Saturday, September 28, 2013
I love my Local Library
You can't beat a good book burning. It's the next best thing to burning the author, which, unfortunately, is no longer allowed under the European Convention on Human Rights.
Mind you, it is not clear whether the Inquisition (Vatican CDF) subscribes to some of this modern pussy claptrap, as they seem to be still seriously embedded in the business of burning holy authors without any heed to claims for fair treatment under human rights legislation. Of course, the Vatican State is a strange sort of creature in the community of nations. Now you see it, now you don't.
Anyway, when Seán Fagan published his latest book, What happened to sin?, in 2008, a complete rewrite of an earlier 1977 book, all Hell broke loose. The Good Father was silenced and his order, the Marists, ordered to buy up and destroy all available copies of the book (or all of his books, I can't quite get a handle on this one).
Well the Marists jumped to comply with this medieval instruction and, as any economist would tell you, the value of any remaining copies must have rocketed.
There were two sources they couldn't touch, however: those people who had already bought the book, and, a little surprisingly for those of us brought up under Pius XII, copies in the public library system.
Now, in my day, the libraries would have been pressganged into this witch-hunt, and any copies not surrendered by the authorities would have been vanished from the shelves by over-zealous Catholics.
So I got to wondering just what was the current position on Sean Fagan's books in the public library system. I had just got a copy myself of What happened to sin? in my local library, so I checked out the position online.
The sin book was plentiful in the Dublin City Public Library system with 9 copies of the 2008 version, 2 copies of the original 1977 version, and 1 copy of the 1989 reprint, all available. And his other major book, Does morality change? was also there in abundance with 6 copies of the 1997 original and 7 copies of the 2003 version available. And remember, this is only the Dublin City branches.
So the day is thankfully gone when a heretic church could dictate what the public could, or could not, read. Isn't this some progress?
I'll end with the craven statement from Seán Fagan's order, the Marists, presumably aimed at those lucky enough to be able to read those copies of his books which escaped the eternal (man made) fires of Hell.
Why, oh why, could the Marists, or the Redemptorists for that matter, not have a guy like the one below incharge?