Law Not above Law

By Ann Hagan Webb
Letter to the Editor
Boston Herald
February 14, 2002

I am a psychologist and a survivor of abuse by a priest. From both perspectives I am appalled at the tolerance this state has shown for Bernard Cardinal Law's complicity in the crimes of John Geoghan and others. Does no one consider his acts criminal?

Legally, I am required to report child abuse regardless of therapeutic confidentiality. As a psychologist, the ethics of my profession would demand that I report abuse and take action to protect children from further abuse.

As a moral human being, I would also be compelled to protect any child from abuse. Had I acted in the same manner as Cardinal Law, I would be sent to prison and the Board of Registration would take away my license to practice.

If a person drives the getaway car from a robbery, he goes to jail. Law drove the getaway car for many pedophiles when he transferred them to unsuspecting parishes. Should he be above the law?

Ann Hagan Webb, Co-Director
South Shore Counseling Center


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