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  1. #1
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    UK - Bodies of 800 children found in septic tank, Ireland

    I am putting in this in "crimes" because that's exactly what this is, a horrific mass murder.

    Bodies of 800 children found in septic tank of former home for unwed mothers

    Special kinds of neglect and abuse were reserved for the Home Babies, as locals call them. Many in surrounding communities remember them. They remember how they were segregated to the fringes of classrooms, and how the local nuns accentuated the differences between them and the others. They remember how, as one local told the Irish Central, they were “usually gone by school age - either adopted or dead”.

    According to Irish Central, a 1944 local health board report described the children living at the Home as “emaciated,” “pot-bellied,” “fragile” and with “flesh hanging loosely on limbs.”

    http://www.essentialbaby.com.au/life...604-39i4a.html


    It's not just the priests who need investigating for historic child abuse... But you never hear about the nuns.

    I recall one lady, slightly dotty, who had carried the traumatic memory of seeing an unwed mother thrown from a high window by a nun at one of the laundry sweatshops aka 'homes for unwed mothers' here in Melbourne, many many years ago.

    I'm sure there's lots of stories out there regarding abuse by nuns. Women can be sadists and sociopaths too.. and where better to be for one of those, than a sanctioned victim pool filled with victims nobody gives a damn about.
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  2. #2
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    Wow, just wow.
    Media thread for Abby and Libby.


    http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...5#post13163455

    WebSleuths Lingo thread.

    http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...bsleuths-Lingo

    Unless I provide a link, every one of my posts are to be considered rumor, Speculation, or simply MY OWN OPINION.

    We are the watchers. We are witnesses. We see what has gone before. We see what happens now, at this dangerous moment in human history. We see what's going to happen - what will surely happen - unless we come together: we - the Peoples of all Nations - to restore peace and harmony and balance to the Earth, our Mother.


    THE IGNORE BUTTON IS YOUR FRIEND!

  3. #3
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    In the name of offering a balanced view, many people spoke out about this news, claiming it was a hoax. It was not a hoax. County records show that almost 800 children indeed died at the home over 40 years.

    The septic tank wasn't in use and full of excrement, as apparently some papers said it was. I never supposed it was, but assumed it some existing pit that was handy to the home. This appears to be right, as stated by a heavy defender of the nuns:

    My interlocutors have done little to challenge Finbar McCormick’s expert testimony. True, they have produced a map on which a sewage tank is marked but contrary to their contention this proves nothing. Given that an institution – a so-called workhouse for the indigent – already existed at the site as far back as the nineteenth century, the existence of a cesspit in close proximity to the building was entirely to be expected.

    Basically we are still left with a totally confused picture. But even if we are to assume that the babies’ last resting place was a disused sewage tank, this does not justify the sensational “dumping babies bodies in a septic tank” allegation that made this story a global sensation. On the whole I agree with Andrew Brown, a commentator on religious matters, who has written a thoughtful and balanced commentary for the London Guardian. As he points out, for those who want to dismiss the nuns as wicked witches, the problem is chronology. He comments: “If the bodies were placed in a sewage tank long after it had been drained and disused, this would seem much less shocking. That less shocking story is at least plausible.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/eamonnfi...-a-media-hoax/

    Oh much less shocking.

    Other sources claim that the story is a conflation of two sources:

    1. record of 800 children dying in the home.
    2. Two men reporting that they found a mass grave on the grounds of the home

    Well, sure. But who was IN that mass grave, un-named, un-marked, unremembered? Not a single freakin nun, I bet.
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  4. #4
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    Another person investigating the truth of the matter:

    No one is challenging Corless’s archival research, which appears to show that nearly 800 babies and children died at the home over a period of 40 years, without burial records. Locals believe that they are buried in an unofficial graveyard at the back of the building, where they have built a small grotto and placed flowers. One expert on health and mortality in Ireland believes that the death rates are much higher than they ought to have been and deserve further investigation. Contemporary debates in Ireland’s parliament reveal that children born out of wedlock in Ireland in the 1920s had a mortality rate five times higher than normal, in part because of semi-deliberate neglect. In some years in some institutions, the mortality rate for such children seems to have been above 50 percent.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...ive-questions/

    And another, highly critical of the headlines:

    On almost every level, the news reports in respectable media outlets around the world were plain wrong. Most importantly, the constantly repeated line about the bodies of 800 babies having been found was pure mythmaking. The bodies of 800 babies had not been found, in the septic tank or anywhere else. Rather, Corless had speculated in her research that the 796 children who died at the home had been buried in unmarked plots (common practice for illegitimate children in Ireland in the early to mid-twentieth century) and that some might have been put in the tank in which two boys in 1975 saw human remains. The septic tank or the grounds of the former home have not been excavated. No babies have been ‘found in a septic tank’, as the Washington Post, Guardian and others claimed. The claim that the babies were ‘dumped’ into some kind of sewage system is wrong, too. Corless says the nuns ‘made a crypt out of the old septic tank’.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite...0#.U6KWZq4UXwk
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  5. #5
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    YUCK!!

