So, an elderly man, well-known in his community, heads a charitable organization to serve young boys. Through that organization, he picks out certain boys to serve his sexual interests. His modus operandi is to give special attention to the boys he has chosen, get them alone and contrive a way to get them in a shower. A few people know of his disgraceful activities but don't have the moral backbone to speak up.

Sounds exactly like a certain local judge and the Lancers boys club here in Baltimore about a decade ago. In that case, apparently, the elderly man satisfied himself just looking at the naked little boys. The disgusting part of that scandal is that several "prominent" Baltimoreans had sons in Lancers, knew of the judge's activities, warned their own sons not to shower with the judge, but steadfastly refused to alert other boys or their parents. And they defended him and his behavior vigorously ("he's only looking"). The possibility of a letter of recommendation from the judge for their sons' college applications trumped any interest in protecting children beyond their own.

As we have learned of child abuse within the Catholic Church and now of allegations of the same at Penn State, the unconscionable behavior of parents continues to resonate.

M. Philip Lehr, Lutherville