DUMBING DOWN TORTURE:  A UN Committee Against Torture is considering a claim by liberal groups that the Vatican has violated the UN “torture” convention by– get this– not acting swiftly and resolutely enough to respond to allegations of sexual abuse by priests.  Don’t get me wrong–sexual abuse of children by priests is abhorrent and dioceses should pay dearly for these transgressions. And the Vatican has already been formally criticized by the UN for violating the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which is understandable.

But to say the Vatican has committed “torture” by not responding quickly or vigorously enough waters down the meaning of “torture” to include anything that someone thinks is not a good or sincere enough apology.