In an article entitled "DOCTOR PEDOPHILE" on THE DAILY BEAST, Jan Crawford writes about the case of one Dr. Earl Bradley in Delaware:

"The Bradley case may be the worst in history, but it is not an aberration. Our investigation for the CBS Evening News With Katie Couric has revealed that dozens of pediatricians, in towns and cities across the country, have been arrested for sexually molesting child patients. In the last decade alone, at least 20 pediatricians were charged—often years after initial complaints were made. And those are the criminal cases. Most complaints, child advocates say, never get past state medical boards. Child advocates like Dr. Eli Newberger, a professor at Harvard Medical School, compare pediatric pedophilia to the priest scandal that rocked the Catholic Church. People trust their pediatricians instinctively, he says, and simply cannot process the idea that they could abuse children. But the evidence has become too great to ignore. 'We're dealing, I think, with a systemic problem, in which there is a reluctance to act on the part of colleagues for the various business and collegial reasons, and an organized coverup,' Newberger told us."

You know, I have written a lot on this blog about sexual repression and the damage it causes. The scandal of rampant child abuse among religious people and their leaders has been so widely exposed at this point that priests barely have any defenders left. I have also written a lot about our western medical profession, which for all intents and purposes is a hot bed of psychiatric disturbance. Like priests, doctors know that they are lying to their "flock," and exploiting a gullible and childish population by the self-aggrandizing assumption of omnipotence and omniscience, ultimately for their own gain of wealth and/or power.

There is another angle that I have talked about, though not as much. That is, the priesthood and medical profession, as traditionally practiced here, are perfect shields for those disturbed individuals employing the defenses of "sublimation" and "reaction formation." (I would include the police here as well, but I don't want to get "Rick" started!)

Here are some simple (hopefully) definitions: "sublimation" is a defense by which an unacceptable impulse, such as the desire to slash or dismember someone, is expressed through socially acceptable means, such as performing surgery by a doctor. "Reaction formation" is a defense in which a socially unacceptable impulse, such as the desire to rape children, is hidden by adopting a persona or profession that seems to express the opposite intention, such as taking vows of celibacy in a priesthood.

Needless to say, or perhaps, necessary to say, defenses sooner or later always break down, and the festered impulses take over with a vengeance. What is suppressed will never stay suppressed indefinitely.

I have advocated for a long time that those in positions of responsibility for the well-being of children - and that includes parents and teachers - are being incredibly irresponsible by not engaging in a period of deep self work as a prerequisite to taking on such as role.

There are no exceptions to this, folks, and no end runs around it. Meanwhile, if you are still foolish enough to be taking your children to church or a traditional doctor (and I presume a fair percentage of readers of my blog do not), at least don't leave them alone there!

1 comment:

hartkitt said...

I see Rick got here before me but that's because I've been mulling over in my mind how to best comment on this post for several days.

First of all, I was surprised to see you jumping on the STRANGER DANGER!! CHILD MOLESTER IN EVERY CORNER!!! band wagon. The article you quote is so absolutely typical of the fear-mongering smoke and mirrors that characterizes this kind of story. "DOZENS!!" "At least 20!!!" Well, I went and did the numbers. There are approximately 85,000 pediatricians in this country and 70 million children (sources US census and American Academy of Pediatrics). Twenty pediatricians represents a miniscule percentage of the total number of pediatricians. It's so small that it's hard to say that there's any kind of correlation between "pediatrician" and "pedophile." Chance could account for that number of pediatricians being pedophiles (or pedophiles being pediatricians.) In fact, it might be that such a small fraction is LESS than other professions.

If "dozens" of those 70 million children were molested by their pediatricians that's still such a tiny percentage as to not even be calculable by my simple desktop calculator. The statistical reality is that children are most likely to be sexually molested (and beaten and murdered for that matter; I've looked this one up before) by their immediate family members. By a vast margine. So I'm with Rick on this one. We're not going to go around herding kids into giant institutions to protect them from their families and neither should we be treating our pediatricians with suspicion as a general rule.

Essentially, I think it's a bit careless to impugn pediatricians on this front, not to mention intellectually mushy.

AND here's my point on sexual repression: my personal theory is that our society is obsessed with the image of the mysterious child molester somewhere Out There because of, yes, repressed sexual feeling. Pardon my lack of the correct technical words here but by projecting ones own sexual feelings outwards onto shadowed figures in the environment one can pretend not to have those feelings oneself. In addition, those sexual feelings can be indulged surrepticiously by obsessively following news stories of evil day care workers even while hiding behind the pose of tut-tutting the moral weakness of those molesters. Having your cake and eating it to on the sexual feelings front.

And the society as a whole can excuse itself for sexualizing younger and younger children in the way they are dressed and the way they appear in "the media" by patting itself on the back over vigorously hunting down and condemning "real" child molesters.

FINALLY, I get to expound that theory in public :D


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