Wednesday, September 30, 2009

This month seems to have had a surprisingly high number of stories in the news about child abuse. There's a few patterns there.

September 2009 marks the ten year anniversary of Janet Reno's appointment of John C. Danforth as a special prosecutor into possible federal misconduct in Waco Texas. The events surrounding that possible misconduct had been justified by Attorney General Reno with a (never substantiated) claim of child abuse in Waco. That possible misconduct led to actual harm to multiple children, as well as adults. Federal operations turned multiple children into this:

That picture illustrates, in my opinion, the ultimate in child abuse. The actions that led to the creation of that picture, including an armed raid on a peaceful home, use of incendiary devices against people hiding in a wooden structure, and more, were incontrovertibly committed by agents of the Federal Government.

Danforth's investigation essentially exonerated the federal government of any wrongdoing in the events that led to the generation of the picture like the one above (and many more such pictures besides). September 2009 also marks the 9th anniversary of the dismissal of a wrongful death suit brought by the survivors of the Waco massacre.

So: unproven allegations of child abuse were enough to launch a raid that resulted in the death and mutilation of "victims" and "perpetrators" of this child abuse. Actual child abuse -- the actual killing and burning of actual children -- was not sufficient to cause federal agents any serious embarrassment (the commander of federal operations at Waco, General Wesley Clark, would run for the Democratic Party Nomination for President after Waco) let alone criminal charges. The survivors of the events in Waco couldn't even get civil compensation for the killing and mutilation of their relatives and friends.

Just starting to get traction in the newspapers in September 2009 (the story actually broke August 28, 2009, very close to September) was the story of Jaycee Lee Dugard, kept as a sex slave for 18 years by Phillip Garrido and his wife, Nancy Garrido. From what I can tell of the story, Nancy Garrido was the breadwinner of the household, working for the government - funded Contra Costa ARC until 1998. So far, most of the coverage that I've seen focuses on Phillip Garrido, almost to the exclusion of his wife, Nancy. Historically, criminal women or criminal couples have not been exempted from coverage or opprobrium due to their gender -- think Bonnie and Clyde, or Ma Barker -- but Nancy Garrido has been referred to as a "victim" of Phillip Garrido, rather than a co-perpetrator, in some (not all) accounts in the press. Why the differential coverage?

On to September's next child abuse story. In September 2009, James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles uncovered multiple instances in which a federally funded agency, ACORN, enthusiastically offered support for the sex slavery of multiple underage girls in various cities around the country. That would certainly have been child abuse in my opinion. At this time, the only lawsuit that has been brought in this matter is the one against James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles for their role in uncovering these actions on the part of ACORN. Again, agents ("agents" used in this case in the sense of "a representative who acts on behalf of other persons or organizations") of the federal government appear to have been enthusiastic supporters of child abuse. The judicial system of the State of Maryland is, as I write this, engaged in proceedings against those who would uncover use of federal funds to support underage sex slavery.

The next child abuse story: In September of 2009, Roman Polanski was arrested by the Swiss after fleeing punishment for alleged child rape (Polanski had plea bargained down a rape charge, and had been convicted of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor. He fled the country after serving less than half of an approximately 90 day sentence). As I write this, large segments of the US artistic and political classes are calling for the freeing of Polanski. It remains to be seen what the California and Federal governments -- after years of inaction -- do in this case.

Based on the path I've noted before in this blog, there might as well be a University of California element to this line of inquiry. In fact, I know of two University of California elements that could reasonably be dubbed "child abuse cases in the news in September."

Here's one, from the September LA TIMES: UCI settles a dozen fertility suits. Doctors at the school's Center for Reproductive Health were found to have stolen eggs or embryos for years and given them to other women. Two doctors involved fled the country to avoid prosecution. As described elsewhere on this blog, University of California personnel sold embryonic children for research, where they were presumably boiled for DNA extraction, sliced by microtomes for microscopy, and all the other elements of biological research. Boiling and slicing of embryonic children who were stolen from their parents could, in my opinion, reasonably be described as child abuse. Further, some of the survivors of that University of California clinic would now be young adults. The University has, thus far successfully, managed to keep both the public and the parents of these now young adults from learning their identity, or even their fate. In fact, the very existence of these children was a secret for approximately two decades, leaked to the press, and to their parents, only during the 2006 increased press attention due to the UC Irvine / UC San Diego sham liver transplant program.

