perjantai 20. huhtikuuta 2012

No right answer

I've followed an interesting discussion about minor sex offenders in US. I understand systems are very different in many ways and is for sure one reason why some things are hard to understand from my perspective.

In US a minor sex offender, after therapist etc evaluation, can be allowed to go to a normal school. It means that perhaps the head master is informed about the situation and some precausions are taken, but not all the teachers and definately not the students and parents know what the new kid has done - or perhaps in some cases allegedly done.

Sexual offense is always serious. It's always horrible. We have way too low and small consequences for rape. It's never right.

The debate is about should or should not everyone be notified what a minor offender has done. I understand people want to know to protect their children. They want to say: Never go near this boy, never speak to him, shout if he tries to contact you... (of course it could be a girl, but talking about a boy here, because they seem to be the majority). But then, shouldn't the principles of causiousness be taught anyway, regarding anyone. How plausible it really is that something horrible happens at school by a fellowstudent? If the child has had horrible experiences himself, which has caused him to do something horrible, there still is hope that he can heal, he can be "healed". If he's done something once, it doesn't automatically mean he's going to it again. But if everyone knows and he knows everyone knows, he doesn't really have any other choice than to be what everyone thinks he is. It's more likely he'll do something wrong again, either to others or to himself. I think everyone deserves a chance. Even when it may be risky.

Note - I am talking about minors, I don't think all the same principles apply to adults - I wouldn't allow an adult sex offender work in a school.

We do need to protect our children. But at the same time, all children need protection, from different things. All children are as valuable - even when they do horrible things. Usually it really isn't because they are evil but because evil things have happened to them.

And unfortunately there are false accusations and minor offenses (don't know about them legally, but I can see something that would here cause only a raising of an eyebrow to be considered as rather horrible in the US) that really can ruin a child's life when there really isn't a need for it.

If something bad happens to my children, it would be horrible. It would be hard to get over it. I would think really hard if I didn't do my job as a parent well enough. If I'm partly at fault. But bad things happen in this world. One can get over those with professional help. As horrible as it would be, I couldn't still allow myself to say that everyone in the school needs to know the new kid is a sex offender. Or that the parents need to know that some kid in the school is a sex offender. Whether it was a serious offense or a minor offense or a false accusation.

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