Strange how the mind cries out for explanations of all things wondrous and heinous. Huge sums and long hours are devoted to the effort. Libraries fill up. Putting a period on the sentence seems to be part of our hard-wiring. Mountainous concrete evidence to the contrary convinces no one: If anyone could actually put a period on one sentence or another -- actually come up with The Explanation -- why would libraries continue to accumulate still more books; why would the internet not grow still?
What brought this to mind was a large study done by John Jay College that investigated the why's and wherefore's of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. The molesting of mostly young boys by priests is such a heinous notion that the average on-looker is left speechless and enraged. This ... is ... beyond... the...pale.
But there must be an explanation, right? -- something that will define the problem and in so doing offer credible solutions. And the same reflex search for explanations and meaning goes for other situations as well -- even the ones that are less explosive and vile, even the ones that are a pure delight. If we corral and explain it, things will be settled.
Anyway, here are a couple of news stories about the John Jay College report, one by The Associated Press and the other by The Washington Post.