Child Pornography


When a child is molested, most people put the highest priority on catching and punishing the culprit. I suggest instead the highest priority should be protecting the child from further trauma. This does not mean letting the culprit go unpunished, just a shift in priorities. People often read into this essay things that are not there. Please read it carefully and literally before flaming me.
It would probably be safe to say that more than half of the evil in the world is due to well-meaning busybodies who just cannot refrain from interfering.
~ Emmet Fox (born: 1886-07-30 died: 1951-08-13 at age: 65) American evangelist.

Introduction

The less an evil is understood, the more bitterly and harshly it is attacked.
~ Anton Chekhov (born: 1860-01-29 died: 1904-07-15 at age: 44), At Home
The topic of child pornography is so emotional, I find that most people become irrational when they talk about it. In their desire to punish the pedophile (whether or not he actually molests) they forget about protecting the child. Several people have severely upbraided me for this essay. They imagine it condones and encourages child molesting and have even accused me personally of molesting children. If you read it carefully, rather than letting your imagination fill in the blanks as you skim, you will see it says no such thing. It makes three main points.
  1. In our zeal to punish child molesters we often forget about protecting the child. I don’t mean to say that we should not punish child molesters, but that we should keep first in mind preventing further harm to the child.
  2. Punishments should be proportional to the actual amount of harm done to the child. Currently the law makes no sense, severely punishing some crimes that do no harm at all to a child (e.g. looking at artwork) and letting off completely behaviours that do (having sex without protection).
  3. To reduce the amount of child molesting, we must be practical and compassionate toward the offenders. Emotional hand-wringing or righteous condemnation won’t do any good.

A Family Story

Once my uncle, when he was in his early teens, told my Grandma that a friend had peed in his younger brother’s bum. Grandma made quite a production of it, and called the police. Even though my uncle had nothing to do with this, Grandma blamed him for failing to prevent the sex play. The pressure was so great he had a nervous breakdown. Grandma was so bent on revenge, she forgot about the effects on the children.

A Personal Story

When I was 15 it suddenly dawned on me that I was homosexual. I did not want to be gay. I felt a complete pariah. I decided that I would commit suicide if I did not manage to become straight by my 21st birthday. I planned to lower myself into Deeks Lake from a raft with a large rock chained to my leg. By the time I hit my 21st birthday, I realised that my mom had told me many ridiculous lies about gay people. Homosexuality was a problem much like discrimination against blacks.

Expectations

Perhaps being gay sensitised me to the plight of other stigmatised groups, especially the sexual minorities — those attracted to other species, children, leather, rubber, pain, humiliation, the dead, etc. Society is most unfair to them. No matter how they behave, we still treat them with utter contempt.

When it comes to child pornography, we, as a society, are far more interested in punishing pedophiles and making their lives as miserable as possible, than in protecting our children. In our hearts, there is nothing they could do to be acceptable in our eyes other than kill themselves. I think this view lacks compassion.

What can the heterosexual majority reasonably expect from the sexual minorities in the way of curbing their behaviour?

Philia Expectation
heterosexuality
(liking sex with members of the opposite gender)
Same restrictions on public displays of affection and sexual activity that are placed on homosexuals. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission. Take care not to pass on sexually transmitted diseases. Avoid having more than two children.
homosexuality
(liking sex with members of the same gender)
Same restrictions on public displays of affection and sexual activity that are placed on heterosexuals. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission. Take care not to pass on sexually transmitted diseases.
transvestism
(dressing in clothing of the opposite sex)
Same restrictions on public displays of affection and sexual activity that are placed on heterosexuals. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
sadism
(liking to cause pain)
Confine sexual activity to consenting adults. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
masochism
(liking to receive pain)
Confine sexual activity to consenting adults. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
undinism
(liking urine)
Confine sexual activity to consenting adults. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
incest
(liking sex with relatives)
Confine sexual activity to consenting adults. Ensure no pregnancies arise by using foolproof forms of birth control such as vasectomy or tubal ligation. There is no particular reason to avoid incest between brother and sister in mixed or adopted famililies who share no biological parent. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
coprophilia
(liking feces)
Confine sexual activity to consenting adults. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
bestiality
(interspecies sex)
Refrain from sexual activity unless the animal of the other species initiates it. Refrain from causing pain or physical injury. This is my suggestion for an equivalent of human-human informed consent. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
necrophilia
(liking sex with the dead)
Confine sexual activity to masturbatory fantasy. Allow acting out if special legal permission given prior to death. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.
pedophilia
(liking sex with children)
Confine sexual activity to masturbatory fantasy. Do not permit children to be harmed in any way to create pornography. Refrain from discussing sexual details without prior explicit permission.

