It's always the "good old days" as a reference point when someone wants to justify violence by one in authority. Were "the good old days" in the 50s? or the 30s? When exactly was it okay for a young adult in authority to beat the crap out of a kid who is being cruel to another peer?The kid Stepek gave a black eye to 20 years ago was a Grade A Punk that was harassing a fellow female student. he took the kid aside and the kid started running his punk mouth and guess what happened? WHAT HAPPENED WAS IT WAS THE GOOD OLD DAYS WHERE IF YOU ACTED LIKE AN A-HOLE IN A CATHOLIC SCHOOL, YOU GOT THE TAR KNOCKED OUT OF YOU!!!!!!! i thank God i grew up in that era.
We tend to forget that violence begets violence, however. The kid that Deacon Stepek pummeled likely didn't learn anything except that young adult religious types are as violent and cruel as his own family members.
Fr. Stepek, even as a Deacon, was NOT justified in beating the tar out of someone who's behavior is despicable. And that's why Stepek nearly got kicked out of seminary. First, there is no excuse for that kind of conduct by a Deacon, or any adult toward a minor. And second, there is no excuse for Fr. Stepek to conceal this incident in his background when specifically asked about such incidents.
This denial, in my opinion, was the turning point with Fr. Stepek's credibility. If he conceals this major event in his young adulthood, what else might he be concealing??