Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Lucia Child abuse not your fault? Think again

If you subscribe to the idea that women should be sexually available outside of a married relationship and act in such a way to take advantage of such women, then child abuse is your problem and your fault. Because you help perpetuate the type of society in which it becomes common for children to be in situations where they are around men (who are not their fathers) living with their mothers.

Until society looks squarely in the eye at the problem of men and women shacking up temporarily and oops, there's a baby, child abuse will remain everyone's problem.

Related Link: Child abuse: "Not my problem, not my fault." ~ Not PC refers to Blair Mulholland's post

52 comment(s):

Karyn said...

It is our problem because all of society has to live with the fallout, and pay the costs of dysfunctionality.

It is no coincidence that in the wild the first thing the male lion does when taking over the pride is kill all the cubs from the deposed male.

Andrei said...

Well said Lucyna.

It is people such as yourself and your husband setting a good example of committed family life that will provide the long term solution to this problem.

The answer doesn't lie with hand ringing politicians,more draconian laws or social workers (particularly those driven by liberal agendas).

I don't believe that child abuse can ever be totally eliminated but by setting the norm as the nuclear two parent family and nurturing it the problem can and will be reduced hopefully to almost non existent levels.

God bless you in your endeavors to raise your children to grow into functional contributing members of society so they in their turn will continue your legacy of dedicated and loving parenthood.

Oswald Bastable said...

No- still not my problem!

ZenTiger said...

Well, obviously not you Oswald. I'm picturing you as one of society's pillars. Not the sort of cad that perpetuates the descent into the mire.

Psycho Milt said...

You let me off the hook straight away with this bit: "If you subscribe to the idea that women should be sexually available outside of a married relationship..."

Of course I don't - women decide for themselves whether they're sexually available or not. My opinion on whether a particular one should be or not is irrelevant, and comes under the heading of "Well, everyone's entitled to their opinion."

I was sexually active for 16 years before fathering a child, and even then it was deliberate. Most people in the developed world have no difficulty avoiding littering the planet with unintended offspring - however, like the poor, the stupid will always be with us.

Or, more briefly: I'm with Oswald on this one.

ZenTiger said...

Well, everyone is entitled to their opinion, its just that stupid opinions might be rewarded with monetary entitlements to offset initial stupidity.

And then, irrespective of whose opinion matters or not, we are suddenly obligated to pay for another's opinion.

Your opinion might not hurt other people. But what to do when their opinion hurts many others?

Three minutes silence doesn't really cut it.

Greg Bourke said...

Whether a preganacy is planned or not, i.e. deliberate, is irrelevant. The proverbial "DPB mum" also 'plans' her pregnancies but with a rather different logic to the chattering chardonnay sippers.

One of the central points of Hugo's novel Les Miserables is the harm that logical justice and fastidious self-centreness can inadvernedly inflict on the less powerful.

If evil exists in a society it is the obligation of good people to confront it.

MK said...

You'll have a hard time convincing liberals of this, to them keeping their legs open and 'getting around' are considered basic human rights, and also dealing with the consequences.

dad4justice said...

False child abuse allegations hurt a man and his pride , however once the lid is lifted on the huge barrel of lies the vindication comeback will damage many Liarbore Ministers who are hell bent on destroying the traditional family so they can prey on the vulnerable children . Maybe child abuse is the product of a government who has created the massive fractured family business . The United Nations have roasted our silly state representatives (over appalling child abuse stat's) but the media won't report anything that reflects badly on the sick and sinister sisterhood Hell Clark regime of criminals !!

Blair said...

But of course! And if we didn't have cars, we wouldn't have car accidents either! Guess that means if you drive a car, you're responsible for the kind of society that has drink driving.

Or maybe not. Maybe you should just fuck off with your moralising, ideological Roman statue worship. Maybe you should start asking why priests are more likely to molest young boys than ordinary members of the population? Maybe you should ask why Christian fathers molest their own daughters more than atheist or agnostic fathers do? Maybe it's because your brand of morality is repressive, oppressive and vile.