Expectation on the Pedophile

Over 1,200 US priests have been accused of sexual abuse but we must remember that several bad orchards don’t ruin the whole bunch.
Barry Crimmins
I am puzzled about the law in Canada involving children. My understanding is that the age of consent was 14. The Conservatives upped it to 16 circa 2008. However, if the older party is in a position of authority or trust over the younger, then the age of consent is 18. However, I have also seen news reports of ushers at the Maple Leaf Gardens being charged for having sex with people 14 to 18. I would have thought it would have been controversial whether an usher could be considered an authority in the context of the interactions.

Discrimination against gays was sneakily inserted into the law. The age of consent for anal sex, (a particularly popular form among gays), is 18.

On the radio phone in shows, callers seem equally distraught about:

People get so freaked by pedophilia, that they fail to make distinctions between totally unacceptable behaviours at the top of the list with behaviours near the bottom that hurt no one. The intent is to encourage pedophiles to eschew behaviours near the top of the list and replace them with behaviours from the bottom.

Our laws and social taboos should reflect that intent.

Rape Porn

Similarly repulsive to most people is pornography depicting rape. It differs from child pornography in that it can be easily staged without actually raping anyone. The analogous debate comes up. Does this pornography diffuse or encourage rape? The Danish experiment suggests it diffuses it, even when emotion argues the reverse. Such an issue should be settled with hard evidence, not merely logic, opinion or emotion.

Religious Argument

Religions such as CCism have a built-in mechanism calling for compassion for even society’s worst offenders. This is not to say you should allow others to rape your children, but rather you should still work for a win-win solution. Jesus said, " And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."Matthew 25:40 Surely pedophiles and rapists are the least of the brethren.

Age of Consent

An American man got drunk and fell asleep on the couch at a friend’s house. The 15 year old daughter stripped and climbed under the covers with him. He started kissing her. The mother came in interrupted the proceedings and called the police. In that jurisdiction, 15 is below the age of consent. The judge as part of the punishment insisted the man have a sign on his truck that said sex offender on board. People naturally assumed the worst. He lost his apartment, job, and was hounded and threatened wherever he went. The TV show that reported this also reported a reader poll on whether this was a fair punishment. The majority felt that indeed it was.

I find this hypocritical given that a sizeable proportion of the male population would likely have fallen to the same temptation in the same situation. He was treated as if he were a child rapist. Age of consent is a strange thing. One second before midnight, a sexual act can brand someone as a dangerous sexual offender. The exact same act one second after midnight, and it could be considered perfectly legal. Surely there should be some middle ground.

In the news lately is a woman in trouble with the law allegedly for having sex with some fourteen year olds. The press refer to the boys as her victims I doubt there is a 14 year old on the planet who would consider himself a victim in that situation. He would consider himself supremely lucky, at least until the shit hit the fan and shrinks did their best to convince him he was an irreparably harmed victim and he was forced to betray his sexual partner.

What Is Wrong With Sex?

Why is it important that a parent be able to prevent others from having sex with their children at least until they are old enough to leave home?
  1. Pregnancy.
  2. Disease including HIV (Human Imumuno-deficiency Virus).
  3. Leading the child into prostitution and the early death from that life style.
  4. Children who have had sex are stigmatised by society. They feel victimised and unclean. They can have lifelong esteem problems.
  5. Children can be physically injured having sex with adults.
  6. Children can be traumatised.
  7. Religious values.
  8. Authority figures can push children into sex even when the children want no part of it.
  9. To set the stage for monogamy and stable relationships.
Ironically, the sex itself is not directly harmful. It is all the potential side effects.

