why won't legal department simply release all the secret pedophile files?
All you care about is yourself, Finkelstein. You'd hand over any child on a platter to a pedophile personally, just as long as you could get back at Watchtower somehow. That is all you want here.
Parents need to protect their kids and if a child is born to sick or abusive parents he is out of luck - yes, parents should protect their children but when they don't the state should step in.
When children are at school, teachers replace their parents.
Schools have child protection policies - teachers have criminal background checks before they're given the job.
The WT organisation is no different to any other organisation in this regard; it should have child protection policies - e.g. potential elders should have criminal background checks before they're appointed. It should be made to comply with child protection laws.
When children are born to abusive or neglectful parents, you can't just say the kids are out of luck - "there's nothing else we can do!" - other people and organisations have responsibilities to keep children safe.
Let us not forget that, for many decades, WT made it almost a fetish to attack the catholic church for the very same thing.
All crimes are not treated the same and the law absolutely makes distinctions between children and adults.
Hmmm. Isn't that what the Penal Code is about?
In the Penal Code below, drug possession and child predation carry the same penalty.
Offense Code Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree 220.18 Criminal sale of a controlled substance in the second degree 220.41 Criminal use of a chemical weapon or biological weapon in the second degree 490.50 Predatory sexual assault 130.95 Predatory sexual assault against a child
fish, i understand im asking a lot. I really do.... but what is the point regarding your last post? Once again you claim you understand that crimes against children are different and then you seem to say they arnt by posting information regarding what class felony they fall under.
Broad classification under the penal code (ie felony vs misdemeanor ) isnt the same as the standard used to prove the alligation or the same as what evidance is acceptable in court etc etc. its a legal classification that generally denotes the type of punishment.
how does that, in any way, related to children being able to defend themselves or having the ablity to report a crime against themselves or even the ablity to comprehend that a crime has been committed against them?
You asked a seemingly simple question. I gave a simple answer showing that crimes against children are in fact different than any other crime and that our society reasonably expects them to be protected where they cannot protect themselves. I reasonably showed that this is different than any other crime and therefore requires that the confidentially of the clergy be breached.
Do you have a point?
crimes against children are indeed very different than other offense you listed.
All crimes are not treated the same and the law absolutely makes distinctions between children and adults.
Anyone with a little common sense can figure out that someone that gets a ticket for disorderly conduct faces different legal consequences than someone who commits armed robbery. They are both crimes though and criminal procedure is exactly the same. Child abuse is also a crime and treated just the same as any other crime. There is no special category for child abuse, it is in the same Penal Code with all the other crimes and classified as a Felony with all the other Felonies of the same rank. There is no difference.
Therefore, If a litigant can Supeona private church communications about child abuse to help his civil case, there is nothing special about that crime to somebody else that also wants church privacy files disclosed to help his case about non-child abuse, such as a prosecutor, a victim of a crime, the Federal government going after someone for tax fraud, etc. Sure children should have special protection, but victims of other crimes are entitled to nothing less in getting the same justice and so should other litigants in other civil cases getting the same money and society should also be protected from criminal conduct, not only child abuse but from other crimes too. So, not saying that children should not have special protection, they should, but also others should be entitled to the same justice. --They should be treated the same.
fisherman: Therefore, If a litigant can Supeona private church communications about child abuse to help his civil case, there is nothing special about that crime to somebody else that also wants church privacy files disclosed to help his case about non-child abuse, such as a prosecutor, a victim of a crime, the Federal government going after someone for tax fraud, etc
You are correct. Supposedly "private" church records can be acquired in the defense of someone's related court case.
That is why this happened:
We disagree with the Diocese's position that the compelled production of its archival documents violates its right to the free exercise of religion as protected by the federal and state constitutions and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000bb-2000bb-4 (RFRA). The government may only substantially burden the exercise of religion if it furthers a compelling governmental interest and the burden is the least restrictive means of advancing that interest. 42 U.S.C. § 2000bb-1(b). The plaintiff has the initial burden of establishing that a rule of general applicability constitutes a substantial burden on his or her free exercise of religion. Muslim v. Frame, 891 F. Supp. 226, 229 (E.D.Pa.1995). Once the plaintiff has satisfied his or her burden, the government must establish that the burden advances a compelling interest and is the least restrictive means of doing so. Id.
In this case, the Diocese argues that the release of archival documents, which are deemed confidential pursuant to canon law, violates its right to religious freedom. Specifically, the Diocese avers that Canon 489 of the Code of Canon *291 Law requires the maintenance of a separate archive for the safeguarding of confidential information and prohibits anyone, including the bishop, from removing documents from that archive and disclosing their contents. We do not doubt that the Diocese's refusal to produce documents in violation of canon law is rooted in a sincerely held religious belief. We find, however, that the burden on the Diocese's religious freedom furthers a compelling governmental interest by the least restrictive means available.
