Tag Archives: sex offenders
Luke Heimlich is a rising college baseball star pitcher at Oregon State, and may well have a future in Major League Baseball. There is a problem though: Heimlich, 22, pleaded guilty to sexually molesting his 6-year-old niece when he was 15 years old. The further complication: he denies that he committed the crime, which was not just one incident but a pattern over two years. He told The New York Times that he only pleaded guilty to ” for the sake of family relations.” “Nothing ever happened,” he told the paper. The girl’s mother, however, says there is no question that he was guilty.
I’m tempted to say that it’s no wonder he pleaded guilty when he was 16. One of the charges was dropped and he was placed on two years’ probation, took court-ordered classes and had to register for five years as a Level 1 sex offender, which in the state of Washington means a low risk to the community. He had to write a letter apologizing to his niece. After five years, the records were expunged and he no longer has to register as a sex offender. What a deal!
Last year story was broken by the newsmedia, and now there is a controversy over whether Heinlich should be allowed to play college baseball. Brenda Tracy, a victims’ rights activists, asked the Times,
“What kind of message does that send our kids?” she asked. “We have now normalized this behavior. The feeling at Oregon State right now is that our team is winning, so they’ve moved on. What does that say to the little girl in this case? What does it say to all survivors?”
Then there is my concern: what does it say about this man’s character that he pleaded guilty to get a lenient deal, and now blandly says that he was lying? I’d view him as more trustworthy if he admitted the crime, was remorseful and repentant, and accepted responsibility. If he did molest the girl, and still denies it, one can hardly say that he has been rehabilitated.
Your Ethics Alarms Ethics Quiz of the Day:
Should Luke Heimlich be allowed to play college baseball?
I’d like to see the polling on this…
Ten Ethics Musings On The “Unethical Photograph Of The Year” And The Daughters of Villi and Mary Kay
I should have included these with original post, but the photo so nauseated me that I was barely capable of critical thought. I’m still nauseated, but better. So now I offer these ten question and thoughts:
1. Will this photo and its implication be used by cultural to excuse student-teacher sexual liaisons? They are grotesquely unethical when minors are involved, but professionally reprehensible even when the loving couple are college professor and student.
2. I presume it will. As I noted in the original post, this photo is a breeding ground for rationalizations, “No harm, no foul” among them, and of course, “It all worked out for the best.” This is like showing the modern China that arose out of Mao’s slaughter of millions with the face of the Great Leader superimposed over it all. It worked out so well! How can anyone argue with that?
3. Every time a grossly wrongful act creates some unanticipated good, consequentialism runs amuck. If Mary Kay and Rape Victim Vili had produced children who had arms growing out of their mouths or who were drug-addicts and cat-burners, the same people who look at the photo now and say “Awww!” would be pointing and crowing, “See?”
4. The proper comparison is a family created through incest. That taboo is so powerful still that a similar photo of Mom, Dad/Grandad and lovely Daughter–No, Sister! No, Daughter! No, Sister! (Sorry, I was having a “Chinatown” flashback) would not garner the kind of positive reaction too many are having to the Happy Fualaau. Continue reading
“We fail to see any reasonable connection between this defendant, his conviction more than a decade ago, his failure to fill out paperwork, and the government-mandated measurement of his penis.”
—- The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, rejecting as “extraordinarily invasive”a Vermont sex offender treatment program that required David McLaurin, who was convicted of producing child pornography, to submit to “penile stimulation treatment” as a condition for supervised release. He was shown child pornography images as the blood flow to his penis was measured.
McLaurin was arrested in 2011 for violating the federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, which requires offenders to register and keep current their address information. He received a sentence of 15 months imprisonment with five years of supervised release.
“The size of the erection is, we are told, of interest to government officials because it ostensibly correlates with the extent to which the subject continues to be aroused by the pornographic images,” the opinion states, dryly. The testing was apparently developed by a Czech psychiatrist and used by the Czech government as a way to identify and “cure” homosexuals.
Uh, yes, I’d say the court got this one right.
