Saturday, 3 August 2013
BBC Sunday morning "Live"
I was approached yesterday by the BBC.They wanted to talk to me about going on a religious programme “live” on Sunday morning! (the mind boggles !)
The question was did I think organised religion was letting down the “faithful” ? Was it possible that the clergy were letting down their flock?
Could I Skype? Did I have headphones? could I send picture of myself in case they had to revert to a phone call?
Needless to say,once they had talked to me ,and looked at our website, they decided against my going on the programme! I am not in the least surprised!
They wanted me to tell them what I thought was positive about the church? - I couldn’t think of one thing.
They wanted to know how I felt about the “wonderful work” the church is doing in Africa, and South America, putting up schools and hospitals? - I told them we were extremely concerned and worried for the children in South America and Africa, where the church seems to be turning to harvest more prey,as they get more cornered here, in countries where there is little policing. - I dread to think what we are going to hear from those countries once the scandals start to break there.(and they will!)
They asked me why we are so concerned with “historic” cases of abuse, surely this was no longer happening?
-I told them that abuse was still rife in the catholic church, with new atrocities being unearthed almost daily, and that to us, there is no such thing as a “historic” case of abuse , they may very well be “historic” to the churches that would prefer them to go away, so they can “draw a line” under them.
But they are NOT historic to those of us who will carry the burden of abuse to our graves having carried them for decades.
They are not “historic” to our children and their children who will inherit damage from our abuses because of damage done to our DNA and passed on to them!
To dismiss to our abuses as “historic” is offensive.
A crime is a crime, and the crime of clergy child abuse casts a shadow over generations.
They asked me if I was an atheist? I told them -absolutely!
They asked if I had once been a catholic?- I told them unfortunately!
They asked when I left the church? -I told them that it had taken quite a long time to get away from the horrendous indoctrination, guilt and the fear of hell fire and damnation that I was fed from infancy, that it was a process rather than an event, I was hanging around on the periphery for a long time after my abuses, rather like a dog who has been cruelly beaten and starved, it will still wag it’s tail pathetically at it’s cruel owner when it sees him, either for a crumb, or with relief to not be being beaten, because it simply doesn’t know any other pack! I knew no other pack, until my recovery finally allowed my brain to function again and see the stark reality of the toxic and abusive regime.
They asked wether it was fair to judge a whole church because of a “few bad apples” ?
I told them that the “few” they are talking about runs into the thousands, and it was impossible to think about clergy child abuse without also looking at the toxic and dangerous distortion and abuse of power at the heart of the church environment which made it almost inevitable.
When a boy is sent to a seminary and told he is “chosen” by god, put on a pedestal and told he is “special” and above all others, when he is even told that his “hands are sacred”!!! Then abuse of power is the inevitable result!
Sexual abuse, rape, physical abuse and bullying is all about power! and the church is utterly narcissistic.
They rang and said they thought on this occasion that this was “too big a subject for this one programme” yeah right!
Now I had no desire to be on that programme , contrary to what they may think, most of us really dislike going on the television, although I have done it a fair bit, and talked quite a lot to many different groups of people about this subject, it is still hard to think that I am known for the fact that I was sexually abused! ( That is usually the focus of these programmes)
The inevitable image that people thereafter have in their head about me is hard to take, and having put that image there, it can’t be removed, the genie is out of the bottle.
But we do it because we have made a commitment to be part of the fight, and to make it more possible for others to come forward.
So we swallow our pride,forget about dignity and stand up to be counted.
If we are brave enough to do that, it is a shame the TV hasn’t got the guts to show it.
But as one of my lawyer friends just remarked
“Well the BBC have always been a waste of space, there isn’t one of them with any balls”
Amen to that!