Jackson's at it AGAIN!
November 19, 2003 7:53 AM   Subscribe

Can Jackson buy his way out AGAIN? Ok, I agree that EVERYONE (including drug dealers and supposed terrorists) is innocent until proven guilty, but for christs sake how many hush up bribes can "wacko jacko" pay before the "pedophile of pop" lands where he belongs...IN JAIL!
posted by hoopyfrood (153 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Jail? That's not right. He belongs in a mental institution if anywhere. I feel quite sorry for him as a person and for his situation.
posted by banished at 8:01 AM on November 19, 2003


......prompted by revelations made by a 12-year-old Los Angeles boy in therapy sessions.

Why is a 12 year-old in therapy? (I know. I know)
Why did his parents allow him to overnight with Jackson?
posted by kenaman at 8:07 AM on November 19, 2003


Jackson -- although obviously a man with severe emotional problems -- may very well have been innocent of all charges last time.

He was the victim of a nasty smear campaign instituted by the boy's father.

Here's an article from GQ that lays out the evidence that Jackson was innocent.

Did Michal Jackson Do It?
posted by hipnerd at 8:09 AM on November 19, 2003


Why did his parents allow him to overnight with Jackson?
They thought of a cunning way to get rich?

Poor wacko.
posted by ginz at 8:11 AM on November 19, 2003


So, you agree that EVERYONE is innocent until proven guilty, BUT not Michael Jackson. That about right?
posted by zekinskia at 8:14 AM on November 19, 2003


With all the smoke, eventually someone had to find a fire.
posted by damnitkage at 8:20 AM on November 19, 2003


......prompted by revelations made by a 12-year-old Los Angeles boy
how many hush up bribes can "wacko jacko" pay before the "pedophile of pop" lands where he belongs...IN JAIL!

Wish the news would get their act together. First they said he was a 13 year old boy. Also, there is no money involved, they want prosecution here. Add, someone with so many people around him constantly, how can this happen?

[side note] Saw a recent quote by his father regarding MJ claiming his dad beat him while growing up. His father said, "he whipped MJ with a switch & belt but he never beat MJ; beatings are done with a stick." Dope switches are sticks.
posted by thomcatspike at 8:26 AM on November 19, 2003


Classic phych really... Adult who never has a true childhood lives out childhood during adulthood to compensate. In Michael's mind... he is still 12.

Sort of like the Catholic priests that rape little boys because they are never allowed to grow up sexually and are instinctively attracted to people with the same 'sexual age'.
posted by LoopSouth at 8:29 AM on November 19, 2003


Why is a 12 year-old in therapy?

Hell, just SEEING Micheal Jackson at close range would probably be something you'd need therapy for, let alone anything else.
posted by Shoeburyness at 8:30 AM on November 19, 2003


Is it me or is no publicity bad publicity?

Jackson has an album out now.... and isn't he practically bankrupt?
posted by boneybaloney at 8:46 AM on November 19, 2003


no... he steals the kid's lunch money too...
posted by LoopSouth at 8:58 AM on November 19, 2003


In Michael's mind... he is still 12.
In his "tv show interview specials" didn't he say, he is and will be child, that's why he has them for friends he can trust them?
posted by thomcatspike at 8:58 AM on November 19, 2003


Not to justify any sort of corporal punishment, but Jackson's dad does have a point, TCS, with the distinction between 'switch' and 'stick.' A switch is a stick that's very flexible, so it whips you. A stick, as the saying goes, can break bones (while a switch can't). Again, this doesn't justify whipping kids, but if Jackson Sr. wants to make some off-topic distinction between "whipping" and "beating," well, it is a valid distinction.
posted by soyjoy at 9:05 AM on November 19, 2003


Also, there is no money involved, they want prosecution here.

Bullpucky. There's plenty of money to be made in book deals, TV Movie of the Weeks, etc. Just because they're not after direct financial restitution from Jackson himself doesn't mean this isn't a money grab. Michael Jackson seems to be everyone's favorite "crazy" to pile up on. Mr. Jackson had a shitty childhood and is clearly trying to have his childhood now -- if parents have a problem with his sleepovers and such, they might want to think twice before sending their kids over there. I mean shit, if I sent my kids to prison-camp, I wouldn't be surprised if they ended up molested. Why put your kids in a situation you already think is wierd if not to extort him later on?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:07 AM on November 19, 2003


From what I understand, the boy's parents are not suing him for any monetary damages- simply wanting charges filed for molestation.

I don't know the circumstances of how this alleged attack occured, but I agree any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with Jackson has a screw loose. And that's whether or not these accusations are true.
posted by konolia at 9:10 AM on November 19, 2003


before the "pedophile of pop" lands where he belongs...IN JAIL!

Hopefully in the same cell with the pedophile of poop, Rush Limbaugh?

Taking illegal "hillbilly heroin" together, laundering their money and having little boy sex with one another?

Heh.
posted by nofundy at 9:15 AM on November 19, 2003


So, you agree that EVERYONE is innocent until proven guilty, BUT not Michael Jackson. That about right?

Don't forget Richard Scrushy, Kobe and OJ!

Jail? That's not right. He belongs in a mental institution if anywhere. I feel quite sorry for him as a person and for his situation.

Why because he's Michael Jackson? He's an alleged child rapist. If convicted he should get exactly what every child rapist gets and no less because he's "special." Just as he deserves to be tried fairly by our system he deserves to be punished fairly as well. Not that either of those things will happen, but it's my two cents anyway.
posted by Pollomacho at 9:20 AM on November 19, 2003


I don't know the circumstances of how this alleged attack occured, but I agree any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with Jackson any adult male has a screw loose. And that's whether or not these accusations are true.
posted by dash_slot- at 9:21 AM on November 19, 2003


Why have parents allowed their childrent to be in compromising positions at Neverland Ranch? Really, what's that all about? This seems to be a recurring problem and I just don't get it.

As for whether the noseless one is a perv, I think it's a given. He's got less nose than Lon Chaney in the Phantom of the Opera but that doesn't a pedophile make necessarily.
posted by shagoth at 9:23 AM on November 19, 2003


I agree any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with any adult male has a screw loose

Huh? I can't tell whether you're being serious or not, but obviously that's ludicrous. If it's intended to be a joke, well, ha-ha.
posted by kindall at 9:30 AM on November 19, 2003


Or you could just see what was news one year ago today.
posted by Skot at 9:35 AM on November 19, 2003


Yeah, that's downright odd, dash_slot. WTF?
posted by soyjoy at 9:40 AM on November 19, 2003


If you're a parent and you allow your child to spend the night with MJ, you're the one who should be whipped with a belt and a switch. That, in itself, should have the Child Protective Services people taking your kids away before any more damage can be done to them.
posted by tommasz at 9:40 AM on November 19, 2003


Clearly Metafilter thread #29687 is the best forum in which to adjudicate this matter.

So, guilty or innocent? It's all the same to me, so I vote "Nader."
posted by PrinceValium at 9:41 AM on November 19, 2003


Pollomacho... he shouldn't go to prison because he likely suffers from a mental disorder, not because he is Michael Jackson. His repeated plastic surgeries, dangling babies over ledges, his fear of being black, are indeed obvious signs that he is in need of help. Don't forget that the purpose of the prison system is to rehabilitate people. Maybe you need to learn to have a little more compassion for fellow human beings.
posted by banished at 9:47 AM on November 19, 2003


I don't know the circumstances of how this alleged attack occured, but I agree any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with any adult male has a screw loose.

consider my screw loosened. I guess i'll pull my son out of school and stop letting my best friend occasionally take him fishing. and no more trips for ice cream with grandpa!
posted by glenwood at 9:52 AM on November 19, 2003


I just want to know why his kids are white.
posted by cinderful at 10:01 AM on November 19, 2003


I just want to know why his kids are white.

A point which I have raised in conversation. I have a lot of friends in "mixed" marriages...and they have beautiful, stunning, children. Not a one of those kids is blonde and blue eyed, even if one of the parents is...

Jackson's children, all three of them, are Aryan looking...which is an interesting genetic trick, that.
posted by dejah420 at 10:08 AM on November 19, 2003


Wish the news would get their act together. First they said he was a 13 year old boy. Also, there is no money involved, they want prosecution here.

MJ being successfully prosecuted and convicted would make the parents civil suit practically a slam dunk.
posted by Trik at 10:13 AM on November 19, 2003


Don't forget that the purpose of the prison system is to rehabilitate people.

HA! are you serious?
posted by PrinceValium at 10:20 AM on November 19, 2003


Wish the news would get their act together. First they said he was a 13 year old boy.

the boy was 12 when allegedly molested, but was 13 when charges were pressed
posted by cinderful at 10:22 AM on November 19, 2003


Jackson's children, all three of them, are Aryan looking...which is an interesting genetic trick, that.

Whassamadda, you never read Lamarck?
posted by soyjoy at 10:31 AM on November 19, 2003


dash-slot-
Really, where does that one come from? Aren't you an adult male? As heinous as pedophilia is, our culture's new fascination with all things sex-crime has led to the sort of mindset you are exhibiting wherein people are not to be trusted because of their gender--and not their behavior. As a proud godfather, babysitter and playmate of my best friend's child I can't decide whether that idea is more hurtful to people like me (the "it takes a village" type) or to the children themselves (who, in my experience, do well to have mentors other than just their parents.

Plus, if not for hanging out with my dad's co-workers as a child, I might still not know the words "fuck"or "shit."
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 10:33 AM on November 19, 2003


Fiddle about. Fiddle about.
posted by reidfleming at 10:34 AM on November 19, 2003


...before the "pedophile of pop" lands where he belongs...IN JAIL!

