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This page is dedicated to what others have to say about child abuse. These opinions provide a forum to intellectually discuss information which others can use to educate themselves regarding deeper aspects of child abuse. For example, it may be used by high school and college students to offer new thoughts, questions and possible answers to this national tragedy.


Preventing & Ending Child Abuse

It doesn't surprise me to hear that the facts and figures regarding child

abuse are fairly easy to come by yet the problem is in preventing and ending

abuse. The answer, as I'm sure you're aware, is sadly that as long as there are

human beings we can expect some abuse to bewith us. In the same way murder is

a reflection of the human heart and therefore not something which can be ended

altogether, child abuse is a sad fact of life. That's the bad news. The good news

is that much good can be done. Here are my thoughts.

I believe a good analogy for the positive progress which can be made in

the fight against child abuse is that of drunk driving. Though drunk

driving continues to be a huge killer from what I've read the incidence of

and deaths from drunk driving have plummeted approximately 40% within the

past 10 or 20 years. What made the difference? Has the propensity for

alcoholism been reduced? In my opinion the answers are twofold: awareness

and intolerance. I can remember twenty years ago watching on TV and seeing

instance after instance of "the funny drunk" who said he was "going to

drive home because he was in no condition to walk". That doesn't happen

anymore today. Nowadays the idea of driving drunk is unacceptable. It is

simply no longer tolerated. There is even a new phrase which has been

added to the American vocabulary-- "designated driver".

I think the same needs to happen in the case of child abuse. I'm reminded

of a funny, successful movie from the 70s named "Airplane". One of the

characters in the movie was a pilot who, quite obviously, was sexually

interested in children. There was a so-called funny line he uttered to the

effect of "Billy, have you ever seen a grown man naked?". Have we

progressed beyond this in our entertainment? Has our society made a turn?

Not necessarily. Within the past year the American Psychiatric Association

allowed publication of a paper suggesting that "in certain cases" sex

between an adult and a child "may not be harmful to the child". There is

at least one well-known organization (NAMBLA) which promotes pedophilia.

The U.S. Attorney General has advocated reduced penalties for child


So what can be done? We can start by making people aware that child

abuse is rampant-- that it invades every sector of our society. We can make sure

children are taught to speak up if ever they are touched inappropiately.

We can report any abuse we witness-- and we can stigmatize that person who

fails to do so. Very importantly we can "humanize" child abuse by showing

its real consequences so that the would-be perpetrator finds it much harder

to rationalize his deviant behavior. We can give a forum to the Survivors

of this world so that they can share how childhood abuse has affected every

aspect of their life. We can show the world the incredible loss society

suffers since rather than complete successful educations and go on to

productive lives as doctors, researchers, scientists, pastors and teachers,

so many individuals spend 20, 30 or even more years of their lives just

dealing with the pains of childhood. We can show no tolerance for the

perpetrators of abuse.


Bob Ashley

Director, Day of the Child


We welcome all constructive ideas, responses and rebuttal