Maybe you don't ask these questions because that involves facing up to the novel idea that people should be responsible for their own actions instead of attempting to control the lives of others.

By the way, don't fucking link to me. I don't want your readers, because most of what you write on here is a pile of offensive shit.

ZenTiger said...

Ouch. A strong sermon there Blair. Not sure where you are getting your stats from though.

Spread the love man, spread the love.

Lucyna said...

Blair, unfortunately for you, you can't stop me from linking to you.

I can see I've hit a nerve.

You also must have missed the Shakeshaft research that shows that school teachers and employees are more than 100 times more likely to sexually abuse children than RC Priests.

KG said...

"priests more likely to molest children"
more likely than everybody except schoolteachers, it seems.
"Maybe you should ask why Christian fathers molest their own daughters more than atheist or agnostic fathers do?"
You have any evidence for that statement?
"Maybe it's because your brand of morality is repressive, oppressive and vile."
Or perhaps you find any brand of morality vile?

Anonymous said...

Blair, you got issues mate. Pretty much confirms my opinion that the "philosophy" of libertarianism springs from the desire to live an amoral lifestyle. Think again before its too late.

peasant said...

I will have to go with the libertarians on this one also [gritting teeth]. Sin is an individual choice and its consequences are an individual's responsibility. This is pretty much the Biblical position.

You can't apportion blame for child abuse to a whole section of society just because you don't like them. If you're going to apportion blame for *specific* crimes on a *general* cultural dynamic, then why not also blame Christians for failing to spread the Gospel.

Handwringing social engineering will always fail. People have to take responsibility for their own choices and suffer the consequences of their own crimes.

Karyn said...

The RCC did not say abuse was "not our problem", like Blair and others. They have faced up to it.

Sure abusing children is an individual thing, but if you care about humanity and want to live in a decent society you look for a way to solve the problem, not look the other way just because YOU haven't personally abused anyone.

James said...

Classic liberals like Blair and I DO have morals....just not made up bullshit ones supposedly handed from the ghost in the sky but ones really derived from examining man's nature as created by the universe we inhabit and tested by humans over millennia till what was right for man as man was sorted from what has proven to be wrong.The moral is also the practical..

Anonymous said...

"ones really derived from examining man's nature as created by the universe we inhabit"

Care to give us some examples James? Because I suspect you are just talking loud and saying nothing.

ZenTiger said...

The moral is also the practical.. I think that is an extremely subjective view of morality, and taking such an approach to discussing morality is bound to become unstuck. Some morality might be practical, but that wouldn't necessarily be a requirement.

Although, it does explain why some people attempt to dress up abortion in the trappings of moral behaviour.

peasant said...

According to you it is the moral climate and social norms of sexuality that are to blame. However I'm pretty sure that research and statistics point to family history, poverty, and self-esteem as being the main risk factors.

Your argument reminds me of the militant feminist claim that "All men are rapists".

Blaming, shaming, and condemnation all around is not constructive. Jesus showed us a better way...

ZenTiger said...

Peasant, could you please clarify who the "you" is?

I thought Lucyna was pointing out that the family make-up was a big influence, and the fact that children are increasingly being brought up without natural fathers present.

I think to some extent, we as a society seem comfortable allowing people the freedom to choose this life-style, and indeed, encourage it with welfare support, easy access to contraception and abortion, endorsement of defacto relationships and living together with little commitment. That's all fine until the girl is pregnant, and the father decides he doesn't need to step up and take responsibility (indeed - "if the women chooses not to have an abortion, that's her choice and because its not mine, it absolves me from responsibility" is the probable justification).

I agree with most of the commenters that we all need to take personal responsibility, and thus, this problem falls squarely on the perpetrators, and not we who haven't bashed and abused.

However, I can see Lucyna's point that as a society we are not educating people well to accepting and living by an ethos of responsibility. I think that is why some commenters get very upset when their attitudes are called into question. I don't see her point as an issue of blame, just a recognition that the problem ultimately does affect us all in some way.

