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Old 12-21-2004, 04:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The treatment of disabled in today's society

This makes me angry, Angry, ANGRY

Quote:
Disabled man's removal from Mass annoys locals

The removal of an intellectually disabled man from Mass last Sunday, at the request of the priest who stopped the service, has caused considerable annoyance in Kilkenny.

Father Dominic Browne told The Irish Times last night he was about to celebrate the 6 p.m. Mass at Black Abbey when he heard a "tremendous noise emanating from a human being".

"In 40 years as a priest I never experienced such a barrage," he said. He knew "this man was a bit mentally retarded and was conscious he had carers". The noise continued until it came to the gospel.

He asked that the man be removed from the church and said he would not resume Mass until this was done. "The carers should have understood this and brought him out and not have waited for me to have to act," he said. He felt the episode had been "magnified to a colossal extent".

He was sorry it happened and apologised to the man's parents.

The man, who is 19, was accompanied by two other intellectually disabled people, a man aged 22 and a woman aged 41. All are from the St Patrick's residential centre in Kilkenny and were at the Mass with two carers.

The centre's director, Mr Eddie Ryan, said last night he was "very disappointed" at what happened. He had been told the man complained of had been praying aloud, but not too much so.

A member of the congregation at the Mass, who did not wish to be named, said he and others were incensed by the incident. "It ruined the whole Mass experience for me. Five or six people walked out," he said. Afterwards about 10 people vented their opinions at another priest standing at the door. He himself confronted Father Browne, who told him he was making more of it than was warranted, he said.

Father Browne's superior, Father Anthony Morris, Dominican prior at the Black Abbey, said he apologised "unreservedly to the young man and those with him for what Father Browne said and the embarrassment caused them". People were "livid" as a result of the incident, he said.

Mr Niall Crowley, chief executive of the Equality Authority, said last night the incident illustrated "a very significant failure to make reasonable accommodation for people with disabilities, not least in such an important area of everyone's life". This was even more the case where leadership would have been expected by such a key institution in our society where people with disabilities were concerned, he said.
The Irish Times
http://www.ireland.com/newspaper/fro...1KILKENNY.html
Hopefully this "Christian" priest will get formally reprimanded for this, but the story (and the highlighted quotation above) inspired me to post this thread.

It annoys me so much, and also fills my heart with sorrow, to see how the disabled are treated in our society.

In Australia, they are currently running a set of TV adverts that address this topic. We see a series of disabled people (physically and mentally disabled) address the screen, whilst the song "Beautiful People" (by Melanie Safka) is played, telling us that they have a contribution to make, a voice to be heard. Maybe it's me, but to say that this is heart rending it an understatement. It very accurately hits the target on this important topic. Why do we not embrace the disabled as much as we should?

Only once, ONCE in my career have I come across a blind person who was fully employed. Only twice, TWICE in my life have I come across a mentally disabled person employed.

What can you do about it?

Volunteer. Contribute funds to charities and societies. And most of all, open your heart and your mind.

Quote:
BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE
by Melanie
Copyright 1967 by Melanie Safka. All Rights Reserved.

Beautiful people
You live in the same world as I do
But somehow I never noticed
You before today
I'm ashamed to say

Beautiful people
We share the same back door
And it isn't right
We never met before
But then
We may never meet again
If I weren't afraid you'd laugh at me
I would run and take all your hands
And I'd gather everyone together for a day
And when we're gather'd
I'll pass buttons out that say
Beautiful people
Then you'll never have to be alone
'Cause there'll always be someone
With the same button on as you
Include him in everything you do.

Beautiful people
You ride the same subway
As I do ev'ry morning
That's got to tell you something
We've got so much in common
I go the same direction that you do
So if you take care of me
Maybe I'll take care of you

Beautiful people
You look like friends of mine
And it's about time
That someone said it here and now
I make a vow that some time, somehow
I'll have a meeting
Invite ev'ryone you know
I'll pass out buttons to
The ones who come to show

Beautiful people
Never have to be alone
'Cause there'll always be someone
With the same button on as you
Include him in ev'rything you do
He may be sitting right next to you
He may be beautiful people too
And if you take care of him
Maybe I'll take care of you
And if you take care of him
Maybe I'll take care of you...

Mr Mephisto
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:32 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Severe threadjack:

On Sunday I went to meeting for the first time in quite a while. I found myself irritated when the silent worship was interrupted by people coming in late, by people sniffling loudly, and by the fact that the children came in from First Day school with about 15 minutes left in meeting and were very disruptive. I thought about this a lot.

When I got out of meeting I went and had lunch with a friend, who had skipped church because there was a children's pagent that would mean, among other things, that there would be no communion that day. He said that communion was more important than some stupid children's pagent.

