Religion: Having your ethical cake and eating it too.
I have just finished reading this article: A crime is a crime, even for priests.
As many of you reading this post of mine will know, I have been writing lately about the Ethics Trial going on in NSW Schools here in Australia. How do the article above and the Ethics Trial relate to each other? I’ll tell you Oh Curious Reader.
The church still struggles to accept that priests’ sins of sexual abuse are also crimes for which the church shares responsibility.
You can’t be good without God.
The Church wishes us to believe that colouring in pictures of Noah’s Ark and a few Angels in Scripture Classes is ‘Ethics’. Ok, we’ll call this ‘Religious Ethics 101′. Once you get older and stop the colouring in, you get to hear more of the Bible Passages and get told you are ‘going to hell’ if you don’t behave, believe and begrudge freedoms to those who don’t believe the same as you. We’ll call this ‘General Religious Ethics’. If you are a super learner and super believer you can move on to ‘Advanced Religious Ethics’ and become a Priest or Nun. Now, you would think that by the time you got to the ‘Advanced’ level that you would have been taught all the things you’d need to overcome the evil in the world.
If Priests have learned all that ‘religion’ can teach them in their lives to the point that religion becomes their life, you’d think they would be at the apex of the ethical tree and unable to commit child abuse. If that is not true, what value is there in ‘religious ethics’ for the lay person? If the Pope can be said to have ‘Papal Infallibility’ and yet still be so blind as to the problems going on around him, not be able to make the proper decisions, not be able to see the problems he himself is causing by being so blind, be so ignorant as to insult the victims with his apologies that aren’t even apologies, allow known abusers to be given sanctuary inside Vatican walls, accuse those who call for proper reform of petty gossiping, not call to account Bishops who blame others for their own shortcomings, then again, how can the lay person expect to gain any real insight into ethical and moral behaviour from them or their teachings? This is The Pope we are talking about here. He should be SuperEthics Man. Defender of the Faith and all that is good, able to leap across pits of evil and save those about to lose their way. He should not be able to leap about dodging justice and have the ability to bend the truth.
So, if the only real ethics is Religious Ethics, and Priests and Nuns who have been to the top of the ethics learning tree are still able to abuse children, I have to ask what good their ethics are? Are these the ‘ethics and morals’ we want our children to learn?
Religion has become too akin to the Medicine Man and his bottle of miracle water that will ‘fix all that ails ya‘.
It is time to toss aside that which is proven not to work and try the alternative offered by those who do not hide behind words like ‘Papal Infallibility’ and refuse to be held to account.