Oh my. I was hoping to clarify a number of things from Mrs. Lise Brisson’s testimony. I can’t. In this “bilingual” public inquiry the transcripts of French witness testimony are in French only. No translation.
Yes, we are getting translation of the live proceedings (as we should), but miss a minute here or there and there is no recourse to a transcript for those of us who are unilingual English. Parliament insists that all documents are translated. The same should hold true for this “public” inquiry.
I have a few comments to make about (1) Mrs. Brisson’s testimony, and (2) the ‘bring Perry Dunlop back’ movement.
Mrs. Brisson’s testimony
Benoit Brisson was sexually molested by Father Gilles Deslaurier. There is some background information on Deslaurier on “The Scandal” – scroll down to the scroll box on Deslaurier. There are also a links further down to two news items of the day, one when Delslaurier was charged (05 July 1986) , another when he was ordered to trial (18 September 1986), and yet another when he was given two years probation (11 November 1986). [All articles referenced are now on the Father Gilles Deslaurier page]
And click here for current media coverage of Mrs. Brisson’s testimony.
Mrs. Brisson has still to be cross-examined so there is more information in the offing. For now I would simply like to list the names of those clergy who were made aware of the sexual abuse allegations and, as far as I can determine, did nothing. Some it seemed talked the good talk, but it certainly doesn’t sound as though anyone was rushing to take Deslaurier out of circulation for the good of the Church or the safety and well-being of children.
Some of those advised included Archbishop Francis Spence (the then Archbishop of Kingston who would have been advised because the Diocese of Alexandria is a “suffragen” diocese of the Archdiocese of Kingston), Bishop Eugene Larocque (then bishop of the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall), Monsignor Bernard Guindon, Father Bernard Menard and Father Denis Vaillancourt.
At this moment I will comment on the latter two.
Father Bernard Menard OMI
Father Menard, according to Mrs. Brisson was not actually with the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall but was somewhere in the St. Raphael area working in a L’Arche home for the mentally retarded. The family turned to Menard seeking guidance and direction as they tried to determine how best to address the allegations. For a while it seems the family deferred totally to Menard’s guidance. That seemed to change at some point when the family decided go public because nothing was being done.
I must say I was intrigued by the involvement of this Father Menard and have been trying to sort out just who he is or was.
It turns out that Father Bernard Menard is Father Menard OMI, ordained in 1959, who spent seven years at the L’Arche community in the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall.
In the late 60s Menard was director of the Catholic Centre on Stewart St. in Ottawa, in the early 70s he was director of Novalis publishing (operating at that time out of Oblate administered St. Paul University Seminary), around 1973-74 he was off for further studies in California, then he was on to the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall for seven years and was certainly there in 1986, by 1991 he was back in Ottawa, then he over to Notre Dame de d’ille in the Diocese of Gatineau-Hull Quebec for seven years, and then by 2000 back in Ottawa teaching at Saint Paul University.
In 2003 Menard published a book promo’d by the left-wing Catholic New Times as addressing such “sensitive” issues as “ civil disobedience, suicide, opting for the outcasts, the recognition of women in their full dignity, the incredible power of non-violence, daring to break down barriers and come together as one people of God.”
A busy, mobile and fascinating man. I am puzzled that he was apparently unable to sort out an efficient and prompt method of alerting parents that a clerical sexual predator was on the loose in the diocese and of ensuring that Deslaurier was taken out of circulation.
Father Denis Vaillancourt (now Monsignor)
According to Mrs. Brisson when she told Father Vaillancourt what Deslaurier had done to her son Vaillancourt was so overcome he didn’t know what to do and broke down and cried.
This is the same Father Vaillancourt who told a group of parents, victims and citizens in 2002 that sexual abuse of boys is only a serious matter if the boys are pre-pubescent!
And one final comment on Mrs. Brisson’s testimony. Mrs. Brisson testified that before news of the sexual abuse allegations against Deslaurier were public she and her husband were approached by one Albert Morin who suggested they “drop it” – that it wasn’t worth pursuing. Mr. Brisson wisely showed him the door.
Morin also tried to convince the Brisson’s to ‘drop it’ by conveying the same message via their son-in-law.
A few questions:
(1) What is wrong with people’s heads?
(2) Have these priests who twiddle their thumbs never read Matthew 18: 6,7 “But he that shall scandalize one of these little ones that believe in me, it were better that a millstone should be hanged about his neck, and that he should be drowned in the depth of the sea.”
(3) Will the inquiry call both bishops (Spence and Larocque) as well as Monsignor Denis Vaillancourt and Father Bernard Menard to ensure they/we have a proper understanding of the diocese’s response to the sexual abuse allegations against Father Gilles Deslaurier?
(4) Will the inquiry delve into the connections between Bishop Proulx and Father Gilles Deslaurier so the public can understand the depth of Proulx’ interest in looking after Deslaurier?
(5) Will the inquiry look at the abysmal response of the justice system in dealing with this particular clerical paedophile?
(6) Was the Children’s Aid Society made aware of the allegations against Deslaurier and if so, when, and what did they do? And if not, why not?
(7) What is the diocese trying to hide and who is it trying to protect by blanking out certain pages of the Deslaurier documents?
That’s it on that for now.
The ‘Bring Perry Dunlop back” movement
I said I would address the ‘bring Perry Dunlop back’ movement. I am hearing that there is a growing clamour to get Perry Dunlop back and put him into the lion’s den – from people who should know better.
At this moment all I will say is where oh where has everyone been for the past fourteen years? Has absolutely nothing sunk in?
And where were these people fourteen months ago when this whole mess could have and should have been put on the right track by fighting for an out-of-province impartial judge and a mandate with enough teeth to ensure that every head which should roll will?
I’ll come back to this. It’s important. Too important to try to throw out a few words thoughtlessly.
And that’s enough for now,
“The Bring Back Perry Dunlop Movement”
Yes, Constable Perry Dunlop could set the record straight…hasn’t he tried…but isn’t the whole point of allegations of “cover up” is that, the truth is being suppressed and the scenario’s re-written?
As news reports disclose and as you have posted Sylvia, with commentary, it is finally getting around to “whacking Perry” again…..actually, I was wondering when it would begin.
Don’t forget, a “Public Inquiry” is a “public opinion” forming assignment, in an attempt to convince the public that, “all is well.” However, defining, “all is well” depends on the perspective of who is proposing “all is well.”
I believe the “Powers That Be” realize the Cornwall Public Inquiry is a multi-million dollar “flop”, “flatlined”, lost, wandering aimlessly, searching for credibility, attention and acceptance. A “scapegoat” is needed, again.
Ultimately and at the expense of various witnesses, the people who will really benefit from this public inquiry, include the self-serving people, deluded by dreams of attaining notoriety and public dollars.
But, as you have mentioned often Sylvia, the MANDATE of this public inquiry is seriously flawed and as a consequence, the Cornwall Public Inquiry has been sent down the wrong road…..the crokked, bumpy, evasive and elusive road of denial, rationalization, justification and “saving face”..
In addition, it is my opinion, the Lawyers and special interest groups, sometimes in collusion, have corralled many witnesses, muzzled them and coerced them, consequently, controlling actions, reactions, influencing thought, motivations and dialogue.
Also, many “Project Truth” related “alleged” victims and/or other “real-actual” victims, may never appear at this inquiry. Don’t forget, this Cornwall Public Inquiry was represented to have been evolved from the outcries and petition signed, surrounding alleged “cover up” in “Project Truth” issues….BUT, later on, the Inquiry spokesperson stated, the Inquiry was not “Project Truth” related; so is another Inquiry required to satiate the public’s original intent, via the petition?
And unfortunately, the Lawyers are busy; it is my belief, undisclosed and behind the scenes, settled litigations or other agreements, past, current and anticipated litigations or compensation board hearings, will “hobble” the Cornwall Public Inquiry.
Furthermore, I believe, the above-referenced, implied litigations, hearings and other, will have a distinct influence on all aspects of this Cornwall Public Inquiry and will be depicted in periodic episodes of, aggression, evasion, passion, or, passive agressive, uninterested, unchallenging, permissive demeanours, by all lawyers and witnesses.
Because of all this, I believe The Cornwall Public Inquiry, “movers and shakers”, are confused and desperate. Are “they” manufacturing a feigned, “build as you go” , rationalization, justification and credibility building, persona? How will the mainstream, news media present the events?
To accomplish their goal, the “movers and shakers” must vilify and publicly “whip” the only “good”….Police Constable Perry Dunlop.
I believe, in its final desperate attempt to “save face”, the “movers and shakers” must destroy and publicly humiliate, the hero, Police Constable Perry Dunlop.
