Sunday, June 19, 2005

Safe From Pariahs

Being the mother of a little girl, my reaction to any news on child abuse or sex offenders is visceral. More often than not my response is guided totally by emotion and not buttressed by dispassionate reasoning or analysis.

Should sex offenders be turned into social pariahs rendering them even more dangerous ? Maybe not. Simply because the effect of marginalizing them from society is a self-defeating objective. However, I have to admit I feel safe to know that they are and can be tracked and be debarred from an amusement park. Our children will be safer for the vigilance.

Whether this approach is right is questionable. I wonder if the ideal solution would not be to seek to cure the psychological aberration - get the offenders the help they need to return to mainstream society. Bathwaterism maybe seem the quick fix but does not truly fix anything in the end.

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