Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Discussions about the sexual abuse of minors in the forums.

Yesterday, Mulch, a member of gotVirtual.net, posted a forum thread called 90 Days? in which he referenced an NYDailyNews.com article, "Queens special ed teacher pleads guilty to statuatory rape for videotaped sex with boy, 15" and appeared to imply that he felt 90 days in jail (and 10 years probation and a $1,000 fine) for statutory rape (two sexual encounters with a 15-year-old boy) was an insufficient consequence of the crime committed, and therefore an insufficient deterrent, though he also said he thinks the government is "generally too harsh in cases like this."  Side note:  She was also required to surrender her license to teach and to register as a convicted sex offender. 

Kokoro Fasching, another gV member, posted this article, "Music teacher jailed for sex with 15-year-old pupil" in the 90 Days? thread on gotVirtual.net.  The article describes a male teacher, Matthew Bartlett, 31, seducing the then 14-year old student after she came to him for advice.  His sentence was four years in prison.

Issues surrounding perceptions based on gender of both the victim and the perpetrator were discussed as were sentences, sexual peaks based on gender, psychological abuse and the abuse of power and violations of ethics for someone in a position of trust and authority, grooming victims, videotaping the acts, forum personalities and, from what I gather, a personal favorite for nina, "logic that makes parenthood a 'choice' for females, yet a 'responsibility' for males.

This afternoon, colleen Criss, another member of gotVirtual.net, posted a forum thread called, "Girls treated as commodities, child prostitution trial told" about the trial of nine men aged between 21 and 59 alleged to have abused, raped and prostituted seven teenage girls, one as young as 13. The forum thread takes information from a BBC News article also entitled "Girls treated as commodities, child prostitution trial told" and dated June 14, 2011.  That discussion unfortunately went mostly nowhere as most of the members of that forum now have troll and old cross-forum drama fatigue.

Inquiring minds wondered if a bit of trolling was going on using the subject of child sexual abuse as forum fodder.

And none of these threads would be complete without Lias scolding fellow posters for "juvenile name calling."  So consider them...complete.  Natch.

I posted a blog with more of the details about the stories discussed...and related and similar stories...in my Psi Shrinkers blog here.

Possible discussion questions:

❐  Were people trolling the forums using child sexual abuse as forum fodder?
❐  Why did Mulch choose to discuss the issue of sentencing for Christine Williams in gV?
❐  Why are these topics not being discussed in SC MKII right now?
❐  Did Mulch veer off topic or merely attempt to use two stories of child sexual abuse to make a compare-and-contrast discussion point?
❐  Should Mulch really be all that surprised or disappointed if some people suspect him of trolling and avoid having serious discussions with him when he is a self-admitted drama-lover, button-pusher and internet troll?
❐  Are you a fan of Southpark and have you seen this?*
❐  Does paying children in cell phone minutes effectively negate the argument that there might have been a cultural element to the sexual exploitation of young girls in England?
❐  Is it cultural or criminal?
❐  Is it bigoted, ignorant, jaded or just a fact of life to make massive assumptions based on the first and last names of people described in a news article?
❐  Is there anyone Lias does not have or feel responsibility for?
❐  Is Mitch arguing with Lias because he misses Wasted?
❐  Will colleen need to break out her swatter and will Maryanne want to break out her bat?
❐  Why was Don referenced?
❐  What is Tarzan on about now, how soon will it be before he posts another odd 'shop pic, is anyone amused, is Tarzan sporting an unusual sense of humor or an unusual amount of butthurt and does anyone care?
❐  What's Derek's story?
❐  What do Grady and Orfeu make of all this?  
❐  Do forum personalities and grudges and history and cross-forum drama make it near impossible to have an on-topic discussion of a controversial subject in the gV forum?  Is there hope for rational debate on gV?
❐  What do Joshua and SLUniverse have to do with these topics and other forum threads about current events and why do they seem to be frequently and incongruously mentioned?
❐  What is the magic of "calling bullshit," "crying hypocrite" and telling posters to "learn to read"?
❐  Should all minors be given one of Mulch's shepherds and what's up with that thread title?
❐  Are the authorities as ineffectual as they are portrayed in the media stories?
❐  How do authorities effectively determine the difference between a runaway who is still reasonably safe and independent and a child who is being victimized?
❐  Do we have the resources to deal with the problem of sexual abuse of minors?
❐ Is there a difference between an attractive teacher in her twenties having sex with an apparently willing 15-year old and other types of sex offenders, and if so, what are the differences?
❐ Is 90 days in jail and ten years of probation a reasonable sentence for statutory rape?  Why or why not?
❐ Is there an antiquated, imbalanced or detrimental cultural or societal view of gender differences for victims and perpetrators and do we need to advance beyond that?
❐ Are there degrees of sexual abuse of minors and therefore should there be levels of responses and consequences?
❐  What are the emotional, psychological, spiritual and physical effects of sexual abuse of minors on those minors?  What are the variables?  And how do we know?
❐  Is there a cultural element to sexual predation of children?
❐  Is prejudice expressed in assumptions about the names, races, ethnicities, countries of origin, religions, sexual orientations and genders of the perpetrators?
❐  Does sexual trafficking of foreign victims get more attention than the sexual trafficking of domestic victims in the United States and at the detriment of the domestic victims?
❐  Why is sexual trafficking and the sexual abuse of minors so prevalent?
❐  How do we stop or stem the tide of sexual trafficking and the sexual abuse of minors?
❐  Is there something parents can do to protect their children?
❐  Do parents need parenting courses?
❐  What happened to S. 3061?
❐  What can people in the community do?
❐  What can we do?


*An ETA courtesy of Mulch via a back channel.


  1. Have neither the time nor the desire, to have an in-depth discussion of the 10,000 assumptions associated with this thread.
    Also like most gv'ers...taking a break from button pushers. :)

  2. I'm all for breaks like that Orfeu. Enjoy. ;-)