A defendant in a criminal case has a right to discover material evidence, Ritchie, and the state has a compelling interest in pursuing the truth in a criminal matter, see Port v. Heard, 764 F.2d 423 (5th Cir.1985). Although an in camera proceeding may cause a limited exposure of privileged information to the trial court, a court order limiting discovery to relevant, non-privileged documents advances this compelling governmental interest in the least restrictive way. See Scott v. Rosenberg, 702 F.2d 1263 (9th Cir.1983)(demand of church documents relating to specific individual's pledges necessary to further compelling governmental interest in preventing fraud). Thus, consistent with the trial court and Superior Court, we hold that the compelled production of documents for an in camera review and the discovery of documents deemed relevant and non-privileged does not impermissibly intrude upon the Diocese's exercise of its religious beliefs and practices.
Accordingly, we affirm the Order of the Superior Court and remand this case for proceedings consistent with this Opinion.
And this too, fisherman:
4. A subpoena. A member may gain the legal right to inspect church records with a subpoena. Members and nonmembers alike may compel the disclosure or inspection of church records as part of a lawsuit against a church if the materials to be disclosed or inspected are relevant and not privileged. Under rules that have been adopted by most states and all federal courts, any party to a lawsuit may inspect records in the possession of another party to the lawsuit, and a party has the right, by a subpoena, to compel another party to turn over books, papers, and documents. Church leaders often are confused about their duty to comply with a subpoena that asks the church to turn over certain records as part of a lawsuit.
For example, let's say that a church is sued by a former employee who claims that she was wrongfully dismissed. The church receives a subpoena demanding that it turn over a wide range of documents pertaining to its personnel practices, employees, and finances. Does the church have to respond to such a subpoena? Does the First Amendment guaranty of religious freedom somehow insulate it from having to respond? The answer is that church records are not inherently privileged or immune from the subpoena power. Although all states consider confidential communications to be privileged when they are made to a minister acting in a professional capacity as a spiritual adviser, many courts have ruled that this privilege does not apply to church records.
ok so lets take this as you presented it...
"Anyone with a little common sense can figure out that someone that gets a ticket for disorderly conduct faces different legal consequences than someone who commits armed robbery. They are both crimes though and criminal procedure is exactly the same. "
fish, please try to remove some of the excess emotion from your remarks. When you start off by saying "anyone one with a little common sense" you seem to be taking a shot at me and suggesting that i lack common sense or perhaps that I'm talking to you as if i think you don't. Neither of those is the case. Im trying to have a respectful discussion, devoid of excess negative emotion.
as for your point, you are incorrect. they are both crimes yes but criminal procedure is not exactly the same. The burden of proof for disorderly conduct is different that for armed robbery.
"Child abuse is also a crime and treated just the same as any other crime. There is no special category for child abuse, it is in the same Penal Code with all the other crimes and classified as a Felony with all the other Felonies of the same rank. There is no difference."
this is also not entirely correct. In many jurisdictions there are special units set up to investigate child abuse. there are special laws regarding reporting child abuse and there are special procedures to investigate. there are even special laws to let children testify in court without facing the abuser. the law is rife with example of children being treated differently.
"Therefore, If a litigant can Supeona private church communications about child abuse to help his civil case, there is nothing special about that crime to somebody else that also wants church privacy files disclosed to help his case about non-child abuse, such as a prosecutor, a victim of a crime, the Federal government going after someone for tax fraud, etc"
i agree. and church communications can be and are subject to subpoena. you seem to be conflating the confidentiality of the confessional with other internal church communications. two very different things. also consider this:
"It’s important to understand the difference between clergy privilege and the duty of confidentiality. Privilege simply means the information cannot be shared in court. The duty of confidentiality applies in all contexts and is an ethical matter every minister must navigate carefully. A minister’s duty of confidentiality is breached when they disclose confidences to anyone, anywhere. However, there may be times when it is appropriate to share confidential information, under extreme circumstances where people may be killed or severely injured. There are only nine cases in the history of this country where a minister was sued for breaching the duty of confidentiality. Of those, only three of the cases found the minister civilly liable for sharing confidences. In the other six cases, the courts concluded there was no duty under the circumstances for the minister to keep the confidentiality. So it can be concluded that ministers who decide to share confidential information should not in most cases be held personally liable from a legal standpoint, but they certainly won’t be held legally liable for not sharing. The exception to this rule is child abuse. In 41 states clergy are mandatory reporters of suspected or known child abuse."
Fish, you have no legal precedent or concept upon which you are basing your argument. its feeling and emotion, ironically the very thing you are accusing others of...
Let me summarize.. i agree with you that past judicial cases absolutely should not be revealed or released. its fraught with legal and moral issues and innocents would undoubtably be harmed irreparably. but not all church communications are privileged. current law demands in many states that child abuse be reported over and above the confidentiality of the confessional.
what exactly are you arguing? are you agreeing with me that past cases have to remain sealed but future cases must be reported? do you have a different perspective all together? is there a way you can simply state your opinion without excess fluff or straw men?
Look I'm pro-JW if that is even a phrase. Even still you have to admit the WTBTS has this 2 witness rule thing wrong in relation to child abuse. Its not complicated, and is horrendously damaging.
Thank you for your very interesting posts, OrphanCrow!