Update: I just read an article where it has a response from Oprah Winfrey for the heat she is taking for taking part in the continued exploitation of Shawn Hornbeck. Here’s her reply:
“The communications staff for Winfrey’s show responded with a statement noting that the show had been pre-taped on a closed set with no audience present.
“Oprah, who has years of experience interviewing children who have survived trauma, respectfully posed questions first to his parents and aunt – and then to Shawn with his family present – so that they could share their message of hope with other families who have missing children,” the statement said. “As with all guests … it was their prerogative not to answer any questions posed to them.””
Yeah, that’s what this is all about right? It’s not about money or ratings or anything else but the need for Sean and his family to get their “message of hope” out. What a crock and a sorry excuse for an explanation for her behavior. I wonder if it was her child or her niece or nephew if she’d feel the same way. Somehow I doubt it.
“Rona Fields, a Washington D.C., psychologist specializing in traumatized children, said she was troubled at how and where the issue was broached.
“It’s not something I would think a 15-year-old boy would want to have broadcast all over the country,” Fields said. “This impacts on the whole rest of his life, and it makes me cringe to think people would be so careless.””
I’ve been reading with disgust the past few days about this monster Michael Devlin who allegedly has kidnapped at least two boys and is suspected in the disappearance of a third.
It’s pretty hard not to pronounce the guy guilty at this point as the evidence seems overwhelming, but I’m willing to concede that everyone deserves a fair trial and I hope that his comes fast and ends decisively and that after it all, if he’s found guilty, that he is executed.
It sickens me to see again and again and again in the press stories of sexual adult predators who prey on children. There is no crime worse in my mind than the abuse of children and seeing those found guilty of crimes against children end up back on the street after serving time is a tremendous injustice indeed.
As a society we need to send a much stronger message to adults who prey on children. And this message needs to be that if they abduct children and are captured that they will die. What’s more, and this is going to take me into a more controversial area, I believe that an amendment to the constitution should be drafted which would allow the use of cruel and unusual punishment in the case of child abductors. I believe that not only should they be put to death, but that in this rare case torture ought to be permitted.
What good would beating these monsters to near death only to let them live another day for another beating actually accomplish? It would send a more powerful message to the would be abductors about the importance of controlling the demons that drive them to commit the crimes that they do. If such a policy resulted in only a single predator changing his mind about an abduction, this would be worth the torture of 100 others. Even if torturing abductors was largely unlikely to become a viable deterrent in all cases, if even in a minority of cases it helped this would be worth it.
I don’t buy the argument that these monsters are sick or that they can’t control themselves. Something needs to be done to stop these crimes from happening.
And while we are on the topic of exploiting children, I have to add that Oprah Winfrey should be ashamed of herself. Shawn Hornbeck has gone through a four year ordeal, a living hell, and somehow Oprah thinks it’s important less than a week after his ordeal has ended to put the boy on national televison and exploit him further.
And what kind of parents are Shawn Hornbeck’s to participate in this media circus built around their son’s terrible misfortune? How much money did Oprah pay Shawn’s mother and step father to come on National TV and say that they thought their son had been sexually exploited by this predator? It’s tasteless further exploitation of the child and I hope that there is a backlash against Oprah for stooping this this low.
I’m glad to see that some others already are expressing similar distaste for Oprah’s sleazy behavior. ” At least Elizabeth Smart’s smarmy parents waited a month and a half to drag her out to play the harp on “The John Walsh Show” like a little abused, emotionless Muppet,” writes Linda Stasi.
“Shawn, however, looked like he just wanted to die – maybe of shame, maybe of terror, or maybe just because after being held captive by a monster, a child knows when he’s being exploited. And yesterday, he was – in the most legal, sanitized, huggy-feely, disgraceful way.”
Robert Paul Reyes adds, “Disregarding the advice of child advocacy experts, Oprah asks Shawn’s parents on TV if their son was sexually abused. His parents should have refused to answer the question. In fact, if his parents had any common sense and decency they wouldn’t have subjected their son to a TV interview so soon after his long ordeal.”
Shame on you Oprah Winfrey. Shame on you for participating further in this boys ordeal for ratings and to make a buck.
I know I don’t venture off into politics very often on my blog, but this one just tore at my heart. It makes me so angry and it makes me want to cry.