I thought about both those things and realized how against the spirit of Christ these sentiments were. Religion should be taken seriously, but it doesn't have to be solemn and joyless.

Back on topic:

My mother works with disabled persons; in fact, many of my friends have fathers or mothers or sisters who work with the disabled. One of my best friends has a severely autistic brother, and I have done service work with disabled people. It's very, very hard. You have to be incredibly patient. Sweeping the less fortunate under the rug is a pretty universal action, because no one wants to be bothered. So, I agree with Mephisto. Make the effort.
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Considering challenged persons I've known I can picture a slightly uncomfortable situation to a completely disrupted service. Allowances should be made but at some point a line may have been crossed. Without having been there none of us know what really transpired. We have a newspaper article and its accounts of people obviously affected by the incident. Very tough for participants to talk about after the fact, too.

No matter what happened, it's very unfortunate it came to this. Opinions form, heels dig in, and little is resolved short of what fits the PR statements.
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Old 12-21-2004, 05:04 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What exactly was the "tremendous noise" that supposedly was heard?

Was it praying aloud like the director of the center said? Or was it simply a loud noise?

I think that the priest may have overreacted by stopping the Mass until the man was removed, but I also think that the caretakers probably should have moved him, or at least quieted him, and so all the protest is overreaction as well.
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Old 12-21-2004, 05:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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We're talking about a Christian church here.

The priest was out of line, as evidenced by his own colleague challenging him and the head of his order giving an absolute apology the following day.

I posted the story as an example, and didn't want to get bogged down in its specifics.


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Old 12-21-2004, 05:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm sorry - Do people have more right to interrupt a Christian church then others? If a person is a disruption, mentally handicapped or not, they should be removed. You can say that Christian churches are supposed to be more accepting to everyone, and they allowed the mentally retarded man to be there, but they had to have him removed because it hurt the service as a whole.

From the article I can't tell if he was in line to have removed the man, but it only seems fair that it's an open option for a priest.
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Old 12-21-2004, 06:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
Junkie
 
Amazing.

Almost everyone, his own colleagues and his own superiors, feel it was unwarranted and deserved an unreserved apology.

Yet here, on this board, we have people defending him?

Good grief.

I guess my goal in hoping that people would open their minds and their hearts is in vain.

And, for what it's worth, being disabled does mean that they should be shown more compassion and understanding that able bodied or able minded people. That's the whole bloody point!


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Old 12-21-2004, 06:55 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorade Frost
I'm sorry - Do people have more right to interrupt a Christian church then others? .
Yes.

The preist knew he was mentally handicapped yet still had him removed. It's called patience and tolerance people need to get a dose of it. So what if the kid was being noisy for a half hour or 45 minutes. That doesn't give the preist the right to kick him out of the church. It's church everyone is suppose to be welcome. Chances are if he was making such a ruckus that church couldn't go on then he should have been removed within the first 5 minutes. Not midservice.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:01 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Life isn't fair. Disabled people got the short end of the stick, and they have to live with it. There are people that will care for and accomadate them. However, this doesn't mean that everyone is going to. I personally feel I shouldn't have to deal with a disabled person if I choose not to, or it isn't my responsibility (ie. if I don't have disabled children). And, before you say, yes, I know I'm an asshole.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
And, for what it's worth, being disabled does mean that they should be shown more compassion and understanding that able bodied or able minded people. That's the whole bloody point!
Like I said, I don't know the full story. It could be the equivalent of a child who's acting up in a movie, while that may seem to be a harsh analogy, but if the person has the intelligence of a child then yes, there's a time and a place for a minister to be able to talk to the person and be their company, but I don't believe it should be at the expense of the rest of the people at mass.

Now the person could have made just a small noise like anyone else and the priest was being vindictive, and then it would be very wrong for that to happen, but like I said I don't know the circumstances.

I believe the action is permissible depending on the situation.

In regards to the rest of the priests and clergy who are going off against the man who did that, it's their job for PR for the church, so that kind of thing is to be expected. Some one does something bad, so the church 'reprimands' the person and the rest of the church will speak out against it to cover their tracks.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:26 PM   #11 (permalink)
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As much as I dislike religion, there are times when the clergyman is right. The guy was kicked out not because he is retarded, but because he was a disturbance. If a normal person behaved the same way, they would be expelled also. Politically correct terms can kiss my ass, by the way.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:44 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I think we should be as accomodating as possible to disabled people, but we shoudl not do it to the point that we make everyone else miserable.

