"Just as the devil does not deserve equal time with God, and a lie does not deserve equal time with the truth, the remarks of William Donahue have no place in any respectable journal seriously dealing with a serious story and pursuing truth."
[Editor's Note: Ray Mouton, the former Lafayette attorney who (in)famously defended convicted pedophile priest Gilbert Gauthe in the 1980s and later abandoned his Roman Catholic faith in disillusionment, now lives as an expatriate in France. But Mouton still keeps abreast of the church and its long-running efforts to shield pedophiles among its clergy. Here he takes issue with The Daily Advertiser's decision to publish an op-ed by William Donahue, the zealous leader of the Catholic League, a pro-Roman-Catholic-at-all-costs nonprofit and occasional media talking head. Mouton's response first appeared this morning on his Facebook page.]
The Lafayette Daily Advertiser, having given prominent space to William Donahue of the Catholic League whose editorial was so far off base that it was not even based in fact - the fact being that the list of 15 men Bishop Jarrell of Lafayette is shielding are not names of men "accused" of abuse but men against whom "credible complaints" were made and in some cases, men who have confessed to crimes - the Advertiser then attempted to offset its wrong in providing a platform to Donahue, by attempting to write an opposite editorial shown here below.
Nothing can "cure" the fault of a newspaper in giving space to William Donahue who long ago discredited himself with attacks on survivor groups and outrageous defenses offered to men like Bishop Jarrell whose actions are indefensible under every moral and ethical standard known to mankind.
In the Advertiser editorial, the newspaper also inaccurately characterized the situation in Lake Charles. The facts are: 1) Glenn Provost was installed as Bishop long after the Church charter was adopted, 2) at the time he became bishop, the file on former Lake Charles priest, Marc Broussard, was in the secret archives of his diocese, 3) Bishop Provost did not turn this material over to police or prosecutors, thereby notifying them that Broussard was a criminal.
The file was laying in the diocesan records when a victim went to police. When the police were investigating the case, they knocked on Provost's door and only then did the Diocese of Lake Charles turn over the information on Broussard.
There is a significant difference between a bishop knowing he has information relating to crimes and bringing that information to police, and the police learning from another source about crimes and then having to approach the diocese that had failed to furnish evidence of the crimes to police.
In Lake Charles, had no victim come forward, Marc Broussard's file would remain in the same file drawer it was in under a former bishop and where it lay on the day Bishop Provost was installed.
Just as the devil does not deserve equal time with God, and a lie does not deserve equal time with the truth, the remarks of William Donahue have no place in any respectable journal seriously dealing with a serious story and pursuing truth.
This was a failure of a newspaper to fulfill its obligation to the readers, for giving Donahue space to pontificate on clergy sex abuse is an unforgivable lapse and not something other responsible journals do any longer as they know Donahue as the Daily Advertiser should have known Donahue.
The Lafayette Daily Advertiser did not cure itself of whatever it is that led the journal to allow such prominent space to William Donahue, a man who has been on the wrong side of history for decades, a man who will twist his intellect inside-out to rationalize the irrational, excuse the inexcusable, or in the case use a bully pulpit the Daily Advertiser built for him to actually congratulate a bishop for shielding and protecting the names of 15 sex abusers and endangering children in the process.
There are some people who are so disreputable that reputable journals will not provide a platform to them, and William Donahue is such a man, a person who has repeatedly attacked survivors of clergy sex abuse and attempted to rationalize irrational actions among the Church hierarchy.
Ray Mouton, author of "In God's House"
Read Donahue's op-ed here.