Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Conversations with Calliope

JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Good morning Joe. How are you this morning?
JOE: Still trying to digest yesterday's letter to the editor about my recent column on priest sexual abuse.
CALLIOPE: What's the problem?
JOE: A reader interpreted my column as an attack on the Catholic Church rather than an inquiry into the nature of abuse.
CALLIOPE: What did he say about you?
JOE: That I seemed to be ignoring the abuse among others charged with care of children and was singling out priests, only a small minority of whom abuse teens.
CALLIOPE: How do you plan to handle it.
JOE: I'm considering it. A friend suggested a brief acknowledgment of the writer's position and then moving on.
CALLIOPE: How does that sound?
JOE: It's good advice. At the end of his letter, the writer says, "Maybe Dr. Langen would agree with me that an honest, courageous and thorough study of this psychological condition is desperately needed because it is spreading."
CALLIOPE: Do you agree with him?
JOE: I do, but also think there are cultural and institutional factors bearing consideration as well. Maybe I can just restate that and move on.
CALLIOPE: Good idea. I guess you have to be careful about what you write.
JOE: I guess so. Explaining my entire position in a five hundred word column can be daunting. If it stirs up controversy or need for further discussion, maybe that's not so bad. See you tomorrow.
(Carol at the spice market- Marigot, St. Martin)

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