Appendix: stupid questions »« PC gone mad I tell you

People who didn’t dare ask questions

A forthright piece in the Irish Independent on the death rate in the Tuam mother and baby home.

It didn’t just happen. It wasn’t just bad management. It took years of organisation, strategies of intimidation and control. And, let’s face it, it took a citizenry steeped in fear and reverence.

A population that was deferential. People who did what they were told. People who didn’t dare ask questions.

Not, of course, that dumping the bodies of almost 800 kids near a septic tank was the object of the exercise – that was just a byproduct. Just some human waste that had to be tucked away in a suitable place.

It was about sex and power. It was about the right of the Church to do whatever it thought necessary to preserve its domain. It stemmed from a hierarchy of old men who were obsessed with sex.

The Church was very conscious of its need to dominate. Never to serve – to dominate.

As it still is. Domination is what it does.

Under the leadership of the legendary Archbishop John Charles McQuaid, between 1940 and 1965 the Church built no fewer than 34 churches in Dublin.

These weren’t pretty little places of spiritual reflection – they were massive structures that physically and psychologically dominated their surroundings.

These buildings did not say, ‘Come in here for solace’ – as any church of any faith might say. They said, ‘We are your masters.’

Regular expulsions for trivial matters sharpened the edge of guilt and fear in the awed people on whom the Confraternities thrived.

The Church was in that period at the height of its power. It could do whatever it wanted. When you have a docile citizenry; an obedient political regime; academics who know which backsides to kiss; and a politically appointed judiciary, you can shape a society in your own image.

Which is what the bishops did.

What was the consequence? Fear, obsession with purity, loathing, sadism.

In short, the “mother and baby” homes didn’t just pop up because someone thought them a good idea. They were a product of a puritanical, shaming, abusive hierarchy of power.

The bishops’ Ireland was a pious country in which unapproved sex didn’t happen. The women who got pregnant outside marriage, and who by their existence undermined the image of piety, had to be hidden away.

And the children born of unapproved activities weren’t real children. The word used was “illegitimate”. They were children, but they were not legitimate children. So they were usually taken away from their mothers and hidden away.

And there they failed to thrive, and many of them died. God’s work.

Comments

  1. Menyambal says

    God wasn’t going to let them into Heaven.

    Deuteronomy 23:2 (King James Version):

    A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord.

  2. mastmaker says

    @Menyambal

    That’s pretty much one of the most cruel things I have read in Bible, and given the atrocities in it, that’s saying something.

  3. says

    Under the leadership of the legendary Archbishop John Charles McQuaid, between 1940 and 1965 the Church built no fewer than 34 churches in Dublin.

    These weren’t pretty little places of spiritual reflection – they were massive structures that physically and psychologically dominated their surroundings.

    Wait, didn’t the latest catlick murder apologist tell us that the horrible death rates were because Ireland was such a poor country?

  4. Jenny says

    i dunno if its true or not but there’s also the suggestion that they decided had to lock them away (*sigh* basically a prison :( rather depressing) to stop them emigrating to the UK and converting to protestants, as i said i dunno if thats actually true but would certainly fit in with the same style of control and paranoia, so they don’t like these ‘fallen woman’ but cant possibly let them go at the same time

  5. says

    I often say that my Catholic education cured me of religion. I came to the conclusion that the trinity that they worship is the unholy one of sado-masochism, sexual obsession and misogyny. It’s like that other trinity in that these three things are different aspects of the same thing which is the evolved need to prevent your rivals from reproducing.

  6. johnthedrunkard says

    No link to the source?
    I can’t find it, even searching key phrases in the Independent’s web site.

  7. AMM says

    Menyambal @1

    God wasn’t going to let them into Heaven.
    .
    “A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord.”

    “congregation of the Lord” doesn’t mean heaven. The commentaries I’ve found on-line are a little vague, but it pretty clearly refers to not being considered a member of the community. Although it’s unclear when this was actually written (as opposed to purported), I think it predates the idea of heaven in Jewish religion. Also, “bastard” is misleading — it refers to children of two people who under Jewish law could not marry, e.g., children of incest or where one of the parents was a foreigner; possibly also children of adultery.
    .
    One of the problems with quoting passages from the bible, especially the Old Testament, and especially in translation, is that words and phrases may not mean what one might naively think they mean, due to cultural shifts.
    .
    Not saying that a lot of the stuff isn’t barbaric, just that it might not be barbaric in the way you might think.
    .
    Also not saying that the Catholic church might not have interpreted it to fit their own prejudices.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>