Last week Attorney General Mark Herring announced that his office was launching an investigation into potential child sexual abuse and cover up in the two diocese of the Roman Catholic Church in Virginia.
The Family Foundation applauds law enforcement and the Bishops of the Roman Catholic Church in Virginia for committing to fully investigate all claims and to ensure that children are kept safe.
Anyone who abuses a child should be reported to law enforcement and punished to the full extent of the law. It is good to know that Attorney General Herring will have the support of the two Bishops in Virginia as he undertakes this investigation into sexual abuse within that religious institution.
While it is great that he is investigating child sexual abuse in this case, we want to know why he refused to investigate child sexual abuse when it was connected to the abortion industry.
Why did Attorney General Mark Herring release an advisory opinion four years ago telling the medical community that they do not have to report sexual abuse of minors?
His opinion then was that no report of the sexual abuse needed to be made by nurses who knew that a 14-year-old girl was pregnant. Even though he admits that a 14-year-old who is pregnant is proof positive that a “Class 4 felony” has been committed against her, he didn’t seem to think reporting that abuse was important in those cases.
Instead of vigilantly pursuing justice for these young girls who have been sexually abused, Attorney General Herring was content to let their stories disappear. Why was he less gung-ho to investigate sexual abuse back then?
Perhaps it was because these cases were coming out of the abortion industry.
Back in 2014, the Attorney General narrowly interpreted the meaning of the law so that sexual abuse cases in the abortion industry wouldn’t come to light.
What is the difference between the question in 2014 and the question today? Perhaps the horrific account of abuse within the Catholic Church in Pennsylvania made a difference?
Wouldn’t the horrific account of children being murdered in an abortion clinic in Pennsylvania also make a difference?
Attorney General Herring is right to be concerned about child sexual abuse. It is right for law enforcement to investigate possible abuse.
We urge him to not only investigate the Catholic Church, but the abortion industry as well.
All children should get protection from the law. They should never be sent back from an abortion to suffer sexual abuse in lonely isolation.
Attorney General Herring was wrong in 2014. We hope he’ll change his mind.