Lucyna said...

Peasant, I would not have picked you as someone that liked a society where people are encouraged to be sexually active before committing, if they commit that is. Has someone else taken over your username?

peasant said...

Hi, sorry if I came across too harshly, this is a tricky topic for me. I think people should be FREE.. with all the joys and pitfalls that freedom entails. Also perhaps you haven't noticed but the average age for a woman to marry is now 30, and it's older for men. Don't you think it's a teeny bit unrealistic to demand total abstinence of people during the most passionate phase of their lives? Not everyone is a Christian and we can't expect them to bother with our religious strictures.

James said...

The moral is also the practical.. I think that is an extremely subjective view of morality, and taking such an approach to discussing morality is bound to become unstuck. Some morality might be practical, but that wouldn't necessarily be a requirement."

Its an objective view of morality....morality exists for humans independent of our wishes and whims...you Christians would agree only claiming God as the source.As we are all humans we all share a nature as humans...we are linked by the common denominator that is our species and its requirements that we must obey and follow if we are to live and prosper.

" Ragged Glory said...

"ones really derived from examining man's nature as created by the universe we inhabit"

Care to give us some examples James? Because I suspect you are just talking loud and saying nothing. "

It is through the language of rights that liberals speak and present their moral code.But Liberals are only concerned with public morality...those actions which may violate the rights of another....private consenting actions/vices are no business of the liberal as they don't violate the rights of others who don't wish to have anything to do with them....except when the State forces them to via the redistributive welfare State.But this is a reason to restrict the State....not peoples liberty's.

David said...

Lucyna,

You also must have missed the Shakeshaft research that shows that school teachers and employees are more than 100 times more likely to sexually abuse children than RC Priests

Not that I think saying "oh yes, but those guys are even worse!" is much of an argument (for whatever Blair was trying to say or for the RCC) but Shakeshaft says no such thing.

ZenTiger said...

the average age for a woman to marry is now 30, and it's older for men. Don't you think it's a teeny bit unrealistic to demand total abstinence of people during the most passionate phase of their lives?

Hi peasant. Just a thought - if there was more abstinence, maybe people would drop unsuitable relationships sooner, and move on. Once they find mr/ms right, they get really serious, marriage follows and consequently it happens earlier...?

Also, I'm not sure pointing out that a more liberal society is creating more dysfunctional families is the same as *demanding* total abstinence. Sometimes, it can be productive to muse on the point being made without trying to think where the author might then head with it (not that I'm accusing you of this, this is just something I thought of after seeing someone on Kiwiblog express an opinion [involving God], and another person over-reacted and seemed to assume "if you have an opinion, and you believe in God, no doubt you'll want to enforce this opinion at the point of a gun". Err, no. He was just saying what he believed was the issue. A bit like this thread really)

Lucyna said...

David,

Charol Shakeshaft, the Hofstra University scholar who prepared the report, said the number of abuse cases—which range from unwanted sexual comments to rape—could be much higher.

"So we think the Catholic Church has a problem?" she told industry newspaper Education Week in a March 10 interview.

To support her contention, Shakeshaft compared the priest abuse data with data collected in a national survey for the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation in 2000. Extrapolating data from the latter, she estimated roughly 290,000 students experienced some sort of physical sexual abuse by a school employee from a single decade—1991-2000. That compares with about five decades of cases of abusive priests.

Such figures led her to contend "the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests."


Source Sex Abuse by Teachers Said Worse Than Catholic Church

David said...

Lucyna,

now compare
"school teachers and employees are more than 100 times more likely to sexually abuse children than RC Priests"

to
"the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests."

Lucyna said...

David,

Now ask yourself. Am I a pendant, and is it useful to this conversation? Let me know when you've got your answer.

David said...

