Baby boom! Our community of faith shares in the blessing of the gift of life. By the end of the day today we will have celebrated the safe arrival of three little ones in the last eight days and four in the last two months. These precious little ones came to mind as I read a quote on the front of Sunday’s edition of Parade Magazine that came in the Daily Oklahoman. The quote read,
No child is capable, emotionally or legally, of consenting to being photographed for sexual purposes. Thus, every image of a sexually displayed child – be it a photograph, a tape or a DVD – records both the rape of the child and an act against humanity. We must stop the hurt.
The article, “Let’s Fight This Terrible Crime Against Our Children,” written by Andrew Vachss, outlines the shift from child pornography as a hobby of pedophiles to a niche consumer industry spurred by the Internet that will generate several billion dollars a year. Vachss concludes the article with,
NOW THAT WE KNOW what child pornography really is, we can understand the monstrous danger it poses to children throughout the world. The question then becomes: What can we do? [He then lists five suggestions.]
First, we must raise the stakes. [a call to higher penalties]
Second, we must abolish the statute of limitations, both civil and criminal, on acts involving the production of child pornography.
Third, to further deter criminal syndicates, we must enact federal laws to allow the United States to sue on behalf of any as-yet-unidentified children depicted in seized child pornography.
Fourth, we must recognize that child pornography is an international crime.
Finally, we must acknowledge that a war cannot be fought without resources, and then demand that our legislators commit those resources.
I cannot help but picture Jesus with the children. When the disciples thought him too busy to engage the children, Jesus rebuked them and suggested, “the Kingdom is for such as these.” Eager trust marks the life of a child. For anyone to take advantage of children in any way treats them as less than human.
Vachss’ last paragraph,
Child pornography is a multi-victim crime and a mulitbillion-dollar business. We already know what children are “worth” to predatory pedophiles and criminal syndicates. Now is the time to show the world what they are worth to us.