Prediction: He'll skip town and emege in Europe, where he'll befriend Roman Polanski.
posted by alumshubby at 10:47 AM on November 19, 2003


Listen, I may be overcautious due to having worked with Social Services on some searing cases. If these children had been better supervised by their parents then all sorts of abuse would have been prevented.

Why would any adult male want to have unsupervised sole access to a lone child? Overnight? Why?

That situation just cries out for investigation - but not prejudging. I would not put myself in the position MJ did. In fact, unless I was related (the only qualification I would make to my above statement) to the child, I would even suspect the skills of a parent who trusted an adult male in a 'babysitting' scenario. That to me is a logical decision.

Some risks you don't take. Pedophiles don't have tatooed on their heads - you cannot tell who is & who isnt.
posted by dash_slot- at 10:52 AM on November 19, 2003


I'm voting for dean.
posted by mecran01 at 10:52 AM on November 19, 2003


soyjoy, A stick, as the saying goes, can break bones (while a switch can't). agree but a switch can make you bleed when whipped. Being picky as I'm thinking a narrow stick not a baseball bat size one.
posted by thomcatspike at 11:04 AM on November 19, 2003


I would even suspect the skills of a parent who trusted an adult male in a 'babysitting' scenario. That to me is a logical decision. Some risks you don't take.

Jesus Christ. This is just fearmongering sexist bullshit. Men can't be trusted to be babysitters? It's a risk you don't take?

I trust my adult male babysitting friends a lot more than I trust the adult gender-neutral strangers that are enshrined as doctors, teachers, and police. I'd much rather leave a child alone with a male friend than a cop/fireman/anyone I've never met.

Stupidity like this really pisses me off, and does nothing more than help create an environment of fear.
posted by Jairus at 11:07 AM on November 19, 2003


pedophile don't have tattooed on their heads - you cannot tell who is & who isn't.

This is true for terrorists and serial killers, too, dash_slot. The suspect-all-potential-perps approach is paranoid and misguided. I've worked in social services, too, seen lots of sad shit, too. If it breaks your faith in an entire gender, you're missing a lot of good and perhaps doing harm to your community. Please reconsider your generalization about the universal danger of men.

On preview, I agree with Jairus.
posted by squirrel at 11:14 AM on November 19, 2003


Holy paranoid crap, Batman! dash-slot, are you out of your mind or have you just worked too much for Social Services without proper council? You can't mindlessly hold half of the human race guilty for the acts of handful men (and women, let us be true: there are lots of cases of child sexual abuse where the perpetrator was a woman)! So being a man automatically disqualify me from being capable of taking care of children? Mad, completely mad.
posted by nkyad at 11:14 AM on November 19, 2003


I think Jackson is innocent.
posted by hammurderer at 11:19 AM on November 19, 2003


We are all entitled to our opinions, Jairus. I don't consider yours to be stupidity, and there's nothing I can do about the off-pissedness that my opinions give you. I fully understand that other parents weigh the risks of modern life in different ways than I do. I won't attack them for that.

Don't misunderstand me: I consider myself to be a carer, having worked in a residential setting with adolescents for a few years. Men are not disqualified, in my eyes, from such work - and I never said that.. the words solo and unsupervised are crucial here - if only to guard against baseless accusations from unhappy or fantasising children (and parents).

Less hysteria, more protection.
posted by dash_slot- at 11:21 AM on November 19, 2003


If these children had been better supervised by their parents then all sorts of abuse would have been prevented.

The vast majority of children who are sexually abused in this country are abused by family members. Not by the "chat-room predators" that US taxpayers pay the FBI millions of dollars a year to entrap, not by the guy in the trenchcoat hanging around the schoolyard, not by Michael Jackson, and not by the convicted sex-offenders whose names appear on flyers when they move to a new neighborhood.

Who told me this? The leading authority on child sex abuse, David Finkelhor, the director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center, who does studies funded by the Department of Justice.

We are a nation in deep, deep denial.
posted by digaman at 11:25 AM on November 19, 2003


Dash_Slot, have you ever considered you might be the one with a problem?
You are overreacting and that is an understatement.
There is nothing wrong with most men. Or women.
posted by ginz at 11:29 AM on November 19, 2003


Multiple counts of molestation, $3m bail, immediate surrender and forfeiture of passport, according to the press conference. The chickens are coming home to roost...
posted by punilux at 11:31 AM on November 19, 2003


digamon:The vast majority of children who are sexually abused in this country are abused by family members.

Stop it with the facts and reason, we're trying to have a witch burning here!

You heard the man, everyone is innocent until guilty except Michael Jackson.
posted by skallas at 11:52 AM on November 19, 2003


Don't misunderstand me: I consider myself to be a carer, having worked in a residential setting with adolescents for a few years. Men are not disqualified, in my eyes, from such work - and I never said that.. the words solo and unsupervised are crucial here

I understand what you mean, but I find it no less offensive. I too, have worked with adolescents, and my partner works in a foster and group homes as an intake and relief worker. The reality of the situation is that (as digaman said) most abuse is done by family, and not in the kinds of situations that the current pedophile moral panic is trying to resolve.

If men cannot work in solo, unsupervised situations as caretakers, then men are effectively disqualified as such. I've worked solo, and unsupervised, as have many men I know -- and the attitude that they should not be able to do so protects no-one (as people who are motivated to molest children will find a way to be alone, and unsupervised), and fosters dangerous misconceptions about the nature of abuse, and abusers.
posted by Jairus at 11:53 AM on November 19, 2003


chickens, or chickenhawks?
posted by archimago at 11:53 AM on November 19, 2003


I agree with dash_slot-. It's not about distrusting all adult males, it's about not unnecessarily gambling with the safety of one's children. A million to one? Probably. But if you don't have to, why take the chance and put your child in a situation where molestation or rape could happen?
posted by UncleFes at 11:53 AM on November 19, 2003


Why would any adult male want to have unsupervised sole access to a lone child? Overnight? Why?

Why would any adult female want those things? There are such things as female pedophiles, you know. Surely the issue isn't the gender of the person, but rather who that person is (father, mother, other family member, close friend, random stranger) and that sort of thing. Are you seriously suggesting that kids shouldn't stay over at their father's house if their parents don't live together, or that kids shouldn't stay over at their grandparents' house?
posted by biscotti at 11:56 AM on November 19, 2003


A million to one? Probably. But if you don't have to, why take the chance

I take it, then, you never ride in cars or allow those you love to do so, because the odds are a lot worse there. In fact, stepping outside the house is unacceptably dangerous. But wait, the house is a chamber of dangers too! Better to just get it over with now and avoid all the horrors...

Life is danger. You can either accept that, weigh the odds in each case, and do your best to live a full life, or you can try desperately to shield yourself and (especially) the kids (those precious innocent kids!) from all bad things. Read (for example) Theodore Sturgeon's More Than Human to see what can come of that.
posted by languagehat at 12:07 PM on November 19, 2003


But if you don't have to, why take the chance and put your child in a situation where molestation or rape could happen?

Like school, or a doctor's appointment, or a field trip, or...

It's called weighing the odds. You make an informed decision based on valid(!) data as to what risks you're going to allow, as a parent, so that your child has the best life possible. Molestation could happen at the doctors. It could happen at a friend's house. It could happen at grandma's. Does that mean your kid should be home schooled, never see a doctor, and never see grandma? Of course not.

As a parent, you have a responsibility to take the time to learn what the dangers actually are, instead of simply accepting what they appear to be. No child is perfectly safe from rape, or physical abuse, or too much sugar, or rock music, or whatever happens to be the moral panic of the year. You cannot make a child perfectly safe. It's impossible -- and the growing attitude that misinformed discrimination is okay as long as it 'protects the children' is harmful to children and adults alike.
posted by Jairus at 12:07 PM on November 19, 2003


dash_slot- is Michael Jackson! Who is innocent!
posted by hackly_fracture at 12:09 PM on November 19, 2003


Count me, father of eight year old girl, among the loose-screwed, dash-slot, for reasons well put by other posters already.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:12 PM on November 19, 2003


Hence, Jairus and Languagehat, the caveat: "If you don't have to..." dash_slot- (and I) are decrying unnecessary risks - like, say, leaving your son for overnight visits at Neverland Ranch. Yes, molestation could happen at all those places you describe, and if it does it is unlikely that I would be in a position to stop it. So I suppose do take risks, every day. What I don't take is unnecessary risks with my child's wellbeing. I don't gamble.

What I don't understand is why you continue to mischaracterize this ostensibly reasonable activity as wild panic-attack-mode hysteria, which it's not.
posted by UncleFes at 12:16 PM on November 19, 2003


According to this research, which appears to me (at quick glance) to be unbiased and scholarly, 97% of all reported child molesters are male, and that "child protection workers conservatively estimate that 1 in every 100 males are child molesters."

Gavin De Becker, the famous safety and crime expert who wrote the wonderful book The Gift Of Fear, even says in his followup book, Protecting the Gift, that parents who teach their kids not to talk to strangers are misguided, that what they should teach them is to go to a woman and ask for help. It is still possible she is a molester, but the chances are far lower.

