Followers

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Geoffrey Robinson: Try the Pope in Court

A prominent Australian-British human rights lawyer and United Nations jurist has suggested that the Pope be put on trial for crimes against humanity. I think that this is a brilliant idea.

Geoffrey Robertson outlined his scheme in The Guardian and a number of Australian newspapers. Although he feels strongly that the Vatican is fraudulently representing itself as an independent country, the Pope should be brought to account for systematic abuse of human rights during his pontificate. Since 2002, he points out, heads of state are no longer immune from prosecution before the International Criminal Court. For instance, a warrant has been issued for the arrest of the president of the Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, for crimes against humanity and war crimes.

In Pope Benedict’s case, Robertson argues that this includes sexual abuse of minors:

The ICC Statute definition of a crime against humanity includes rape and sexual slavery and other similarly inhumane acts causing harm to mental or physical health, committed against civilians on a widespread or systematic scale, if condoned by a government or a de facto authority. It has been held to cover the recruitment of children as soldiers or sex slaves. If acts of sexual abuse by priests are not isolated or sporadic, but part of a wide practice both known to and unpunished by their de facto authority then they fall within the temporal jurisdiction of the ICC – if that practice continued after July 2002, when the court was established.

But why stop at the Pope? Surely equity demands that others should stand in the dock along with Benedict if sex abuse happened on their watch and they failed to act energetically to stop it.

Read it all here.
 
But why stop at the Pope? Surely equity demands that others should stand in the dock along with Benedict if sex abuse happened on their watch and they failed to act energetically to stop it.
 
I agree.  Go for the hierarchs of the Episcopal Church who condon sexual deviants and even ordain them!

No comments: