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The public advocate wants to know . . .
August 6, 2008 9:21 PM   Subscribe

Are you a beloved uncle or trusted coach?
posted by Crotalus (47 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Wow. That's crap. Tasteless, poorly executed crap at that.
posted by stenseng at 9:28 PM on August 6, 2008


Yeah, really creepy/sad and bad acting.

Now that we've got that out of the way, this is actually a pretty good idea. Most sexual abuse is perpetrated by relatives or family acquaintances. "Don't talk to strangers" is good advice, but it doesn't help when the "stranger" is your stepdad or Uncle Fred.
posted by Avenger at 9:31 PM on August 6, 2008


Are you accusing me of being a child molester in possibly the worst FPP of all time?
posted by clearly at 9:33 PM on August 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


I'm a beloved cunt.
posted by dhammond at 9:36 PM on August 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


No.
posted by ColdChef at 9:41 PM on August 6, 2008


So what's the message here? Distrust everyone, especially family and school employees?

"I'm a guy.....

....

a guy who likes to MURDER PEOPLE!!"


Would that be seen as a useful PSA also? Is the target audience people who have difficulty with the concept of crime in the abstract?
posted by drjimmy11 at 9:42 PM on August 6, 2008


Sometimes I feel like a pissing elephant.
posted by isopraxis at 9:44 PM on August 6, 2008


I think that if I was an actor I would not want to be cast in an advertisement in which I had to claim that I was a child abuser.
posted by Caduceus at 9:47 PM on August 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


How long before males are simply banned from having any contact with children?
posted by Space Coyote at 9:47 PM on August 6, 2008 [8 favorites]


What, no Father Flanagan?

["If you think you're makin' a plow jockey outa me, you got another think comin'!"]
posted by erniepan at 10:07 PM on August 6, 2008


Come with Uncle and hear all proper. Hear angel trumpets and devil trombones. You are invited.
posted by homunculus at 10:11 PM on August 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


A little googling of the info on the intro to the PSAs brought up the Darkness to Light website. They'll award you a Training Completion Certificate if you pay $15.00 for their online training.
posted by longsleeves at 10:19 PM on August 6, 2008


A little googling of the info on the intro to the PSAs brought up the Darkness to Light website.

Is it just me or does their menu cover up some of their body text in other people's browsers too?
posted by Caduceus at 10:21 PM on August 6, 2008


How long before males are simply banned from having any contact with children?

When we got our handy-dandy swag of government-supplied child-rearing stuff there were only sections relating to men and child-raising. One was what to do if your husband hits you, and the other was what to do if they hit your kids (because "you kids" are always addressed to a woman, of course).

Mind you, all the examples of dealing with badly-behaved children were using little boys as examples, so I guess they were consistent from cradle to grave.
posted by rodgerd at 10:32 PM on August 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Gah.

were only sections relating should read were only two sections relating
posted by rodgerd at 10:33 PM on August 6, 2008


Nevermind, it seems to be working now.
posted by Caduceus at 10:34 PM on August 6, 2008


As a married but childless man, I think very carefully about situations where I might be alone with any kids...not because I find kids appealing sexually, but because I'm hyper-aware that if little Johnny or Joanie says "he touched me" as a joke (pretty unlikely, surely, but when has common sense been a cure for paranoia?), I'm in a world of hurt.

And that's kinda sad. I have no idea what the answer is.
posted by maxwelton at 10:35 PM on August 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Goddammit...

Just...

Fuck these ads. Pay more attention to your kids, enough to have some sort of understanding of what's going on. Just don't demonize groups of generally good people "for the children."

Jesus Christ. The problem with non-profits is that you can't boycott them.
posted by Navelgazer at 10:57 PM on August 6, 2008


Man. I always wonder how awesome these people's careers must be going if taking a job in an ad as the 'creepy child molester' role is the best step. But I also wonder about the career trajectory of those people in the Weather Channel severe weather re-enactments. I guess somebody's gotta do it.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 11:01 PM on August 6, 2008


Jesus fucking Christ on a flagpole. We all know the most likely candidates child molestation are followers of ...Jesus Christ*.

