The front page of the Feb. 1 Californian was really a heartbreaker for loyal Catholics like myself ("Cardinal Mahony fires back over handling of sex abuse.") The story of the scandals in the Catholic Church is fair game, but to constantly sensationalize it isn't fair.

Since the story first broke a few years ago, most coverage has not included important facts.

For instance, most of the victims were post pubescent boys -- 80 percent. This means that the proper word for these crimes is pederasty not pedophilia.

By using the wrong word the media covers up the fact that the church had a problem with homosexual priests.

The Catholic Church is not alone when it comes to scandal. Most readers have probably not heard about the scores of Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn who have been arrested in the past two years on charges of sexually abusing minors. Many of the offenders were rabbis. The district attorney would not release the names of convicted Jews, but did release the names of convicted Catholics.

In Hawaii a law was passed eliminating the statute of limitations for abusers in Catholic schools, but continued it for those in public schools.

The problem the media have when reporting on sexual scandal is their fear of seeming prejudiced against "gays." This is why the Boy Scouts are weakening and may allow them to be leaders.

The church should never have allowed them in the seminaries. The Scouts should learn from the Catholic mistake.

Rachel Kennedy