Disadvantages of Pornography

The main disadvantage of pornography is to the viewer. Pornography presents idealised willing partners. This makes the viewer ever more discontent with practical actual partners. Pornography makes the viewer keep upping the ante on what would constitute a suitable partner. No real person who meets that level will ever be available. I once mediated a heterosexual couple. Even though his partner had a near flawless complexion, he insisted she wear heavy makeup to create the airbrushed illusion he was familiar with in centerfolds. In homosexual pornography, images are sometimes altered to greatly exaggerate penis sizes. People are unwittingly lusting after cartoons they will never meet in real life. This disadvantage could be an advantage when it comes to pedophilia. Perhaps drawings with idealised features could similarly draw the pedophile away from real children toward imaginary ones.

Recommendations

The law should be changed to be more consistent. It is quite ridiculous that exploiting a child prostitute age 12 is treated as less serious than looking at a naked photograph of a 17 year old. It is most odd that looking at the photo is a crime, but actually having sex with the 17 year old is not. It also makes no sense to put restrictions on hand-drawn pornography, unless children were sexually exploited as models to create it. In general there should be no restrictions on hand-drawn or computer-generated pornography.

The age of consent should be a uniform for both straights and gays. The number could be anywhere between 14 and 17, but the most important thing is it should be uniform in all jurisdictions. When the law changes state by state or province by province, it engenders disrepect for law. The cut off point comes across as too arbitrary.

That should allow any sexual activity including anal intercourse. Forcing sex on another by abuse of position of authority or trust should protect people of all ages, not just 14 to 17 year olds.

The penalties should take into consideration the sexual development of the child, i.e. both the child’s actual age and the child’s apparent age, whether the child or the adult was the aggressor, and whether bribery, intimidation or force was used. The penalty should also take into consideration the difference in ages. A 14 year old having sex with a 13.5 year old is not as serious as a 30 year old doing the same thing.

When there is an issue of authority, e.g. teacher/student, there should be some attempt to assess just what degree of coercion was actually involved, as well as potentially involved.

There should be no legal prohibitions on owning or selling realistic sex dolls, no matter how they look. They may resemble any species, gender or age. This may sound a funny thing to quibble about today, but in the coming decades, as computers, robots and artificial intelligence mature, the debate will heat up.

Compassion

I am a gay person, and I am well aware of how insanely cruel, and self righteous, particularly the religious are towards anyone outside the standard. Here is a thought experiment. Imagine you travelled to a planet where heterosexuality was considered illegal and immoral. It might be a planet where people lived indefinitely until they died of accidents. Thus they had to be extremely sure no one conceived babies except under strictly controlled conditions. Just what would you consider fair in this planet’s treatment of you? Would they for example have the right to jail you because: You might ask these Puritans just what they want you to do to satisfy their restrictions. They are unclear. They just want you to disappear. They want you to stop being heterosexual, as if it were something your chose like the colour of your socks. There is nothing your your power that you can do to satisfy them and get them off your back. They hate you for being heterosexual, not because you commit illegal heterosexual acts.

This all sounds quite silly. Yet this is exactly how society treats pedophiles, and to some extent gays and the outer philias. We need to revamp the laws with more compassion, and with a clear picture of exactly what we expect pedophiles to do to vent their urges safely, given that there is no possible they can choose to not be pedophiles. The danger is, if you demand people totally bottle up powerful sexual urges, eventually they will explode, possibly in an uncontrolled and seriously harmful way, such as a rape/murder.

Parting Thought

Panderers like Montel Williams, Maury Povich and Steve Wilkos, like modern day Senator McCarthys, rail against rapists who had consensual sex with sexually active 18 year olds. This ratings-grabbing overreaction distracts from dealing the real crimes against children, like the grinding life-destroying daily physical and sexual abuse by priests and teachers in residential schools. Everyone gets so excited about burning the pedophile alive that they totally forget about the child, and in the process traumatise and psychologically damage him or her, sometimes even more seriously than the original sexual act.
The majority of pedophiles caught have pornographic images of children 3 to 5 in their possession. Clearly these are a different set of people who find 15 to 18 year olds attractive. By lumping them together as equally heinous, as various predator trap TV shows do, you deflect enforcement from the far more serious problem.
~ Roedy (born: 1948-02-04 age: 66)

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