Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Live and Let Live...Just Not Next Door (SO Series)

Imagine, dear reader, that you are looking for a home.

No problem, right? There are plenty of free publications offering rentals and homes for sale in every neck of the woods and at every price level

But wait.

You can't move in any old where.

You have limitations.

You can't live near a school. Hmm...OK...not too difficult, plenty of places not near schools, although that makes getting the kids to and from a bit more of a challenge.

Oh, wait...you also can't live near a daycare. Oh...OK...so any neighborhood with a home daycare or a daycare center is out

Whoopsie, forgot...no church, either. Huh...there are some parts of the country where that's just not possible. Heck, here in Redneck Central you can't spit without hitting a Baptist something or other.

Also, no playgrounds, parks, or places where children congregate. No YMCA, public swimming pool, or mall with a playground or skate park.

You need to search carefully around your prospective new home, because if you don't locate every one of the above and make certain it's more than 1,000 feet from where you'll be living?

Jail. Possibly for life.

Imagine being told you cannot visit your parents, or any of your family. If you do?

Jail. Possibly for life.

Imagine, dear reader, that the same applies for place of employment, or educational facility.

Imagine that you must find a way to support your family while living within these edicts. Imagine, if you can, your spouse being fired because you're married to him/her. Imagine your children relentlessly bullied at school, at church, at soccer/football/baseball because they're yours. Imagine people coming to your house and threatening you, threatening your family.

Imagine law enforcement providing your address to anyone who wants it, because it's the law.

Imagine not being able to travel for any length of time without first getting permission.

Imagine having to turn over every phone number, every e-mail or online account with passwords so that someone may, at any time, log on and see what you are doing...and if they don't approve?

Jail. Possibly for life.

Imagine having to go every year (in some place more often) to a dark, dreary office and proclaim your presence in the area, give your address and fingerprints, and wait for someone to come and confirm that you live there. Imagine having to move because someone opens a childcare, a church, a park within the thousand feet (unless you're lucky enough to live somewhere that has grandfather clauses).

Imagine having to wear an ankle bracelet, never to be removed, that has a GPS device, and if you stray into a no-no area (inadvertent though it may be)?

Jail. Possibly for life.

Imagine never being able to see your child's school play or recital, never attending a scouting camp out or overnight function, never serving as a classroom parent or chaperon, never taking your child to an amusement or water park, never going to the beach.

Imagine being afraid to change your daughter's diaper, wipe your son's bottom, give your child a bath.

Imagine having to worry about all of that for the rest of your life...all of that and more. Imagine people treating you as pariah because you've been labelled, and that label doesn't differentiate the severity of your act.

Imagine being eighteen and thrown into a cold, callous, uncaring system, knowing that the rest of your days you will be called "Sex Offender" and will carry the burden of that label until you die. No one will hire you, no one wants you living near them, no one cares that the girl* you "offended" was your girlfriend, that she consented, that she was three days from her seventeenth birthday. Or perhaps she lied and told you she was seventeen when she was not, that she has done this before, that she likes to toy with older boys, or perhaps she's looking to score, to gain merit in the eyes of her peers (if you think that doesn't happen, you're wrong - it happens every day, girls and boys both). Her consent, her deceit, do not matter. The fault is yours and yours alone.

No one cares - all they see is the label.

They see a pedophile. They do not look, do not want to look, beyond their own presumption of guilt

*I say "girl", but this applies equally to the males of the species. Please don't get your knickers in a twist because of my gender bias - I don't care to type "girl/boy", "his/her", or "they/their" all the time. I'm lazy.


That Janie Girl said...

Awesome post, Kyddryn. And you're right, this situation does happen.

Every single day.

♥ Braja said...

This sounds horrendously familiar....