*in the 20th-21st centuries. You know, that youth group leader. Suspect them now. All those Christians are Ted Haggards and Larry "wide stance" Craigs. If you truly want to protect your children, steer them far away from the Christian Church. Nothing but predators to be found there. Teach them to eschew their church and their bungholes will be safe.
posted by sourwookie at 11:24 PM on August 6, 2008


The road is long, with many a winding turn...

Seriously, what kind of Orwellian doublespeak is this? The more trusted you are the more suspect you are?

"You've known me your entire life. I've been in your house, I've cooked you dinner. I'm your mother, Sarah. What you don't know is what I do when your Dad is away."

Aw, punch them in the dick.
posted by sourwookie at 11:45 PM on August 6, 2008


As a married but childless man, I think very carefully about situations where I might be alone with any kids...not because I find kids appealing sexually, but because I'm hyper-aware that if little Johnny or Joanie says "he touched me" as a joke (pretty unlikely, surely, but when has common sense been a cure for paranoia?), I'm in a world of hurt.

True that. I've worked with kids a lot, not as a certified teacher, but as a visiting artist-type-person. I've had the terrifying experience a few times in which a story comes back to me by the chain child > parent > principal > teacher > me. It's usually a big fish story about a misunderstood comment I'd made in class. At those times, I've been keenly aware that if the misunderstood thing had been a gesture or hug instead, I'd be pretty much dead.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:10 AM on August 7, 2008


Poor Raymond Buckley:" In 2002-MAY, the Morning Call newspaper of Allentown, PA interviewed Paul Eberle. He is co-author of "The Abuse of Innocence," a book about the McMartin case. He said: "Almost all of the accusing families were practicing Catholics who attended the American Martyrs Church...What the Catholic Church did was to open its doors to all these witch-hunters." Eberle said rallies linked to the church demanded that "Ray [Buckley] must die!" He continued: "The [Martyrs] Church was marching with the accusers, and anybody with an ounce of brains knew these people were innocent. The church was very accommodating with the lynch mob." Raymond spent years in jail during the trial.
posted by hortense at 12:23 AM on August 7, 2008


When I volunteered with the rape prevention education project at my university, people would come up to some of my co-volunteers in public, and say loudly "Hey, aren't you the rapist?" That made me somewhat leery of playing that part in our educational programs (no, there was no actual rape going on wiseass), and the times that I did I made sure to present an exaggeratedly off persona so that no one would associate it with my normal mannerisms.

I'm pretty sure we did very little good, but it was definitely a learning experience.
posted by BrotherCaine at 12:34 AM on August 7, 2008


I work in a boarding school as non-teaching staff, and as a nearly-married childless man, I too am hyperaware of my relationship with the students.

You have to be so careful never to touch them under any circumstances. Frankly, I try to avoid ever being alone in my office with them. The automatic assumption these days in the UK is that men are child molestors, and it's up to us to prove otherwise - a couple of female mags have come out and said as much. "Better to be safe than sorry, it's most often family members that commit abuse".

I play with and have physical contact with my young nephews of my sister and sister-sin-law - they're great kids - but even then, I make sure it's with at least one other member of my family present. You better be damn sure I put the camera down if the two year old decides he's going in the pool without his nappy to play with his mum.

If things carry on as they are, men will simply be too afraid to have any contact with children not their own. When I was growing up, it was a baseline assumption that, with a certain awareness for creepy-stranger-danger, I could go to any adult for help if I was in trouble when I was ranging far and wide on my bike. If I was sat crying on the side of the road with a skinned knee because I'd tried to trick gravity once too often, chances are random adults would stop to see if I was ok.

