You may have seen this already, but in case you haven’t… I get the overwhelming sense that child porn hysteria has become a significantly harmful force, so as to likely now impede actual efforts to stop the terror and horror of actual child porn. Stop the madness. When can agencies of authority start an honest conversation about these issues to educate people, so we can try to end exploitation and assault in our lifetimes — instead of this lynch-mob mentality? This is getting out of control. It feels like we’re on the verge of criminalizing childhood, and parenting. And the innocent people, such as the parents victimized in this bizarre charade, are suffering from real mental fallout from the trauma. Think about the wider impact on society. Not good.
(…) Last fall A.J. and Lisa Demaree took a memory stick with family photos to the printing center at the Wal-Mart store in Peoria, Ariz. Some of the photos showed their three young girls, all under 5 years old, partially nude in the bathtub. The Demarees say these were innocent pictures that all families take. But a Wal-Mart employee felt otherwise and contacted the police who agreed that this was a child pornography situation.
Child Protective Services searched the Demaree home and took custody of the children for a month while the state investigated. The watched family videotapes and found a few in which the children were playing unclothed. Lisa was suspended from her school job for a year, and both of their names were placed on the sex offender registry. The couple spent $75,000 on legal bills.
Ultimately, the story has a reasonably happy ending. The Demarees were cleared of any charges and their daughters were returned. They’re angry:
“It took us a long time to take a picture [again],” Lisa told Good Morning America on Monday. “I even worry about them in their bathing suits now, if I get a shot of them in their bathing suits and they’re tilting their heads a certain way or their hips are sticking out a little bit, all I think of is ‘Does someone think that it was posed? Or how is that going to be perceived?’”