    There is NO good use of a disused septic tank -- thank you very much -- if they are disused they should be hacked apart especially so that the no one accidentally falls into it....dang.

  6. #6
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    he home was knocked down many years ago to make way for new houses, but the area around the unmarked mass grave has been maintained by locals.

    A fundraising committee has now been formed and it is hoped a memorial will be built with all the names and ages of the children displayed.

    Archbishop of Tuam Michael Neary said he would meet leaders of the Bon Secours Sisters to assist with the memorial.

    Minister for children and youth affairs Charlie Flanagan said "active consideration is being given to the best means of addressing the harrowing details".

    "Many of the revelations are deeply disturbing and a shocking reminder of a darker past in Ireland when our children were not cherished as they should have been," he said.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-0...-grave/5501482

    England can today prosecute 83 yo TV stars on "historic" alleged sexual assaults (many of which are being prosecuted with the *flimsiest* of anecdotal evidence) but nuns who actually did starve and neglect and abuse helpless infants always seem to get a walk. With a mild and very diluted-by-excuses message of dismay from the religious body ultimately responsible for all that untold suffering.

    Go figure.
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  7. #7
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    Children in general were not cherished and b...tards were less than 2nd class....along with their moms....not that long ago and reminded of that at every turn not just by nuns by ''proper'' folks too.

  8. #8
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    This must be one of the worst reported stories I've ever seen. The bodies of 800 children haven't been found anywhere - 796 death certificates have been found for children between the ages of 0 and 9 who died in the Bon Secours home over the course of 36 years, between 1925 and 1961. Where they are buried nobody knows.

    Mixed up in the story is an account given by a middle aged man of how he and his friend saw some bones in a concrete tank buried in the grounds of where the home used to be. He says there were maybe 20 people buried in there. His description of where they found that tank back in 1975 may or may not be the same place as the site marked on some maps as a septic tank.

    And from that, the world media have gone screaming "800 BABIES FOUND IN A SEWER, OMG EVIL CATHOLIC IRELAND!!!!!"

    Some facts - there have been mass graves discovered all over Ireland, particularly near the sites of former workhouses, because over a million people died here in a famine in the mid 19th century. Sadly, it has been known for workmen who discover them during the course of building a road, housing estate, etc, to simply dig a hole somewhere out of their way and dump the lot in there. It wouldn't entirely shock me if it turned out to be the workmen who built the housing estate who put the bones into the concrete tank.


    As for the death toll - that averages out as around 22 deaths a year in a home which housed around 300 people at any given time. That's not outrageously high, especially in the pre-war years when such things as antibiotics, vaccines etc weren't widely available.

    Anyway, the government has set up a Commission of Enquiry into all the mother and baby homes in Ireland which is due to begin its investigations in July this year. Hopefully their investigations will shed some actual light on the situation because all we've had so far is heat and hot air.

  9. #9
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    With all respect, Cappa..

    - Yes, it is an appalling bit of kneejerk journalism that the facts (which are still REALLY awful) were fudged for the sake of a dramatic headline.

    -- This was not the 1800's famine - it was a church-run home, 1920-1960.

    -- 22 deaths per year average - if that happened in any kid's home in Aus or the US or England, it'd be suspicious. Why not in a home in Ireland, one run by the wealthiest religion in the world to boot? If you scroll up, it's been stated that this is an unusually high number of deaths, which warrants investigation.

    -- Witnesses have stated that the children were in generally appalling condition, by the sounds of it, severely malnourished at the very least.

    -- Research shows me that most of these kids came into the home at *birth*, so they'd been there all their short lives - it was not general poverty causing their dreadful condition.

    -- There's just no minimising the horror of children's homes like this. There just is not. They were miniature death camps for children brought into a world (thanks to views on birth control set out by the same church running the home) which did not want them (thanks to views on unwed mothers set out by the same church running the home). The church is why they were there at all, surely it's not much to ask to that it be held responsible for their subsequent suffering and deaths?

    So what if it was long ago (1960 is not that long ago though, is it..) and in a country wracked with poverty? I am sure the Vatican was doing very nicely all through that era. So how is it that 800 little children in this --one-- institution (out of how many??) starved and perished?

    I fully expect any enquiry to find the church all but blameless. This does not mean the neglect of those little kids was not a crime.
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  10. #10
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    I didn't come in here to defend the Catholic Church, Ausgirl. I'm an atheist, and I can carry on all day about the things that the Catholic Church in Ireland and elsewhere should be blamed for - things for which we have actual evidence. But this home in Tuam, at this stage, doesn't seem to be one of them.

    You are labouring under some misconceptions...

    This was not the 1800's famine - it was a church-run home, 1920-1960.
    Nobody knows where those bones found by the two boys in 1975 came from. They could well be famine victims, and unless the site is exhumed and the remains examined, we never will know. Hopefully the Commission of Enquiry will do just that.

    Bear in mind that the West of Ireland, (where Tuam is situated), was one of the hardest hit areas during the famine, and that there was a workhouse on the site of the mother and baby home during that famine. The probability that the boys found a famine grave is high, although we won't know unless further investigations are carried out.