If I saw a child crying beside the road in broad daylight today, myself? I'll call the police to help them. If I was with my partner, I'd lurk about in the background to make sure they were OK. I simply wouldn't dare approach them and ensure they were OK personally.
posted by ArkhanJG at 1:02 AM on August 7, 2008 [3 favorites]


Clearly the message is to go around blindly accusing every man you meet of sexual abuse until the world is safe again.
posted by tehloki at 1:56 AM on August 7, 2008


I don't get the picking on uncles & coaches, clearly they just need one for Catholics priests and one for Protestant ministers.
posted by jeffburdges at 2:03 AM on August 7, 2008


These actors are either incredibly courageous, foolhardy or desperate to agree to put themselves up as child abusers.
posted by toughlove at 2:24 AM on August 7, 2008


According to the slate the editorial house that put them together is called 'Cut and Run?' LOL
posted by jfrancis at 3:18 AM on August 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


sourwookie: "You've known me your entire life. I've been in your house, I've cooked you dinner. I'm your mother, Sarah. What you don't know is what I do when your Dad is away."

Except that, in today's world, women who sexually abuse kids are often treated as victims themselves. Especially if it's one of those teacher-student relationships. Women abusers certainly aren't assumed to be the monsters their male counterparts are portrayed as.

A helpful guide to appropriate reactions:

Uncle Ted climbs into bed with his niece: Castration
Father Ted climbs into bed with his entire youth group: Castration
Miss Jones keeps male student after school for some "extra credit": Cover of People magazine
Miss Jones keeps female student after school for some "extra credit": "Oh, that poor woman needs help."

[NOT MISOGYNIST]
posted by emelenjr at 3:54 AM on August 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Now this is misandry.
posted by pearlybob at 4:02 AM on August 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Say, don't kids these days need male role models...at a safe distance?
posted by wenestvedt at 6:47 AM on August 7, 2008


Heh, they have a Link Agreement. I am breaking it!

Everyone knows the real pedophile threat is bears, anyway.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 7:16 AM on August 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


How long before males are simply banned from having any contact with children?

I can't wait for this day. I hate kids more and more with every passing day. Annoying little fuckers!
posted by autodidact at 7:28 AM on August 7, 2008


I agree, Pearlybob. This is misandry. I feel bad for any male who wants to go into teaching or child development, or nursing, or other nurturing field. I also feel bad for male ministers and priests, because I believe the vast majority of men who go into these fields have no desire to find "easy marks" among the children.

This assumption that men in these fields are suspect is a form of statistical discrimination -- "the cases where men in these positions of trust are broadcast all over the news, so there MUST be a million cases where this hasn't been uncovered". I grew up with a mother who made just these sorts of assumptions -- I was not allowed to have male babysitters. The biggest irony is that the demonizing of males in nurturing professions is a heuristic that, in effect, keeps parents from having to pay attention to real predatory threats to their children. ("My children are safe because I don't let them go to the church youth group/hire male babysitters/talk to strangers")

The sad truth is that parents can't pick a rule which will protect their children from all danger, as much as they'd like to. It is a poor substitute for paying attention to what is going on in your child's life.
posted by lleachie at 7:40 AM on August 7, 2008


One thin slab of mystery meat.
posted by mrgrimm at 8:21 AM on August 7, 2008


Um, misandry yes. Unfair to some, sure.

But I have always had a very weird feeling about men who want to take care of children. It's just weird. I am not homophobic, and don't equate homosexuality with pedophilia as a lot of people do. But men who want to teach young kids? Unless they are teaching them gun safety and fire-making, dude, get away from the kids.

I personally am indifferent to kids, though I love my own more than life itself.

It's one of those situations where yeah, there are some people who will be treated unfairly by the "system", but frankly, there's a risk that's not worth taking. I grew up hearing jokes about pedophile priests, I just thought those stemmed from an ironic take on priests' "kindly and familial nature". Not only do I want to protect my kids, but I don't want to be in the position of really, really, wanting to kill a man and risking going to jail for it.
posted by Xoebe at 8:22 AM on August 7, 2008


Any variation without written consent from Darkness to Light will result in immediate termination of your rights to link to Darkness to Light’s Web sites...

