"In 2015... wider society started to recognise that a climate had developed around allegations of child-sexual abuse and rape that was not conducive to fairness and impartiality .... Some observers recognised that the climate that Yewtree had created had been over the top ......There is hope on the horizon ......"
Dream on. I have been following the child abuse hysteria in Ireland for the best part of 20 years now and I have seen hope come and go, on more than one occasion. In 2003/04 there seemed to be a major change. The Gardai (police) had spent years investigating claims of child murder by the Christian Brothers in Letterfrack and Artane - including one highly publicised exhumation - and they were sick of it. There were a couple of child rape trials that ended in a fiasco for the prosecution, especially that of (former Sister of Mercy) Nora Wall AND allegations against Irish Bishops that were so crazy that even anti-clerics were embarrassed. (One writer REGRETTED that historic claims of pedophilia against Ireland's most famous churchman John Charles McQuaid, were so ludicrous that they might create sympathy for the late Archbishop). In 2003 an organisation "Let Our Voices Emerge", was founded to represent victims of false allegations of child abuse and the founder, Florence Horsman Hogan, persuaded the Christian Brothers to issue a strong statement about such allegations. Several articles appeared in Irish and UK newspapers about the victims of false claims and even the anti-clerical Irish Times wrote about a "Salem Witch-hunt".
So what happened? Well the 2003 statement was almost the last attempt by a male-dominated Irish Church to stand up for itself. In the mid 1990s the Bishops had successfully threatened to sue the UK Guardian and TV3 for libel and forced both to apologise, but 10 years later the male establishment was giving way to female leadership who more or less took over the Conference of Religious Superiors. The nuns were very conscious of the "pain" felt by people making allegations of child abuse - especially the Sisters of Mercy who took the view that even those who made transparently false claims (including child murder), must have suffered deeply to cause them to act thus. Therefore the proper Christian response was to apologise to such accusers, in order to "heal their pain".
In 2004 the nuns issued their FOURTH apology, in which they made it clear that they unhesitatingly accepted the bona fides of all their accusers. The roof then fell in. One journalist ,who had been writing about false allegations, decided that the Religious were imbeciles and represented no threat; so he reverted to his previous anti-clerical stance. (So I was told by someone who knew him). Other journalists followed suit. Also in 2004 a new Archbishop of Dublin was appointed who took the same stance as the nuns etc.
How much of this is relevant to the UK? Well maybe the rise of female leaders, the feminization of their male counterparts, the glorification of "victims" and the idea that, even their lies are the product of some real suffering at the hands of the male patriarchy??
Anyway I wouldn't be too hopeful about any major changes in 2016 - in Ireland or the UK!
I hear what your saying- these things come & go in waves. But like the ebb tide, the overall trend is receding.
At the end of the day, if the bastards are reduced to pinning accusations on the dead, so be it. You can say I molested 10,000 kids when I'm in my grave for all it will bother me. I know it hurts, but we need more of the deceased family members to come out and openly ridicule complainants' claims- that will hurt them more than anything.
I hope you are correct and possibly you are, in relation to the UK. I have seen many signs of hope appear in Ireland over the years - and be crushed not only by thuggish journalists and politicians, but also by the decadence of some Church leaders - mainly nuns but at least two bishops also.
The current position here, is that the Sisters of Mercy are well aware that their strategy of apologizing to false accusers (in order to heal their pain) has been a catastrophic failure. However they have gutted their credibility and their morale to such an extent that they are LITERALLY beyond redemption. The former male leaders of the Church - both Bishops and Religious superiors - had put up a reasonable fight. I would have preferred them to have done more, but they MIGHT have succeeded if their efforts had not been sabotaged by "liberal" nuns who thought they were transcending ideals like truth and justice, when they were actually perverting them in the name of a bogus "Christian charity". The male leaders have now run out of steam and a couple have copied the nuns in supporting false allegations against their own colleagues. The latter includes the current Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin! http://www.irishsalem.com/indi...
Therefore I am VERY cynical about the possibility of any improvement in Ireland - but perhaps the future is brighter in the UK!
"...their strategy of apologizing to false accusers (in order to heal their pain) has been a catastrophic failure"
And that's key. In the wake of Savile, some (like Stuart Hall) were persuaded to 'confess' in order to assist in the 'healing' process. It's now clear that there is absolutely zero benefit to doing this for the accused- Hall even had his 'unduly lenient' sentence increased after conviction! Once people stand and fight, the emptiness of the Emperor's wardrobe will be revealed...
On the basis of my experience in Ireland, I would suggest that one useful strategy is to constantly remind people that some very serious allegations of child abuse are OBVIOUSLY false. Remember the six months of media (and police) hysteria in 2008 about supposed bodies of murdered children at the residential home on Jersey - all sparked off by the discovery of part of a "child's skull" that turned out to be the fragment of a coconut shell! That lunacy has fallen completely out of public consciousness. If even the police had remembered it, they might not have been so keen to believe the recent allegations about Tory MPs murdering five children. As at Haut de la Garenne in Jersey, no names of missing murdered children were even mentioned in relation to the Westminster "scandal". I coined the phrases "Murder of the Undead" and "Victimless Murders" to describe similar claims in Ireland.
I would say that in Ireland, THIS specific kind of lunacy is practically finished - there have been hardly any such allegations since about 2010. The CHIEF reason is that the Gardai (police) are absolutely sick of the hysteria and the associated waste of police time but I hope that my own one-man-campaign had some influence. Is there anyone who could persuade Irish and UK security representatives to get together for a discussion on this subject? I don't think the Gardai will take the lead as it's something of a sore point for them. Are there any open-minded UK top cops who might request advise from their former colonial subjects?? We CAN assist you in your enquiries!