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Dowd The Pope Is Morally Compromised

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New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, who is Catholic, wrote Sunday that Pope Benedict XVI is morally compromised as a result of the child sex abuse scandal, which she said ultimately stems from the Church leadership's low regard for women.

Dowd begins her column with a comparison between herself and Saudi Arabian women who live under the repressive codes of Islam.

"I, too, belonged to an inbred and wealthy men's club cloistered behind walls and disdaining modernity," writes Dowd.

Dowd says that when religious leaders lack respect for women, they can easily disregard the traditional women's role of caring for children.

"Negating women is at the heart of the church's hideous -- and criminal -- indifference to the welfare of boys and girls in its priests' care," she says.

"No wonder that, having closed themselves off from women and everything maternal, they treated children as collateral damage, a necessary sacrifice to save face for Mother Church."

"The church that through the ages taught me and other children right from wrong did not know right from wrong when it came to children. Crimes were swept under the rectory rug, and molesters were protected to molest again for the 'good of the universal church.' And that is bad, very bad -- a mortal sin.

"The church has had theological schisms. This is an emotional schism. The pope is morally compromised. Take it from a sister."

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