Now make of that what you will, but I agree with dash_slot that I am much more suspicious of men (who aren't also dads) who are very into children, and my husband and I agree we will never, ever have a teenage male babysitter for our daughter. Yes, it is sad for men who genuinely like children in completely non-sexual ways. Sorry.
posted by jfwlucy at 12:21 PM on November 19, 2003


UncleFes: Things like "Why would any adult male want to have unsupervised sole access to a lone child? Overnight? Why? That situation just cries out for investigation" and "I would even suspect the skills of a parent who trusted an adult male in a 'babysitting' scenario" are, to my eyes, a lot closer to panic-attack-mode hysteria than they are to ostensibly-reasonable-activity.

jfwlucy: That research is so shoddy that they even spelled Crewdson's name wrong when referencing his work. As for John Crewdson himself, he was one of the major figures responsible for the satanism-as-child-abuse-cult moral panic of the 80s. His statistics are designed to inspire fear, and secure further government funding.
posted by Jairus at 12:28 PM on November 19, 2003


Although I might tend to agree with you on the latter, I must respectfully disagree regarding the former. I would find it very reasonable to question the motives of any adult male who wanted unsupervised sole access overnight to children. While any one of those might be perfectly innocent, the combination is, to my mind, an classic example of what I would regard as an unnecessary risk to take with my child's welfare.
posted by UncleFes at 12:33 PM on November 19, 2003


Pollomacho... he shouldn't go to prison because he likely suffers from a mental disorder, not because he is Michael Jackson. His repeated plastic surgeries, dangling babies over ledges, his fear of being black, are indeed obvious signs that he is in need of help. Don't forget that the purpose of the prison system is to rehabilitate people. Maybe you need to learn to have a little more compassion for fellow human beings.

Pretty much every felon in prison suffers from some sort of mental disorder, that's what ended them up in prison for christ sake (not counting the non-violent drug offenders)! If you weren't mentally deranged, gullible or just plain dim you wouldn't consider premeditated murder, ass fucking an 8 year old or defrauding old ladies of their life savings. I agree that prison should be about rehabilitation, however most US states take the punishment stance, so no, rehabilitation is not the actual purpose. As for Jackson himself, his quarks (can) have fairly logical explanations, plastic surgery to enhance the physical appearance by which he makes his money and to correct the past mistakes, "fear" of being black is pure arm chair/tv investigative journalism psychological speculation, baby dangling to give the press who was demanding a photo op the opportunity to feast. He may be odd, but that does not prove illness, conviction of molesting young boys does however. Perhaps my concern and compassion for innocent children outweigh my compassion for their convicted rapists. I am compassionate that everyone get a fair shake though no matter what they are accused of.
posted by Pollomacho at 12:35 PM on November 19, 2003


UncleFes, you should question the motives of anyone who wanted unsupervised sole access overnight to your children. With that said, an adult make caring for a young male overnight should not 'cry out for investigation' any more than an adult female caring for a young female overnight.

jwelucy, I would also question the wisdom of exposing your children to outside caretakers that are exclusively female. In my experience, children in these kinds of situations often develop misconceptions about the role of a woman in the home, and later in life, their own role in a family.
posted by Jairus at 12:38 PM on November 19, 2003


Hit post instead of preview. "anyone" should be in italics, "adult make" = "adult male", and "jwelucy" = "jfwlucy".
posted by Jairus at 12:41 PM on November 19, 2003


Perhaps our differences, then, are contextual rather than substantive.
posted by UncleFes at 12:42 PM on November 19, 2003


Okay, how about theDepartment of Justice's research on the matter? "Nearly all the offenders in sexual assaults reported to the law were male (96%)."

Jairus, I'd let a couple babysit for us. Maybe. And in any case, she sees lots of female professionals, etc. But whatever "misconceptions" my daughter might get from having only female babysitters -- that's a risk I much prefer to having possibly to help her recover from sexual abuse by a male babysitter.
posted by jfwlucy at 12:45 PM on November 19, 2003


I'm far from trying to be defensive of the guy. I think he's a sick freak. But doesn't it seem strange that some random child's family comes out with new charges of molestation every time he comes out with a new album or something? And why are parents still allowing their kids to be around this guy? Surely they have seen stories of alleged molestations with him before. Do they live under a rock?
posted by whirlwind29 at 12:51 PM on November 19, 2003


I don't know the circumstances of how this alleged attack occured, but I agree any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with Jackson any adult male has a screw loose. And that's whether or not these accusations are true.

That's baloney, and I take offense as a volunteer for Big Brothers. I don't see any other way to participate in the program if I don't spend solo unsupervised time with the Little Brother. I do not bring him to my home unless my fiance is there for my own protection.
posted by McBain at 12:51 PM on November 19, 2003


So, dash_slot, UncleFes, jfwlucy: Every year millions of boys go on overnight trips supervised solely by adult males generally unrelated to the boys. A sizable portion of these trips involve crossing state lines, and many last for several days and nights in wilderness areas.

Based on your statements, does this mean that you think the Boy Scouts is a bad idea? Or that you question the parenting skills of any parent who allows his son to participate in such an organization?
posted by Irontom at 12:53 PM on November 19, 2003


Just to clarify the above, my Little and I spend a lot of time out and about just the two of us, so that last sentence isn't a contradiction or a guideline of the program. It is simply a choice that I've made.
posted by McBain at 12:54 PM on November 19, 2003


UnbleFes: Perhaps so. I think it's more about differing opinion as to what's best for the safety of children, than it is any difference in opinion regarding abuse in general.

jfwlucy: I'm not arguing that most offenders in abuse cases aren't male -- but this says nothing as to how many men are offenders. (A 'conservative estimate' that 1 in every 100 men are child molesters is hogwash, plain and simple.)

In a sample of 100 male offender cases vs 4 female cases, it's quite possible (even likely, according to critical criminology) that there are men in that sample who count for 5, 10, 15 of those 100 offences. There's also the factor that most adolescent males abused by females are much less likely to come forward with the abuse, due to gender-related shame. Abuse report statistics show only that -- reports of abuse. It is not a perfectly accurate yardstick of real-world-abuse.
posted by Jairus at 12:56 PM on November 19, 2003


Only in America can a black man turn into a white woman.
posted by Keyser Soze at 12:58 PM on November 19, 2003


Whats black and in a babies diaper? Michael Jacksons hand.
posted by Keyser Soze at 12:59 PM on November 19, 2003


Irontom: Boy Scout campouts typically involve more than one adult and more than one child. Any Boy Scout campout that involved only my son and only one Scoutmaster? I'd think that was a bad idea, yes indeed.

Jairus: I concur. I also agree that the idea that 1 in 100 men is molester. That's patently ridiculous.

McBain: Big Brothers, as I undestand, are very rigorous regarding background checks for potential Big Brothers, aren't they?
posted by UncleFes at 1:00 PM on November 19, 2003


You don’t leave a child with a stranger, especially overnight. MJ is a stranger to all, know any of his best friends? He has said his only friends are the children as he “can trust them”.
posted by thomcatspike at 1:02 PM on November 19, 2003


You heard the man, everyone is innocent until guilty except Michael Jackson.

This is a website, not a court of law. We're perfectly free to conjecture our heads off.
posted by jonmc at 1:03 PM on November 19, 2003


Q: Whats michael Jacksons favorite Nursery Rhyme?
A: Little boy blew

Q: What do Michael Jackson and Walmart have in common?
A: They both have small boys pants at half off!

Q: Did you hear about Michael Jackson's toaster?
A: The bread goes in brown, and comes out white.

Q: What do you do if Michael Jackson is drowning?
A: Throw him a buoy!
posted by Keyser Soze at 1:03 PM on November 19, 2003


Big Brothers, as I undestand, are very rigorous regarding background checks for potential Big Brothers, aren't they?

They did a criminal background check, then talked to my boss, my mother, and another personal reference. In addition to the interview.
posted by McBain at 1:03 PM on November 19, 2003


Now lets speak equally here. Im sure the multiple allegations that have been going on for years are just publicity ploys and ways to get some money by these kids parents. Maybe even the baby MJ almost dropped out the window was a publicity stunt.

Goddamn. He might as well be fucking an 8 year old boy on the white house lawn, so his lawyers can declare an act of God, because michael jackson was taking a leak and god put an 8 year old boy right in his way of urination, effectively making michael jackson get a hard on and come out of sheer confusion.
posted by Keyser Soze at 1:08 PM on November 19, 2003


They did a criminal background check, then talked to my boss, my mother, and another personal reference. In addition to the interview.

That seems designed precisely to avoid putting the children at unnecessary risk. I ask myself: should I do less? As a parent, should I not put in at least that much thought and effort? S'all I'[m saying.
posted by UncleFes at 1:11 PM on November 19, 2003


Add, Jackson's children, all three of them, are Aryan looking...which is an interesting genetic trick, that.
He said he wants a boy and a girl from all the continents. Thought "Blanket"'s was Asian or was that his next child to be?
posted by thomcatspike at 1:12 PM on November 19, 2003


UncleFes- The point remains, there are first time offenders every year without criminal records. How many friends and relatives are later questioned and reply "he seemed like a normal guy"?
posted by McBain at 1:13 PM on November 19, 2003


As a parent, should I not put in at least that much thought and effort?

Also, I was responding directly to "any adult male".
posted by McBain at 1:15 PM on November 19, 2003


True. I guess it comes down to the idea of, if I can't stop it totally, and it happens, can I look myself in the mirror and say truthfully that I did all I could to prevent it? Or did I gamble with my son's safety - because I was lazy, or thoughtless - and my son was subsequently hurt? Because if it's the latter, then the fault resides partially with me. I can't - I won't - have that.
posted by UncleFes at 1:18 PM on November 19, 2003


Of course you should, Fes. Sorry, my answers are so muddled. I'm multi-tasking.
posted by McBain at 1:19 PM on November 19, 2003


Ugh, of course you should take precautions. Was responding to previous questions. I should just stop now.
posted by McBain at 1:21 PM on November 19, 2003


i was molested by my aunt. women can do it.
posted by Keyser Soze at 1:21 PM on November 19, 2003


Or did I gamble with my son's safety - because I was lazy, or thoughtless - and my son was subsequently hurt?

