Getting away with murder

"Let's hope the power grubbers across the street are paying attention," writes Michael Lynch [Essay: "Protected 'porn'" August 8, 2002] (http://www.readthehook.com/92368/essay-protected-quotpornquot-supreme-co...) citing ambitious politicians for the recent attempt to widen the definition of child pornography.

Mr. Lynch, and his probable backing of commercial pornographers, may be interested to know that one of the chief supporters of the Aschroft v. Free Speech Coalition case was the director of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the same man whose child, Adam, was kidnapped from a shopping mall in Florida.

The Supreme Court would not be prohibiting speech because it increases the chance that an unlawful act will be committed at some indefinite future time. It would be prohibiting child pornography, computer generated or no, because unlawful acts are committed against children every day. And, yes, pornography is a culprit. That's where the honorable Judge Kennedy failed.

The web plays pornography guru to the most prolific and profitable display of child pornography ever and, like many a charismatic cult leader, is getting away with murder.

As a nation, we continue to allow an epidemic of child exploitation to exist under our virtual noses while with the same collective gasp of wonder why so many of our children are being kidnapped, molested, murdered, and left naked beside freeways.

You need only talk to experts in the field of sexual and domestic violence to get information about the links between pornography consumption and actual unlawful sexual violence. The FBI gets over 9,000 sexual assault and rape reports every day. That's just for females between the ages of 12 and 32. And everyone knows how under-reported rape is. Just ask the hundreds of men who have come forward about the prevalence of abuse by Catholic priests.

Polly Klaas, Samantha Runnion, Danielle Van Damm, and thousands of other children, male and female, are assaulted, molested, raped, kidnapped, and murdered every year because child pornographers stand behind their First Amendment rights, and our Supreme Court lets them.

Those girls were killed because we value our freedoms in this country, no matter how dangerous, more than we value their lives.

Let's hope the porn grubbers across the street are paying attention.

Camille Cooper
Charlottesville

bejoyusm@aol.com