If Pope Benedict was trying to do penance for the sex abuse scandal this week, he'd better say a few billion more Hail Marys, because equating the ordination of women as priests with the rape of young children wasn't quite the way to do it, writes Maureen Dowd in the New York Times. "Letting women be priests—which should be seen as a way to help cleanse the church—is now on the list of awful sins right next to pedophilia, heresy, apostasy and schism," she rages.
Not only did the Vatican once again fail to meaningfully crack down on the scandal and prevent its recurrence, Dowd gripes, but it circled the wagons around the same old boys' club that helped create the mess. "There is no moral awakening here. The cruelty and indecency of child abuse once more inspires tactical contrition," Dowd writes. "If Roman Polanski were a priest, he’d still be working here."