No, you didn't as long as you took common sense precautions and try to trust your instincts. These kinds of assaults are unfortunate and horrible, but I don't think they're nearly as common as the Half-hour Hate would lead us to believe every evening at 6 and 11. I'm not going to live in fear.
posted by McBain at 1:27 PM on November 19, 2003


During a FBI raid on neverland police found class A drugs in the living room, class B drugs in the kitchen, and class 5c in the bedroom.
posted by inpHilltr8r at 2:10 PM on November 19, 2003


UncleFes and McBain, I think you have distilled this argument to its essence: fear. Among those who have posted here in defense of men, I don't think anyone would speak against taking a mindful, cautious approach to child rearing; nor do I think that those who have expressed more alarm here would prefer a society submerged in fear.

But keep in mind that one's fear takes a toll on more than just himself, it impacts the family and the way the children see the world. Fear impacts the culture at large.

Everyone must make his own bargain with fear: you give up this much "quality of life" and get that much "assurance" in return. In threads like this, our fears cross blades. Those expressing a blanket fear of group x are going to hear from group x, and probably some others.

Group x in this case is men, the unholy rapists of the universe by some accounts. Speaking for myself, I get tired and frustrated when I see some stranger point a finger at me in fear. It's not that I don't understand where they're coming from, it's that often I feel their fear is out of proportion to the actual danger.

The media loves a case like this Jackson debacle: more logs to throw on the fear fire, to get this cauldron of xenophobic hatred boiling hard enough to support some more invasions. I suggest trying to see yourself in the context of a society that interacts with the energy you express.
posted by squirrel at 2:22 PM on November 19, 2003


squirrel: I would not equate risk of abuse with fear of men. I spend enough time amongst my female colleagues countering such attitudes. Fear and danger are on different scales, chalk & cheese, so I cannot connect them in proportions. All I can do is acquaint myself with risk, take precautions, and live.

We are not all rapists, as you'll note I havent said.

UncleFes, jfwlucy, tcs: thanks for making me feel it's normal to be cautious and protective. It's not every day I'm labelled as paranoid, mad and such. just for asserting some protective priciples in caring for youngsters.

McBain: The point remains, there are first time offenders every year without criminal records. How many friends and relatives are later questioned and reply "he seemed like a normal guy"? I agree entirely. That backs me up. And 90-99% of those first time offenders will be male. And they will have been on their own, with unsupervised access to a lone child.

What I'm saying is that even 1 other adolescent may afford some extra protection. 1 other carer (male or female) - ditto, may be a protective factor.

squirrel: The suspect-all-potential-perps approach is paranoid and misguided. In my book, trust is earned - and entrusting a single guy with my kid is nigh on impossible to earn.

digaman: The vast majority of children who are sexually abused in this country are abused by family members. That is true, it's reflected in UK stats too. However, just because the majority of motor fatalities occur in family sedans doesn't mean I leave off the seatbelt when I ride in an MG. Familial abuse tends to be intra-generational or sibling-on-sibling; parents should be suspicious of their own family, if those family members abused them. If you weren't abused by a family member, and cannot see other indicators, well, you have a lower level of risk.

biscotti: Are you seriously suggesting that kids shouldn't stay over at their father's house if their parents don't live together, or that kids shouldn't stay over at their grandparents' house? I except the 'seperated dad' scenario, but see below. This is about risk reduction.

Jairus: an adult make caring for a young male overnight should not 'cry out for investigation' any more than an adult female caring for a young female overnight. Well, I didn't specify the gender of the child - girls and boys are abused by child molesters. The gender of the adult is a factor, in my mind, because the number of female perps to male is in a ratio of maybe 1:19. If my daughter gets lost at a fairground, she is told that mothers pushing prams are safer to ask for help than single males, cops safer than carnies, etc.

Irontom: Based on your statements, does this mean that you think the Boy Scouts is a bad idea? Or that you question the parenting skills of any parent who allows his son to participate in such an organization?
Pretty much answered by UncleFes at 1.00pm

ginz: Dash_Slot, have you ever considered you might be the one with a problem? You are overreacting and that is an understatement. There is nothing wrong with most men. Or women. Yes, I might have a problem, so I check my assumptions - regularly. These ones have withstood my investigations, and the examination of professionals.
And I agree there's nothing wrong with most men and women. I suspect anyone who offers to have my child, on his/her own, overnight, with no other adult present.

And I would be paying close attention to what my child told me the next day, verbally & non-verbally.

posted by dash_slot- at 2:55 PM on November 19, 2003


He's an alleged child rapist.

pollomacho's gone off a foaming at the mouth again. he's in here screaming CHILD RAPIST at the top of his lungs, when not one single news report seen today has used the word rape. not a single one. control yourself son, we understand how deeply all things sexual frighten you, but there's no need to make a fool of yourself shouting things as fact that have not even been alleged. i'd love to see that sandblasted little freak jackson confiscate your assets just to teach you a lesson. alas, he's too famous.
posted by quonsar at 3:15 PM on November 19, 2003


Every year millions of boys go on overnight trips supervised solely by adult males generally unrelated to the boys... Does this mean that you think the Boy Scouts is a bad idea?

I did a couple dozen Boy Scout hiking/camping outings in my youth, always with at least 15-20 boys my age and 2-3 scoutmasters; nothing the least bit sexual ever happened and yet, it still scarred me for life (primarily due to things other scouts put in my sleeping bag).
posted by wendell at 3:18 PM on November 19, 2003


Why because he's Michael Jackson? He's an alleged child rapist. If convicted he should get exactly what every child rapist gets and no less because he's "special." Just as he deserves to be tried fairly by our system he deserves to be punished fairly as well. Not that either of those things will happen, but it's my two cents anyway.posted by Pollomacho at 9:20 AM PST on November 19

No caps lock. No screaming. No hysteria. No hype. No prejudice. No bias. Just the equation of an alleged child sexual abuser with a rapist - not such a stretch when you have the legal term 'statutory rape'.

W.
T.
F.
quonsar?

posted by dash_slot- at 3:36 PM on November 19, 2003


No hysteria. No hype. No prejudice. No bias.

now, that's a stretch. careful, dashy, i understand there may be an adult male moving into your neighborhood.
posted by quonsar at 3:48 PM on November 19, 2003


hnh. hnh-hnuh. hnh.
/butthead
posted by dash_slot- at 3:55 PM on November 19, 2003


[mental image of a middleaged butthead "kiddyfishing" through the open window with candy and string going "heh. heh heh." drives quonsar screaming from the room]
posted by quonsar at 4:45 PM on November 19, 2003


Honest question for the baby-sitting profilers:

Do you take other variables into conderation? Age? Class? Religion? Race? Or do you "gamble"? Would you say it's immoral to not hire babysitters based on race, if there is in fact a statistical difference?

(note: I know nothing of the statistics for any of these variables, this is hypothetical)
posted by dgaicun at 4:53 PM on November 19, 2003


I know of no other variable that is so out of kilter: it's something like 95-99% men that commit sex offences against children. If the stats are unknown, why take them into account? Which of the other variables are so heavily skewed? Why, if they arent, should they be considered?
posted by dash_slot- at 5:13 PM on November 19, 2003


Meanwhile, I am in utter amazement, as Jackson is the ABC News LEAD STORY.
posted by konolia at 5:24 PM on November 19, 2003


dash_slot: Uh, no. Male abusers account for between 80-90% (not 95-99%) of all reported cases of sexual abuse. Reported cases != all cases. Female abusers have a much higher rate in cases of male victims, and it's estimated that only about 5% of abuse where the victim is male is being reported. Based on that, it's been projected that there's a fairly high (in the order of 25-40%) rate of female abusers, but they're simply not being reported. If you'd like, I can dig out the papers from my bookshelf where this research is done.

There is zero evidence for your statement that 95-99% of sex offences against children are commited by men. Like much else said in this thread, it's misinformed, and only serves to propagate dangerous misconceptions.
posted by Jairus at 5:35 PM on November 19, 2003


If the stats are unknown, why take them into account? Which of the other variables are so heavily skewed? Why, if they arent, should they be considered?

This is a convenient evasion of my question (which was clearly marked as a hypothetical), so you don't have to be the bad guy. I don't accept it.

It is also inconsistent with the statement that you don't "gamble". Non-gamblers don't leave these things to chance.
posted by dgaicun at 6:31 PM on November 19, 2003


Reading this discussion brings to mind "Bowling for Columbine" and Moore's thesis: that America's passion for violence is fueled by fear.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:45 PM on November 19, 2003


On the contrary, FFF - the fear, it seems, is on my side of the equation, not the pedophile's - yet I, and millions of other fathers, have done nothing violent at all, even to those pedophiles who have been found, convicted and later released back into the community - few, if any, retributions, vigilante action, midnight disappearances. Nothing of the sort. On the other hand, the violence and sociopathy of the average pedophile far and away outweighs even the most irate father. Which would seem to indicate that Moore's thesis, applied here, is diametrically opposite to actual reality.
posted by UncleFes at 9:49 PM on November 19, 2003


Would you say it's immoral to not hire babysitters based on race, if there is in fact a statistical difference?

If someone compiles the relevant statistics and gins up some manner of probably-multistage probit or scobit to find good predictors of pedophilia, and through some miracle doesn't screw up the analysis by selecting on the dependent variable or screwing up the model specification or any of the other classic blunders, and they find that race is a significant predictor, and then they go back and redo everything to make sure it's actually race that's doing it and not any of the jillions of other easily-measurable demographics that correlate with race... then it's actually a solid inference, and making decisions on good inference is probably okay.

