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NYC Officials Fear Of Archbishop Dolan Impedes Justice For Church Abuse Victims



In August, 2011, Father James (aka Jaime Duenas) of Nativity of Our Blessed Lady Catholic Church in the New York City borough of The Bronx, was arrested on allegations that he had repeatedly molested a 16-old girl working in the rectory.

Prosecutors say Duenas told them the girl was “wearing short skirts” and that she didn’t mind “the massage.”

Wouldn’t you think that given the Catholic Church’s notorious history with child sex abuse, orders would have come down from on high that in no circumstance whatsoever was any employee of the Church to blame a victim, or even an alleged victim?

Yet prosecutors say Duenas told them that the alleged victim “liked it” and that she was wearing “short skirts.”

A victim advocacy group attempted to educate the community about the realities of how sexual abusers operate. But many in the community circled wagons in defense of their priest, with an implied negative judgement about the complaining witness in the case, the 16-year-old girl.

Archbishop Dolan went on the attack. On his blog, he published “Gratitude to the Catholic League” — a Catholic League press release impugning the integrity of the 16-year-old girl.

READ: Archbishop Dolan Bashes Church Rape Victims

The complaining witness alleges that the sexual abuse occurred over a three day span. Dolan’s blog mocks her as a liar, says that she “voluntarily” returned to work on days after she claims Duenas molested her, and states furthermore that Duenas has never previously had an allegation made against him.

Firstly, if Dolan wants to convince the public that he is serious about protecting the well-being of young people in the Church, he will not disingenuously publish that an accused priest has had no prior allegations made against him. It is well-known that abusers inculcate fear in their victims and that victims generally are 1) extremely fearful of coming forward and 2) full of ugly uncomfortable emotions such as shame shortly after the abuse.

Secondly, for Dolan to publish to his blog insinuations that the 16-year-old complaining witness is lying — (this blog written by a Catholic Church kingpin and read by many in the Catholic community, including some that were circling the wagons to protect Duenas and to scorn the girl) — is a form of attempted witness intimidation. Dolan should have allowed the criminal justice process to function — without insinuating that the 16-year-old witness is lying.

Dolan’s attempted witness intimidation went further. The statements from the Catholic League’s Bill Donahue impugned the integrity of SNAP (Survivors Network of People Abused by Priests) calling it a “phony victims’ group.” If SNAP is a “phony victims’ group” as Dolan published, then why was SNAP involved when the Catholic Church paid a $7 million settlement to Church sex abuse victims in Delaware? And why was SNAP involved when the Archdiocese of Los Angeles reached a $600 million settlement with Church sex abuse victims?

If these were “phony” victims, why did the Catholic Church pay them a $600 million settlement?

Dolan actively communicated anti-SNAP propaganda at a time that SNAP was involved in trying to secure — for young people’s safety — the places where Duenas had been working. One of SNAP’s criticisms of Dolan is that he did not inform the communities of Duenas’s arrest; that he left them to learn of it through the media. A SNAP press-release said, “We call on Dolan to stop acting passively and secretly, and start acting compassionately and aggressively. We urge him to personally visit every parish where Duenas worked, begging anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered child sex crimes to contact police and prosecutors.”

Instead of doing that, Dolan published an anti-SNAP smear calling it a “phony victims’ group.” There is an appearance that the material Dolan published calling SNAP “a phony victims’ group” while also insinuating that the girl is lying was thusly contrived to create a reader take-away that the girl is — however loosely– to be associated with a “phony victims group” and therefore is herself a “phony victim.”

Shame on Archbishop Dolan for publishing such vile and despicable dreck. Double shame on him for publishing it under the title “Gratitude to the Catholic League” beside a photo of his bloated smiling face as though there were nothing conniving and hideous about the press release.

To sum up what is wrong with Dolan’s blog post; 1) The whole thing is calculated to put the screws to the 16-year-old alleged victim and to show other eventual victims that the screws will be put to them in this way too, should they ever dare to come forward; 2) Dolan published that Duenas never before had child sex abuse allegations made against him, as if that proved that Duenas could not possibly be guilty of child sex abuse;  3) Dolan published a defamatory smear against SNAP, which at that time was providing advocacy services in the community. Dolan’s published anti-SNAP smear indirectly encouraged members of Duenas’s parish to circle their denial wagons more tightly. To see how low the Catholic Church stoops in smearing SNAP, look at this Catholic League anti-SNAP screed with a cartoon image of a diapered baby crying.  The Catholic League intended to mock the advocates by depicting them as a crying baby, but I dare say that is not the imagery to use if you do not want people associating your Church with child sex abuse.

Any decent human being would acknowledge that it was monstrously indecent for Dolan to publish the insinuations that the 16-year-old girl was lying.

Because Dolan engaged in this attempted witness intimidation, it would be urgently important for New York City government officials to speak up and to denounce Dolan’s blog post and to tell him that witness smearing of a 16-year-old who is alleging sex abuse is completely unacceptable, that society just will not stand for it.  The criminal justice process should be allowed to run its course without the Archbishop aggressing the witness on his blog.

