Protect Vulnerable Children

Protect Vulnerable Children
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Many cases of child molestation and sexual predation of children have come to light in the recent past. This is as alarming as can be and reflects an unrecognized pathology in society. It bears mention here that no society in the world is actually free from these pathologies but in most, especially, developed societies, these are recognized and identified. Accordingly then, due measures are taken to protect vulnerable children. Of course, even after identification and recognition, these kinds of crimes cannot be totally and completely eliminated but, in the very least, can be brought down measurably. The psychological, emotional and even physical toll of these crimes on the victims is immeasurably deep and life- long. The scars that they leave can be both debilitating as well as incapacitating. And, in some extreme cases, the perpetrators of these pathologies even kill their victims. The problem, in the context of our society, is that these pathologies, to repeat, are not recognized. As such, crimes are perpetuated , most of which might not even be reported. Given the seriousness of the issue(s), it is incumbent upon society to devise an appropriate response that saves the lives of the vulnerable in many sense of the term. Primarily, the response has to be societal. We need to look the problem squarely in the eye, so to speak and then devise solutions. These might or should include sensitizing ourselves, parents and even children to be alert to indecent and improper attention. Victims of this kind of attention must then be encouraged to speak up and articulate their angst and pain. The purpose here is two fold. One is that perpetrators be identified and second is that this kind of victimhood must not be suppressed. Repression of trauma is a template and a stepping stone for other kinds of psychological and psycho-emotional issues that can debilitate a person. Persons found guilty of perpetrating these kinds of crimes must not only be named and shamed but also exemplary punishment meted out to them, whose nature, for instance, could be they be deprived of social and economic support for the entire length of their lives. There could be other forms of punishment too but what is of primary significance is the recognition of these pathologies followed by counseling and rehabilitation of victims in a way that allows them to lead dignified and meaningful lives. Brushing the issue under the carpet or ignoring it can only fester a problem that exacts suffering and victims who are scarred for life.