But I can't think that many people are doing this.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:32 PM on November 19, 2003


There is zero evidence for your statement that 95-99% of sex offences against children are commited by men. Like much else said in this thread, it's misinformed, and only serves to propagate dangerous misconceptions.

Please do post your evidence, I'll seek links to support my contentions too.
posted by dash_slot- at 12:16 AM on November 20, 2003


Surely the amount of kids he 'looks after' he should be subject to regulations similar to those imposed on individuals required to look after kids, and monitored suchlike. If he concurred to those, surely he'd never get into this trouble?

Jacko is wilfully naive in attempt to have childhood? He's a pillock, but that don't make you a kiddiefiddler.
posted by boneybaloney at 3:54 AM on November 20, 2003


Or as we sing to the tune of 'Winter Wonderland' on the 'terraces' at 'soccer' in the U of K...

"With a packet of sweets
, and a cheeky smile,
Jacko is a f***ing paedophile
"
posted by boneybaloney at 3:57 AM on November 20, 2003


I'm tempted to say 'one swallow doesn't make a bummer', but I won't. Oh dear. Sorry.
posted by boneybaloney at 3:58 AM on November 20, 2003


Back to the specifics of the MJ case...how exactly does one go about visiting Neverland? Is it like a "make-a-wish" type thing, where all the kids are sick in some way? Or do you just call them up and ask if your kid can stay over? Essay contests? How are these kids getting into these situations?

Also, anybody ever see/hear of a girl staying over at Neverland? Seems like it's always boys.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 6:44 AM on November 20, 2003


"Jackson's children, all three of them, are Aryan looking...which is an interesting genetic trick,"

the plastic surgeon bleached out MJ's DNA, as well?
posted by matteo at 7:26 AM on November 20, 2003


Which would seem to indicate that Moore's thesis, applied here, is diametrically opposite to actual reality.

Yeah, it might seem that way, if you hadn't seen the movie yet. But UncleFes, you've had almost two months to rent it, since you said you were gonna. What gives? Do you need the address of a local Blockbuster?

I'm going to gently - gently, now - suggest that having seen the movie might improve your next post about its central thesis.
posted by soyjoy at 9:23 AM on November 20, 2003


"If someone compiles the relevant statistics and gins up some manner of probably-multistage probit or scobit to find good predictors of pedophilia, and through some miracle doesn't screw up the analysis by selecting on the dependent variable or screwing up the model specification or any of the other classic blunders, and they find that race is a significant predictor, and then they go back and redo everything to make sure it's actually race that's doing it and not any of the jillions of other easily-measurable demographics that correlate with race... then it's actually a solid inference, and making decisions on good inference is probably okay."

In other words, do all the stuff that you guys haven't done for men.
posted by dgaicun at 9:29 AM on November 20, 2003


soyjoy: I was responding to FFF's declaration, and caveated the whole thing with the "seem to indicate" part, as opposed to "I know this to be absolutely factually the capital-t Truth." I don't want people to automatically assume that they can trump any point I make by invoking Moore's movie. So, in the event that my general assumption that Bowling for Columbine thesis = American's shoot each other because they live in a culture of fear is incorrect, then I concede the point. If someone on the right would throw me a frickin' bone and tell me in a couple of easy-to-understand sentences what the damn thesis of the movie is, I'd appreciate it.

I know, I know, I said I would watch the fool thing, I just have bigger fish to fry right now, is all. I rent about one DVD every two weeks or so, and I'm still only on disk 4 of 6 of the second season of CSI.
posted by UncleFes at 9:46 AM on November 20, 2003


this is going to be a slaughter without regard for facts or truth. just look at this image appearing on this page from cbs news. credited as a CBS "photo" it's clearly a photoshop vignette of some foreign, suspender wearing police, a pair of handcuffed wrists, and a recent photo of jocko. the major news agencies have clearly long envied the tabloids and are now determined to become just like them.
posted by quonsar at 9:58 AM on November 20, 2003


soyjoy: In my defense, reading FFF's statement of the thesis:

America's passion for violence is fueled by fear.

Plus earlier comments that the "Overprotective" PoV (dash_slot-'s, mine, et al) was spurred by fear (mostly via squirrel) would seem to equal that the Overprotectives would thus have a passion for violence, when in fact it's the opposite.

But yeah, point taken. Mea maxima culpa. And thanks for being gentle :)
posted by UncleFes at 10:01 AM on November 20, 2003


We've had threads about child sexual abuse previously and these have always contained messages of mass hysteria and threats of violence.

In this particular thread, I thought I'd seen someone wish harm upon Jackson. I've looked again and didn't spot it.

But the hysteria remains. "...any parent who allows their child to spend unsupervised time with any adult male has a screw loose." How irrational!

I'm close friends with a single mom of three. I've become a surrogate father to those kids, because their useless sacks of shits for fathers aren't involved in their lives at all. But to judge by the comments here, they'd be better off without a postive male role model in their lives. (And FYI, she was sexually abused as a child. Seems she's got her head screwed on straighter than some of you, though.)

I've another friend who is in a similar situation: surrogate father to two ex-girlfriend's children. These ex-girlfriends drift in and out of relationships, while he has remained the sole constant positive role model. When the shit hits the fan at their homes and they have to leave, they end up living at his home for months on end. But maybe it'd be better they lived on the street rather than have [gasp!] unsupervised time with an adult male.

And, hey, I've another male friend who's living with a single mother-of-three. Better kick him out of the house. Keep that nasty male creature away from her boys!

I also know a few men who work as Big Brothers.

Gosh. That's got to be sixteen-odd children who are spending unsupervised time with adult males! Quick, put a stop to it -- think of the children!

Hysteria. Stupid hysteria.

Here's a better plan for you all: teach your children how to speak out when they feel boundaries are being crossed, and teach them to feel comfortable telling you anything.

If they ever should be so unfortunate as to meet a pedophile, male or female, they will be able to tell them "no," which will in all likelyhood stop anything before it happens, and will be able to let you know they were at risk.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:33 AM on November 20, 2003


wow - am I too late to jump in and say that dash slot is full of shit?

95-99% men that commit sex offences against children

I will bet that 95% of the children's hospitals in the world were architected by men, too. And funded. And 95% of the construction workers were probably male too.

What does this tell us? Jack shit!

You are failing statistics at the most elementary level here.

Premise: 95% of child sex offenders are male.

Conclusion: You can safely guess that the next sex offender to be arrested will be male.

Bullshit: You can safely guess that most men are a threat to children.

The statistic you are missing is the percentage of the male population that are sex offenders. Statistically, I'll bet it's as inisignificant a fraction as it is in the female population. Certainly not enough to make the kind of wild extrapolations you're talking about. If you think that depriving children of male attention is a safe bet with no negative consequences for them, you're wrong.

I've never heard such blatant man-hating crap so vehemently defended in all my life. This is the worst kind of essentialist, alarmist, sexist tripe, and you're only to eager to keep digging your hole, all because, as a care worker, you're qualified to prejudge half the human population.

What. Shit.
posted by scarabic at 11:11 AM on November 20, 2003


FFF: Barring the Big Brothers, who we've noted are rigorously screened, every situation you've described is exactly the sort of situation a child molester would seek to take advantage of. I trust that none of the people you describe are molesters - but they could be. If I was any of those children's father, I would be looking very VERY closely at the situation, and the men involved.

It's not hysteria. I would not immediately brand someone a child molester, nor would I seek to remove the children, without cause. But I would exercise simple caution; I would rather be safe - and know to the best of my abilities and satisfaction that the children were safe - than be sorry, and learn later that my cavalier attitude had put them in danger.

Think of the children? For the children you describe, I wish their parents had, or would even now.
posted by UncleFes at 11:14 AM on November 20, 2003


I will bet that 95% of the children's hospitals in the world were architected by men, too. And funded. And 95% of the construction workers were probably male too. What does this tell us? Jack shit!

No, it tells us that a new children's hospital it likely to have been designed and built by a man.

Statistically, I'll bet it's as inisignificant a fraction as it is in the female population.

No. If the proportions of males to females in the population are roughly equal, and the ratio of abusers to non-abusers is far smaller for females then it is for males, then the fraction of abusers in the male population is, all other things equal, going to be far larger than the fraction of abusers in the female population. So, if you take any male, the likelihood is that he's not an abuser; any female, the likelihood that she's an abuser is even less. But if you take one male and one female and say one of them is an abuser, it is far more likely that the abuser will be the male.

dash slot is full of shit

In light of the accuracy of your other statements? Perhaps he is not quite as full of shit as you propose.
posted by UncleFes at 11:23 AM on November 20, 2003


Is this really true Keyser? Sorry if it is. But I still don't like your trolling remarks in this thread. Or weren't they?
posted by ginz at 11:23 AM on November 20, 2003


Pedophilia (by strangers) comes in all ranges. From not - to very - damaging experiences for a child. Incest on the other hand occurs a lot more and is mostly very damaging.

Pedophiles are rare in all societies. Incest on the other hand is not.

The fear people have of pedophiles is just our newest witchhunt.
posted by ginz at 11:41 AM on November 20, 2003


I agree entirely. That backs me up. And 90-99% of those first time offenders will be male. And they will have been on their own, with unsupervised access to a lone child.

It doesn't back you up. My point is that even with background checks, there are tens of thousands if not more men and boys participating in programs like Big Brothers and Boy Scouts that don't have problems despite that problems mostly occur in lone, unsupervised interactions. Yet, you claim the parents who allow they're children to participate in these programs are crazy? I'm not going to live in such fear that we do away with Little League baseball, Big Brothers, etc... 99% of travel accidents might happen in motor vehicles, but that doesn't mean you would be crazy to drive a car. Your logical leaps are fallacious. We continue driving our cars despite the risks.
posted by McBain at 11:42 AM on November 20, 2003


The secret room is kinda creepy,
although there may be some perfectly
reasonable explanation, or it's a fake.