As in any dysfunctional issue and ongoing “setting”, it is always the “one” who challenges, reveals, confronts or intervenes in the dysfunction, who is vilified, blacklisted, ostracized and blamed.
Police Constable Perry Dunlop has been interviewed many times,……the Dunlop Family has given its “pound of flesh.” The Inquiry can secure those testimonials of Perry’s and any related evidence. Perry Dunlop does not have to appear, especially when the Inquiry spokesperson has disclosed the Cornwall Public Inquiry is NOT Project Truth related.
However, the philosophy of the “movers and shakers” may be that, Police Constable Perry Dunlop has been disgraced and “bloodied” before, he absorbed it, so he can be “bloodied” again. Hence,”bail-out” the “movers and shakers.”
In fact, Police Constable Perry Dunlop,is the only one who can be “bloodied” or “scapegoated” surrounding issues he was involved with…everyone else has been “cleared” or “gagged.” I believe that if Perry Dunlop is compelled to appear at the non-Project Truth related Inquiry, as this Cornwall Public Inquiry had been described as being, he will be scrutinized, examined and re-examined unrelentlessly and unforgivingly, by a flock of circling lawyers…Lawyers who possess many, undisclosed motives; Perry will be put on trial!!
BUT the aforementioned could backfire; in addition to other strategies, REAL, ALLEGED AND ACTUAL victims and witnesses MUST come out of hiding, step forward and speak out publicly to the news media or similar, about their personal experiences…. and…. as former Ontario Provincial Politician and Provincial Judge, Garry Guzzo reiterated, NAME NAMES!!! It is time for REAL, ALLEGED AND ACTUAL victims to prepare and then, DISCLOSE what they know or, tell the world they cannot “speak out”, because they are “gagged” or otherwise!!
Police Constable Perry Dunlop is required for one reason only……(you fill in your thoughts here)
Tell me, when we consider all we know, since in or before 1992, which, has been disclosed or which we hold in secrecy, ….do we believe the allegations of sexual abuse and cover-up, or, is it all a lie?
True! True!! True!!!
If Perry doesn’t march into the lion’s den he will – as before! – be tried and vilified found guilty in absentia.
If he marches in or is marched in he will be tried, flogged, drawn and quartered, ridiculed and villified. In truth, when it comes to guilt or innocence, Perry is in a no-win situation. There is no Charter hanging in the wings for those who blow the whistle on paedophiles.
Perhaps the one difference in the two options is that in the latter “they” can smell and touch the blood and collectivley move in for the kill, and “we” will have the “privilege” of watching the slaughter in real time as we cringe moan from the comfort of our homes “poor Perry,” “it’s too bad he has to go through this,” “what can we do?” and, – oh yes, – and “I didn’t understand.”
Yes. It’s high time and past time that those who know and those who fearfully whisper their little secrets speak up and get the dirt out. Have an affidavit drawn up. It’s a legal document. Go to the police if you have sexual abuse allegations. But whatever you do let the media know every step of the way. Let me know. I don’t care. Just let someone know so it’s out in the public domain and those who should act are forced to act.
There’s an old saying that the truth will set you free. Another that the only thing it takes for evil to triumph is for ‘good’ men to do nothing.
I do believe it’s high time for all ‘good’ men to do something. Therein lies the ‘healing’ and therein lies the safety of our children and the beginning of the end of the stranglehold men who prey on little boys hold on our courts and on their victims.
Perry has done his bit. It’s time for others to get just a little batterd and bruised if this battle for truth and justice and freedom is to be won.
..yes Sylvia, right.
I wonder what perspective Police Constable Perry Dunlop was observing the “issues” from when he acted or reacted in the early 1990’s?….a father to three young children? a husband? a police officer? a neighbour? a citizen of the community sworn to uphold the law?, all of the aforementioned or others?
In addition, as I perceive the “whole situation” regarding “Project Truth and Perry Dunlop” and supported by my personal knowledge surrounding my personal experiences,….if I was a Police Constable, like Police Constable Perry Dunlop and if I witnessed what I perceived to be inappropriate or potentially unlawful behaviours, whereas I had reasonable and probable grounds which led me to perceive there existed a “cover-up”=(unlawful), relating to allegations of sexual abuse, conspired and orchestrated against children=(unlawful, I would have done ANYTHING to “BLOW THE WHISTLE”….I would hope MOST citizen’s, who paid my salary, would expect nothing less, would agree and support this type of courage….no, the correct word is responsibility.
