Headline 3:
Jail time vs. rehab for pedophiles

Headline 3: Jim Gamble, a senior policeman in charge of child protection in an England community shocked viewers of the BBC's Today program when he suggested policing rather than jail time should be considered for pedophilia.

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Gamble went on to suggest that some predatory pedophiles should be offered treatment instead of being locked up. He said there is evidence that a pedophile can be managed in the community.

But Gamble truly astonished viewers when he actually recommended that pedophiles should step forward, confess and ask for help.

Comments to Headline 3:

Where the devil does Gamble get his "evidence"? The suggestion that pedophiles can be managed in the community is ridiculous. But the mere suggestion that pedophiles confess and ask for help is utterly absurd.

Pedophiles function through a misuse of power. They are obsessed by that power. They are sexually driven by that power. That power translates to manipulation and control of their young victims.

Pedophiles are both physically and emotionally attracted to children. They operate in secrecy. They groom their young victims. They tell them they love them. They entice children and youth with offerings of gifts and money. For example, with young children they provide candy, toys, trips to McDonald's. For youth: jewellery, make-up, clothes, sports equipment, sports tickets, cigarettes, alcohol, etc.

Pedophiles convince their child abuse victims they are to blame. They convince their victims that they enjoy the experience. Young victims believe this, especially when their bodies betray them with orgasm.

And just for the record, orgasm is perfectly natural, even when sexual assault is taking place. And further to that: It is perfectly natural for a young male to have an erection, and ultimately an orgasm, when he is scared, anxious or nervous. Pedophiles know this about their young victims; and they use it against them.

Pedophiles take their opportunities wherever they can get them. Sure, there are the obvious spots to gain access to children: playgrounds, schools, any place that children and youth frequent. But what of the not-so-obvious spots, like the child's own bed? Or the bath? Pedophiles can be fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters and other relatives. They can be adults or adolescents. They are generally NOT strangers.

How can we expect to manage pedophiles in the community when we can't manage them in their own homes?

MR. GAMBLE . . . GET YOUR HEAD OUT OF THE SAND!

We live in a society where overworked social workers carry ever-increasing case loads on child abuse, where citizens cry out for more police services to control the continually rising crime rate. We can't manage what we are currently dealing with. There is no way we can find the resources to manage pedophiles in the community. It would take an army of support services to manage and control even just one pedophile, never mind many.

And what of Gamble's suggestion that pedophiles come forward and ask for help? I was gobsmacked when I read this.

Pedophiles target our youngest and most vulnerable in society, and as such, people regard them as the lowest form of criminal. I doubt very much that a pedophile would step forward and risk what the public would do to them. One need only read the papers of cases where child sex offenders have been driven off by neighbours who have been informed that an offender is living practically next door. Would anyone want a self-professed pedophile living in such close proximity to children?

Besides, I'm not convinced that pedophilia can be treated. There are studies that reflect treatment is effective, but I'm dubious when they are conducted on what amounts to a handful of offenders.

I understand that our jails are over-crowded. I believe that this over-crowding is what spurred Mr. Gamble's inconceivable suggestions. But to suggest that pedophiles be the criminals that we do not incarcerate, the criminals we manage in society, is just plain wrong.

I can't answer which of the criminal base should be in society, but I for one feel our children are safer when pedophiles are locked up. At least when they are in jail, they can't offend.

Headline 3 originally posted June 3, 2007

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