So, the scum that crawled out of pond water and eventually animated itself enough to become the New York Times puts up a misleading, stupidly-written, and ugly hit piece pointed at the pope. Their colleagues at the Associated Press soon follow, and retain all the egregious wrong impressions of the NYT piece.
It's not that the real story isn't ugly enough. A priest of the diocese of Milwaukee named Father Murphy abused deaf children, allegedly 200 of them. He did this in the 1960s and 1970s. Despite being investigated by civil authorities (read: police) he was never charged with this crime; he was also moved by the present archbishop, Abp. Cousins, away from the school and to Superior, WI in 1974. Archbishop Rembert Weakland finally got around to writing about the matter to then Cdl. Ratzinger in 1996; by that time Murphy was elderly and ill, and had had a stroke. Murphy himself wrote asking to be spared a canonical trial; this was granted, and Murphy died in 1998. (A prior discussion about a canonical trial went nowhere because more than twenty years had passed since the allegations were made, which put the case at the time beyond the Church's statute of limitations at that time.)
Not content with the ugliness of the actual story, though, the yellow journalists are conducting an orgy of incendiary journalism. The pope canceled a priest-abuser's trial! Uncaring pontiff leaves deaf children crying! Abuser gets off scot-free due to callous Vatican inaction! (Etcetera ad vomitum.) The little matters of things like facts, details, and timelines are swept aside in all the passion to use the Scandal to attack Pope Benedict. Again.
And there are already alarming signs that their tactics are having an effect. In the comments below one of those news articles, commenters were calling for violent acts against the Pope, against priests, even against Catholics generally.
No one is denying that sex-abuse scandals happened, that they were more widespread than many at first believed, that the Church did not in every instance manage to deal effectively with the wicked perpetrators, or that some internal policies dealing with incidents like these were in dire need of changes. But this particular instance shows the failure of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and of the local civil authorities; it does not indicate what the enemies of the Church are determined to find--some evidence that the Catholic Church at the highest levels winks at child abuse and covers it up as some sort of institutional policy, or that the pope himself cares nothing for abused children.
The peddlers of this scurrilous gossip-rag stuff should be ashamed of themselves, but I have a feeling they won't be, not even if some of the mob they raise goes off and does something like this at some point. But in this latest attempt to sling whatever muck they can at the Vatican, the media's bottom-feeders have shown their hand a little too plainly. This has never been about protecting innocent children from abuse. It has always been about trying to bring down the Church.