It really is baffling to many why the debate over the treatment of convicted paedophiles is continuing for so long and no swift and forceful punishment is being inflicted. The boring and futile debate over the consequences for their disgusting deeds is quite irritating to those amongst us who feel there should be no argument over imposing the harshest punishment possible for harming a child in such a vile manner. Over the last few weeks we heard the pacifists calling for leniency saying the pervs would be disadvantaged if their passports are stamped. They say making a sex offenders registry public would result in discrimination and deny convicted paedophiles the right to legitimate employment etc etc. We say, so what?
Now, as the same protracted debate continues through a specially selected committee to discuss the Sexual Offences Act Amendment Bill, comes a new suggestion that convicted child molesters should be chemically castrated. Independent Senator, Dr. Varma Deyalsingh says, the punishment is carried out in certain US States such as Florida and is an option to jail or surgical castration. This form of punishment could also be applied to female offenders. Another participant called for the issue to be dealt with rationally rather than emotionally, which we fully endorse. What other brilliant suggestions would emerge from this specially convened congress, we wait to see.
It is the view of many especially the families of the victims that every form of punishment that could be imposed on a child sex offender, should be. And while we may tend to agree, there must be restraint and ensure that the punishment fits the crime. Hence our confusion over the debate whether those found guilty of this heinous crime should be allowed to live ‘undercover’ amongst us or whether they should be allowed to travel freely to foreign nations including ours. Or worse, whether should we allow them to work in an environment where children are unwittingly exposed to potential harm.
The imposition of fines, jail terms or punishment of any sort on individuals found guilty of crimes is twofold. Primarily it is meant to be just that. Punishment. Secondly it should be appropriately administered to act as a deterrent to the individual and others like him or her. Will punishment prevent crime totally? We highly doubt it. But when a grown man could abuse a child for his own twisted gratification without concern for the permanent damage that being done that individual, then it’s time to put aside sentimentality and impose punishment without concern for his welfare too.