Yet, apparently, no New York City government official has the guts to denounce Dolan for the smears he published against the alleged victim and SNAP. I contacted New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn in an e-mail copied to most Council members; Quinn did not reply. I called and e-mailed her press contact Jamie McShane and explained that I wanted comment from Quinn about Dolan’s blog post. I said that I did not expect the comment immediately but that I wanted to know by the end of the day whether I could expect comment from Quinn at all.  He said OK, but did not follow up. I also called and wrote my NYC Council Member Gail Brewer; no response. I called and e-mailed the press contact for New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio; (the post of NYC Public Advocate is comparable to a Deputy Mayor). The press contact took my questions but provided no follow-up.

Really, New York City Council — really? If this 16-year-old girl were your daughter, you would be totally cool with the smears Dolan published against her?

Remember — the point in this is not whether Duenas is guilty, but that Dolan’s blog post is unconscionable no matter the final disposition of the case. Besides its direct smears against the girl and the victims’ advocates with a demonstrated track record of working for community safety, it conveys improper messages to eventual additional abusers, victims and to the Catholic community in Duenas’s parish as a whole.

Meanwhile, what is in the criminal Complaint against Duenas? Two counts of forcible touching (a DNA Qualified Offense), Endangering the Welfare of a Child (a DNA Qualified Offense), Two counts of Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree (a DNA Qualified Offense) and Three counts of Harassment in the Second Degree.

Duenas is alleged to have repeatedly groped the girl’s buttocks without her permission while she was on the job in the rectory, to have made lewd suggestions to her, to have put her hands under her shirt, unclipped her bra and told her “Don’t tell your parents.”   He also is alleged to have pulled her by her arm into his lap and molested her.

With Dolan’s behavior in this matter so unambiguously wrong, wrong, wrong, why will nobody in NYC government say a peep about it?  Why is the New York City Council so afraid of Dolan that it will not tell him he is wrong when on his blog he trashes a 16-year-old female Church employee and a Church child rape victims’ advocacy group? In a more recent smear against SNAP, the Catholic League’s Bill Donahue said “Catholics are talking about the announcement that Archbishop Timothy Dolan and Archbishop Edwin O’Brien will become Cardinal Dolan and Cardinal O’Brien next month—they’re not interested in wallowing in negativity.”

Evidently, New York City government officials have no scruples or pangs of conscience about making it so easy for Archbishop Dolan not to “wallow in negativity.” Dolan has his techniques down for trashing alleged Church child sex abuse victims in his blog, and he can rest assured that no NYC government official will criticize him for that appalling misdeed that endangers young people in the city. If any NYC officials want to give me an interview, proving me wrong in that, they know where to find me.

New York City– based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT– interest by– line has appeared on Advocate .com, PoliticusUSA .com, The New York Blade, Queerty .com, Girlfriends and in numerous additional venues. Among his other interests are the arts, boating and yachting, wine and food, travel, poker and dogs. His “Mr. David Cooper’s Happy Suicide” is about a New York City advertising executive assigned to a condom account.

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Gaetz Needs Just Five Republicans to Oust McCarthy – He Already Has Three



After weeks of “chaos” within the House Republican conference that led to a down-to-the-wire near-shutdown of the federal government, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) has spent the past two days vowing to oust Speaker Kevin McCarthy for reaching across the aisle to pass legislation keeping the government running.

Gaetz’s own future is in question with some of his Republican colleagues vowing to expel him should an unfavorable report be released by the House Ethics Committee on his possible sexual misconduct and illicit behaviors including possible drug use and possible public corruption.

“Several Republicans,” CNN’s Manu Raju reports, are “expected to back motion to eject McCarthy,” who “will very likely” need Democrats to keep his Speakership.

READ MORE: ‘Sodom and Gomorrah’: ND Republican Unleashes Anti-LGBTQ Christian Nationalist Rant Calling for ‘Christ Is King’ Laws

“House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries has not said if his caucus would join right-wing Republicans to help topple McCarthy or if Democrats might support him in exchange for political or legislative favors,” Reuters reported late Monday afternoon. “Democrats, in theory, could demand that McCarthy honor his spending deal with Biden, drop the impeachment inquiry, or hold votes on gun and immigration legislation.”

But Gaetz already has three publicly declared votes to oust Speaker McCarthy. In addition to himself, far right Republican Rep. Eli Crane of Arizona responded “Let’s roll” Sunday afternoon to Gaetz’s announcement he would file a “motion to vacate” against McCarthy.

And U.S. Rep. Bob Good of Virginia has also declared he would “never” vote to let McCarthy keep the Speaker’s gavel.

Other far right Republicans, including U.S. Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Byron Donalds, and Chip Roy, have indicated they would not support ousting McCarthy, at least not right now.

But Gaetz may have time on his side.

READ MORE: ‘Part of the Authoritarian Playbook’: Trump’s Courthouse Rant Slammed by Fascism Scholars

While he on Monday acknowledged he probably doesn’t have the votes yet, the math could line up differently by the end of the week.

The Senate will not be in session after Wednesday, with many Senators expected to travel to California for the funeral of U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein.

