Sinead O'Connor Legacy After Me Too, Catholic Abuse

Tara Murtha:

Every song is a prayer pulled from her throat.

Sinéad O’Connor’s breakthrough record I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got opens with a recitation of the Serenity Prayer, and ends with the titular poem, performed like a chant: "I'm walking through the desert / And I am not frightened although it's hot / I have all that I requested / And I do not want what I haven't got." Released in 1990, I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got is a transformational record, meaning both that it charts how the artist survived a failed relationship, and its critical and commercial success made the Irish singer into an international star.

In 1992, most Americans were not yet aware of the Roman Catholic church sex abuse scandal, but the story was already out in Ireland. Though scattershot reports of abusive priests surfaced in U.S. news during the mid-1980s, Americans didn’t begin to truly reckon with the depth and breadth of the church’s systemic, worldwide abuse and cover-up until the Boston Globe published a series of reports in 2002 — a full decade after O’Connor’s SNL stunt.

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Hero. Every person who booed her, or besmirched her should feel deep regret and beg forgiveness…