Absence of confronting and/or disclosing the real and/or perceived “cover-up” would risk creating the impression that “the system” was condoning the unlawful behaviours and perpetuating the “cover-up”, as well as perpetuating future unlawful behaviours against children.
Despite WHO or WHAT the “systems or individuals” were I would have immediately addressed my concerns with my superiors. Thereafter, if I assessed and interpreted the responses of my superiors and/or other were unacceptable, wherein my “allegations” of a real or perceived cover-up was not investigated or was minimized, dismissed, rationalized or justified, I would take further action, which I believed to be safe and appropriate.
In the event I suspected and feared real or perceived sexual predators and/or offenders would not be held accountable or responsible for their unlawful acts/ommissions or be “absolved-exonerated” or similar, thus being capable of re-offending, even my own children, in the community I lived in, I would have taken ANY action, I believed to be safe and appropriate.
In careful consideration of the aforementioned, and despite professional “protocol” outlined and therefore dictated in the “Police Act”, the “Official Secrets Act” and/or similar, that I Swore under Oath to follow and obey, I would have taken ANY action I perceived to be safe and appropriate. Included in my thought processing, would have been, that, I would have concluded my legal and moral responsibility, “under God”, was to Serve and Protect the children and other citizen’s of my community, especially when I had resonable and probable grounds to believe significant unlawful acts and/or ommissions addressing very significant unlawful acts, conspired and perpetrated were undisclosed and “covered-up”.
HOWEVER, “maverick style disclosers, whistleblowers” workers, especially Police Officers, who swear to follow specific protocol and other workers employed in various Public Service, Public Administration jobs, who become “whstleblowers”, PAY a price for the “whistleblowing” and/or disclosing.
Campaigns are mounted to discredit them; don’t forget, it is always the one who discloses, confronts, challenges, intervenes in, any, dysfunction, who is the first to be vilified and blamed, etc.
The Police Constable and/or “whistelblower” will most likely be, assigned blame, blacklisted, ostracized, vilified and condemned to living as an “outsider” for life.
Furthermore and painfully, after all else…..instead of being the “heros” they were, briefly, and, really still are, the “whistleblowers” and/or Police Constables like Police Constable Perry Dunlop, are even vilified and ostracized by the people who once considered him/them a hero for disclosing and/or “whistleblowing”…..saving the community.
That’s the problem in dealing with this isn’t? Rational thinking people can not conceive allowing real or suspect paedophiles “alleged” to rum amuck with continued untrammelled access to children.
But somehow it seems that common sense flies out the window when it comes to getting down and dirty to fight a battle which can only be won by fighting where the opponents are lodged – down in the filthy muck.
No. We’ll sit back and allow the children, who are uncapable of knowing or identifying the enemy or comprehending the damage done by surrender, get dirtied and sullied and violated. (And never mind arming them with “good” touch and “bad” touch. There is no such animal as good touch when it comes to a grown man sexually violating the body and soul of boy – with or without “consent.”)
Heaven forbid we adults fight the battle for our children to ensure that as far as is humanly possible no child is groomed, seduced and/or sexually violated under our watchful eye.
No. We let the Perry Dunlops of the world do it for us. We root him on from the sidleines. We rejoice that are a few Perry Denlops left, and express our undying and eternal gratitude after he is repeatedly and alternately lynched, drawn and quartered and tarred and feathered and thrown to the lions because he presumably didn’t dot his “I”s and cross his “T” when he blew the whistle – and perhaps even violated the paedophile-friendly policies, practices and procedures of his peers.
But when it comes our turn to get just a little down and dirty and personally engage in the battle for the bodies, minds and souls of our children we suddenly know better than the Perrys of the world. And then when it comes to what looks like the final crunch we want Perry – who can smell the enemy a mile away and knows his deceptive and seductive tactics better than all of is put together – to do the enemy’s bidding and step sprightly into the colliseum just one more time, armed with nothing but brash assurances that Perry has it all wrong – we who have cheered him in the past as we watched the blood flow have the answers. We who have refused to confront or learn how to identify the enemy now claim to know him. And truth befalls pride. We assure Perry that we know fr fact that the lions filling the colliseum are really turtle doves, and that if perchance there is an odd lion or or two growling and licking licking his chops he’s not the man-eating kind, he’s there to protect our children.
And all I can say right now is may God Bless Perry and Helen Dunlop and keep them in His tender care, and God help our poor dear children who have been thrown like fodder to the paedophiles of Canada.