I will sacrifice anything for my children. There isn’t even a question in that statement. When it comes to my kids, nothing is more important. Nothing. So if I’m given a choice between a freedom such as speech and their safety? I’d gladly never speak again.
See, my automatic reaction to “The Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure: a Child-lover’s Code of Conduct” by Philip R. Greaves II, the book at the center of the heated Amazon/Twitter debate, is strong. I’ve never been a “burn that book” type of person. I thrive off of books of a controversial nature. I crave books that feed me emotionally, especially with varying degrees of anger and sadness. But a how-to for child molesters? I can’t support that kind of free speech. I just can’t. In my mind, that’s gone too far.
Admittedly, no one appointed me The Decider Of What’s Right And Wrong, but seriously. This is all shades of wrong.
I sat at my desk yesterday staring at photos of my two daughters, age two and four. So beautiful , absolutely innocent and completely vulnerable. Then I thought about this book. About who would buy this book. I thought about how it’s possible, while not probable, that the person buying this book might molest for the first time after reading this book, thinking they’re following some sort of “Code of Conduct”, as described by Mr. Greaves. I thought about how one of my girls could be this victim. Sure, all of this is unlikely, but it is possible. If I knew that this could happen, even if the possibility was minute, and I was given a vote, I’d gladly, without hesitation, give up my freedom of speech for good.
I have read excerpts from this book. I wanted to be sure, before roasting it on a spit, that this was in fact what the title promises and not some sort of sick joke. The title doesn’t lie. It tells you what products to use in place of adult-sized condoms. That the predators often believe their prey will grow to love them and eventually they will marry and live happily ever after. How to not injure their victims.
This book is not a joke. This book is a disgusting and horrific instruction manual on how to completely destroy a young person. A young person like my child.
I don’t know how else to describe this. We’re allowed to write and read and speak about whatever we see fit. That’s our right. It’s one of the, if not the, most valued freedom we have. But how can we hang onto this freedom with such blind stubbornness when it allows “The Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure” to find its way into predator’s hands? Sure, banning or boycotting one book can and will lead to banning and boycotting more books. I get it and I’m not ok with that, in general. But if banning a book like this one will protect my children, or any child, I’d risk it.
I’m not going to argue about this. I’m not asking you to make the same sacrifice. In a perfect world, in my mind, this book never would have been imagined, let alone written and available for purchase. But it’s not a perfect world. No one asked me whether or not the book should be banned, I’m just saying, in my opinion, from the standpoint of being the mother of small children, I’d do anything to make this book go away. It wouldn’t cure pedophilia, obviously. I’m not at all naive. But should child molesters have access to instruction manuals? Why is this even a question?
My first and most important job is to protect my children at all costs. All I know is how this one instance, this one book, has made me feel and what it has made me think about. I can’t think objectively when it comes to victimizing children. As a parent, as a mother, I no longer have that luxury. And if that means forfeiting my rights and freedoms for their safety, I am MORE than ready to make that sacrifice for them.