We Need to Stop Worrying All Men Are Pedophiles

Guys who have anything to do with kids are branded creeps: Lenore Skenazy
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2011 8:37 AM CST
"Gripped by pedophile panic, we jump to the very worst, even least likely, conclusion first."   (?VinothChandar)

(Newser) – An Iowa daycare worker is banned from changing kids' diapers, or even being present when others are doing so. A hero grabs two kids out of a smoking minivan moments before its tires erupt into flames then gets attacked by the kids' grandmother. Their problem? They're male. "And so it goes these days," writes Lenore Skenazy for the Wall Street Journal, "when almost any man who has anything to do with a child can find himself suspected of being a creep."

She dubs it "worst-first" thinking: Immediately assuming the worst, even if it's highly unlikely. "Then we congratulate ourselves for being so vigilant." Skenazy runs down other unfortunate effects of this hypervigilance: a warning from the British Musicians' Union that its members not touch kids' fingers, even to reposition them on an instrument; the man who spotted a lost toddler along the road but didn't pick her up for fears he might be considered an abductor—she wandered to a pond and drowned. "We think we're protecting our kids by treating all men as potential predators. But that's not a society that's safe. Just sick."

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