By Situation Theatre 5/03/2019
Who do you trust to keep paedophile priests out of prison?
Last week it was revealed that former Prime Minister John Howard submitted a character reference for George Pell after he was found guilty of five charges of child sexual abuse. It stated that “none of these matters alter my opinion of the Cardinal”.
He wrote about the man in these glowing terms:
Cardinal Pell is a person of both high intelligence and exemplary character. Strength and sincerity have always been features of his personality. I have always found him to be lacking hypocrisy and cant. In his chosen vocation he has frequently displayed much courage and held to his values and beliefs, irrespective of the prevailing wisdom of the time.
Cardinal Pell is a lively conversationalist who maintains a deep and objective interest in contemporary social and political issues.
It is my view that he has dedicated his life to his nation and his church.
This week the former leader who Australia was supposed to trust to keep interest rates low is apparently also the Liberal Party icon who Australia should trust to keep well-connected men who sexually abuse children from serving time.
Seeming to slightly modify one of his greatest hits as Prime Minister, Mr Howard today gave this statement to the press about the Pell case.
“National security is about having an uncompromising view about the fundamental right of the Liberal Party to protect powerful paedophiles inside the Catholic Church. It’s about saying to the world we are a generous, open-hearted people, accepting the behaviour of more Catholic paedophiles on a per capita basis than any other political party. We have a proud record of welcoming paedophiles from 140 different parishes, but we will decide which paedophiles come to prison, and the circumstances in which they come.”