Cracks are appearing in the child-sex-abuse dike. The bricks and mortar of silence and prevarication and righteousness seem to be falling apart after years and years and fucking years of standing proud and tall and virtuous and unchallenged.
In Pennsylvania, former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, 68, was found guilty yesterday of 45 counts of sexually abusing children in his caring hands.
Also in Pennsylvania, Monsignor William Lynn, 61, was convicted yesterday of child endangerment -- a single count that makes him the first Roman Catholic church official to be held legally responsible for a wide-ranging blind eye exhibited by the Vatican.
The actions of both men occurred in the past -- a past that those who wished to forgive and forget were counting on as a means of sidestepping responsibility. The court decisions made it clear that there is culpability for what has been done.
These two instances are small fissures in the fortresses of what has been portrayed as a trustworthy and soaring goodness. Like the infamies of the banks and brokerage houses that pushed the world into a renewed Depression, it remains to be seen if the very foundations of such infamies -- the philosophies that inspired them -- will receive any correction.
I have my doubts. But at the moment, it is enough that the infamies of the past have arrived in a courtroom where evidence is adduced and judgment rendered ... step by step, case by case, infamy by infamy.
Pretending that a good thing has no vile potential is worse than reprehensible -- it's stupid.
Silence and virtue are no longer enough.
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