It's no secret; I have this deep-seated abhorrence for adults who rape children. It also boils my blood to see that we have become desensitized to the incidents of rape perpetrated by our clergy, perhaps as a result of the overwhelming volume of complaints. It's hard to get our head around the fact that the people we trusted, these self proclaimed 'men of G-d', turned out to be the rapists of our children. The sheer scope of the crime is incomprehensible.
This desensitization has occurred globally. Take Ireland as an example. A report released last year, entitled the Murphy Report, depicted a mere sampling of the wholehearted and widespread, damn-it let's call it what it is - endemic - sexual abuse of children in the Irish Catholic Church. Abuse that can be traced back in the organization, according to the report, to the 3rd century CE. We're not talking about a rotten apple spoiling in the barrel here; the whole barrel, with only a few exceptions, is rotten to the core.
My question is, where's the outrage? The whole world should be screaming in anger. Why are people, parents, victims, not filling the streets daily demanding that this cancer that permeates throughout the church, be vigorously and publicly excised? There can be no excuses, rationalizations, or understanding of these deliberate and sadistic criminal actions against our children. The trail of this violence against children marches right to the Vatican's front door; right to the Pope's office according to reports now emerging about his brother in Germany. Let me, as parent, make no bones about it; had one of these pricks touched a hair on the head of one of my children I would have beaten them to a bloody pulp with a tire iron. Am I the only parent who feels this way? There can be no reconciliation, no forgiveness; only harsh punishment.
The violent actions against children have become wrapped in acceptable and safe terminology by the clergy and the media. 'Sex abuse, child abuse, interfered with, touched, groped, fondled, child pornography, kiddie porn…' are all safe misnomers, behind which hides the hideous reality of what occurred. Let's be clear, there is nothing 'kiddie' about the violation of innocent children. Let me be blunt and describe these crimes for what they are, not hide them behind acceptable language; it does no justice to the victims. If the reality sickens you, it should.
Child sexual abuse: the rape - oral, vaginal or anal - of a child from the age of 2 months to 13 years old, a boy or a girl.
Pedophiles: men who have a preference for having sex with prepubescent children as young as months old to the age of 13. They are driven, compulsive, manipulative, deliberate and predictable in their behaviors. Yet they pass as everyday people; charming, friendly, fun to be with - the last people you would suspect of raping children. Which is why they succeed and most remain uncaught throughout their lifetimes with their victims sometimes numbering into the thousands.
Fondling: putting a hand in a child's underpants and rubbing their penis or vagina and anus. Penetrating a vagina or an anus with a finger(s). It is used to stimulate the perpetrator, as the perpetrator masturbates or had the child do it for him.
Child pornography - 'kiddie porn': Let me tell you what it's not - it is not scantily dressed children. Child pornography depicts adults raping little children - oral, anal, vaginal penetration. It depicts violent rape as the little children's bodies are not design to accommodate adult penis' or fingers. It depicts men ejaculating in the face, the mouth, and on the bodies, of these children. As a result these children are left with their genitals and anus' swollen, bloody and bruised afterwards. Many are tied up, gagged, while they are raped, their fear - terror - etched on their young faces as they try to comprehend what is happening to them. Their fear a hideous reflection of the pleasure that their rapists are experiencing.
'Kiddie' erotica: Images of children in underwear or nude. In various stages of undress and pose. Seems harmless enough doesn't it? It is designed for pedophiles to masturbate to as they imagine the children as sex partners. A free source for this booming DVD market is the ad in the paper, the note in the mail, looking for children interested in becoming models. The fee the parent pays covers the overhead of shooting the shots; the real money is in the DVD that's compiled afterwards and sold around the world to pedophiles. And it's not illegal.
As we like to say in American 'let's get real.' Let's call what has happened to our children by these monsters what it is - RAPE - and respond accordingly with the same degree of violence with which the crime was perpetrated.
The lifetime effects of the rape of a child goes way beyond the physical damage done to a body unable to accommodate intercourse with an adult. These children are scarred for life; assuming they do live. They become, in many cases, shells of what they could have been, their lives changed forever to provide sexual pleasure for their rapists. Their lives are destroyed, marred by trust betrayed, awash in shame and poor self image. They blame themselves for what happened; an emotion encouraged by their persecutors. Many describe their abuse as akin to murder as their lives are taken from them; the control we all need so much to survive - gone. And they get to re-live it daily.
Instead of talking about financial compensation, let the nations dust off the tire iron of justice and responsibly respond to the rape of our children in the measure in which it was perpetrated. Pedophiles, predators are psychopaths; there is no cure for the evil that they perpetrate. Life in prison is the best they should hope for; execution, in my mind, is preferable. They have absolutely no purpose in society. After all we don't rehabilitate, nor attempt to, serial killers. Why should we do so with compulsive child rapists?
Evin Daly is the founder and CEO of One Child International Inc./Child AbuseWatch, a U.S.-based world child advocacy organization. firstname.lastname@example.org . www.abusewatch.net