(the 'never trust a man' vibe here is kinda creepy too, but whatever)
posted by milovoo at 11:44 AM on November 20, 2003


UncleFes - I didn't say I thought the proportions would be the same, I said I thought they would be equally insignificant. That is, more males than females, but both proportions would be infinitessimal, and neither would be large enough to warrant suspicion of the entire gender.
posted by scarabic at 11:46 AM on November 20, 2003


On the contrary, FFF - the fear, it seems, is on my side of the equation, not the pedophile's - yet I, and millions of other fathers, have done nothing violent at all

Until a scared parent goes out to buy a gun, because the evil "others" out there might come after him and his. Then one night the gun comes out in an argument, or little Johnny finds it, etc... that's the point.
posted by McBain at 11:47 AM on November 20, 2003


Barring the Big Brothers, who we've noted are rigorously screened,

My point was a potential pedophile without a record could have easily gotten by Big Brothers' "rigorous" screening. That is why I said the neighbors and relatives always say "he was a normal guy". But do we abandon Big Brothers or Boy Scouts because of it?

I say no. The same way we all drive cars even if thousands die in them every year, or as in another thread, are burned hideously by drunk drivers.

Guess what folks? Life is dangerous! Use common sense, talk basic precautions, trust your instincts, stop going to the Two Minute Hate, and don't live in fear. It will consume us all. (and that is what Moore is getting at).
posted by McBain at 11:56 AM on November 20, 2003


five fresh fish, scarabic, and McBain are in a three-way tie for Best Retention of Good Sense in an Inflammatory Thread; collect your trophies at the hospitality desk.

UncleFes: All due respect, and obviously your motivations are of the highest, but you really have lost all perspective on this. "For the children you describe, I wish their parents had, or would even now" -- in other words, you actually do believe what fff proposed as a bitter jibe: "But maybe it'd be better they lived on the street rather than have [gasp!] unsupervised time with an adult male." Sounds to me like you're just going to pass on your irrational fear of men to the next generation.
posted by languagehat at 12:06 PM on November 20, 2003


Why would any adult male want to have unsupervised sole access to a lone child? Overnight? Why?

That situation just cries out for investigation


Combined with Michael Jackson's celebrity, character, and outlandish behavior, yes, it does call for caution. It's not his male-ness that should be the red flag.

Should my brother raise a red flag if I suggest he bring my nephew up and leave him with me for the weekend? He's my nephew and my godson and I hope to be an important part of his family and his life as he grows to adulthood. Is it so suspicious that I should want to spend time with him? I mean, why why why would a man want to spend time with a child? WHY? It must be for SEX! Whatfuckingever.

Big surprise here, but looking after a child around the clock is probably the most effective way to bond with them. And providing care in the form of meals, reading before bed, etc. can be a very rewarding act of guardianship and love. I enjoy seeing all my nephews and nieces, and I would be personally outraged if anyone construed that as a sexual attraction. I actually wonder where your own mind is if you think that way. If really have no sympathy for MJ, but I don't want to be labelled a danger to kids because I share his gender.

As an adult male, I can testify that kids want to spend time with men. For whatever reason, they enjoy getting attention from men as much as from women - perhaps even more, since so few men take an active role in daycare, teaching, etc. This, if anything, is what child molestors take advantage of. But this doesn't mean we should squash the instinct and keep children from having men in their lives.

Are the fathers in this thread offended beyond belief or what? After all, being the child's father doesn't exempt you from this kind of suspicion. Plenty, if not most, child abuse is in the family. I guess you better make sure your wife supervises all your time with the kid. No sleepovers at your house if you're the only adult around. Feeling persecuted yet?

You might as well say that you keep your kids away from black people as a matter of simple caution, since a good majority of violent crime in your community is in the black neighborhoods. And you better keep them out of all automobiles, too, since crashes are a leading cause of injury and death. If you want to play with statistics, you better be prepared for some startling realities.

Use simple caution? Sure. Do your best to make sure your kids are safe? Of course you do. Does this mean withold them from all males? That doesn't sound like caution or logic to me.

The word is ess-en-tial-ism. And it reeks.
posted by scarabic at 12:10 PM on November 20, 2003


Until a scared parent goes out to buy a gun, because the evil "others" out there might come after him and his. Then one night the gun comes out in an argument, or little Johnny finds it, etc... that's the point.

That would be indicative of (a) paranoia, (b) lack of self-control, and (c) the abrogation elsewhere of the impulse to keep children safe that ostensibly prompted the purchase in the first place. Now who's acting fearful? I mean, you're extrapolating a series of events here that's even more rare that child molestation. More kids die in backyard pools than by accidental shooting.

The same way we all drive cars even if thousands die in them every year, or as in another thread, are burned hideously by drunk drivers.

My car has airbags, seat belts and anti-lockbraking, and my kid sits in a child seat. It is one thing to live in fear, it is quite another to take sensible precautions. We don't, obviously, abandon Big Brothers or the Boy Scouts - but we minimize, to the best of our abilities, the opportunity for pedophiles to harm children within those groups.

That is, more males than females, but both proportions would be infinitessimal, and neither would be large enough to warrant suspicion of the entire gender.

Point taken, my mistake. My apologies for the snark.

you really have lost all perspective on this. "For the children you describe, I wish their parents had, or would even now" -- in other words, you actually do believe what fff proposed as a bitter jibe: "But maybe it'd be better they lived on the street rather than have [gasp!] unsupervised time with an adult male." Sounds to me like you're just going to pass on your irrational fear of men to the next generation.

I have neither said, nor do I believe, any such thing. FFF has described three scenarios - "single mom of three...useless sacks of shits for fathers... two ex-girlfriends who drift in and out of relationships...living at his home for months on end... man living with a single mother of three..." - that already suck! These kids parents - male and female - are (imo) shitty parents - alright, their conceivably could be a couple where the honest, hardworking, intelligent mom got the raw end of the deal by some jackleg cad(s) whose sperm have some amazing ability to overcome basic birth control, but as described these people are already taking unnecessary risks with their children. IF one of those kids were mine, I'd be damned interested in what was going on at home with mom. Man-hating doesn't enter into it.

People in this thread are spinning up a whole pseudo-environment of man-hating than has actually been demonstrated. I mean, dash_slot- simply said that, on the factual basis that more men commit acts of child molestation than do women, he feels that parents who leave their children in the sole, unattended custody of other men are "crazy." Well, that's an opinion, perhaps extreme, but based at least on a factual, albeit fairly rare, statistical event. Hardly "never trust a man" (he or she must almost certainly trust some men), a theme which only dash_slot- declared, and one that he later clarified. Why does everyone focus on this small error in syntax, when they know that the hyperbole they spin it into is neither what dash_slot- or I believe nor what the thread is about?
posted by UncleFes at 12:15 PM on November 20, 2003


Until a scared parent goes out to buy a gun, because the evil "others" out there might come after him and his. Then one night the gun comes out in an argument, or little Johnny finds it, etc... that's the point.

That would be indicative of (a) paranoia, (b) lack of self-control, and (c) the abrogation elsewhere of the impulse to keep children safe that ostensibly prompted the purchase in the first place. Now who's acting fearful? I mean, you're extrapolating a series of events here that's even more rare that child molestation. More kids die in backyard pools than by accidental shooting.

The same way we all drive cars even if thousands die in them every year, or as in another thread, are burned hideously by drunk drivers.

My car has airbags, seat belts and anti-lockbraking, and my kid sits in a child seat. It is one thing to live in fear, it is quite another to take sensible precautions. We don't, obviously, abandon Big Brothers or the Boy Scouts - but we minimize, to the best of our abilities, the opportunity for pedophiles to harm children within those groups.

That is, more males than females, but both proportions would be infinitessimal, and neither would be large enough to warrant suspicion of the entire gender.

Point taken, my mistake. My apologies for the snark.

you really have lost all perspective on this. "For the children you describe, I wish their parents had, or would even now" -- in other words, you actually do believe what fff proposed as a bitter jibe: "But maybe it'd be better they lived on the street rather than have [gasp!] unsupervised time with an adult male." Sounds to me like you're just going to pass on your irrational fear of men to the next generation.

I have neither said, nor do I believe, any such thing. FFF has described three scenarios - "single mom of three...useless sacks of shits for fathers... two ex-girlfriends who drift in and out of relationships...living at his home for months on end... man living with a single mother of three..." - that already suck! These kids parents - male and female - are (imo) shitty parents - alright, their conceivably could be a couple where the honest, hardworking, intelligent mom got the raw end of the deal by some jackleg cad(s) whose sperm have some amazing ability to overcome basic birth control, but as described these people are already taking unnecessary risks with their children. IF one of those kids were mine, I'd be damned interested in what was going on at home with mom. Man-hating doesn't enter into it.

People in this thread are spinning up a whole pseudo-environment of man-hating than has not actually been demonstrated. I mean, dash_slot- simply said that, on the factual basis that more men commit acts of child molestation than do women, he feels that parents who leave their children in the sole, unattended custody of other men are "crazy." Well, that's an opinion, perhaps extreme, but based at least on a factual, albeit fairly rare, statistical event. Hardly "never trust a man" (he or she must almost certainly trust some men), a theme which only dash_slot- declared, and one that he later clarified. Why does everyone focus on this small error in syntax, when they know that the hyperbole they spin it into is neither what dash_slot- or I believe nor what the thread is about?
posted by UncleFes at 12:16 PM on November 20, 2003


Ach, sorry about the double. In light of the blue acreage I've used up here, I'll make this my last (double) post.
posted by UncleFes at 12:18 PM on November 20, 2003


UncleFes: Seat belts and air bags are just like criminal background checks, they are obvious and sensible precautions, but will not stop everything. People still die in cars equipped with these precautions. So I'm not sure how this is a response to my analogy. It seems we agree.

