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Famed Singer's Tough Words on Religion: 'No One's Got Christ More Wrong Than the Christians

"If I was in a club, and I found out that there had been generations of people abusing children, and then that club was covering that up, I would quit the club."

FILE - In this June 16, 2013 file photo, Tom Petty performs on Day 4 of the 2013 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tenn. Songwriting has gotten harder, not easier, with time, says Petty, who will receive top honors from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers on Wednesday, April 23, 2014, for his four decades in music. (Photo by Wade Payne/Invision/AP, file) Wade Payne/Invision/AP, file

Singer Tom Petty has a bone to pick over the way the Catholic Church handled the sex abuse scandal, telling Billboard Magazine that "no one's got Christ more wrong than the Christians."

Petty, who recently penned a song remembering the victims of the Catholic sex abuse scandal called "Playing Dumb," will make the track available on the vinyl release of his new album "Hypnotic Eye."

FILE - In this June 16, 2013 file photo, Tom Petty performs on Day 4 of the 2013 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tenn. (Photo by Wade Payne/Invision/AP, file)

But while he's tackling controversial subject matter, Petty told Catholics he respects whatever faith they want to have, but that he wouldn't personally continue supporting a church that actively covered up crime.

"Catholics, don’t write me. I’m fine with whatever religion you want to have, but it can’t tell anybody it’s OK to kill people, and it can’t abuse children systematically for God knows how many years," he told Billboard. "If I was in a club, and I found out that there had been generations of people abusing children, and then that club was covering that up, I would quit the club."

Speaking of religion more generally, Petty told Billboard that "it seems … to be at the base of all wars."

"I've nothing against defending yourself, but I don't think, spiritually speaking, that there's any conception of God that should be telling you to be violent," he continued. "It seems to me that no one's got Christ more wrong than the Christians."

(H/T: Friendly Atheist)

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