The article isn't clear. At the beginning it sounds like the guy was raising all kinds of hell. By the end it sounds like the guy was whispering a prayer. Which is it? If he's being loud and obnoxious then yes, he should be asked to leave. I understand that he cant' help it, but the other 100 people in church can't help it either and they do not deserve to have their service destroyed.

Lemme ask y'all this. If this had happened in an orchestra concert, should he be removed? Obviously the answer is yes. It's a shame he cant' stay for the concert, but he doesn't have the right to ruin the experience for everyone else.

As for why everyone else is apologizing, hell that could be because of the overly politically correct attitude everyone has these days. "You picked on a disabled guy? My god I'm never going to YOUR church again!" is the automatic kneejerk reaction, even though it's bullshit.

And before you guys start yelling at me for being a cold heartless bastard, my brother-in-law is permanently in a wheelchair. One symptom of his condition is that he sometimes chokes and gags loudly on his food. It doesnt' happen all that often, but when it does it's not very pleasant. There's the noise, and then there's the copius amount of drool. When this happens in a restaurant, he pays his check and leaves right away because he realized that even though he is disabled and can't help it, he doesn't have the right to ruin all the other diners' meals just because he wants to be there. He realizes that sometimes life is unfair for some people, and the rest of society shouldn't have to give up everything in order to try and level the playing field.
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:03 PM   #13 (permalink)
Junkie
 
You guys are all missing the point.

The congregation were not happy with his decision. Some worshipers even walked out. Obviously he wasn't causing that much of a disturbance.

And I don't think it's political correctness to show compassion and understanding to the disabled.I think it's common human deceny; something a lot of you seem to be lacking.

Mr Mephisto
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:07 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
And I don't think it's political correctness to show compassion and understanding to the disabled. I think it's common human deceny; something a lot of you seem to be lacking.
I think that's pretty low.

In this case perhaps it was wrong for him to have removed the mentally handicapped man -but- many of us 'indecent' people feel that a priest should have the ability to remove a disruption regardless of his or her mental capacity.
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:36 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorade Frost
In this case perhaps it was wrong for him to have removed the mentally handicapped man -but- many of us 'indecent' people feel that a priest should have the ability to remove a disruption regardless of his or her mental capacity.

I find the idea of being kicked out of a church for anything short of running round naked and chasing the sisters a bit mind boggling, no?

It was a different kind of disruption. He was mentally handicapped and that fact alone means that the normal rules do not apply and special considerations have to be made. Not drastic measures, but a little common sense could've done a whole lot of good here.

Yes, there are rules. However, sometimes rules have to be bent a bit to accomodate our humanity. He's mentally handicapped. I don't know the particulars of the story, but there's a good chance that he couldn't control his "outburst." A small nod, a slight pause, maybe a bit of banter with the crowd; any of these would've done a lot more good than kicking the disabled kid out.
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:41 PM   #16 (permalink)
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From what I can tell, we're not going to be able to get anywhere in this simply because we don't fully understand the situation to which he was removed from the church. We're just speculating on it all.

Like I said, though, I disagree that you'd have to be short of running naked through a church to be booted from it, but I figure that ths difference won't necessarily be something we can persuade each other on.
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Old 12-22-2004, 12:32 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glava
As much as I dislike religion, there are times when the clergyman is right. The guy was kicked out not because he is retarded, but because he was a disturbance. If a normal person behaved the same way, they would be expelled also. Politically correct terms can kiss my ass, by the way.

Bingo. I couldn't have said it better...so i'll quote you.
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Old 12-22-2004, 01:47 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glava
As much as I dislike religion, there are times when the clergyman is right. The guy was kicked out not because he is retarded, but because he was a disturbance. If a normal person behaved the same way, they would be expelled also. Politically correct terms can kiss my ass, by the way.
I have to respectfully disagree. You can't equate a person with average intelligence with a person of lower inteligence in this case. If someone like me or you (who are of normal mental abilities) were making noise in church, we would be fully aware that we were making the noice in a place where it is innapropriate. We have a grasp of social rules because of our cognative abilties. Unfortunatly, the intellectually disabled man in the church did not seem to ahve such a grasp. Intent was not there the same way that sympathy doesn't seem to be here. The Catholic Church's stand on mental retardation is very simple: God loves all of His children. We have to learn sympathy and empathy in order to facilitate these people because they are a part of our society. Dismissal is an option only considered by those who are too ignorant to sympathise.
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Old 12-22-2004, 01:58 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Most churches I been too have small enclosed rooms with pews and a big glass window. They are also wired with speakers so you can hear the mass. The rooms are there for parents with infants or kids that will be a disturbance to the other people in church. If the church was equipped with one of these perhaps the kid should have been in one.