I am a proud member of the international league of pedants (our logo) - if only I could spell I'd could make secretary

You brought up the shakeshaft research so you must think it is germane to something. The way you worded it (and you see lots of apologists doing the same thing) it sounds like the rate of abuse among teachers is greater than the rate among priests. The research she is talking about is looking at the total number of children abused in schools and comparing it to the total number of childredn abused by RC priests. I think even you'll admit there is a world of difference here?

Like I said to start with I don't think comparing relative rates of horrific and disgusting acts is particularuly useful. But if you are going to don't missrepresent already shaky (it's based on a self selcting write-in survery) research

ZenTiger said...

David, if some-one comes to the blog and makes the argument that tries to imply all priests are pedophiles, and that statement is left uncontested there becomes a tacit admission of this "fact".

So it becomes very germane to consider if pedophiles in the priest hood are no more or less representative than pedophiles in other professions, especially in those that have regular contact with children.

Whatever the actual figures and rates, I think we'll find we are quibbling for the wrong reasons.

As it happens, I think pedophiles are drawn to positions where they have access to children (and where they don't select careers, they volunteer for activities like sports coaching, scouting, etc).

The main issue with pedophiles infiltrating the ranks of the priesthood was the immature and harmful reaction of the administration in the past years. Time has delivered hard lessons, but all indications are that they have learned.

We are starting to now see allegations coming out in the government sector - teachers and welfare workers being two large groups. Interestingly, the same sort of denial is common here, and yet they have had the benefit of 20 years or so watching the Churches being attacked. You'd think they'd understand the ramifications of mishandling these issues, but I'm not so sure.

And finally, whatever we do, pedophiles are still going to get access to children no matter the profession. We all need to be vigilant and prosecute the actual criminals harshly, whilst being careful not to over-punish the institutions.

Danyl said...

Now ask yourself. Am I a pendant, and is it useful to this conversation? Let me know when you've got your answer.

David isn't being a pedant - he's just making a point that's gone over your head. Allow me to explain.

If you have a hypothetical city in which there are 10 RC priests and 1000 teachers, and one priest is a child abuser and 100 teachers are then (a) the sexual abuse in schools is 100 times the scale of the RC abuse, yet (b) the proportion of priests and teachers who are child abusers is identical.

What you are doing is looking at these results and claiming that teachers are 100 times more likely to abuse children, which is clearly dead wrong.

ZenTiger said...

But all this skirts around the likelihood that, at best, the statistics probably aren't going to be much different, and the original name calling directed at priests might be more a reflection of anti-religious bias.

And however the stats are interpreted, its fairly sobering to see the TOTAL number of children affected by teachers is a very scary number, especially if it generates the same behaviour in their victims.

Danyl said...

But all this skirts around the likelihood that, at best, the statistics probably aren't going to be much different, and the original name calling directed at priests might be more a reflection of anti-religious bias.

Well, we've had this argument before Zen and it didn't go anywhere - but I'll repeat my original point.

Being a teacher is probably the single most desirable career for child abusers, for obvious reasons. It's always going to have a very high incidence of paedophiles. So to say that priests - who are supposed to be devoting their lives to chastity and God, AND who presume to tell the rest of us how we should live our own lives - are ONLY as bad as teachers when it comes to child abuse seems very weak to me.

ZenTiger said...

On one hand you say of teachers that "its the nature of the job to attract child abusers" and for priests you say "its hypocritical"

You can't have it both ways. Pedophiles are also attracted to the priesthood. Pedophiles are deviants that are obviously prepared to lie and con their way to access children. The good priests, the vast majority of priests are committed individuals worthy of more respect than your flippant branding of "hypocrite" just as all teachers do not deserve such slurs.

I used the term infiltrate, because that I think is a big part of it. A lesser part may well be some that recognise the demon within and turn to the church in an attempt to sanctify themselves. Maybe that worked for some, it obviously didn't work for all.

So this argument is NOT about comparing teachers to priests, other than the post started out about the morality of the community (sex without commitment) and immediately we get the tired old "priests are worse" taking the thread of topic. That old debating tactic is more feeble than your misplaced accusation (IMHO).

