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Letters: Abuse, the church and the law

Those affected by the Catholic Church's sex-abuse scandal hold a rally in February.
(Los Angeles Times)

Re “Church lobbies to avert abuse suits,” July 16

To the Roman Catholic leadership opposing SB 131, which would give more time to sex-abuse victims in California to file civil lawsuits: Stop shaming us.

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The Catholic faithful have watched in horror as the truth of sexual abuse by clergy and its coverup by Catholic leadership have come to light. We feel sorrow and shame for the sins committed by some in the church against our children, the lambs, and we expect the church to atone.

Edward Dolejsi of the California Catholic Conference, which opposes SB 131, asks an apt question: “Are you going to open another window five years from now? When does it end?”

It ends when all abuse victims have received justice. No sooner.

Dennis Villacorte

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Pomona

How tragic that your headline about a group that says it believes in a just and compassionate God could not say only “Church lobbies to avert abuse,” instead adding that last hard-hearted, money’s-all-that-matters word, “suits.”

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If only today’s Roman Catholic Church spent as much time, energy and money on trying to avert the abuse of innocent children that it does on trying not to pay legitimate penalties for that very real abuse.

My heart bleeds for those little ones.

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Bonnie Compton Hanson

Santa Ana

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Where is the moral outrage when it comes to child sex abuse committed by employees of public institutions?

The legislation would grant a statute of limitations holiday that could extend liability to private institutions such as the Boy Scouts of America

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and the Catholic Church for 50 years or more. Yet a public school district or other government agency would be exempt.

More than that, existing government statutes of limitations require a government claim to be filed within six months of the event, or within a year under a late claim. Do the pocketbooks of the taxpayers trump the damage done to children at public institutions, but not at private ones?

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Let’s be fair about this and apply the extension to everyone or no one.

Bill Robinson

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San Clemente

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