Sex abuse scandals and cover-ups send Pope’s approval rating to new lows

A new poll released by the Pew Research Center shows that amid the countless sex abuse scandals, Pope Francis’s popularity among Catholics has reached a new low.

CNN reports:

Overall, 72% of Catholics in the United States view Francis in either a very or mostly favorable light — down from 84% in January — but when asked specifically about how he’s addressed sex abuse in the church, the numbers have been on a precipitous decline.

In February 2014, more than seven in 10 Catholics who attended Mass weekly said they were pleased with Francis’ handling of the scandal, but in the September Pew survey, only 34% approved.

Approval was even lower among less-regular Mass-goers (30%), but they have long disapproved of how Francis addressed the scandal. In February 2014, only 46% said he was doing a good job with it.

That’s remarkable, but still wild to think that so many still support Francis and the Catholic Church after all they’ve done – and haven’t done.

And, mind-blowingly, Catholics somehow gave Francis high marks for “standing up for traditional morals,” whatever that’s supposed to mean.

Conversely, the Pope received much higher marks across all Catholic demographics for “standing up for traditional morals,” though those approval numbers also remain on a significant decline since February 2014.

I have to assume that their “traditional morals” include pointing out that not every child was raped by a Catholic priest. Or maybe they’re getting back to basics of the Bible, and stoning unmarried women who aren’t virgins or only beating their slaves hard enough so they can get back up after a day or two. You know, the things in the Bible that I have to assume qualify as “traditional morals.”

And this comes on the heels of a poll that found 48% of white evangelicals would support Kavanaugh even if the sexual abuse allegations against him were true. “Traditional morals,” indeed.

As I previously wrote, given everything we know about the history of abuse, the inaction by the Francis when he found out, and his continued inaction on the issue, I cannot understand how anyone can still call themselves a Catholic or participate in the Catholic Church. By continuing to be involved, you are endorsing the Catholic Church’s past and current behavior, and telling them that there is no reason for them to change. 

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This is akin to people who support bad local sports teams. If your local sportsball team is performing poorly year after year, a good fan would stop supporting them. Stop going to games. Stop giving them money. Go elsewhere for entertainment. One of the most powerful ways for you as an individual to effect change in a large organization is to stop giving them money. They’ll either clean house and get their shit together – or they won’t.

It’s time to quit the Catholic Church.

Given everything we know, if you still still support and stand with the Catholic Church, you are complicit with the sexual abuse of children. Period. The continued support tells the church that they literally cannot do anything wrong, and that there is no reason for them to change. 

Written by Dan Broadbent

Science Enthusiast. Atheist. Lover of cats.




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