Inklings of child abuse have been evident for decades but these suspicions were incidental and made no more than ripples in a pond until 1983 when molestation charges were made against Father Gilbert Gauthe (Gavrielides & Coker, 2005; Wills, 2000; Berry, 1992). The case…
question in most people’s minds is how such inexplicable and copious numbers of abuse could go unnoticed, unreported, unacknowledged and with no accountability for so long. The question posed within this essay however, is why? Why has there been such wide spread and proliferate sexual abuse of children within the Roman Catholic Church.
Gauthe, who was a priest based in Louisiana was shifted from parish to parish by church elders and authorities once they became aware of his abusive activities. In an attempt to maintain equilibrium within the Church and keep control of the situation themselves the Church gave Gauthe opportunity to continue his sexual abuse against minors. Due to the media and public outcry however, he was brought to trial and removed from his position in 1983; in 1985 he was sentenced to jail for twenty years but was released after ten; whereupon he was later arrested again for further accounts of molesting young boys (Gavrielides & Coker, 2005; Werth, 2003; Dale & Alpert, 2007). The Gauthe case however proved to be the first wave in a tumultuous ocean of abuse, molestation and cover-up in the Catholic Church.
In 2002 the Boston Globe (January 6) declared that the “Church Allowed Abuse by Priests for Years” (Carroll, 2002; Isely, Isely, Freiburger & McMackin, 2008). The story revealed how Law, the archbishop of Boston and his forerunners had turned a blind eye to sexual abuse and had permitted their priests to abuse children without retribution (Carroll, 2002), and that priests like Father Geoghan, who had purportedly raped or molested 130 children had been protected by the Church (Carroll, 2002). Such revelations instigated a plethora of victims coming forward to report abuse, and the media using words such as ‘crisis’ and ‘scandal’ in relation to the Church (Plante, 2004), incited public outcry and demand for answers and retribution. The outcome was the realization that nobody was in reality, aware of the enormity of the crisis, ...
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In general, many agencies and governments have voiced their concerns regarding child abuse and have suggested drastic measures. However, most people do not realize the severity of child abuse and even some do not realize that they are actually abusing children.
Child abuse covers all physical, emotional, and sexual actions of parents, caregivers, relatives, or strangers against children and minor individuals (Sachs-Ericson et al. 106). In addition, a neglect or failure to provide for the youngsters’ physical and emotional needs, such as food, affection, and medical care, is also a form of child abuse.
Statistical figures have exhibited alarming figures as far as child abuse is concerned in Greenville South Carolina; 1019 cases of child abuse were reported in the year 2005 which speaks volumes of the negative effects it might have inflicted on the community. (Larry, 64) Child abuse has proved to have very long term
In the year 1996, it was reported that approximately 4.3 percent of children younger than 18 years of age were victims of child maltreatment in the United States (McDonald, 2007). The unofficial numbers are much higher and experts have predicted that 2- 10 million cases of child abuse can occur every year (Lawson, 2009).
Increasing rate of child abuse cases creates severe problems among the authorities as well as the public and it has become a highly controversial issue in recent years. In the United States, studies prove that children continue to suffer from the hidden epidemic of growing abuse and negligence.
The collected data from these groups were able to establish the steady rise in the number of abuse cases in families, as well as the socio-demographic characteristics of the families where abuse is most-likely to happen.
Also, while trying to cope with the thoughts of the abuse, their conditioning in the environment and for the environment becomes maladaptive and leads to acquisition of many health and psychological problems. They become
lling their fundamental needs and desires, and escape from providing them with food, shelter and emotional support are also various forms of child abuse. Somehow, physical torture, mental tormenting and sexual attacks on them view as the worst forms of child abuse, because of
While child abuse has received much attention in the current world These non-genuine cases causes distraction from the real cases which needs much attention. The misreported cases also milk away resource and time that could have been used more meaningfully to investigate and solve the genuine abuse.
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