ZenTiger said...

BTW Danyl, your previous comment did not seem to take account of my comment made directly before your second to last comment. It seemed to me there was a potential overlap of agreement there.

Lucyna said...

Danyl and David,

If your points are the same, then what do you make of Shakeshaft's quote, which I posted above. Let me repost it:

Such figures led [Shakeshaft] to contend "the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests."

Has she misrepresented her own research or have you misunderstood it? Hmmmmm....

Danyl said...


If your points are the same, then what do you make of Shakeshaft's quote, which I posted above. Let me repost it:

Such figures led [Shakeshaft] to contend "the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests."

Has she misrepresented her own research or have you misunderstood it? Hmmmmm....


Slaps forehead.

david said...

You’ve pushed it too far this time Lucyna, it’s clear to me now this whole thing’s a joke. I mean sure, the handle that is an anagram of lunacy should have been a clue, and the whole ‘this is the avatar I wear when I go into battle’ (as a level 27 catholic cleric I guess) post was a little over the top. I really should have twigged that no reasonable person could take the Pink Swastika for a piece of scholarly work. But no, it wasn’t till I read that last comment that it became clear to me. No real person could possibly not understand what Danyl took the time to explain to you


So are you going to fess up? Is it true you are a plant from some rationalist blog set up to make religionists look silly? Are you in fact one person or a conglomerate of atheist bloggers pulling together, egging each other on to more and more ridiculous extremes?

Anonymous said...

Danyl and David
It doesn't seem to have occurred to you that Lucyna might understand your point very well indeed, she just disagrees because the author of the study made the summation she did. Her question is then the next logical and valid one - is Shakeshaft wrong? or do you two not get it?

David said...

/me Collapses into his desk

Read the whole paragraph if you want:

Shakeshaft is saying 290 000 students were abused. That's a total.

Lucyna (if she is real) thinks the reseach is saying that school teachers are more likely to abuse children than priests, this implies an estimated rate of abuse per teacher. Shakeshaft doesn't (and can't) provide information on the rate of abuse per teacher because all she has is a survey from which she is extrpolating the total of 290 000 so her research doesn't say what Lucyna thinks it says.

Nowhere in the quoted piece does shakeshaft talk about rates, she is saying a hundred times more people are abused in schools that are abused by priests. Danyl explained very nicely why this doesn't tell us anything about the rate and therefore Lucyna's 'liklihood' of abuse.

Is everyone clear now?

Lucyna said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lucyna said...

David, I apologise. You aren't a pedant. A pedant would at least use my words to annoy me with rather than work on what those words implied to him.

While you may think that I implied a rate, I never stated a rate.

Though, maybe you got confused by Blair's statement to which I was responding:

Maybe you should start asking why priests are more likely to molest young boys than ordinary members of the population?

So far Blair hasn't even backed up his statement.

david said...

It's not reading into, it's reading

school teachers and employees are more than 100 times more likely to sexually abuse children than RC Priests


Any reasonable person would take that to mean teachers are 100x more likely to abuse than priests. The same interpretation you put on Blair's hysterical post which uses almost the same words.

If you didn't think that's what Shakeshaft was saying then why would you use it to rebut Blair's post? That would be like countering a statistic that said there was an abnormally high rate of criminality in Gore by saying "well yes, but there are a lot more crimes committed in Auckland". Which isn't a great debating tatic.

I'm bored of this now

Danyl said...

I'm bored of this now

That means you lose the debate! Once again noble Christian virtue wins out over the twin demons of elementary mathematics and basic reading comprehension!

Zen, I will attempt to respond to your points when I am not about to collapse from fatigue.

ZenTiger said...

that means you lose

Aside from the indication that you appear to see this as some strange kind of competition in order to make a point, don't speak too fast. It might be a team effort. I'm still here, even if the master of elementary mathematics and champion of basic reading comprehension has to have his afternoon nap now...

(well my comment makes more sense than your concept of noble Christian virtue)

So I hope you don't think you've proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that 290,000 sexual abuse cases in 10 years (or whatever it was) is totally insignificant.

Please do come back when you are feeling refreshed. I am interested to see how you intend to prove a person who has never engaged in pedophilia is a hypocrite for delivering a sermon.

Although the post wasn't really about that. Come to think of it, I'm getting bored with the tedious repetition of the same off-topic comments. I sincerely hope you can bring something new to this conversation.

ZenTiger said...

BTW, just in case I scare you too much, I understand the mathematics.

As I said earlier, however the stats are interpreted, its fairly sobering to see the TOTAL number of children affected by teachers is a very scary number.

Lindsay said...

"If you subscribe to the idea that women should be sexually available outside of a married relationship and act in such a way to take advantage of such women, then child abuse is your problem and your fault."

Child abuse is the fault of everyone who has sex outside marriage. Moreover it is the male partner who "takes advantage".

Unbelievable.

I understand that children are generally safer within a marriage but your statement is a hell of a long leap from that.

Blair is not responsible in any other way than his tax was used to support the system that turns out the majority of these dreadful parents. And I am sure he would not have voted for the perpetuation of that system.

Lucyna, we know what the associated factors for child abuse are and illegitimacy is one. But it doesn't follow that all illegitimate children are abused. Your celibacy-till-marriage solution will never find favour so best start looking for a better one.

ZenTiger said...

Lindsay, the way I read it, Lucyna is suggesting that the example we set become the rules by which society plays by.

Lucyna is not saying that all illegitimate children are abused. It's more that we are actively participating in a society where child abuse will become more prevalent because we create the conditions where the importance of the family takes second place to self-gratification.

We are getting a glimpse that the child abuse problem is like an iceberg in our midst. [Look at the teacher stats above! :-)]

Society has managed to work out that "responsibility" comes down to throwing a few dollars of welfare out to broken families, and have a debate on the merits of getting the father's name down on the birth certificate and docking the guys wages.

Unfortunately, this is a problem money cannot solve. A child growing up without a caring father's love and guidance is priceless.

So Lucyna tries to make the point that the responsibility to fix this goes deeper and further than the bloke using condoms and being prepared to support an abortion.

To suggest anything that could rock the boat beyond this tidy convenience, whilst expressing outrage at how dehumanized a growing segment of our community has become is just a little to confronting perhaps?

I think I understand that. I'm having a hard time trying to get my head around what Lucyna is saying. It's taken a fair amount of effort to disconnect from my own personal opinions see her view. Looks like Danyl hasn't finished with me, so no doubt I'll get another opportunity to think this through in a way I wouldn't normally understand.

Anyway, if I was on your blog, would I read this kind of statement do you think? :

Lindsay, we know what the associated factors for child abuse are and welfare is one. But it doesn't follow that all welfare sponsored children are abused. Your end-welfare solution will never find favour so best start looking for a better one.

Am I right? And if so, why do you persevere?

Lindsay said...

Zentiger, Historically we have had far less welfare in the past. But it isn't the quantity. It's who provides it and on what terms. I absolutely think we can change that but I do not think we can stop people from having sex outside of marriage. Neither do I think such an expectation is desirable.

I want to change the way society caters to need. And that WILL change with or without my input. Lucyna wants to change human nature.

Ultimately it comes down (doesn't it always?) to personal responsibility. There s nothing wrong with sex outside of marriage as long as people are prepared to accept the consequences. As it stands welfare alleviates the need to be responsible.

Blair said...

Lucyna, your argument was completely hysterical, so one might forgive me for responding in kind. I don't really have much to add to what Lindsay said.

As for James's beliefs on morals, I disagree with the objectivist view of morality also, so he speaks only for himself. But that is another argument for another day.

Lucyna said...

Blair, just wait until I take the time to explain my argument fully. Though unpalatable, it is entirely logical.

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