That would be indicative of (a) paranoia, (b) lack of self-control, and (c) the abrogation elsewhere of the impulse to keep children safe that ostensibly prompted the purchase in the first place. Now who's acting fearful?

What percentage of gun owners say the reason they own one is in whole or part as self-defence? What influenced their desire for self defence? What are the statistics on gun violence (accident or not) for homes that own guns as opposed to those that don't (where some outside element would have to bring a gun in)?
posted by McBain at 12:36 PM on November 20, 2003


Also? Don't be in Santa Barbara right now. We apologize for the inconvenience and ask you to return when our DA and our County Sherriff quit asking the vultures to stop feeding on Jackson's already-roasted-in-their-minds-carcass long enough to spend all their money in our nice little town, as that cash is the only thing keeping them in pretty stuccoed and terracotta-tiled offices.

They're also here to tell us that neither of them listen to "that kind of music". And that none of their kids have ever or will ever visit Neverland Ranch.

...and 2,187 related!
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:29 PM on November 20, 2003


It's not his male-ness that should be the red flag.

Correct - it's his interest in children.

I've never been on the end of a MeFi roasting before, nor been quite so (deliberately?) misunderstood.

The essence of my argument is: men that seek unaccompanied access to minors are too much of a risk to those minors, and parents that allow this are negligent.

No doubt, this reformulation will be seen as weaselly, or deemed as somehow in bad faith in some other way. I don't hold out any prospect of those posters with shoulder-chips, or who feel maligned as abusers (where I have not said as much), even wanting to understand what I said. That's up to you.

None of your arguments are bolstered by name-calling. I won't undermine my sincere views by replying in kind.
posted by dash_slot- at 4:02 PM on November 20, 2003


OK dash_slot- you've now reiterated your POV for the 13th time, apparently under the impression that those around you don't understand it. I do, and it is repugnant.

There is such a thing as an untrustworthy man seeking access to children for unwholesome purposes, yes. You continue, however, to leap to the ridiculous conclusion that any man who seeks to spend time with any child is probably up to something, at least, probably enough to warrant alarm.

Yes, if a man of questionable character, little relation to the child, and odd habits insists on only overnight, unsupervised bedroom sessions with children all the same hair color, or something of the kind, then I will cry danger as quickly as you.

But I don't know what kind of a world you're living in where every man is potentially a child abuser, and any "unsupervised" access to a child by a man is an unsupportable risk. I simply cannot believe that your reaction to the Michael Jackson scandal, sickening as it is, amounts to: "I don't know what they were thinking leaving their child alone with an adult male anyway."

I'm tired of listening to you repeat this fearmongering, sexist argument, and done shining light through all the holes in it. You've been roasted plenty for it as is.

Good day.
posted by scarabic at 4:52 PM on November 20, 2003


I think I'm going to use the phrase "IN JAIL!" all day tomorrow.
posted by adampsyche at 5:05 PM on November 20, 2003


(scarabic - I guess you can skip this. You are not compelled to read, listen or shine lights, ok? Esp. as you seem to be taking this very personally against me, tho I am not alone in the safety first camp)
Posters after10.52am, November 19th who read it as anti-father, anti-uncle, anti-Big Brother, anti-male in general have trouble with their comprehension. I don't have any generalisations about men which I need to reconsider. It is the seeking of contact with children which parents need to be wary of in adult men. Having spoken to some experienced colleagues today about this, I don't wish to take that back.

Of course I am aware that a majority of sex abuse occurs within families. I think I have made that clear above. It is not practical nor constructive to remove dads, brothers, uncles, nephews, grandads and so on from contact with their younger relatives. If any one of them were accused - tho unconvicted - of abuse, i would choose to deny unsupervised access to my daughter, for that person, just as I would for all unrelated males who sought access to children.

Programs which have adult males working together (or better, a male/female pairing) are lower risk and to me, positive. All adult males in regular contact with children need to protect themselves from unfounded accusations of abuse, and not put themselves in vulnerable positions. Supervision can be at a distance, but is best in actual earshot or sight. I would judge that there is relative safety in numbers for children: 2 nephews overnighting may be safer than one. That's a judgement call for a parent to make, and each situation will be weighed up on their merits.

I have sought links for stats on abusers by genders, and found no consensus: I saw estimates from 97% down to 80-something percent being male. On that lower level, I'd say that a single female is a safer bet than a single male.

As to prejudice against men, I have experienced that, as have most men in care work. I would not expect any organised and professional group setting for children to allow any adult unsupervised access to children, but my main points were about the home setting.

I urge you to consider that abusers actively plan contact with young people, gaining trust with their parents/carers and becoming almost part of the family. Do not fear them: the simplest precautions (like listening carefully to what your kids are saying) will deter, and your kids will always prefer time with their parents than with outsiders, anyway.

Remember that this is not aimed at any single one reader, but that extra care may protect one more child. So that's why I stick to my guns.
posted by dash_slot- at 5:15 PM on November 20, 2003


Is it so suspicious that I should want to spend time with him? I mean, why why why would a man want to spend time with a child? WHY? It must be for SEX! Whatfuckingever.

Remove the double negatives from that, and we see our loudest paranoics think that the only reason men spend time with children is to diddle them. Sick fuckers.

These kids parents - male and female - are (imo) shitty parents...

You are such an ignorant fuck of a prick, Fes. Based on no information about their upbringing at all, you've judged a couple of excellent mothers.

[It's not his male-ness that should be the red flag.] Correct - it's his interest in children.

Sweet jesus! If you truly believe that no man should be interested in children, I hope you never, ever become a father. That's some sick and twisted shit you've got going.

The one possible redeeming comment made by one of our paranoid compadres is this, with further qualifications added:

SINGLE men who SEEK unaccompanied access to the children OF STRANGERS are too much of a risk to those minors.

It is well beyond the bounds of sane precaution when the man is married with kids, or when the man is a close friend of the family.

Fes, you have me so pissed off I'm damn near beyond speech. I hope you are nowhere near such an ignorant, judgement asshole to any of the single mothers you've met in real life. You've been a real nasty piece of shit in this thread. Once again, fuck you you fucking fucked fucker.

Grrr.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:33 PM on November 20, 2003


What is the point of that?

Get a grip man.
posted by dash_slot- at 5:53 PM on November 20, 2003


the major news agencies have clearly long envied the tabloids and are now determined to become just like them. --quonsar

Well, Duh! It's the only way to get an interview with BatBoy!
posted by dejah420 at 6:26 PM on November 20, 2003


As an adult male, I can testify that kids want to spend time with men. For whatever reason, they enjoy getting attention from men as much as from women - perhaps even more, since so few men take an active role in daycare, teaching, etc. This, if anything, is what child molesters take advantage of. But this doesn't mean we should squash the instinct and keep children from having men in their lives.

Advantage: scarabic.
posted by squirrel at 6:33 PM on November 20, 2003


jesus christ five fresh fish, get a fucking grip and calm the hell down before you post.
posted by mathowie at 9:13 PM on November 20, 2003


metafilter: fuck you you fucking fucked fucker
posted by quonsar at 10:28 PM on November 20, 2003 [3 favorites]


UncleFes has me pissed because one of the women he slammed as a "shitty parent" has gone through hell and back to ensure her kids grow up to be excellent adults.

Sexually abused as a child, she went into a destructive spiral during her teenage years. She ran away from home, lived on the streets, got drug addicted, got further abuse.

When she got pregnant, though, she started pulling her shit together. She found the willpower to drop drugs entirely. The father didn't and ran away. He literally moved to the far side of the country to escape his parental obligations. He's still a mostly-unemployed, mostly-drunk dink.

She then went to counselling to work through her sexual abuse issues. Sought further insights through several personal-growth seminars. Became a dedicated mother. Became a health-food nut. Swore to not make the mistakes her own lousy mother hand made.

While on The Pill and, as far as she's ever been able to figure, in the middle of the second week!, she became pregnant again. Unfortunately, though the father isn't an addict, he is twenty-some years older than her: old enough to be her father (a typical sexual-abuse survivor story) and had already raised a family (and divorced). He was really, really upset that he'd impregnated her, and absolutely refused to play any father role of any sort. Extremely hostile to it all.

Dysfunctional choice of men? Hell, yah. That sort of shit happens when you're being diddled at age six, when you rat it out and end up being wrung out by the courts, and then end up neglected by a mother who proceeds to deal with the reality of the abuse by hitting the bottle, beating her kids, and shacking up with a series of men. We are what we learn.

Father number three looked to be a good thing, though. A pot-head, but a guy with a great work ethic when he bothered to find work, a sweetheart of a man, and a talented DIY guy. But a pot-head. Having done a bunch more self-growth work, she realized the pot and the lack of work were a dead-ender: if she wanted more for her kids, it wasn't going to be in that sort of a situation.

So now she was a single mother of three with a history of really lousy relationships. But she is one hell of a dedicated parent. She homeschooled her kids for the first few years, enrolling them in the best distant education school in the province. She busted her ass to make ends meet on welfare, denying herself all niceties so as to put high-quality food on the table and a roof over their heads.

Having worked through her personal issues enough to be able to deal with her mother once again, she found that her mother, too, had been on a counselling/self-growth path. They were able to work together to resolve their past history and build an adult family relationship.