I have a hard time beleiving the priest would kick him out unless he was being an extreme nuisance. But the story is shy on the details. Based on it, no one here really has a clue what happened.
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:12 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I rarely go to services....but have as of late, gone to a unitarian church down the street. The congregation there is extremely mixed, and has a family (present at two of the three services I attended) with two autistic children. These kids are somewhat loud at times, and rarely stay in one place.
Everyone, and I do mean everyone, in the church looks out for these kids. I felt perfectly comfortable in this place due to the obvious care these people felt for each other, and the fact that nobody looked down upon the family. Having been raised Catholic, and spending everyday save Saturday in church for seven years, I was very hesitant to attend a church service again, but the attitudes prevelant inside this place have given me pause in my dislike of organized religious affairs.
That said, it would seem the issue here is one of respect, and true caring for your fellow Man/Woman, not some PC statement of acceptance. The Idea behind a congregation, at least to me, would be centered around the people who attend, NOT the profound words of the woman (female clergy here) at the pulpit.
It is unfortunate in my opinion, that the guide in these peoples spiritual journey, has decided his own use of this Gods' house , superscedes the use of those who have come to experience it.

I would think the "GOD" entity, is pretty pissed about now.

EDIT- Care for the lepers....for they too , are Gods children.
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Last edited by tecoyah; 12-22-2004 at 02:16 AM..
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Old 12-22-2004, 07:46 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willravel
I have to respectfully disagree. You can't equate a person with average intelligence with a person of lower inteligence in this case. If someone like me or you (who are of normal mental abilities) were making noise in church, we would be fully aware that we were making the noice in a place where it is innapropriate. We have a grasp of social rules because of our cognative abilties. Unfortunatly, the intellectually disabled man in the church did not seem to ahve such a grasp. Intent was not there the same way that sympathy doesn't seem to be here. The Catholic Church's stand on mental retardation is very simple: God loves all of His children. We have to learn sympathy and empathy in order to facilitate these people because they are a part of our society. Dismissal is an option only considered by those who are too ignorant to sympathise.
When a judge/jury tries to find a punishment for a crime, they consider intent in their decision-making process, as mandated by law. However, the priest didn't try to punish. He had a much more practical purpose in mind - to get rid of a disturbance. Kicking out the retarded man would be equivalent to closing a classroom door because of a noisy hallway. Nobody wants to punish the hallway, but isolating yourself from it serves a very practical purpose.
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Old 12-22-2004, 07:56 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glava
When a judge/jury tries to find a punishment for a crime, they consider intent in their decision-making process, as mandated by law. However, the priest didn't try to punish. He had a much more practical purpose in mind - to get rid of a disturbance. Kicking out the retarded man would be equivalent to closing a classroom door because of a noisy hallway. Nobody wants to punish the hallway, but isolating yourself from it serves a very practical purpose.
I couldn't disagree more.

Christianity is an inclusive religion. By ejecting someone, who was patently there to worship, just because they were disabled and praying loudly, goes against every tenet of the Christian faith. It's hypocritical and it's annoying.

Let me repeat something that everyone seems to be missing here.

The priest's colleague and his direct superior both disagreed with this action. The superior actually apologized "unreservedly" and said that people were "LIVID" as a result.

So why when his own colleagues, his own boss, his own parishoners, all believe this action was inappropriate (at best), do some of you continue to defend him?

I contend that it's for no other reason than as a conscious or unconscious backlash against disabled people. Give me another good reason.


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Old 12-22-2004, 08:09 AM   #23 (permalink)
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This is actually one area where the U.S. is more liberal than most of the world with our "Americans with Disablilties Act." It's actually the greatest achievement of GHWBush's presidency, even though it had to be piggybacked on vital legislation to pass veto.

It's not perfect though and has been abused by some unscrupulous lawyers. It also wouldn't apply in this case because the church is private property. I can understand why some European countries haven't adopted similiar measures because of their ancient cities, but surely Australia could do something like this.

