The Rev. Anthony Mercieca has said he didn’t “abuse” former Florida Rep. Mark Foley. According to the 69 year old priest, it’s not unusual behavior for a Catholic priest to romp around naked in a hot tub with teenage boys. While his comments are incredible, they aren’t that uncommon for sexual predators. Most perps refuse to recognize the criminal behavior that they’ve perpetrated on their underage victims.
Within a week, the Catholic Church in Florida has been rocked by the revelations of two more sexually abusive priests and two other priests who stole millions from the collection plate. Rev. Anthony Mercieca, now 69 and living on the Maltese island of Gozo, recalls touching former Congressman Mark Foley but not abusing him sexually. Mercieca seems incredibly unmoved by the damage inflicted by his nude romps in a Florida hot tub. The other abusive priest, Rev. Gustavo Miyares apologized last Sunday to his flock in Hialeah but not to his victim.
After the third day of Transcather Cardiovascular Therapeutics show, the results are still mixed regarding the safety of drug coated heart stents. The stents, manufactured by Boston Scientific’s Taxus and Johnson & Johnson’s Cypher, many experts agreed, there appears to be a long-term clotting risk compared with the use of older bare metal stents. Even some physicians have been reluctant in employing the medical devices out of fear of clotting complications. According to the NY Times article, “Reporting surprising findings from one of those studies, Dr. Alaide Chieffo, a researcher from Milan, said that Italian and German doctors who tracked more than 3,000 patients with drug-coated stents from 2002 through the end of 2004 found that the drug therapy widely thought to protect such patients from clotting had no beneficial effect after the first six months.”
Bristol Myers Squibb, the manufacturer of the blood thinning drug Coumadin, has strengthened its warning label concerning the dangers of potentially fatal bleeding. Coumadin, known generically as Warfarin, had previously cited a “risk of hemorrhage” and wasn’t highlighted in a black box.
Orlando Christian Prep and former Bishop Moore High School coach Buck Lanham has been arrested on possession of child pornography as well as possession of marijuana. The high school coach could not be arrested for the other charge, having sex with a minor, because the statute of limitations had already expired. However, law enforcement officials believe there are other victims of Lanham.
If Rep. Mark Foley was the victim of a crime, he needs to identify the perpetrator in order to protect other minors. It’s not enough that he’s disclosed that he’s a victim of sexual abuse, he needs to prevent future abuse by naming his accuser.
In all the political uproar, this message concerning the safety of our children has been lost. Just as the Catholic bishops thought first about protecting the institution, the Congressional leaders first considered their power and prestige rather than the safety of children.
That’s the real story and the tragedy of the Mark Foley saga.
Now that Mark Foley has admitted that he was sexually abused as a young boy, he needs to go one step further and identify his abuser. I don’t say this because I’m interested in more lurid details. However, the abuser needs to be identified because he or she may still be abusing other children.
This is the real horror in the Foley tragedy, the Congressional leaders failed to come forward about this story in much the same way that the Catholic bishops failed to recognize the criminality surrounding the actions of their priests.
The one thing that seems to be missing is the protection of children. Rep. Foley needs to come forward and identify the clergy person who abused him. Other children may still be in danger if this person is still alive. It’s not enough that he’s come forward and stated he’s been abused, he has sponsored legislation to protect children while a member of Congress. Now, he has an obligation to inform the public who abused him.
Medical device manufacturer Medtronic has received a warning letter from the FDA after it failed to publish a post market report concerning its stent graft AneuRx. The device was approved in 1999 and is used to treat aneurysms. The reporting requirements are a safeguard for consumers so that the device is used properly and functioning safely.
Lamictal, the Glaxo Smith Kline drug is used to treat epilepsy and bipolar disorder, has been linked to certain birth defects including cleft palate or lip exposed to the drug during pregnancy. According to a Wall St. Journal article ” After discussions with Health Canada in August, Glaxo said the cleft-palate deformity was detected at “an elevated rate” in infants whose mothers took the drug during the first three months of pregnancy, compared with others who weren’t exposed to the drug.”