Catholic League president Bill Donohue says bigotry was behind the decision of two mid-Western newspapers to publish feature articles on sexual abuse by Catholic priests.
The Telegraph Herald, a Dubuque, Iowa newspaper, started on March 5 an eight-day series exposing sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Dubuque. The same day, the Chicago Sun-Times ran a long article by a local columnist about how he was abused by a priest in 1979.
“There is only one reason why these articles are being printed now—it’s in vogue to bash the Catholic Church,” said Donohue. “If bigotry isn’t in play, then it needs to be explained why the Telegraph Herald decided to run an eight-part series on the dirty laundry of the Dubuque archdiocese extending back decades but not on the dirty laundry of local school districts?”
Donohue said it is “beyond dispute” that public school systems house more sexual abusers than any other comparative group.
“Why hasn’t the Dubuque community been treated to a litany of sordid stories on how school superintendents pass molesting teachers from one school district to another?” Donohue asked.
“To be sure, we expect more from priests than teachers. But the disproportionate coverage given to priests cannot be fairly justified,” he said.