Re: Child Protection Act Fact Sheet 1993-12-20
Bruce B. Harper (BHARPER@VTVM1.BITNET)
Tue, 21 Dec 1993 12:05:22 EST
�I'll try this again, without the Internet tag on my address, since the
listserver didn't like that . . .�
On Tue, 21 Dec 1993 16:58:44 +0000 Gino Lucrezi said:
>I received today this from a White House mailing list.
>I was curious to know if BSA had any say in this new law, and why
>GSUSA only is mentioned in the fact sheet.
>> * Establishes a national database of all indictments and convictions
>> on child abuse and sex offense charges, violent crimes, arson, and
>> felony drug charges;
This is a tad off topic, but we did discuss this in the past . . .
An indictment is only a charge and is no indication of guilt or innocence.
There are already many reports of people (parents and youth leaders) being
falsely accused of child abuse or molestation by a child or youth out for
revenge. Since logic and reason don't always prevail with the social services
people called in to investigate, guilt is assumed from the beginning (yes, I
know it is correct to err on the side of caution, but some people get too
carried away). While it may be wonderful to have this national database of
CONVICTED offenders, I have a problem with listing indictments. On
one hand, a person may be guilty but escapes prosecution because he or she
can't be found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. However, what is the
mechanism to purge the information of those who are wrongly accused and are
truly innocent of any crime? When this came up here before, several people
related information about Scouters who were very good at what they did, but
who were rendered ineffective because of one accusation that never amounted
to anything. While I prefer that my children be protected from those who do
prey on the innocent, part of the responsibility for seeing that happen is
mine as a parent. Granted, it is easier for me in the small town of
Blacksburg to know who the leaders are.
I don't know that there is an easy answer to this. My concern is that
this act, while good intentioned, is just another example of people giving
up their personal responsibilities and letting the government do it for
them (be it child minding or health care).
Administrative Display System Bruce B. Harper, Manager
Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia 24061-0433
==Assistant Webelos Den Leader, Pack 56, Blacksburg==
BHARPER@VTVM1 (BITNET) or BHARPER@VTVM1.CC.VT.EDU (Internet)
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City