This continued separation of children from their parents is, in my opinion, also possible child abuse. In my opinion, the University has been remarkably fastidious about keeping information about their children from the parents of these stolen young adults. The secrecy that the University continues to maintain regarding these children is particularly remarkable, in my opinion, given that many of the embryonic children from the same program were known to have been sold for medical research, that the University of California is known to have performed lethal research, with poor "consent" procedures, on other apparently unwitting young subjects and that the University has been cavalier about other medical information .

The ususal reasons for keeping the identity and fate of these children (now young adults) from their parents, and vice versa, don't seem to apply here. Whatever troublesome conflicts in parenting styles between the biological parents and the "adoptive parents" really should not be much of a problem for children who are now in their 20s. The biological parents did not sign away their parental rights to these children; they didn't even know of their children's existence until 2006.

I also keep in mind the fact that the University of California had at least one known extraordinary business arrangement with the Yakuza, namely running an expedited liver transplant program for Yakuza at UCLA. Of all the transplant operations in the world, the Yakuza apparently were most quickly able to arrange their transplants at UCLA when the time came that those transplants were needed. This suggests, in my opinion, that there may have been previous connections between Yakuza and the University of California. This may relate to the stolen children through this fact: Yakuza are alleged to use child pornography as a base of their income.

Finally, note that the University of California was home to at least two separate groups, at UCLA and at the University of California Irvine, which illegally sold human bodies to outside purchasers.

Given all of this, I shudder to think of the possible reasons that the University of California might be so motivated to have kept the very existence, and now the fate and identity, of these young adults under wraps. There have been no criminal proceedings in this case.

Lest one be tempted to depend on the courts to ensure oversight over the University of California in the context of child abuse, I present this story from the Orange County Register: Prominent doctor gets 30 days in jail for molestation. The prominent doctor in question was Dr. William Moore Thompson III, University of California surgeon for 40 years. Dr. Thompson allegedly molested at least one child under the age of 14 "on 15 to 20 occasions between May 24, 2003 and May 23, 2004," and allegedly violated another child at some point at least ten years ago. Dr. Thompson "pleaded guilty to two felony counts of lewd and lascivious conduct with a child under 14 years old, and one count of dissuading a witness from testimony." Dr. Thompson got 30 days in jail, as well as house arrest to precede the jail time.

The remarkable thing in Dr. Thompson's case, in my opinion, is not that he allegedly molested two children on multiple occasions. It is that a California court, apparently in recognition of Dr. Thompson's life's work (which, as above, apparently mainly consisted of 40 years as a University of California surgeon) gave him such a light sentence. According to the linked article, "Sentencing guidelines call for a three- to eight-year sentence in state prison for the crime" to which Dr. Thompson pleaded guilty. Clearly, something about Dr. Thompson caused the court to impose a sentence far outside the guidelines. My best guess is that something about Dr. Thompson is his long term status as a government agent, i.e. a University of California surgeon.

So, as the name of the blog says, I'm trying to make sense out of this. One thing that jumps to mind is that there appears to be an unholy (I haven't used the word "unholy" before on this blog, but somehow no other word appears correct) use of allegations of child abuse by government agents when it suits their purposes, and downplaying of actual abuse when government agents, or those in the political class, are the perpetrators. I'm still trying to figure out the nuances, but, based on stories from this month alone, at first glance, it looks bad. Really bad.

(this post slightly edited after initial posting)


Anonymous said...

Doctors almost always get a pass when it comes to any form of sexual misconduct.

Anonymous said...

It has been a year now since Dr. Thompson was convicted. Does anyone know if he actually served the home confinement sentence of 330 days (according to other sources) followed by 30 days of jail time? This sentence is pathetically light given the severity of his crime. Also, it is interesting that every news article related to this story is not accessable. That must have taken some influence and/or money to remove almost all traces of this story. Any comments would be welcomed.

Anonymous said...

Yes his time was served and the reason his sentence was so light was due to the evidence presented during deposition of the victim and due to the alleged prior victim. The news story was not very well investigated or reported. I had found out the news story was provided by his step son who had been cut off from the family due to multiple rape charges. He was the lone source.