Last edited by Locobot; 12-22-2004 at 09:04 AM..
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:13 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
I contend that it's for no other reason than as a conscious or unconscious backlash against disabled people. Give me another good reason.
After sleeping on this subject and re-reading through some of the posts I've come to the conclusion that he should in fact not have been removed.
But I also think that you're statements aren't particularly constructive since you're practically accusing everyone who supported removing a disruptive man discriminatory.
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Old 12-22-2004, 10:31 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glava
When a judge/jury tries to find a punishment for a crime, they consider intent in their decision-making process, as mandated by law. However, the priest didn't try to punish. He had a much more practical purpose in mind - to get rid of a disturbance. Kicking out the retarded man would be equivalent to closing a classroom door because of a noisy hallway. Nobody wants to punish the hallway, but isolating yourself from it serves a very practical purpose.
Are you equating a mentally disabled person with a hallway?! You may not know this, so I'll share something I've learned from experience. Mentally diabled people, though not always of rational mind, still have just as many feelings as any person. While this man may not have understood what was going on totally, I would be willing to bet he understood that he was being singled out in a less than friendly way. A hallway does not have rights and oes not deserve respect. This man does have feelings and does deserve respect. It isn't necessarily about punishment, it is more bassic than that. This was a response that was innapropriate. While it wasn't a punishment, it was a response that disregarded the special situation in this case. If a child is being loud, the child is removed by a parent. The pastor does not stop the service and ask the child to leave. Can you imagine how frightening and embarassing that would be for the child? The same is true of this man.
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Old 12-22-2004, 10:48 AM   #26 (permalink)
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The last post was along the lines of what i was thinking. This person certainly had a caretaker accompany him to the service, and they should have had the common sense to escort this person out of the place. Seeing as how this obviously didn't happen, the priest could have directed the alter boy to remove them in a less public, less humiliating manner.
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Old 12-22-2004, 11:08 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorade Frost
After sleeping on this subject and re-reading through some of the posts I've come to the conclusion that he should in fact not have been removed.
But I also think that you're statements aren't particularly constructive since you're practically accusing everyone who supported removing a disruptive man discriminatory.
I agree with what you're saying here.

Mr. Mephisto:
It doesn't seem right to me that you claimed to want to only discuss this as an example of a trend, rather than the details. So a few people in here are saying that a priest ought to be able to remove a disruption from the service--regardless of whether the disruption comes from a person with disabilities or not.

Yet, then you uses the actual incident to label those few people as wholly intolerant because they don't disagree with the actions of this particular priest (or at least, didn't say so at first).


So you seem to have conflicting goals: either we talk about these types of incidents or we talk about this particular indicent--but not use one's opinion of a particular incident to chastise them over an entire group of incidents, in general.

For myself, I too think priests are acting appropriately if they feel the need to remove a disturbance from the pews to protect their congregation. I don't see christianity as inclusively as some others do. I think a church protects its congregation--nothing more. If those people were part of the congregation, then I would agree that the priest doesn't have any rationale for removing someone. If some bums wander in off the street and hover around for communion wine and start making a commotion while being "guests", I think the priest has to make a similar decision between the needs/safety of his congregation and those of visitors to the church.

The statements above could have widely divergent meaning. While some members of the congregation were livid, we don't know which incident they were livid about. That is, were they livid at the disturbance or were they livid at the removal. We don't know, and possibly even the person who supplied that information to the newspaper doesn't know. But it really doesn't matter to me, either.

I'm capable of reserving outrage toward an incident I wasn't a party to. If I happen to be in a situation where someone is disrespected, I will make my views known if I feel the desire to do so. But I don't feel I need to voice disapproval of a particular incident that doesn't involve me and that I don't know the details of, and has already occurred regardless in order to feel like a decent human being on an anonymous internet forum.
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:23 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Mr. Mephisto, damn right you should be angered. Discrimination in any form is intolerable.

For those of you who suggest that a minister/priest/rabbi/shaman/whatever has the right to remove someone from their service who is causing a disturbance, what exactly do you consider a disturbance? Where is the line crossed to become inappropriate? Would an individual who does not bathe frequently be appropriate to be removed? (Before you jump to the homeless person concept, think about some of the older individuals you have encountered who do not bathe frequently and are able bodied.) Would a new married couple who are very affectionate to each other be a distrubance to others (and I'm not talking about making out or more graphic activity, just holding each other tightly)? What about a same sex couple just sitting next to each other - I know that would disturb many individuals. What exactly is the guidline?

Inidividuals with cognitive disablities can have issues that are not in the norm. But does that make them less of a person? In the USA, laws were passed to afford each individual with the right to pursue their life with equal accomodation. The most common occurence are accessibilty ramps and curbs, along with elevators in public buildings. We have assisted those with physical needs, why shouldn't we assist those with cognitive needs?

In my experience not just as someone who deals with a largely diverse client base, but also a sibling of an individual with cognitive and physical disablilities, individuals and families deal with many challenges, not the least of which is those who do not comprehend the abilities of the disabled. Sure, many poeple have donated time or money to an organization that supports those with need, but do they realize that many individuals are under-served or not served at all. The fact that this individual is able to live in a community setting with the assistance of others is the goal for all in the disability movement. Many states/countries still have institutions that are essentially prisons for people who have committed no crime - they were just born.