“This could create some level of havoc on House side — dozens of [House] members will also want to fly out to SF,” noted Washington Post congressional reporter Paul Kane. “Maybe even McCarthy, but mostly House Dems. If the motion to vacate vote is Wednesday or Thursday, attendance could be haphazard.”


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‘Sodom and Gomorrah’: ND Republican Unleashes Anti-LGBTQ Christian Nationalist Rant Calling for ‘Christ Is King’ Laws



North Dakota state Representative Brandon Prichard, a Republican who co-sponsored legislation that was passed in to law that bans all gender confirming surgeries and medication for minors in his state, went on an anti-LGBTQ Christian nationalist tirade including a call for state ordinances to declare “Jesus Christ is King.”

“Every conservative state should put into code that Jesus Christ is King and dedicate their state to Him. Force RINOs to say no to Jesus and then brutalize them in elections. We need a government of Christians, not fakers,” wrote Rep. Pritchard Sunday evening.

Pushback came swiftly, from politicos including former Republican and former U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, who responded saying, “Not in this country. Never. Our Constitution won’t allow it. And that’s a damn good thing. Shame on you.”

Rep. Pritchard’s remarks in recent days have taken on a similarly strong Christian nationalist theme.

READ MORE: ‘Part of the Authoritarian Playbook’: Trump’s Courthouse Rant Slammed by Fascism Scholars

“Here is a simple test to determine if you are conservative: Should the church of Satan or satanic temple be allowed the freedom to worship in the same way as Christians? If you answer yes, you need to rethink your claimed political identity because you are not conservative,” he wrote Friday.

Later that same day he added, “Real conservatives will never put the constitution above natural law. The constitution is only useful insofar as it forces our government to limit power and pursue objective truth. It is a powerful means to an end, nothing more, nothing less.”

Over the weekend Pritchard issued a call to ban pornography, saying it “serves no positive benefit in society, destroys men, and treats women as objects.”

A social media account that appears to be for the adult site Just for Fans mocked him, writing on social media, “If you want to cancel an account, please contact our customer service department.”

READ MORE: McCarthy ‘Could Be a Former Speaker by the End of This Week’: Report

Also over the weekend Pritchard called for any Republican who thinks children should be allowed to attend drag shows be “censured or expelled from the party.”

He then wrote he was “extremely disappointed” with North Dakota State University “over their decision to have two homecoming kings and NO homecoming queen. People will be mad when I introduce a bill next session to say that state-funded schools cannot pick homecoming royalty of the same sex, but I didn’t start the fight.”

Pritchard also declared, “All schools should have LGBTQ history taught and lesson one should be Sodom and Gomorrah.”

Monday morning the lawmaker claimed, “All I want is to buy some land, raise a family, and mind my own business. Everything changes when you realize the left is militantly against this existence and will do everything to destroy our families and religion. We must take power or risk being controlled, it’s simple.”

The North Dakota state constitution requires lawmakers to take an oath that reads: “‘I do solemnly swear (or affirm as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of North Dakota; and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of _________ according to the best of my ability, so help me God’ (if an oath), (under pains and penalties of perjury) if an affirmation, and any other oath, declaration, or test may not be required as a qualification for any office or public trust.”



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‘Part of the Authoritarian Playbook’: Trump’s Courthouse Rant Slammed by Fascism Scholars



Inside New York’s State Supreme Court in Manhattan, Donald Trump unleashed his anger on the first day of Attorney General Letitia James’ $250 million civil fraud lawsuit that has already led to the judge ordering the ex-president’s business licenses be revoked and his businesses dissolved.

One of Trump’s rants was highly-criticized by a fascism expert who compared it to language used by authoritarian strongmen including “Mussolini, Hitler, Berlusconi, Erdogan.”

Trump told reporters Monday the New York fraud case “is a continuation of the single greatest witch hunt of all time.” He described Justice Arthur Engoron as a “rogue judge” and Attorney General James as a “racist attorney general” and a “horror show,” and the case against him “a scam” and “a sham.”

READ MORE: McCarthy ‘Could Be a Former Speaker by the End of This Week’: Report

Ruth Ben-Ghiat, a New York University professor of history and Italian studies, responded to Trump’s remarks, saying “the witch hunt/victimhood rhetoric is part of the authoritarian playbook and was/is used by the following corrupt leaders: Mussolini, Hitler, Berlusconi, Erdogan. If extended to the whole country being victimized, add Putin, Xi, and more.”

Fascism expert Federico Finchelstein, a historian and history department chair at New York’s New School for Social Research, responded to Trump’s comments: “Fascist lies are about the projection onto others of what fascists are/do. Trump today as usual displayed his wannabe fascist mindset.”

Sherrilyn Ifill, the former President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) exclaimed, “So he’s in the courthouse calling the judge ‘rogue’ and calling the prosecutor ‘racist.’ Not on the steps outside the courthouse (bad enough) but inside the very courthouse.”

READ MORE: ‘These Are Our National Secrets’: Democrat Slams GOP for Ignoring Trump Classified Documents Found ‘In the S——’

Trump also told reporters at the courthouse Monday that he’s been indicted because he’s running for president. Multiple reports have revealed he announced his White House run in an effort to avoid prosecution.

Watch the videos above or at this link.

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