiments, sending shock waves through the mainstream culture.

blitzgal
9 years ago

Also, FINALLY! It only took a full day for Etna to show up on my avatar.

blitzgal
9 years ago

Steele, get a dictionary and look up the word “citation.”

drst
drst
9 years ago

cloudiah – instead of vile, I’d go with “abhorrent” at the moment. Ugh.

cloudiah
9 years ago

Steele, thanks for confirming your original post was total bullshit.

hellkell
hellkell
9 years ago

Steele, excuse me? What has the Bowel Movement been fighting against?

cloudiah
9 years ago

BTW, Steele, did you see that you, personally, are the subject of concentrated mockery right here?

BigKitty
BigKitty
9 years ago

OT, but I haven’t been around for a while, and I note that everybody has a new kitty avatar! Could somebody please show me how to get one of my own? thanks!

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
9 years ago

What has the Bowel Movement been fighting against?

Constipation, duh. 😀

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
9 years ago

BigKitty: Instructions are here http://manboobz.forummotion.com/t1086-kitty-avatar

hellkell
hellkell
9 years ago

Shade, then that’s a losing battle. Exhibit A: everything Steele writes.

cloudiah
9 years ago

Shade, you ninja’d me, you jester’s fool! 🙂

And drst, yeah, abhorrent is probably the right word. Seriously, I have been watching kitten videos non-stop since reading the original post.

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
9 years ago

cloudiah: I think it was by just like a millisecond too. 😛 *Evil kitty cackle*

anathema2
anathema2
9 years ago

@ Steele,

Um, no. We don’t trivialize men’s issues here. We trivialize the misogyny that the MRM paints as men’s issues. I think the regulars here would agree that the patriarchy hurts men who don’t conform to its ideals. For the most part, we care about the actual problems men face, not the misogyny the MRM dresses up in the language of addressing men’s problems.

Remember when Ruby said that prison rape was funny? I do. I also remember that just about everyone else here condemned her comments.

Ozy comments here fairly regularly. Don’t they help run No, Seriously, What About Teh Menz? I suppose that they help run a blog specifically dealing with the issues men face simply because they like laughing at men’s issues?

anathema2
anathema2
9 years ago

Yes in point of fact, Boobzland is a little fish in a big pond; nonetheless, more influential voices – such as the second-wave feminists who control the mainstream American media – echo your vile sentiments, sending shock waves through the mainstream culture.

The media is controlled by second-wave feminists?

Such as . . .?

Tell me, who are these second-wave feminists who control the mainstream American media? I’d really like to know.

And, no, linking to one of your Antimanboobz posts where you rail against this cabal of second-wave feminists controlling the American mainstream media doesn’t help. You absolutely failed to provide examples, citations, or evidence of any sort there as well.

Bostonian
9 years ago

Oh great, the child rape advocate NWO is here, with his buddy Steele/Varpole/Butthorn who cuddles up to child rape advocates.

The Movement is totally all about social justice, if by social justice you mean raping kids.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
9 years ago

So, hey, let’s say that I killed someone in a fit of rage, but it wasn’t a planned murder. It’s not like I set out to commit a crime. So I shouldn’t go to jail, right?

Except people don’t pull this weasely, disingenuous shit with any crime except rape.

And yeah, ephebophilia and pedophilia are exclusively gay things, which internet forums like r/jailbait and r/preteens exist on Reddit.

amandajane5
amandajane5
9 years ago

Steele, honey, darling, sweetheart, idiot, one of those, if you want to make a claim, you’re going to have to back it up. If you believe:

This is the kind of attitude that the Movement fights against

Then you’re just going to have to go ahead and come up with an example of “the Movement” fighting against it.

Go ahead. ONE EXAMPLE.

Gametime
Gametime
9 years ago

Appalling. This is the kind of attitude that the Movement fights against; we have met significant resistance from feminists.

I find it enormously amusing that you refer to “the Movement” as “we,” even though as far as I can tell you’ve been ignored by every MRA you’ve ever tried to buddy up to. (Hey, remember that time you were going to contact “prominent MRAs” to warn them that Tom Martin was a feminist plant? How’d that go? Did you have to send out followup emails hastily retracting your accusations after you decided you wanted to be Martin’s best friend?)

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
9 years ago

At this point Steele’s version of The Movement seems to consist of…Steele. He’s excommunicated everyone else. He is a Movement of one.

Naira
Naira
9 years ago

So…is it just me, or do Owly’s posts seem set up in such away as their astoundingly easy to knock down? Like, each sentence seems perfectly crafted to be a strong concentration of bullshit.

When I read this, aside from being shocked at the victim blaming, I had a thought: even if a 14 year old gets the idea into their head to seduce an adult, isn’t it the adult’s RESPONSIBILITY as a legal adult to do the refusing? I mean, sorry…a kid coming on to Sandusky doesn’t suddenly make his responsibility disappear. Do not pass go, do not collect $200.

I don’t believe for an instant that anyone, other than Sandusky himself, is responsible for the rape and molestation. But the “14 year old seducer” bull-puckey isn’t a defense, either. I really, REALLY hope those kids didn’t run across this. The last thing a suffering kid needs is someone merrily tromping through their misery setting up “You’re WRONG!” signs.

God help those kids, their families, and hell…their therapists too. All of ’em have a long slog ahead of them and I wish them the best of luck and a path free of victim blaming ass-hats who are only serving to destroy the work they’re trying to do.

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