Back to topic, any public individual who does not realize that their constituency is everyone in their parish/district/etc., and would willfully exclude an individual because of a disability is wrong. Although the article doesn't give an exact age of the priest, we can assume that since he has been a priest for forty years, he is older. Fortunately, in all walks of life, younger individuals are being trained to accomodate and include all individuals regardless of their abilities. It was right for the entire community and hierachy to chastise his actions; it was wrong.

Speaking for Ourselves is a nonprofit organization that I am familiar with. They are an organization formed by individuals with disablities of various levels who felt that their voices were represented well by others, but was not as poignant as what they had to say themselves. I will leave you with their mission statement:

Quote:
Our mission is to find a voice for ourselves.

Teach the public about the needs and wishes and potential of people with disabilities.

Speak out on important issues and Support each other through sharing, leadership development and helping and encouraging each other.
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:40 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I think we've reached the "digging in heels" point. It's unfortunate how one newspaper account with ample room for interpretation is enough to drive people at each other in this way.
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:53 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorade Frost
After sleeping on this subject and re-reading through some of the posts I've come to the conclusion that he should in fact not have been removed.
But I also think that you're statements aren't particularly constructive since you're practically accusing everyone who supported removing a disruptive man discriminatory.
No I haven't. I said that people who support a man who ejected a mentally retarded person from church for praying too loud was an example of how disabled people are treated saddens me.

This priest annoyed his own colleagues, his own parishoners and his actions resulted in an unreserved apology by his superior.

I then reacted to some people here defending him, when his actions are indefensible and agreed so by all concerned. Furthermore, some posters then posted comments like disabled people "got the short end of the stick" and "I'm an asshole" (commenting about their own admitted prejudice) etc. Several people complained about "political correctness". I disagreed and said this is about human deceny and not political correctness.

My posts repeatedly said disabled people should be treated with more respect and more understanding than able bodied and able minded people. I appealed to us all to open "our hearts and minds".

How is that accusing others of discrimination?


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Old 12-22-2004, 02:56 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Locobot
This is actually one area where the U.S. is more liberal than most of the world with our "Americans with Disablilties Act." It's actually the greatest achievement of GHWBush's presidency, even though it had to be piggybacked on vital legislation to pass veto.

It's not perfect though and has been abused by some unscrupulous lawyers. It also wouldn't apply in this case because the church is private property. I can understand why some European countries haven't adopted similiar measures because of their ancient cities, but surely Australia could do something like this.
The story comes from Ireland, my home country and the place I lived for all my life until four years ago. Ireland is traditionally considered a very devout Catholic country; another reason this grates for me and many others (the parishoners who complained or actually walked out in protest for example).

Ireland does have quite progressive anti-discriminatory laws in fact. If people wanted to, they could prosecute this priest. But what does that achieve?

It's opinions we need to change, not actions based upon fear of litigation.


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Old 12-22-2004, 03:09 PM   #32 (permalink)
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some of you have already said what I think in a better way than I could...so I will just say that I agree with everyone that supports Mr.Mephisto.

If that were my church I wouldnt set foot back in it again. The people that dont agree disabled people are an "exception" to the rules are wrong in my opinion.

I have a big place in my heart for the mentally/physically disabled. ALL thru school I was the one that sat with them on the playground cause nobody would play with them, or push their wheelchairs in the lunch lines. Every year I volunteered at our counties school for the disabled when they had their special functions, festivals etc. I worked with the special olympics as well. I never did any of this expecting anything at all in return....but when you get that smile...or them telling you that you are a special person thats all I could ever ask for.

All people are special in their own way....even mentally/physically limited people.

I wonder how many people would still side with the priest if they had to spend just one day being dependant on someone else. If they had to have their diapers changed (yes Im talking about adults) because they werent able to use the bathroom by themselves, if they had to be hand fed, if they had to have someone speak or see for them.

I feel so sorry for people that think exceptions dont need to be made for people like this.
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Old 12-22-2004, 03:19 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Hey smooth. I owe you a PM. Just got back from a lengthy business trip...

Quote:
Originally Posted by smooth
I agree with what you're saying here.

Mr. Mephisto:
It doesn't seem right to me that you claimed to want to only discuss this as an example of a trend, rather than the details. So a few people in here are saying that a priest ought to be able to remove a disruption from the service--regardless of whether the disruption comes from a person with disabilities or not.
No, a few people said that disabled people should not be treated any differently, or complained about political correctness.

I'll say it again, people are missing the point. And that is, disabled people SHOULD be treated differently. They should be shown understanding, compassion, welcomed into the community, shown they have value (both personal and to society).

That's why I have reacted to what I see as a petty and incompassionate response to this story. Good grief, the people invovled directly can see the point. The only ones defending this priest's actions are a few on this board! Not his parishoners, not his colleagues and not his direct superior.


