I got this on a link from someone who was also disgusted by this. (Some names have been changed to protect people)
I “know” an accidental paedophile. We met a lovely lady in a nightclub. My friend pulled that night and went out with her for a couple of weeks. She “looked young compared to him” but she said she was my age. I had suffered an accident recently and looked like death warmed over so I was in a poor state to judge appearances.
But then something caught my attention. She said she didn’t remember the Velvet Revolution of Prague (I lived in the Czech Republic) which was weird. I remembered the Gulf War and that was in the same time period, but I figured that my experience was traumatic while hers was “just a kid not understanding why people were all worked up about it”.
And then a few days later while helping her move I came across her passport. Checking to see if it was hers or her flat mate’s when we realised something.
She was born in 1992. She was 7 years younger than me. She was 15… She couldn’t tell us what she was up to during the Velvet Revolution because she was not alive at that point. She was moving out of her sister’s place into his so she could party with adults who had no bedtimes, drank and who would not make her “go to school”.
I called my friend immediately to tell him. Until this point we had no inkling she was under age. We had to sit her down and tell her what she did was wrong. I specifically told her it was a selfish move. He literally told her to leave a few seconds after that. Now here is the thing. Should we punish this man who had no idea and who did the right thing? Who fell for someone lying about their age? I don’t think we should. He unwillingly broke the law and was unaware of her age.
I told her sister what she had done. I don’t think she got away from her “selfish” act unscathed.
There are accidental paedophiles. Adults who sleep with teenagers who look old enough and who give consent. It is statutory rape but there is no guilty party. And we try and cut that down via things like ID Cards and doormen but we cannot stop all the kids who want to “club”.
There are real paedophiles out there. Not these “accidental” ones. It’s predominantly a male crime. There are women who sleep with underaged boys but the demographics are skewed towards men. It’s not a “stereotype” so much as a statistical point. Now maybe MRA can claim that women are getting away with it more, but we aren’t seeing a plethora of boys and men come forward indicating that they were raped when younger by women so we must assume that the statistics hold true.
I read this piece then saw the tag. P(a)edo Hysteria.
Mr. Whippy was the ice-cream man and when I heard the sounds of Green Sleeves in the air all the clocks froze. I would pluck the rubber plug from beneath the paper mache elephant that kept the loose change and shake it like I was using a jackhammer.
I knew the best way to cut him off at the pass was to run diagonally through the park and meet him at the corner where the big tree dropped gumnuts around Mrs Purnell’s tin pink flamingo. She despised that and scolded you for it when you saw her, but that story is for a different time.
When he rounded the corner the wake of kids dancing on the street behind him reminded me that god never lived in church because he lived on wheels. His van always stopped exactly where I stood. It was a wheezy metal horse painted in pink and blue with hand painted illustrations of five sorts of ice-creams and I swear I could almost hear angels sing when that roller door clattered open. The smell of the vanilla and the diesel would weld me to the shimmering bitumen and he’d lean over the speckled bench with a smile.
“Whadda ya want mate?”
The majority of child abuse occurs within the family. A child is more likely to be abused by a parent or a relative or a friend of the family than by a random stranger. That being said, there are such incidents.
In the wake of a similar “god” of my childhood being indicated as a paedophile I must argue that we must listen to the victims as well of this crime.
I speak of Jimmy Saville. A lot of my childhood was bereft of major parental interference so I learnt a lot from role models and many of them were on TV. I grew up but as a kid I had heroes and one of them was Jimmy Saville. A man who made me want to help people. Whenever he visited sick children, I was amazed. I wanted to do that.
To find out what he did shocked me to the core. Sure he was weird, how could those Americans laughing at Brits who let a man who “looked like that” around their kids understand that he may have been weird but he was loved by kids across the UK?
But he certainly didn’t love kids. You don’t hurt those you love. You don’t abuse them. He stabbed us in the back. He was a snake who hid in the grass of our childhood with the perfect camouflage.
I waited for Green Sleeves, and when the sun went crimson and dipped behind Mount Table I knew something was wrong. The next week I walked through the park and waited for him in the usual spot and Mrs Purnell came out of the house and cackled from behind her fly screen door.
“He’s gawn. They got ‘im so you better get yer ice-creams from the shops instead.”
For the next three Saturdays I waited at that corner for him. I ached to hear the sound of his van and I waited while the heat surrendered to longer shadows before it was time to leave. Dinner would be waiting for me at home and I asked about him.
“What happened to Mr. Whippy?”
Dad said, “He’s come a gutser mate. The papers say he’s been bad.”
No. Ran a stop light is “bad”. Fucking Children is not bad. It is an abuse of trust and the rape of someone who cannot give consent as they cannot understand consent. It is one of the vilest crimes one can commit.
I heard Green Sleeves again and ran to my usual place but he was not there. I listened and knew he’d be at the end of the street around the corner at the top of the hill and I rushed there to make it in time to see the roller door open up.
A young woman looked down at me and asked me what I wanted. Who was this person who had flung god from the world?
“Where’s Mr Whippy?”
“Mate. He’s not coming back because I’m doing the rounds now.”
The van had new words on it that said, “Under new management” and the illustrations had been replaced with glossy enamel paint. They looked good but they were my traitors. I wanted no part of this and I stepped back while the other kids crowded around the bench holding up their coins.
Sometimes your heroes stop being heroes. It’s good to remember what you learnt from them.
Without Jimmy Saville I may not have wanted to help people the way I do. I understand that part of my childhood influenced by him is a positive one.
I also understand what he did and can delineate between the good I picked up and his horrible actions.
A woman with a child in a papoose came to the window and smiled.
“Sorry about what happened Annie. I know it’s rubbish what they did.”
She looked back at her and her eyes were broken with pain.
“It’s rubbish alright, and it’s rubbish what they say about dad. He’s always got kids around him on the rounds. So how could he ever get one in here without any of them seeing?”
They said the same thing about Jimmy Saville. I understand this is a fantasy world where most paedophiles are not guilty but the funny thing is that more paedophiles have walked away without ever being charged than have been caught. The majority of cases are reported late or worse, never reported at all.
So there you have it, we have paedophile apologist fiction on A Voice for Men. Because it’s not enough to limbo under the bar of good taste when you can dig too.
Stay classy MRAs.