Bleep! Bleep! Irony alert!
December 6, 2007
Well, this seems a little strange:
THE New York Catholic Archdiocese is using comic and colouring books to warn children about sex predators, drawing criticism that the books fail to alert kids that priests may pose a threat.
Do you think they see the irony in that?
The 28-page comic book Archangel, published in September, tells the story of a teenager who relies on St Michael the Archangel to report the sexual abuse of two female students at his high school by the father of one of their friends.
Relies on an Angel. Right. So it’s full of practical advise then.
Carmen Durso, a lawyer who represents some of those victims, said the books took a moralising tone that might have the opposite effect of persuading children to report abuse.”They’re kidding themselves if they think they’re going to create with these things a situation where kids are going to talk to someone,” Mr Durso said.
And that’s because being a religious institution does not automatically make you an expert in child psychology or trauma.
The books also failed to point out that sex offenders were likely to be people in trusted positions, including religious leaders, said David Clohessy, who added he was sexually abused by a parish priest as a child.
“It’s appropriate for an audience of Catholic kids to be told that even Catholic priests and seminarians and bishops and nuns can do these things,” he said.
“Usually adults who hurt kids aren’t strangers, but are grown-ups who you like and your parents trust and other adults trust.”
Absolutely. It’s certainly a better then nothing, but perhaps the money would be better spent on a program designed by, I don’t know, experts in the field?