With her mother's help she was able to finangle a mortgage for a run-down, but large, house in my town. Part of the deal with the bank was that she'd be renting part of the house out, enough so to cover the mortgage payments.

Still on welfare, she learned to swing a hammer. On her own, she gutted the basement of the house. With the help of her mother's new husband, she built three bedrooms, a bathroom, and a shared kitchen area. While the actual finish of the place is pretty good, the ceilings are very low, the rooms are small, and the residents do have to share bathroom and kitchen. As a result, it's always fully rented... to welfare recipients, many of whom aren't the sharpest tool in the shed. That in itself is another set of stories.

Anyway, with the house now paying for itself, she completed her high-school diploma through correspondance. She enrolled in a heavy-duty employment-training program and then enrolled in a homecare nurse program. It was at this point I met her and became involved in her children's lives.

By this point all the kids are school-aged: she's been on this path of self-growth, parenting, and digging herself out of a deep hole for a solid eight years.

Because these were full-time programs, she threatened the fathers with deadbeat-dad court appearances unless they began to start putting some money toward their kids. These three men are chronically underemployed: you can't squeeze blood from a stone. But with a lot of work she managed to negotiate terms that work for everyone, and managed to keep things on a more or less non-hostile level of interaction. That hasn't been easy given the quality of these men.

When she found employment, welfare was, of course, cut off. For the first year she worked sixty-hour weeks to make ends meet. One child was put into a private Christian school (though the mother isn't Christian, but the public school in the neighbourhood is Not Good). I pitched in a lot of babysitting hours, so that she'd be able to do it. I'm self-employed, so it worked out nicely.

With some work under her belt and a little more pressure on the fathers, who owe some years and years of child support payments, she was able to get together the money to put the other two kids into school, to start paying down the loans for the basement conversion, and to start working, in very small steps, on improving the upstairs part of the house.

On her own, she's ripped out and rebuilt the children's attic bedrooms, putting in insulation and sealed-unit windows, much to everyone's warm delight. She's pinched pennies and been able to get the roof partly reshingled. The livingroom got a desperately-needed coat of paint. At this rate, it'll be another ten years before she can get the main floor finished -- but she'll have doubled the value of the house.

These efforts at getting ahead of break-even were paid for by working more: she has hosted exchange students, which pays a few hundred dollars more than the students cost over a several-month term; she spent years providing personal care relief for the mother of a multiply-disordered child; she worked odd relief shifts at other adult-care facilities in addition to her full-time work.

Her children have been brought up without beatings. They received at least five years of full-time Mom during the most important, formative years of their lives. They are well-brought-up: the self-growth work their mother did was passed on to them. They have a very high level of self-awareness and self-control. They know how to assess their goals and desires, and take personal responsibility for the decisions they make. They are polite and considerate of others. And they pull good-to-excellent grades at school.

This woman is, in short, the antithesis of a "shitty parent," and assholes who have likely never experienced privation in their lives should STFU instead of standing in judgement of people they don't know and can only hope to emulate.

So perhaps you can understand why I'm really angry about that particular bit of name-calling on UncleFes's part. Really, really angry.

And I'm also angry about the idiocy shown by the paranoiac asshats in this thread. A large part of why I'm involved in these children's lives is because they need a consistent positive role model.

And though I've tried my damnedest to be there for them when they need me, and to help them develop a view about men that isn't based on the fuckups that fathered them, it's tough. It's especially tough to see the boy show signs of self-hatred because he's a boy, because his dad abandoned him, and because his mother is still fucked-up about men in general.

The other fellow I mentioned in my first post, surrogate father to two ex-girlfriends, finds the same happening with the children he's providing role-modeling -- and, in his case, support payments even though they are not biologically his -- for.

But despite the fact that those of us who provide positive male role models can't be all that a child needs for a father, those kids are still a damned sight better-off than they would be if their mother took the same fucked-up "men aren't necessary for children" attitude that I've seen in this thread.

So there you have it. One hella long post about two childless men who are providing more fathering than any childless man should every be expected to provide, in the hopes that those children will be able to grow up to be far better parents than their own biological fathers were.

It should provide any of you with enough background information to at least start to understand why I might be just a little cheezed off about the attitudes and comments I've read in this thread.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:41 PM on November 20, 2003


This is interesting. In one thread, Mefites claim that men naturally prey on vulnerable people. In this thread, everyone argues the opposite.

And people think I'm weird when I say that masculinity is the most interesting concept to watch these days.
posted by Hildegarde at 10:44 PM on November 20, 2003


Notes on above:

Because these were full-time programs, she threatened the fathers with deadbeat-dad court appearances ie.) she wasn't home to take care of kids, ergo needed babysitters, which requires coming up with cash. Took a couple years of effort to track the middle one down, though. The other two had been making occasional token payments on a random basis, but that's not a reliable way to fund a childcare.

When she found employment, welfare was, of course, cut off. And that was, of course, the entire point of getting the training. Welfare is a shitty, shitty place to be.

She homeschooled her kids for the first few years. This actually turned out to work pretty well. The kids do have a deficit on the spelling/grammar end of things, but they do well otherwise.

...put into a private Christian school... This, on the other hand, has been excellent. Small classes and a good, non-bullying, contribution-oriented, personal-responsibility environment. The oldest is in public high-school now, though, and that, too, is turning out to be an excellent decision.

...she worked odd relief shifts at other adult-care facilities in addition to her full-time work. I forgot to add that she's now got top seniority, and is becoming active in the labour movement, which promises great personal rewards and a hefty pay increase. It's also requiring ball-busting work: intense distance-ed courses, high-stress negotiations, odd hours, glass-ceiling challenges, idiocy from union men that feel threatened by women, and travel away from home.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:56 PM on November 20, 2003


IN JAIL!
posted by adampsyche at 3:48 AM on November 21, 2003


Wow, FFF, you lost it there....


Anyway, I've read the whole thread, one of the most interesting I've seen in quite a while because the arguments were (mostly) lucid and understandable. Even the points of view that, in my opinion, were highly exaggerated or just plain wrong were not unfounded, which is rare.

But as a childless Uncle, I have actually sought out the extended company of my nephew in the past, played with him, fed him, bathed him (he had to be naked for this), read him bed time stories and gave him good night kisses. I find it thoroughly repugnant that this could be "suspected" as deviant behavior (not what I actually did, but what I might have done) simply because I am a man.

I think generally UncleFes has fine tuned his argument to the point where I can accept it and even agree with it: common sense precautions based on fact are always necessary when protecting yourself and your children. But dot_slash's more sweeping, although somewhat tempered in his last posts, suspicion of men is truly disturbing. As is the other side of the coin, where he advises non-abuser men to bend over backwards not to put themselves in a situation where they might be suspected of abuse. Ugh. Fortunately, I don't live in th US where it seems that these types of hysterical memes (90-95% of abusers are men!) taken out of context actually make protecting yourself (as a non-abusing man I mean) sensible. As scarabic wisely has pointed out, the statistics need to be fully analized, not cribbed down to the most shocking and fear producing data.

Anyway, good job guys, I hope we have more threads like this.

ps) the best part of the thread is the way that everyone ignored the pathetic trolling of one individual and stayed the course.
posted by sic at 5:00 AM on November 21, 2003


I hope we never have any more threads like this: I feel demonised, misrepresented, misunderstood and scapegoated.

I want to correct sic's assumption that I am american. I'm not, and neither are any of the social workers I've talked to on this subject. That's an example of reading too much into what was written here: I never said it, but it was taken as read.

I never said don't be a role model. Be a role model. Show me where what I said is inconsistent with that. It's consistent with what I do for my godchildren.

"assholes who have likely never experienced privation in their lives should STFU instead of standing in judgement of people they don't know and can only hope to emulate."

That just cannot refer to me, as it's so far removed from the truth. Even so, the number of assertions made in ignorance makes want to leap to the target's defence.

FFF, I am glad that your friends are coping so well with life's tribulations.
posted by dash_slot- at 10:23 AM on November 21, 2003


I have decided that this topic is one which I shall have to build a wall around. My involvement in helping raise these children is the most important thing I shall accomplish in my lifetime. It is an atypical situation and without intimate knowledge of its history and the people involved, likely beyond most people's ability to understand. As such, it is unlikely that a common ground communication can be had.

The closest parallel that I can imagine will communicate some amount of its importance and emotional energy is to say that I am effectively a parent in this family, and the judgements are a slight against my family and my family relationships.

I sincerely apologize to Matt for not having built this wall earlier. Consider it now closed.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:53 AM on November 21, 2003


In another twist, the father of the young victim is denying that the charges are true. According to NBC4, the parents are involved in a bitter divorce and custody battle. The father states he believes the mother is unfit and that "Either she places a child in a home in which he's in danger of being molested, or the alternative, she is encouraging a child to make false accusations."

The linked article further states that earlier this year the victim was seen in segments of the Michael Jackson interview and that the mother had nothing negative to say about Michael Jackson.

I will admit that I am a hardcore Michael Jackson fan. This makes me want to believe that the charges are unfounded and untrue.

As the daughter of a lawyer, I believe that he is guilty until proven innocent.
posted by monique at 12:07 PM on November 21, 2003


brothers in uncledom, sic :)
posted by scarabic at 12:35 PM on November 21, 2003


As the daughter of a lawyer, I believe that he is guilty until proven innocent.

Right. That wouldn't be English common law, then.
posted by dash_slot- at 12:42 PM on November 21, 2003


Oh my god! That should have said Innocent until proven Guilty. Ha. My bad.

I feel like everyone here thinks he is guilty until proven innocent and that was on my mind as I was typing this.
posted by monique at 1:21 PM on November 21, 2003


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