Facts: ABA Journal
Combine the comments I’m getting from the “cannibelles” launched at Ethics Alarms from the “Wisconsin Sickness” website (“Personal conduct has no bearing on professional trustworthiness!“), and add the film negative of the recently posted Ethics Hero, the selfless pastor, add some eye of newt, and ABRACADABRA! You get…. Christ Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church of Jacksonville, Florida, whose pastor, Darrell Gilyard, is a registered sex offender!
And of recent vintage, too. This apparently doesn’t faze the good parishioners of Christ Tabernacle Missionary Baptist because—well. pick your rationalization…I’m sure they have:
- “There but the grace of God go I!”
- “Everybody deserves one mistake!”
- “Let Him who is without sin cast the first stone!”
- “Who are we to judge?”
- “It’s not like he killed someone!”
- “What he does in his private life is nobody’s business!”
- Look at the Catholics! At least our pastor molests girls!
- “Christians believe in redemption!”
- “It doesn’t matter: he’s an excellent preacher!”
Gilyard’s last church wasn’t so understanding, but then it was that congregation’s underage girls who he pleaded guilty to molesting in 2009. You can’t blame them too much for being intolerant.
But his new church is being reasonable about this as well as broad-minded; they are taking the responsible course. Children aren’t allowed in church while Gilyard is preaching.
Welcome to the Third Annual Ethics Alarms Awards, recognizing the Best and Worst of ethics in 2011!
2011 prompted more than 1000 posts, and even then I barely scratched the surface of all the ethical dilemmas and unethical conduct swirling around us. If you have other choices for the various distinctions here and in the subsequent Awards posts, please make them known.
Here are my selections:
Unethical Community of the Year: Huachuca City, Arizona. Leading the way among American communities that believe, in their hysteria, that former sex offenders who have served their sentences are nonetheless fair game for persecution and the denial of basic rights as citizens and human beings, Huachuca County passed an ordinance that bans registered sex offenders from the use of all public facilities, including parks, school and libraries. Runner-up: Obion County, Tennessee. Last year, Ethics Alarms gave the county runner-up status as “Unethical Community of the Year” for sending its volunteer fire department to watch a man’s house burn down because he had failed to pay a $75.00 fee. In 2011, it did it again. I swear: if Obion County hasn’t come up with a better system and this happens again in 2012, Obion County will get the title no matter what some other unethical community does.
Most Warped Ethical Values: The Penn State students who protested the firing of football coach Joe Paterno, because, you know, he was such a great football coach that a little thing like allowing a predatory child molester to run amuck on campus shouldn’t be blown all out of proportion. Runner-up: Ron Paul supporters.
Unethical Website of the Year: Lovely-Faces, the anti-Facebook stunt pulled by Paolo Cirio, a media artist, and Alessandro Ludovico, media critic and editor-in- chief of Neural magazine, to show how inadequate Facebook’s privacy controls were. To do it, they stole 250,000 Facebook member profiles and organized them into a new dating site—without the members’ permission. The site embodied “the worst of ethical thinking: taking the identities of others for their own purposes (a Golden Rule breach), using other human beings to advance their own agenda (a Kantian no-no) and asserting that their ends justify abusing 250,000 Facebook users, which is irresponsible utilitarianism.” Continue reading
Commenter Shelly Stow has the Comment of the Day, with some useful calculations inspired by the post “America’s Untouchables, Continued…”:
“Every time I read about the creation of “child-safe” zones, I just shake my head. According to the latest statistics from the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Division of the DOJ about who child molesters are, for victims age 6 and below, 58.7% are family members, 39.7% family acquaintances, and 1.8% strangers (and not all of the stranger group are registered offenders; in fact, few are); for victims age 7-11: 50.5% family; 46.7% acquaintances; 2.7% strangers; and for victims age 12-17: 21.7% family; 72.9% acquaintances; 5.7% strangers–keeping in mind that only a tiny percentage of the stranger groups are registered offenders.
“Based on this, the only “zone” that would keep children out of the reach of potential molesters and therefore safe from sexual abuse is a zone that would exclude their parents, siblings, grandparents, entire extended family, baby sitters, neighbors, teachers, playmates’ parents, siblings…..everyone in their lives.”