Britain's top Catholic cardinal stepped down today after allegations of inappropriate behavior with priests, dating back to the 1980s, became public. Keith O'Brien is an outspoken conservative in the church, describing homosexuals as "captives of sexual aberration" and same-sex marriage as "shaming" the United Kingdom. Read the rest
Taylor Berman at Gawker reports that two of the top candidates to replace retiring Pope Benedict have predictably well-informed opinions about why Catholic priests rape so many children. Read the rest
"Female students at a Catholic high school in northern New Jersey have taken a “no-cursing” pledge at the request of school administrators, though some question why no such demand was made of male students." [NBC - Thanks, Heather! Read the rest
After years of legal battles, The Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles has grudgingly released files on priests accused of sexually abusing children. An announcement from the church about the document dump is here (PDF). Read the rest
On Monday, I published a letter from my husband, Christopher Baker, to the Boy Scouts of America. In that letter, Baker returned his hard-earned Eagle Scout award and explained that he no longer wanted to be associated with an organization that discriminated against gay teenagers and GBLT parents. Read the rest
Music for Marriage Equality is working with Washington musicians to approve R-74, a referendum that will put same-sex marriage to the popular vote on Washington's state ballot in November. Read the rest
In the New York Times, Stephen Castle reports on a case in the Netherlands dating back to the 1950s: Roman Catholic Church officials are accused of surgically castrating as many as ten young men. Read the rest
David Friend, CEO of the company Carbonite (which makes backup software), explains why his company won't be reinstating its advertising on the Rush Limbaugh show. Carbonite was one of the advertisers that pulled its Limbaugh dollars after the radio host described a law student a "slut" and a "prostitute" for testifying on the cost of contraception for students whose Catholic university wouldn't extend insurance coverage to reproductive control. Read the rest
Soft Skull Press has kindly given Boing Boing an exclusive excerpt of Mike Edison's history of Playboy, Penthouse, Screw, and Hustler magazines, called Dirty! Read the rest
Officials of the Catholic church in Ireland object to a new law that mandates the reporting of child abuse. From the BBC:
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The Irish Children's Minister Frances Fitzgerald said that priests who are given admissions of child abuse during the sacrament of confession will not be exempt from new rules on mandatory reporting.
(Lady Gaga performs during a gay pride concert in downtown Rome.
Stefano Rellandini / Reuters)
The gay icon Lady Gaga was there wearing her green wig, together with up to one million people marching chanting singing in a carnival gay pride march. Read the rest
Silvio Berlusconi will be the first head of a G-7 state to be arraigned in court on charges of paid sex with a minor. Read the rest
Photo (click for large) by Francesca Ottobelli: anti-Berlusconi protesters in Italy today.
"If Not Now, When?" was a national demonstration of Italian women, against Berlusconi and, to put it bluntly, his porno-democracy. Read the rest
[Image, via Wikipedia: The Flammarion engraving (1888) depicts a traveller who arrives at the edge of a flat Earth and sticks his head through the firmament.]
A scientific experiment avoids confusion by holding as much as possible constant, while systematically varying some factor of interest. Read the rest
"A 1997 letter from the Vatican warned Ireland's Catholic bishops not to report all suspected child-abuse cases to police -- a disclosure that victims' groups described as 'the smoking gun' needed to show that the church enforced a worldwide culture of covering up crimes by pedophile priests." (AP) Read the rest
"According to Eduardo Porter of The New York Times editorial board, prices are more interesting than most of us realize. And the prices that never appear on a price tag are the most fascinating of all. Read the rest