Opinion | Opinie 27/03/2010

OK so yes, I ran out of both time and internet this weekend, so I didn’t post any opinions. But absence of evidence is not evidence of absence; or, without garbled metaphors, just because I didn’t post any opinions doesn’t mean I din’t ‘ave’em. Contrariwise – I had (and have) lots of them.

I’ll try to catch up today or the next few days. I’ll also try to ‘date’ them to the day when I first had them (if that makes sense), that seems appropriate.

First up, a brief one about a popular them lately: the catholic church.

Ze dronken hun glas…

It is my firm belief that, despite the current systematic child rape scandal, actually the church will suffer no negative effects from it. This is partly a gut-feeling and partly it is based on the simple reasoning (and scientific fact, but I can’t be arsed to find the reference because no-one would care to read it anyway – study done on the issue of WMD in Iraq, try Googling it) that believers in any weird thing, faced with facts that disprove their belief, instead of ditching their illusion actually strengthen it.

…deden hun plas…

So, in this case, catholics will not en masse reach the conclusion that the catholic church is a hypocritical pile of poo, from which you best be as far removed as you can, and leave the church in their droves. Instead, catholics will simply use a combination of the ‘No True Scotsman’ logical fallacy – that ‘No True Christian would have done such a horrible thing’ – and the above observation – ‘my church is good, despite the facts pointing out otherwise, simply because I really really want my church to be good’. Another factor here is that most catholics anyway have an attitude in which they don’t really listen to what ‘the hierarchy’ says anyway (that somehow never stops them from wondering about the validity of their other beliefs and behaviours though, which yet have been handed down at some point by the same hierarchy, but that’s another matter, I digress).

…en alles bleef zoals het was

That combines with the fact that the church is an entity entirely onto its own, both morally and jurisdictionally (sorry, can’t think of a more elegant word).

The latter makes sure that no single priest or other church figure is ever going to face ‘real world’ punishment for crimes committed; in effect implying that they are innocent by the letter of the law – and by extension, in reality for many people too.

The former relates to the fact that the catholic church has the simple punitive system in which you are punished if someone higher than yourself says that you are punished. The Pope issues a statement saying that all involved in this scandal are bad – that’s it, they’ve been punished, job done, can we all now move on please, and stop whingeing about this minor detail and focus on all the good deeds the church does, like promoting safe sex in Africa. Oh wait.

No, I can safely predict that nothing much will happen to the catholic church.

Obviously you are wondering what the Dutch headings mean; it roughly translates (losing the rhyme) as ‘they drank their glasses, did their pees, and everything stayed the same’, a cynical take on people in charge dealing with problems by ignoring them, keep doing what they do (i.e. nothing much), and the problem will simply disappear because people lose interest in pursuing it.


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