The Courier-Post, a New Jersey daily newspaper, announced on May 13 that it is conducting a student-essay contest on the sexual-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church.  “The alleged abuse of minors by priests in the Catholic Church is the subject of May’s Student Voices essay and editorial cartoon contest.  Entries must answer the question, ‘What should students do to protect themselves from sexual abuse?’”  The essay must not exceed 400 words and the cartoons must be original.

Catholic League president William Donohue had a few words to say about the contest today:

“I have repeatedly been asked by reporters what grade I would give the media for its coverage of the sexual-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church.  For hard-news reporting, my answer is an ‘A.’ But I would give the Courier-Post an ‘F.’  Not for its reporting, but for its (lack of ) journalistic ethics.  Here are a few facts to ponder:

  • the vast majority of child-sexual abuse is committed by family members
  • the rate of pedophilia among priests is roughly the same among the clergy of other religions—between 2 and 5 percent
  • the rate of pedophilia in the adult general population is roughly 8 percent
  • 15 percent of pupils are sexually abused by a teacher or staff member between kindergarten and high-school graduation
  • in only one-percent of the cases where students have been sexually assaulted by teachers did school officials attempt to revoke the offender’s license

“But this is besides the point.  Crime data show that black-on-white crime is several times higher than white-on-black crime.  Now it would be inconceivable for any newspaper to launch a student-essay contest asking white kids what they can do to protect themselves from being mugged by black kids.  That’s because most papers abide by the kind of ethical standards that are noticeably absent at the Courier-Post.”

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