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Sinead OConnor Investigate the Pope

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Since ripping up a photograph of Pope John Paul II on Saturday Night Live in 1992, Irish singer-songwriter Sinead O'Connor has made her issues with the Catholic Church known.

Now, in a new interview with the Los Angeles Times, the singer talks about Pope Benedict XVI's "pastoral letter" apologizing to the people of Ireland for the church's past failures, saying "there should be a full criminal investigation of the pope." The pope's letter is in response to the rising number of allegations of sexual abuse of children by priests across Europe.

"It's a study in the fine art of lying and actually betraying your own people," O'Connor says of the apology. "He starts by saying that he's writing with great concern for the people of Ireland. If he was that concerned, why has it taken him 23 years to write a letter, and why did he or the last pope never get on an airplane and come to meet the victims in any of these countries and apologize?"

O'Connor came out as a lesbian in a 2000 interview with Curve magazine but five years later told Entertainment Weekly she is "three-quarters heterosexual, a quarter gay. I lean a bit more towards the hairy blokes."

Though O'Connor says she still considers herself to be a Catholic, she is extremely critical of the church's views on women's issues, including abortion rights, and gay issues.

Read the full interview here.

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