    22 deaths per year average - if that happened in any kid's home in Aus or the US or the UK, it'd be suspicious. Why not in a home in Ireland, one run by the wealthiest religion in the world to boot? If you scroll up, it's been stated that this is an unusually high number of deaths, which warrants investigation.
    Its not suspicious in Ireland because its no higher than the national child mortality rate during the same period. Its a child mortality rate of around 8-9%. To put that in context, the child mortality rate in Limerick during the same period was 13.5%. The national average was closer to 8%, just slightly lower than that of this home in Tuam.

    And while the Vatican may be rich, they didn't share their wealth with the Bon Secours nuns. The home they ran in Tuam was funded by the government and by such money the nuns could raise from charities.

    Witnesses have stated that the children were in generally appalling condition, by the sounds of it, severely malnourished at the very least.
    Witnesses have stated that the children were in an appalling condition in 1944. No surprises there - there was a diphtheria epidemic in Tuam in 1944. There had also been a World War raging around Ireland for the previous five years which meant such things as essential medicines and even many foodstuffs were in scant supply.

    Other comtemporary accounts from the 1930s report that the home in Tuam was one of the better run homes of its type, and the death toll compared to the national average would tend to support that.

    There's just no minimising the horror of children's homes like this. There just is not. They were miniature death camps for children brought into a world (thanks to views on birth control set out by the same church running the home) which did not want them (thanks to views on unwed mothers set out by the same church running the home). The church is why they were there at all, surely it's not much to ask to that it be held responsible for their subsequent suffering and deaths?
    Your description above probably does apply to some of these homes - by all accounts the mother and baby home in Bessborough was particularly bad. However, there's no evidence at this stage that the home in Tuam was anything like that. In fact, I'm seeing no evidence that the children there were suffering anything other than the poverty and deprivation which was all too common generally in Irish society at the time.

    So what if it was long ago (1960 is not that long ago though, is it..) and in a country wracked with poverty? I am sure the Vatican was doing very nicely all through that era. So how is it that 800 little children in this --one-- institution (out of how many??) starved and perished?
    Their death certs show that they died of a variety of diseases including diphtheria, TB, whooping cough, measles, and yes malnutrition. Does that mean the nuns were starving and neglecting the children? Or does it simply show that the type of women and children who ended up in these homes were from the poorest and most malnourished section of Irish society?

    Cos, of course, girls from well off families who "got into trouble" went to a private nursing home and came home with a new baby "brother or sister" rather than being packed off to the nuns.

    I fully expect any enquiry to find the church all but blameless. This does not mean the neglect of those little kids was not a crime.
    That's a somewhat offensive comment, although I'm sure you don't mean to be anti-Irish. Previous government enquiries into abuses by Catholic clergy in this country haven't found the Church "all but blameless" at all. They frequently haven't found any evidence for the more lurid and inaccurate fantasies spun in the media, but they have resulted in compensation to the victims, blame attributed to the Catholic hierarchy, and in a few cases where the abusers were still living, prosecutions.

    I'm quite happy to wait and see what this enquiry results in before I jump to the conclusion that it will be a whitewash.


  11. #11
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    I wasn't at all commenting on the Irish, Cappa. Just going by experience of similar investigations over here in Aus, where a LOT of crime (including neglect) against kids by various church organisations gets swept under the rug with a mealy-mouthed apology at best, and then it's all expected to be nicely forgotten. Perhaps it works differently in Ireland.

    And thank goodness for you, doing your research. I wonder where all those little bodies are, though, if not somewhere on the property. And I wonder how many of the nuns went hungry or without medical care.

    I too will be looking forward to the results of the inquiry.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausgirl View Post
    I wasn't at all commenting on the Irish, Cappa. Just going by experience of similar investigations over here in Aus, where a LOT of crime (including neglect) against kids by various church organisations gets swept under the rug with a mealy-mouthed apology at best, and then it's all expected to be nicely forgotten. Perhaps it works differently in Ireland.

    And thank goodness for you, doing your research. I wonder where all those little bodies are, though, if not somewhere on the property. And I wonder how many of the nuns went hungry or without medical care.

    I too will be looking forward to the results of the inquiry.
    I was probably being a bit over sensitive with the anti-Irish comment. Some of the comments I've seen on other parts of the internet in response to this story aren't far from openly accusing the Irish of being some kind of sub human untermensch. I know that's not what you meant though.

    Where are the children buried is a good question. We know that this home was served by their own pastor, and not by the local parish priest, which means they would have kept their own records about such things as baptisms and burials. Once the home was closed, all the home's records were turned over to the government. So the record of where these 796 children are buried is probably lying somewhere in a dusty, long forgotten book stuffed in a box in the National Archives in Dublin.

    I would hope that is definitely one thing which can be discovered by the upcoming enquiry, that way some kind of memorial can be put in place for them.

  13. #13
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    Very Disturbing.

  14. #14
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    The Associated Press has finally issued a correction of its initial innacurate reporting...

    http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories...06-20-14-48-31



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