Monday, June 15, 2009

Good News!

I like positive news and it seems that today there is some! The Va'ad of Queens has informed a Pita Shop that a pedophile who plead guilty to molesting a boy that frequented the store, may not return to work and must terminate all ownership in the bakery.

Only VIN commentors will concern themselves about his parnasah prospects in a show of misplaced compassion. VIN commentors never cease to amaze. Some even criticized Von Brunn's son for not having proper kibud av. My word! Of course, nothing is new under the sun as misplaced compassion is a theme we are introduced to as a people in Tanach.

I think the rest of us can just smile about the news and this show of moral clarity and commonsense. Let's hope this is a sign of good things to come.


A Living Nadneyda said...

At the risk of being completely misunderstood...

It is good Isaac Ebstein was caught. It is good his freedom is being limited, because he cannot control himself.

Pedophilia is a mental disease, often with a genetic basis. As with alcoholics, a pedophile remains a pedophile, forever. As with alcoholics, it is not just a matter of "controlling yourself." Either he succeeds - through cognitive therapy, behavior modification, or some other therapeutic intervention - in curtailing his harmful behavior, or he doesn't.

Just as an alcoholic have a right to gainful employment, as long as he is not endangering himself or others (including the business interests of others), a pedophile has a right to gainful employment as long as he is in control of himself and does not harm others. The question is whether he can achieve, and sustain, a state of not harming others.

Taking away his business will not, in itself, solve this problem, and may in fact create more problems; for example, after his year's probation, he could use his unemployed state as an excuse to find work that gives him more access to children than before.

An unemployed pedophile, with no framework and no regular schedule, is worse than a pedophile who is expected to show up to work every day, and whose whereabout and actions are being tracked purposely by those in his surroundings.

That said, of course he has no right in the world to be in a place where he will have unsupervised access to more potential victims.

If this man was caught abusing one child, we can assume that his victim was only one of many. Hopefully it will not be one of many future occurrences, and the counseling he receives will succeed in allowing him to rehabilitate and return to society, without harming others.

Forcing him to leave the setting where he preyed on others is an important step, but taking away his employment per se is not necessarily an ideal solution, in and of itself.

Unknown said...

Kinda weird when it's the bakery around the corner...

Miami Al said...

The cynic in me says cover-up... Requiring him not work there is perfectly reasonable and obvious... he molested a child from that bakery, he shouldn't be allowed to find another one. The idiots at VIN are to be ignored.

However, I question the fast divestment of his ownership. Assuming he is not controlling owners, his ownership is neither a risk to children, nor of immediate concern. Presuming the victims will seek restitution from this criminal, his ownership stake in the business is probably his most collectable asset. By requiring him to divest it now, someone will scoop it up cheaply, denying his victim fair compensation. Further, shares in a business are hard to hide, cash is easy to hide in assets protected from bankruptcy and lawsuits (retirement accounts, annuities, off shore accounts, etc.).

If the Vaad was interested in protecting children AND getting this pedophile away, they would demand that his shares be held in escrow for some period of time to allow the victim to seek compensation and a receivership for the pedophile's share of the business.

The Vaad demanding immediate divestment instead of demanding some form of protection for the victim (remember, the victim was "befriended" at the bakery, which would make the entire business liable, not just the perpetrator) tells me that the Vaad is either more concerned with appearances than protecting children or is looking to cover things up in the books.

A lawsuit would require a valuation of the shares... which would require a deposition and auditing of the books. A quick sale of the shares for a nominal fee keeps the bakery out of the lawsuit... and people out of looking at the books and seeing whatever the Vaad wants kept secret.