On March 14, 2008, ABC's 20/20, a Disney owned company, aired a show challenging age of consent laws. To the dismay and shock of child advocates and Anti-pedophile bloggers and writers (a term coined for those who expose online sex offenders, predators and pedophiles), it was disproportionately favorable to the plight of sex offenders. The show featured a segment called "Vigilante Justice" in which they interviewed a child advocate who goes by the name "Petra Luna". The child advocate was clearly shown to be the antagonist as opposed to the sex offender(s), who were presented as the protagonists and victims.
Credible child advocates (as opposed to registered sex offenders claiming to be child advocates, whose offenses range from molesting preschoolers to teenagers) are gravely disappointed in the position ABC's 20/20 decided to take. Even more disappointing is the fact that ABC is owned by Disney.
Parents might be caught off guard and falsely assume that Disney would take a more child centered position on sexual abuse.
While many reasonable people might support the pretense of 20/20's questioning Romeo and Juliet laws, which are "offenses" that often refer to younger teens "hooking up" with older teens or offenses with minimal age gaps, the show was surprisingly sympathetic to the sex offender, especially in their "Vigilante Justice" segment. Speaking on behalf of many child advocates and parents, we believe 20/20 mislead viewers by portraying the United States National Sex Offender Registry as made up of a significant amount of Romeo and Juliet affairs by conjecture only.
Truth is, nobody really knows how many Romeo and Juliet affairs actually make it to the registry. Most Romeo and Juliet affairs are often reported by angry parents and the vast majority of affairs are never reported the police at all. Many states are already making amendments to such laws to change status for Romeo and Juliet crimes, such as Florida.
For example: Underage sex is still a crime in Florida, but the law which went into effect in July allows a judge to remove the sex offender designation in certain cases. The victim in the case must be between 14 and 17, a willing participant in the sexual activity and no more than four years younger than the offender. The offense must be the only sex crime on the offender's record.
The woman who was presented as a victim of "vigilanti's" in 20/20's Age of Consent segment is a notorious sex offender activist and advocate and is shown here, in the video link below.
It has been rumored that NBC's show "To Catch a Predator" has long been the nemesis of ABC's 20/20 in a tumultuous ratings war.
The reason child advocacy volunteers are most concerned with 20/20's support of sex offenders is obvious, but we also think 20/20 was sorely remiss in not disclosing Jan Kruska's sex offender advocacy work and the dangers of lowering age of consent laws to tweens or even younger.
John Stossel, the host of the 20/20's "Age of Consent" gave his viewers something to think about when he revealed that other countries, Yemen for example, had age of consent laws that started at age 9, but is this suggestion an appropriate battle for Disney and ABC? It strikes me as a conflict of interest, for a company whose target audience is as young as just a few months old and their parents, the segment on "Vigilante Justice" seemed to tread a slippery slope when they seemingly decided to to take sides, sympathizing with a known sex offender advocate and sex offender law reformer.
Interviewee Petra Luna has revealed to us that the producers of 20/20 and John Stossel were made aware of Jan Kruska's website, http://www.operationawareness.com and her general motives. It doesn't take much research or reading on her site to start questioning whether or not she has a child's best interest in mind, the arguments and anger toward the parents of abused children and the laws that were designed to protect them go much further than a scorned offender.
Sex offender advocates work by grooming the public in much the same way that they groom children. They slowly introduce ideas and use deception to present their cause as synonymous with civil rights movements such as gay rights or minority rights. Many sex offender advocates, especially those actively involved in lobbying for change and have organized via the web, believe that child/adult (age of child unrestricted), is a matter of civil rights for both the adult and the child.
They often present their advocacy as:
* Fighting for children's rights They believe that it's a child's RIGHT (sometimes as young as infancy) to have sex with an adult
* That child protection laws and the sex offender registry don't work They present junk science to decriminalize sex offenses against minors and claim that the registry and child protection laws only make pedophiles and sex offenders more secretive and resourceful even though they have no evidence to support this
* That is the fault of the child or the parents if a child is molested Many sex offender reformers claim that if a child falls into the hands of a predator it is because the parent was a bad parent or actually blames the child as the instigator of sex, regardless of their age. They want you to take their word for it without actually speaking to the victim themselves
Further incriminating 20/20 are their web forums and public discussions on the Age of Consent (located on the 20/20 website) where they decided to selectively delete posts by true child advocates (Anit-pedophile volunteers) and leave up of the comments of sex offense reformers and pedophile activists. One has to ask, what would be their motive in doing this? While sex offender reformers/activists seek to abolish laws against tween/teen/adult sex and decriminalize such behavior; undoubtedly they see 20/20's age of consent challenge as a major victory. It may behoove Disney and ABC to educate themselves on why these laws are important to begin with. The fact is, these laws are there to protect children from predators and adults, not necessarily consensual teenage relationships. One must ask, if 19 year olds are legally able to have sex with 12 year olds, then how could justice ever be served when a 50 year old grooms and takes advantage of those same 12 year olds?
Is this the message Disney is willing to risk their reputation on? Is this a battle Disney chooses? Is Disney going to remain silent while it's affiliate company presents a very bias and quite frankly, pro-sex offender and pro-pedophile message? Are parents willing to negotiate with sex offenders so that they offenders are granted greater access to children as young as 9 as John Stossel presents for discussion?
Is Disney willing to take on this pro sex offender activism? Laws must close loop holes for predators while not criminalizing teenage sex. A line must be drawn somewhere and our hope is that Disney and ABC would refuse to contribute to blurring that line of consent and puberty as the right time to have sex. As one of John Stossel's guests suggested - nowadays 10 year olds can reach puberty, suggesting that they're biologically ready for sex. This is a controversial statement and one that is extremely dangerous for children. Does ABC and Disney really support pushing this envelope and if not, why aren't they presenting the dangers of lowering the age of consent as well and presenting the dangers of suggesting the validity of such controversial laws?
Our plea: Parents, educators, and child advocates alike, please, write Disney today and condemn their presenting sex offender advocates as victims and advocating the lowering of age of consent laws. This kind of publicity gives credibility to all offenders and encourages and supports child molesters, knowingly or unknowingly. This kind of publicity is what sex offenders, even those violent in nature and those with much wider age gaps, perceive as a monumental victory.
Please support child advocates who wish to keep children safe from sexual abuse -- children of ALL ages. Even 15 year olds deserve the right to be protected under the law, because if we're going to allow children consent at the point of puberty, whose going to protect them when an adult molester claims that the child consented? Where exactly do we draw the line?
Parents must ask themselves, are we willing to negotiate with a 12 year old who has likely reached puberty or even negotiate with our 15 year olds? If it is legal for a 19 year old to have sex with a 14 year old, then why not a 60 year old having sex with a 13 year old? We promote as a general rule -- all minors deserve to have the laws err on the side of protecting them from sexual abuse.
Please stand up for children across the country, across the world. If you won't, who will? Certainly not the people who think that there is nothing wrong with child/adult sex. Disney/ABC can be reached via email at: