compassion for pedophiles? - Page 11 - VeggieBoards
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#301 Old 11-21-2011, 09:02 AM
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I'm thankful my biggest battle is with chocolate cake.

And you can't even possibly imagine how much I wish that were my biggest battle also.
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#302 Old 11-21-2011, 09:44 AM
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I'm so sorry to hear that this happened to you, Pixie.
Upon re-reading my posts in this thread I will admit that I came across quite strongly in my disgust and lack of compassion toward pedophiles and in retrospect I will apologize for my choice of wording, but not for my intent. The Sandusky scandal has thrown me into a sort of rage that I have not previously encountered in life and I suppose it doesn't help matters that I am geographically close to it as well right now. It was so much easier to deal with my demons when I was 2000 miles away from them.
Anyone can see the striking similarities between Penn State and the Catholic Church but actually having been one of those little boys just makes it so incredibly vivid. For me, the actual physical assault wasn't anything close to being as painful as seeing all the blind eyes turned to it. Knowing that people actually saw it happen and turned their backs to protect the greater good. Watching those priests up on the altar every sunday, preaching of morality and kindness and our 'precious youth'. Watching my parents shake their hands after services and thank them for everything they have done for the community. And as an altar-boy having to 'serve' them on my knees, every sunday, right there in front of everybody.

Thanks Digger. I was brought up with the Catholic religion also and I know quite a few people were abused this way so I can empathise honestly, I still have days or moments when I feel absolute rage myself especially if I hear or read anything triggering.

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I am sorry that happened to you, Pixie.
I am not saying that people shouldnt feel compassion for whomever they want. What Im saying is (1) people need to take into account that an expression of compassion for one person may be hurtful/damaging to another person who is more in need of/deserving of compassion, and (2) compassion, in and of itself, is not a virtue.
Let me illustrate. I was ten when this happened: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Speck. It happened less than two hours from here, it was horrific, and it was all over the radio (television not yet having been invented). At one point, they started to broadcast the name and description of Richard Speck. A massive manhunt was underway.
I remember vividly the moment I was hit by a great wave of pity/compassion for Richard Speck. I imagined him terrified and possibly filled with regret or remorse. I realized that day that I have an abnormal store of compassion. I didnt think then, nor do I now, that that is a virtue. It simply is, much like my having freckles simply is part of my makeup. Its how I express my compassion that matters.
Even at age ten, I was aware that going up to the families of Specks victims and telling them of the compassion I felt for Speck (which was dwarfed by the compassion I felt for the victims and their families) would have been hurtful to them. Even now, almost fifty years later, I would not say it on this internet forum if I suspected any of the victims family members or friends were reading this. The expression of compassion has effect. Much less so would I tell anyone else that they should have compassion for Richard Speck. His crimes were truly horrific.

Thanks Mlp. I wonder if is it nature or nurture that some people have high levels of compassion?

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Having compassion for criminals doesn't mean giving them a hug and letting them go free. Compassion means the ability to understand mental flaws can lead to behavior that severely hurts others. Reason means understanding that those mentally flawed people who hurt others should be prevented from continuing to do so.
It's possible to have compassion and reason. It's not an either-or situation.

I agree.
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#303 Old 11-21-2011, 09:58 AM
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Thanks Mlp. I wonder if is it nature or nurture that some people have high levels of compassion?

I think that, as with all characteristics, even physical ones to some extent, it's well nigh impossible to sort out.
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#304 Old 11-21-2011, 10:02 AM
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MrFalafel admitted to the court that he had been suppressing his urges for quite some time, that he knew what he did was wrong, and that he destroyed the lives of those children. I'm not so sure that I can feel compassion for a man who admits that he knew all this beforehand but still chose to act on it.
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#305 Old 11-21-2011, 11:50 AM
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Wasn't there a thread about compassion for pedophiles somewhere around here?

I seem to have wandered into the "lets dig up the past" thread by mistake.
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#306 Old 11-21-2011, 12:07 PM
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Thanks for sharing Pixie. I know it can be a hold your breath moment when you share something like that about yourself. I'm sorry that happened to you.
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#307 Old 11-21-2011, 12:48 PM
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Nobody has said it. But I wonder if people are thinking it.

I hope not.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#308 Old 11-21-2011, 01:03 PM
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Nobody has said it. But I wonder if people are thinking it.

I can only speak for myself, but while I had compassion for Richard Speck (and others), I certainly did not condone what he did, and my compassion for him was insignificant in comparison to my compassion for his victims. Not that my compassion for either the victims and their families of for Speck did any good. It just was, and without action was morally neutral.

ETA: Now, if I had written a letter to Speck, voicing my compassion, that might have made a tiny difference to him. But it would also have been like spitting in the face of his victims, and would not have been a decent thing to do, IMO.
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#309 Old 11-21-2011, 01:17 PM
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MOD POST - Stop the personal back and forth bickering and get back on topic - which is: should there be compassion for pedophiles?

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#310 Old 11-21-2011, 01:37 PM
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This thread is being closed temporarily while I clean up the personal back and forth about other threads. It may take a while.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#311 Old 11-21-2011, 02:16 PM
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Ok. Re-opening. Please do not rehash old, closed threads here, and please have some consideration for those here who are recovering from major childhood traumas.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#312 Old 11-21-2011, 02:21 PM
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Cool - by all means, let us not hold anyone accountable for what they say.

Every thread is a fresh slate, a new beginning, a new opportunity to present oneself in whatever light one wishes.
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#313 Old 11-21-2011, 02:45 PM
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ETA: Now, if I had written a letter to Speck, voicing my compassion, that might have made a tiny difference to him. But it would also have been like spitting in the face of his victims, and would not have been a decent thing to do, IMO.

Is any compassion towards a mass murderer be analogous towards spitting in the face of their victims?

If one objected to police brutality towards a mass murderer, is that offensive to their victims?
How about objecting to torture of a mass murderer? Is that offensive to their victims?
How about wanting a mass murderer to get a fair trial? Is that offensive to their victims?
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#314 Old 11-21-2011, 03:02 PM
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So what are you trying to say about people who have messed up neural wiring and commit crimes against others?

Not a damn thing. You are reading far too much into a joke.

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#315 Old 11-21-2011, 08:30 PM
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Years ago, I was appointed to represent the interests of an eight year old girl who had been repeatedly raped by her stepfather, the father of her younger half sister. The way it came to light was that she told her best friend, who in turn told her parents, who reported it to the authorities. The mother, as is the situation in so many cases, stood by her man. He eventually went to prison, for a little more than a year. (It’s apparently much more acceptable to rape a family member than a stranger, to go by the relatively light sentences that are given in such cases.)

When I received notice from the division of family services that they intended to close their file on the matter, I inquired of the case worker when the rapist was getting out of prison. In a month’s time, she said. I asked where he would be living. The case worker had not inquired. I did inquire, of the mother. She was looking forward to his release, so that they could resume their life together. I promptly filed a motion with the court, asking that the children be removed from the home if the mother allowed him to come near it or near her daughters.

On the day of the hearing, the mother tearfully asked me why I hated her. I told her I didn’t hate her, but I intended to protect her daughters. I asked her a question in turn, “What message do you think it sends your daughter when you invite her rapist back into your home and your bed?” She just looked at me blankly.

Some of the posts in this thread remind me of that woman. There are members of VB, and others who are not members, who were raped or otherwise sexually molested as children. Statistically, that’s true for about one in five people reading this thread. Perhaps you should focus more of your compassion on them and the message your words are sending to them, rather than on their rapists.

I hope you recognize no one in this thread (as far as I can tell) has advocated anything remotely like what that woman did. I can say personally that her actions sound despicable to me. Has anyone advocated that Mr. F be released after a year and his victims be made to live with him? Pretty harsh comparison...
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#316 Old 11-21-2011, 08:32 PM
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I hope you recognize no one in this thread (as far as I can tell) has advocated anything remotely like what that woman did. I can say personally that her actions sound despicable to me. Has anyone advocated that Mr. F be released after a year and his victims be made to live with him? Pretty harsh comparison...


You do realize that mlp has once again left us, right? She won't be responding.

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#317 Old 11-21-2011, 08:35 PM
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Well dammit.
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#318 Old 11-21-2011, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by sequoia View Post

You do realize that mlp has once again left us, right? She won't be responding.

Oh, whoops. Well, I still think it's worth putting out there for the audience in general.
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#319 Old 11-21-2011, 08:41 PM
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Oh, whoops. Well, I still think it's worth putting out there for the audience in general.


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#320 Old 11-22-2011, 11:59 AM
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Anybody remember the video of the guy waiting at a payphone (at an airport) probably 25+ years ago. His son was raped by his karate instructor.

Edit, here it is... 1984

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oi3Hyxuf5AE&feature=player_embedded

That video could have done with a warning. I had no idea I was about to watch someone get shot in the head...


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#321 Old 12-05-2011, 04:54 PM
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The moment a pedophile molests a child they are the scum of the Earth in my opinion. Pedophilia itself, I believe, can be treated with therapy. It is a sickness of the mind. But the moment a pedophile crosses over that line from thinking to acting, I have no sympathy for what befalls them. I'm not sure whether or not he is considered a pedophile, but when I was in elementary school, my basketball coach and teacher was caught exposing himself to girls on webcam anywhere between the ages of ten and fourteen, purposely. He did this many times and I remember whenever he could leave the computer lab to go get something he would lock his laptop that he brought with him everywhere in a desk and bring the key with him. It really scared me to know that this man had been my basketball coach, he had been a Rugby coach too and Rugby is a game where we all just change our shirts on the side of the field anyway, thats just how it is. It is a sobbering and disgusting thought that someone like that was ever close enough to touch me. He is in prison now, where he belongs, and about twenty more charges have been brought against him.

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