Quote:

Yet, then you uses the actual incident to label those few people as wholly intolerant because they don't disagree with the actions of this particular priest (or at least, didn't say so at first).
I'm not labeling anyone anything. I said that acting compassionately towards the disabled is not political correctness, but it is human decency. And this is something that some people here are lacking; or so their responses would imply.


I have absolutely no problem with a priest asking for a deliberately disruptive person to leave a church. Of course they should be allowed to do this.

But for a priest to remove someone mentally handicapped, who is self-evidently being integrated into society, who is being brought to church to pray, who is in a place of Christian worship, for praying too loudly?

That's just fucking wrong.


Quote:
So you seem to have conflicting goals: either we talk about these types of incidents or we talk about this particular indicent--but not use one's opinion of a particular incident to chastise them over an entire group of incidents, in general.
My original intent, repeated a couple of times, was to talk about the trend. However, the thread has evolved into a back-lash against perceived PC sensibilities when the incident is no such thing. I have simply responded to what I believe are incompassionate (dare I say unChristian) comments.

Quote:
For myself, I too think priests are acting appropriately if they feel the need to remove a disturbance from the pews to protect their congregation.
But obviously this priest acted inappropriately. I never said they shouldn't allowed to remove someone, but not in this manner and most importantly, not in this circumstance.

Quote:
I don't see christianity as inclusively as some others do. I think a church protects its congregation--nothing more. If those people were part of the congregation, then I would agree that the priest doesn't have any rationale for removing someone. If some bums wander in off the street and hover around for communion wine and start making a commotion while being "guests", I think the priest has to make a similar decision between the needs/safety of his congregation and those of visitors to the church.

The statements above could have widely divergent meaning. While some members of the congregation were livid, we don't know which incident they were livid about. That is, were they livid at the disturbance or were they livid at the removal.
You're being flippant. Of course they were livid about the removal. Reread the story and the context in which the unreserved apology was given.

Quote:
We don't know, and possibly even the person who supplied that information to the newspaper doesn't know. But it really doesn't matter to me, either.

I'm capable of reserving outrage toward an incident I wasn't a party to. If I happen to be in a situation where someone is disrespected, I will make my views known if I feel the desire to do so. But I don't feel I need to voice disapproval of a particular incident that doesn't involve me and that I don't know the details of, and has already occurred regardless in order to feel like a decent human being on an anonymous internet forum.
We are all capable of reserving our opinions and emotions. But that doesn't mean you don't express them when, and if, you feel it's appropriate. I have seen you comment negatively about other topics.


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Old 12-22-2004, 03:28 PM   #34 (permalink)
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I don't think this issue is as black and white as many would like to think. I believe the rights of the disabled end as soon as they start to encroach on my rights. I don't hate the disabled. I not willing to say that there is nothing a disabled person could do that would warrant their removal from a church service because doing so would be incredibly unrealistic. I don't think the reactions of some of the congregation or clergy are indicative of anything besides the simple fact that this situation had a polarizing effect on the members of this church.

Regardless, to point to this story as proof of a trend seems a stretch. We can speculate as to the many unknowns in this particular instance, but when it comes down to it, none of us knows what actually happened aside from the specifics laid forth in the article.
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Old 12-22-2004, 03:40 PM   #35 (permalink)
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I believe you're missunderstanding the intent of the thread.

The incident is indicative of a lack of understanding and integration for disabled people. It simply inspired my request that we "open [our] hearts and open [our] minds."

No more, no less.


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Old 12-22-2004, 03:45 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Mephisto
I believe you're missunderstanding the intent of the thread.

The incident is indicative of a lack of understanding and integration for disabled people. It simply inspired my request that we "open [our] hearts and open [our] minds."

No more, no less.


Mr Mephisto
Gotcha, consider it opened.
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Old 12-22-2004, 04:57 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Mephisto
Hey smooth. I owe you a PM. Just got back from a lengthy business trip...



No, a few people said that disabled people should not be treated any differently, or complained about political correctness.

I'll say it again, people are missing the point. And that is, disabled people SHOULD be treated differently. They should be shown understanding, compassion, welcomed into the community, shown they have value (both personal and to society).

That's why I have reacted to what I see as a petty and incompassionate response to this story. Good grief, the people invovled directly can see the point. The only ones defending this priest's actions are a few on this board! Not his parishoners, not his colleagues and not his direct superior.




I'm not labeling anyone anything. I said that acting compassionately towards the disabled is not political correctness, but it is human decency. And this is something that some people here are lacking; or so their responses would imply.


