Editorial: Sexual harassment: a rising issue

By Kaitlin Barr
November 15, 2007

Sexual harassment is a serious offense that has been extensively covered in the media in recent years. It seems as though we are constantly hearing of different situations happening between teachers and students, older men or women and little children, and even priests and little children.

We are hearing more about these situations now than in the past. It may possibly be because our culture is more open about discussing such crimes than generations in the past. Older generations had more of a “hush hush” mentality when it came to a scandal. Now, it makes for good media and interesting conversation. If it came out 50 years ago that a priest was involved sexually with a little boy or girl, no one would believe it. In recent years, thousands of priests have been accused for things they did years earlier.

When some people hear about older men and women sexually harassing younger, innocent children, they are disgusted and don’t understand their mind-set. Others understand what they are going through because they themselves have specific disabilities occurring in their minds. These people see absolutely nothing wrong with talking to teenagers online, pretending to be 15 or 16 when in reality they are 45 years old.

TV shows have made a lot of money on shows that investigate child predators and catch them in the act. Many documentaries have been created showing the process of older people trying to meet up with younger children, mostly older men trying to meet up with young girls.

Oprah has done many shows about child molestation and has dedicated part of her Web site to catching child molesters. It’s an extremely serious topic that’s being addressed. For most college students, they don’t care about it as much because they themselves do not have children to worry about. Although they don’t have children now, it’s good to get involved before they have kids so that it can be changed in the future, by the time they have children.

Web sites such as Megan’s Law were created to help people living in neighborhoods find out how many child molesters are living around them everyday. If there are sexual predators, parents can take precautions. Even for those who don’t have families right now, Megan’s Law is extremely interesting to look at because it shows your neighborhood and area as well as how many convicted felons live around you everyday.

Companies should be more careful when interviewing and hiring people for jobs, especially in jobs that would entail being around children such as teachers, nurses, bus drivers, coaches of sports, etc.

A rising issue in the media lately, child molestation and sexual harassment needs to be addressed, so that our children have a better chance at having safe adults influencing their lives.

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Kaitlin Barr

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