LOI. So which governments recognize these linking laws?
posted by mrgrimm at 8:23 AM on August 7, 2008


But men who want to teach young kids? Unless they are teaching them gun safety and fire-making, dude, get away from the kids.

Nice stereotypes, asshole.

As a former little-league coach, substitute teacher, and general kid-friendly dude, shut the fuck up.
posted by mrgrimm at 8:24 AM on August 7, 2008 [5 favorites]


Kids are great, it's parents I hate. (not really, but you get the point)
posted by Vindaloo at 8:48 AM on August 7, 2008


But I have always had a very weird feeling about men who want to take care of children. It's just weird. I am not homophobic, and don't equate homosexuality with pedophilia as a lot of people do. But men who want to teach young kids? Unless they are teaching them gun safety and fire-making, dude, get away from the kids.

That's a deeply weird reaction, to me. Some people like teaching, and working with kids, and I have no idea why that should even something to blink at.

Russian roulette is a risk not worth taking. Assuming all males who are good with kids are potential pedophiles is cuckoo-nutso paranoia and part of the damn problem.
posted by cortex at 9:16 AM on August 7, 2008 [5 favorites]


But men who want to teach young kids? Unless they are teaching them gun safety and fire-making, dude, get away from the kids.

"Gun safety and fire-making"?? So... if I follow your line of reasoning: It's okay for men to teach boys survival skills (killin' stuff and burnin' stuff), but nothing else because the risk of man-boy action is too great.

How about if I teach a 5yo boy with no arms how to swim? I know, it's probably borderline. I mean, on the one hand, it could save his life in the event that terrorists force his plane to make a water landing. On the other hand, butt secks.

I see your point.
posted by LordSludge at 9:17 AM on August 7, 2008


I'm going to spend all day wondering whether Xoebe is joking or not.

This thing roll truck roll's going to spend all day wondering is brought to you by Darkness to Light!
posted by roll truck roll at 9:22 AM on August 7, 2008


I'm the adult-who-rides-bikes on my block, which makes me a potential weirdo right from the word go. There is a little boy who lives up the street, maybe 7 or 8 years old. We wave to each other and sometimes we race bikes to the end of the block, but I'm allowed to cross the street and he's not. I have a sort of nodding acquaintance with his mom and dad. One day my doorbell rang, and it was my buddy, with a flat tire. My wanting-to-help-kid-with-flat instincts kicked in, but I quickly thought that would be a supremely bad idea. I told him to get his mom and/or dad and come back. I should have had them sign a waiver, too. The kid could crash on the bike I repaired and I could lose my house. Too bad.
posted by fixedgear at 9:40 AM on August 7, 2008


One day my doorbell rang, and it was my buddy, with a flat tire. My wanting-to-help-kid-with-flat instincts kicked in, but I quickly thought that would be a supremely bad idea. I told him to get his mom and/or dad and come back. I should have had them sign a waiver, too. The kid could crash on the bike I repaired and I could lose my house. Too bad.

That's a real shame.

Just imagine being one of the actors in these spots? It's worse than being in a 'male enhancement' ad.
posted by dunkadunc at 10:11 AM on August 7, 2008


Just imagine being one of the actors in these spots?

AT THE BAR

A: "Howzit goin', buddy? Hey, don't I know you from somewhere?"
B: "No, I don't think s—"
A: "Yeah, yeah, no, I saw you somewhere, I never forget a face. Man, this is gonna drive me crazy, you sure we haven't met?"
B: "I really don't—"
A: "Oh, waitaminute. You're that sonofa—why, you lousy—"

[violence commences]
posted by cortex at 10:24 AM on August 7, 2008


I am about to start teaching, and the teachers who have come as guest speakers to my certification program have warned not to go with a student out of the view of other students, e.g. if you take a troublesome student into the hall to talk to them during class, stand in the doorway so that the class can see you, with the student just outside of their view, and don't touch them at all. Why? Because the student might try to claim that you hit them. (This is high school we're talking about.) Also, NEVER give a student a ride in your car for any reason, etc.
posted by manguero at 12:40 PM on August 8, 2008


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