Protecting pedophiles while protecting children

by stillin 155 Replies latest watchtower child-abuse

  • DogGone


    (On Agreement)

    I think there are many things we agree on. In addition to what you have listed I think there is agreement that:

    - The past practices of the JWs (and almost all other religions) were terrible when it comes to protecting children

    - That it is not just a matter of the failure to report the crimes of rank and file members:

    o It is the history of intimidating families to keep quiet on pain of disfellowhipping,

    o Using the "two witness" policy to bully victims into silence

    o Keeping Elders and others in positions of authority after an accusation has surfaced despite failing their own "free from accusation" test (Titus).

    - That the JWs have been slower than most to respond with positive change

    - That religions should do more than the minimum the law requires given that they claim to be the authority on justice and morality.

    - As it pertains to Stillin's original post, the general agreement is that all cases are not reported and that not enough has changed with the policies, practices and culture in the religion to protect children.

    Now focusing on what we agree on is like attending the old Tuesday books studies. Everyone leaves with cookies but no one has learned a thing. It is by exploring our differences that we are challenged, learn, and grow. Religious and political viewpoints love to exist in echo chambers where people who all agree get together and mock those that don't. Whole networks in the USA are now echo chambers. For the years I have been lurking at JWN, what I have always appreciated is that this is, by and large, not an echo chamber.

    Take Losts contribution, it was instructive to me to learn what she meant by the term "pedophile". It is very different than what I mean. We were talking past each other. Most of the time when the subject comes up everyone in the room agrees they should be killed or castrated. As a public statement of condemnation I can't help but support the sentiment. I think of Clifford Olson and I say, why DID we keep him alive? However, when having a considered discussion about the policies of JWs and what society should ultimately do, merely expressing mutually agreed contempt about the very worst cases contributes nothing.

    I'm cherry picking cases that are less egregious to show that we should not, must not be so absolute in our statements and judgments.

    I'm sorry to hear about your personal story. Although it is all too common, it is still heartbreaking. It is so hard to understand how the reputation of an "organization" can be put above the love, trust, and care of a child. But, when I was deep “in” I was just as blind.

  • DogGone


    (On Castration)

    I actually don’t feel castration, whether physical or chemical is more brutal than death. If it solves the problem to do this to a repeat offender, why not? However, I spent a bit of time researching to see if this was effective. After all, many a neutered dog have violated my leg!

    A 2010 article from BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal) discussed the efficacy of castration for sex offenders.

    Physical castration of sex offenders was carried out in several European countries in the first part of the 20th century, and although morally dubious and not always targeted at high risk cases (many of those castrated were homosexual, mentally ill, or learning disabled), recidivism rates of less than 5% over long follow-up periods are invariably reported, compared with expected rates of 50% or more.

    However, I thought is the 5% really that great, why did they think the recidivism rate was “expected” to be 50% or higher? Well the footnote indicates this information was from a 1979 study, long before the extensive recidivism rate studies noted earlier. Therefore, that number is suspect. Strangely, the study they site in the paragraph above notes in its abstract that:

    The main conclusion is that there is no scientific or ethical basis for castration in the treatment of sex offenders.

    Heim N, Hursch CJ. Castration for sex offenders. Treatment or punishment? A review and critique of recent European literature. Arch Sex Behav1979;8:281-304

    ( )

    However, even it is 5% compared to 9%, that still means a major reduction. A newer study from 2000 referenced by the BMJ notes:

    Long-acting gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist analogues are the most potent antiandrogens, and selectively abolish testosterone secretion in a totally reversible fashion. They are administered parenterally once every 1 to 3 months, and have the fewest side effects…. Long-acting GnRH analogues, together with psychotherapy, are highly effective in controlling selected paraphilias (pedophilia, exhibitionism, and voyeurism), and are the most promising mode of therapy in the next millennium. There is an urgent need for good methodological research; carefully designed double-blind controlled studies with a large number of subjects in order to validate or not the use of the various pharmacotherapies.

    Rösler A, Witzum E. Pharmacotherapy of the paraphilias in the next millennium. Behav Sci Law2000;18:43-56 )

    So, there does seem to be some promise. The 1997 study abstract, also referenced, has a warning:

    One strong conclusion drawn is that antiandrogen medications should never be used as exclusive treatment for paraphilic and aggressive sexual behaviors.

    Prentky RA. Arousal reduction in sexual offenders: a review of antiandrogen interventions. Sex Abuse1997;9:335-47

  • jhine

    DogGone , your comments on castration were interesting , it is one way of controlling repeat offenders without taking away their chance to be rehabitilated . Of course I mean chemical castration which I assume can be reversed . Though I suppose that physical castration still leaves the peson with a chance to live a productve and happy life , which of course death does not .

    However with physical castration there is always the danger of an innocent person being punished and also as you pointed out according to whoever decides who needs castrating some personal issues can come into play.

    If chemical castration was used widely as a means to stop repeat offending do you think that this should be after the appropriate prison sentence was served ? I think that society in general and victims in particular need to know that suitable punishment has been meted out to show that paedophile behaviour will not be tolerated in any (reasonably ) civilised society .

    As you have said the range of offenders varies , but there are those who seem to be hardened offenders , those who share information online as to how to lure children etc and even people who try to say that there is nothing wrong with their predilections. Is the death penalty too harsh for those who show no remorse and are shown to be part of gangs who are not only encouraging each other to physically abuse children themselves but who are actively encouraging child pornography which of course still means child victims somewhere .

  • *lost*

    Definition of the word pedophile/paedophile (wiki)

    As a medical diagnosis pedophile or paedophile is a psychiatric disorder in persons 16 yrs of age or older typically characterised by a primary or exclusive

    sexual interest toward pre-pubescent children (generally aged 11 yrs or younger.....)

    An adolescent who is 16 yrs of age or older must be at least 5 yrs older than the pre-pubescent child before the action can be classed as pedophilia .

    In popular usage pedophilia means any sexual interest in children or the act of child sex abuse

    ...... the act or fantasy on the part of an adult in engaging in sexual activity with a child or children.

  • stillin

    Regarding castration: I may be off-target here, but I have read that rape (a totally different crime?) is often more a crime of power over another, rather than actually a need for sexual contact. This is one argument against castration in that the castrated one is not really "fixed," and will seek other ways to reinforce his low opinion of women, or is it a low opinion of himself?

    It seems like pedophilia is similar. If castration actually worked it appears that it would be a perfect fix, but I'm not so sure. The sickness is deeper than that.

  • jhine

    stillin , no I do not think that you are off target regarding rape ,I have read that same information . I do not know if that applies to paedophiles though .

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