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About sexual predators and pedophiles.
Yesterday, I was horrified to learn that there are 244 confirmed sexual predators living within a 5 mile radius of my home. Having a 7 year old child, it is quite unsettling to say the least. My question to you is do you really think that sexual predators, pedophiles, and child molesters can be properly rehabilitated? I recall a news report a few years ago where they discussed this topic in depth and the unanimous conclusion was that they could not be properly rehabilitated. I understand that all people make mistakes but is this an unforgiveable sin? Your thoughts please.
asked in Legal, Morality, Opinion

tecspec answers:

I certainly wouldn't want them any where near me.
My sister found out that her long time partner had been 'interferring' with their 2 daughters and he got sent to prison. My sister rung me about a week after he got sent down to say that he been beaten up by other inmates and the warders. She wanted me to be sympathetic and I wasn't, I can speak my mind and be quite vociferous about it too..
I'd like them all to be locked up so that they are kept away from the innocents.
If there is one thing that (IMHO) is worse than almost anything its child abuse of any kind.

I agree with the experts these perverts can never be rehabilitated.
If this was 'Merry olde England' they would have had their bits chopped off!

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vultan answers:

Well, assuming you know the source of this statistic is 100% reliable, rather than just local gossip, it might set your mind at rest somewhat if you knew what type of 'sexual predators' they were, since the term can cover people who have raped adults and even conceivably people who have committed acts of consensual incest or statutory rape - not good things to have done, of course, but not quite as reprehensible as sexually abusing a child.

In answer to your question, some probably can and some probably cannot. There may have been people who were confused about their sexuality at the time they committed an offence, or who might genuinely have gained control over their sexual urges.

Just quickly googling, it seems that there is conflicting evidence about how likely such people are to re-offend. Some articles suggest that sex offenders have lower recidivism rates than other types of criminal, and also that 'treating' paedophiles in the community reduces the likelihood of them re-offending, so perhaps a kind of rehabilitation is possible. I suspect that the general (and quite understandable) public hatred of such people drowns out any voices and statistics that suggest rehabilitation is possible, though. 'Rehabilitation' implies acceptance fom the rest of society, of course, and I can't see that happening.

This links to some interesting-looking research:

Mind you, even if it is true that they're less likely to re-offend, I'd still be pretty uneasy about finding out there were that many convicted sex offenders living near me, and I don't even have children.

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Sapphire10 answers:

Me i'd move from there especially if i had a 7yr old like you have,
I wouldn't give a monkeys nuts what sort of sexual preditor they are, They are still the lowest of the low and do not deserve to live near animals let alone human beings.
Rehabilitate do me a favour a they need there bits and pieces chopped off and served to them for dinner,Whilst they are on a island all on there own doing what ever thoughts and deeds they want with each other,Leaving all the other decent people in the world to live knowing our children will not be the next victims of these vile crimes.

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Russel.West answers:

Prevention is the best form of defence against sex offenders - we all know they exist, it is how we teach our children to protect themselves and that we are protective where our children are concerned since they are, at 7 years old, vulnerable - teaching them there are no secrets a child cannot keep from those who love them, that way if ever they are 'groomed' they will automatically WANT to tell you that someone has told them they have a secret to be kept - sex offenders rely on 'grooming' a child into thinking what they have to hold over them can prevent them from telling someone, they use guilt and shame to isolate a child and make them think that what they have done will either not be believed or that what they hold over the child by way of blackmail in the child's mind is so big that what they do to them is tiny in comparison -

How do I know this? when I was young it happened to me and at the time when I told one of my abusers that I would tell my dad and he would probably kill him he managed to come back with - well you'll never see your dad again cause if he does he'll be in prison and you'll never see him again - to a 12 year old that left me with no way out or so I thought... 27 years later that piece of low life has to look over his shoulder where ever he goes wondering if I'm there with my cameras watching him, and every so often another journalist knocks on his door...he has been in the news of the world about 4 times now, he has spent now most of his adult life in and out of prision and now lives right next door to a school!

So I say to you if you teach your child to always tell you if someone makes them feel uncomfortable or tries to manipulate them your child will always feel safe.

I have to say the fear of those particular crimes are indeed sadly what prevents parents today from letting their kids out of their sight - when in fact it is a relatively rare incident thank goodness, most abuse is committed by someone who knows a child quite well, so if a child becomes withdrawn, or starts to behave in a way the parent becomes worried talk it over with a very close friend, a teacher or professional carer even the child's GP and if alarm bells still ring those professionals know what they must do...

I have just tried to think how to tell a child of 7 when they must tell their mum or dad about 'wrongful touching' or being asked to do something sexual, I have to say I think it has to be one of the hardest things to do, my little girl is only 2 1/2 I have no idea how I'm going to tell her, never mind knowing when the time is right given I wouldn't want to scare her from being intimate in a non sexual way with friends and family given she has been so ill and everyone wants to cuddle her...

Hard call this one...but if you are worried talk to the school teacher, I know that sex offenders on the register are subject to strict controls and if found breaking them often go straight to jail until a hearing is arranged and their licence reviewed - controls which include being banned from going anywhere near children's areas, including schools, I know in the past heads of schools are made aware of 'problem offenders' I hope it still happens - not that they could tell parents, I seem to remember it is so they can make the police aware if they are seen hanging around.

Supplement from 09/03/2008 10:23pm:

Just a quick reminder - if you have 244 offenders in a 5 mile radius, please be aware that some of those may well be people who offended many years ago - since the new register means it is for life the list only gets added to - until of course someone does humanity a favour and dies!

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BobBibleman answers:

I get the impression there is only the view that they should all be killed or castrated (which I'm not sure would help, and just seems like public vengence) or hidden away, rather than any actually help. I suppose saying 'help' sexual predators sounds wrong, but if it stops them committing any crimes isn't that better?

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Family.Guy answers:

I agree with you. There is no way anyone with that sort of mental illness can be cured. If someone suffers with Depression they cant be cured it will always be there.

I think what they need to do to them is cut their things off and find a deserted island and leave them to the judgement of god

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