Saturday, April 08, 2006

Does Society Regard Sodomy of Boys As No Big Deal?

Four days ago, Dr. Helen Smith, a forensic psychologist and blogger, publicized the case in which an eighteen year old and a nineteen year old, working as camp counselors, were let off with the equivalent of a slap on the hand after sodomizing 18 boys in at least 40 different instances.

After a court made light of these crimes, describing them as nothing more than a hazing, Helen said:
Apparently, sodomizing a young boy with a broomstick and a flashlight does not constitute a sexual violation, merely a "hazing" (whatever that means).

Wow, in a world where a man can lose his job for being falsely accused of trying to sodomize a girl, young men can almost get away scot-free if they actually sodomize boys.
Smith believes that there are two brands of justice in America: one that treats rape or sodomy of girls as a serious issue; another that treats such treatment of boys as inconsequential.

When I first read Smith's post, I thought that the light punishment meted out to the criminals who sodomized all those boys had more to do with the influence of an Arizona State Senate president, father of one of the sodomists, than with societal or legal attitudes about the sexual violation of boys.

But then, our local paper, The Cincinnati Enquirer ran this item about a case from the northern Cincy suburbs today. Here, sodomizing boys was not characterized as "hazing," but as "horseplay." At least that's what one lawyer is saying. He'll probably use the Arizona case as a precedent. However you describe it though, it's vicious criminality!

If there weren't a body of opinion in our society inclined to excuse this unacceptable act of sexual violence, no lawyer would have the unmitigated gall to advance such a stupid, insensitive, immoral defense of the indefensible!

Maybe Smith is right, then. Maybe there is a tendency in our society to dismiss the sexual violation of boys as an inconsequential thing. If so, attitudes must change!

UPDATE: Helen Smith of Dr. Helen has linked to this post. Thanks, Helen!

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