I have absolutely no problem with a priest asking for a deliberately disruptive person to leave a church. Of course they should be allowed to do this.

But for a priest to remove someone mentally handicapped, who is self-evidently being integrated into society, who is being brought to church to pray, who is in a place of Christian worship, for praying too loudly?

That's just fucking wrong.




My original intent, repeated a couple of times, was to talk about the trend. However, the thread has evolved into a back-lash against perceived PC sensibilities when the incident is no such thing. I have simply responded to what I believe are incompassionate (dare I say unChristian) comments.



But obviously this priest acted inappropriately. I never said they shouldn't allowed to remove someone, but not in this manner and most importantly, not in this circumstance.



You're being flippant. Of course they were livid about the removal. Reread the story and the context in which the unreserved apology was given.



We are all capable of reserving our opinions and emotions. But that doesn't mean you don't express them when, and if, you feel it's appropriate. I have seen you comment negatively about other topics.


Mr Mephisto
Yes, I guess my entire post could have been summed up like this:

My capacity to reserve judgement on a particular incident shouldn't be read by you as a lack of common human decency.



The two posts above your first response actually agreed that the priest seemed to have gone too far, but also that they didn't have enough information to really make a strong assertion.

The post directly above your third response (from Shakran) was trying to reconcile the feelings of a community (an affected congregation) with those of an individual.

In between all of that it looked to me like people were not defending this priest, but rather a priest's ability or right to eject someone from the service to end a disturbance.


So I was hoping for you to reevaluate how you are viewing many of those posts as they don't seem to be heartless or inhuman as you're feeling when you walk away after reading them.


Bones: I don't know if we would all agree upon "The" line, but I think your post is evidence that everyone is operating with some kind of line of exemptable disruptions. That is, your examples are would 'this' be ok (but not that, since that is pretty universally unacceptable; what about 'this,' but not straight up sex in the pews; what about 'this,' but we all would presumably agree that being drunk and grabbing the lady in front of you on the ass or tits would be proper grounds to eject your drunk ass...).

I hope you see my point, because I haven't found that when I come back and repeat myself that much gets solved so I'll probably just watch this thread from here on out.
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Old 12-22-2004, 07:17 PM   #38 (permalink)
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I don't see how disabled people are supposedly supposed to be given special treatment while being treated like everyone else. If they are being integrated into regular society, they have to learn to live by society's norms just like everyone else. Otherwise, how can they be integrated?

On a more general point, it's unfortunate but disabled are at a disadvantage in comparison to "normal" people. Just like I am at a disadvantage in comparison to an athlete, or someone with a high school education will probably be at a disadvantage to someone with a doctorate. People of all types face disadvantages, why should those whose are more extreme be given special rights?
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:00 PM   #39 (permalink)
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snip double post
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:00 PM   #40 (permalink)
Junkie
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by alansmithee
I don't see how disabled people are supposedly supposed to be given special treatment while being treated like everyone else. If they are being integrated into regular society, they have to learn to live by society's norms just like everyone else. Otherwise, how can they be integrated?

On a more general point, it's unfortunate but disabled are at a disadvantage in comparison to "normal" people. Just like I am at a disadvantage in comparison to an athlete, or someone with a high school education will probably be at a disadvantage to someone with a doctorate. People of all types face disadvantages, why should those whose are more extreme be given special rights?

Riiiiight...

So, just like us "normal" folk, they should have to negotiate steps. Who says we need wheelchair ramps? Damn waste of money!

Plus, what's with all these closed caption machines and braille signs? If you're blind and want to be "treated like everyone else", then you deserve no special treatment. I'm sick of seeing those blind people get all the breaks!

And don't get me started on those retards. If they want to be treated like everyone else, then they have to learn to deal with the world like the rest of us! If they don't understand what's happening around them, if strangers and the frentic rush of modern society scares them, if they have trouble relating to others, if they can't read or count or write... well, so what? They should handle it just like us "normal" people.

/sarcasm


Quote:
Originally Posted by smooth
My capacity to reserve judgement on a particular incident shouldn't be read by you as a lack of common human decency.
I didn't accuse you of having little or no human decency. That comment was made before you joined the thread. It was also aimed at posts such as the one above, at those who admitted they were "assholes" and couldn't care less, those who reacted to this event in a backlash against perceived (and so-called) political correctness and those who defended this particular priest when everyone else involved did not.

And I stated, repeatedly, that a priest should be allowed to ask someone to leave if they feel they are disruptive. Personally I think it's hypocritical, especially if the person is not intentionally doing anything and is there to worship. What's next? Religion only for those that "fit the bill" and "behave"?

Like I said, it has a waft of hypocracy and meanmindedness about it, but that's my personal opinion.


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