Sunday, July 20, 2008

Delaware Libertarian makes the News Journal--at least in a small way

In today's News Journal Beth Miller has an important and thoughtful article about the Delaware child abuse reporting law and the issue of priestly sexual abuse in the Diocese of Wilmington.

You should read it all; I know that Beth put a remarkable amount research time into this piece, and I think it outlines the major issues quite well.

Of course, you'll understand if this is my favorite part:

The Diocese of Wilmington has not followed all the national patterns, though.

Neuberger, a relentless pugilist who spares few words when describing the failings of his clients' opponents, was surprised by Saltarelli's approach as settlement negotiations unfolded. And, as might be expected, Neuberger's tone changed dramatically after the diocese settled its first two cases without putting either plaintiff through the rigors of deposition and cross-examination.

"The bishop is not following the scorched-earth policy of some other dioceses," Neuberger said. "The big surprise was that the diocese went down the avenue of restorative justice."

Steve Newton, a history professor at Delaware State University who converted to Catholicism about four years ago, has appreciated Saltarelli's recent approach.

"I'm sure there are cases where the diocese has not handled it as well," said Newton, who writes the Delaware Libertarian blog. "But the bishop has led the diocese in assuming responsibility for dealing with this issue ... I think creating that window and that exception was a good thing. I think the legislature crafted a really good compromise for attacking a really difficult problem."
[emphasis obviously added]

I thank Beth for the plug, but more importantly, I thank her for the story.


Anonymous said...

Mind if I ask what you were before converting?

Just curious.

And as a Libertarian, what did yu think of the Pope's visit.

I was surprised and proud of his brave new approach.....

Steven H. Newton said...

I was raised agnostic/atheist (never actually saw the inside of a church until I was in Boy Scouts). Married Catholic and agreed to raise kids that way; came in slowly as they grew up.

This pope both mystifies/excites me and repels me at the same time. An obvious intellectual (read his God and the World from the early 1990s) he is also in some ways the most reactionary pope in decades.

I really don't know what to think about him.