The Instigator
Atrag
Pro (for)
Winning
3 Points
The Contender
spankme
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Pedophiles that look at abusive images of children should not recieve lengthy jail sentences.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Atrag
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/26/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 956 times Debate No: 37046
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)

 

Atrag

Pro

People that get pleasure from the abuse of children are particular detestable group. However, how disgusting someone's behaviour is to the public should not be the basis for the severity of their punishment. However, in the USA that people serve over 10 years in prison due to possession of such images.
spankme

Con

I am responding as to whether they should be greatly penalized for looking at these images, not as to whether or not they should still be alive to look at these images, to which I would have to say no.

These images are of themselves illegal, as they record an illegal act on an innocent human being, and no one should see them. But allowing a pedophile to see them is like throwing gasoline on a fire. Let them be scared to death of being caught looking at them. Let the child in the images and their family have their justice on someone who enjoyed his/her suffering and was punished severely.

I don't wish to be over-emotional, though of course it is hard on a topic like this. I maintain though that pedophiles will never change, can never be cured. They must be watched, and punished more severely than others for things that could lead them to commit another despicable crime.
Debate Round No. 1
Atrag

Pro

I thank my opponent for accepting the debate.

"These images are of themselves illegal, as they record an illegal act on an innocent human being, and no one should see them"

It is true that an image of someone being sexual abused is an image that should be kept private. This is why we punish those people that distribute the image. However, this is not about those that distribute those images and breach of privacy in that act. Even if this were to be a reason to punish someone who possesses these private images, it would not be proportionate for someone to be sentenced for years for what amounts to an, albeit it serious, invasion of privacy.

"But allowing a pedophile to see them is like throwing gasoline on a fire. Let them be scared to death of being caught looking at them. Let the child in the images and their family have their justice on someone who enjoyed his/her suffering and was punished severely."

Firstly, I am not arguing that it should be legalised but that length jail sentences are disproportionate. Secondly, the viewpoint expressed seems to suggest that my opponents sense of justice emanates from the 'disgust' response that I mentioned in my first argument. Stating that we are not punishing the offender because the act of possession has damaged the victim but rather because of the pleasure the offender takes in it. What if a paedophile looks at a child on the street and than sexual gratifies themselves at the thought of abusing that child? Even if one argues yes to this, does such a person deserve more than 10 years imprisonment for the private expression of that desire. There should be a freedom of conscience even if that conscience is universally recognised as evil.

"I maintain though that pedophiles will never change, can never be cured. They must be watched, and punished more severely than others for things that could lead them to commit another despicable crime."

I suppose you mean another despicable act of gratifying themselves to a child's abuse. There is no causation between the person viewing the images and the abuse of the child in the image significant enough that make the offender sufficiently culpable to warrant giving them a long custodial sentence. We should not punish people merely for a propensity to commit an act.
spankme

Con

"It is true that an image of someone being sexual abused is an image that should be kept private."

I feel that they should not be kept private, but destroyed. My opponent is right in pointing out that disgust towards these images, as well as those who abuse children, affords me little sympathy. But it is not only disgust that makes me feel that the punishment for viewing these images should be severe for a pedophile. I believe that someone who is a threat to society should be denied anything that will inspire them to do it again. The higher the punishment, the less likely they will be to seek these images out.

"'I maintain though that pedophiles will never change, can never be cured. They must be watched, and punished more severely than others for things that could lead them to commit another despicable crime.'

I suppose you mean another despicable act of gratifying themselves to a child's abuse. "

A child's suffering turns a pedophile on - that's what he wants, and he can't change anymore than you or I can change what does it for us. But when a pedophile gets turned on by child pornography, he needs a release in the real world sooner or later, and the more images he sees, the sooner he will seek out that release. Strict punishment against them seeing these images is probably doing them as much of a favor as it is society. It slows down their urge to do it again, thus getting another conviction, and saves some innocent kid their childhood - perhaps their whole life. It is a crime that warrants higher levels of prevention than most any other. If it can be prevented by someone being afraid to go to jail for even thinking about it, then so be it.
Debate Round No. 2
Atrag

Pro

In the first paragraph my opponent admits that a desire to punishment paedophiles highly for the crime of possessing decision imaging motivates him. It states that as well as this the punishment should be high to prevent them doing it again. My opponent has yet to identify a anything in the act of viewing the abuse of children as in any way different from masturbation to the thought of abusing a child (the latter not being a crime and the forming being a crime that often attracts a sentence of over 10 years imprisonment). If we were to punish being for masturbating to the thought of abusing children this would also dissuade them from doing it again. However, I continue to expand the argument that as neither the masturbator or the viewer causes any then neither should demand a lengthy jail sentence that would dissuade them from doing it again. A high sentence to dissuade the recurrence of a disgusting act isn't justification enough.

" slows down their urge to do it again, thus getting another conviction, and saves some innocent kid their childhood - perhaps their whole life."

Note that the link between viewing sexual imagery and actually committed the acts viewed in this sexual imagery is yet unsubstantiated in this debate. There is no de facto link.
spankme

Con

It is true that there is no concrete link between watching children being abused and actually committing the act, as I was surprised to learn when researching my reply. I would have thought it fairly obvious. However, every study I found on this could not conclude otherwise either, meaning, that there was no connection at all between child porn and abuse. The most common reason for that, it was said, is the people in charge of the study have to wonder if the pedophile is lying. But why would he lie? Why would he lie about when he last watched child porn and how often, and whether or not it turned him on to the point he had to play out the fantasy? Why would he not be forthcoming on the specifics of his ultimate shame?

Quotes from the Kristen Carlson of the Michigan Law Review:

...psychological studies suggest a strong correlation between those who seek out child pornography and those who would be diagnosed as pedophiles. Studies also suggest that most pedophiles are unable to control their strong sexual urges. They are likely to seek out sexual relationships with children if they are not incapacitated in some way...Recent research has suggested that child pornography offenses have brought child molesters into the criminal justice system that otherwise would have gone undetected....(1)

Now does child pornography cause someone to molest a child? Of course not, no more than a gun causes someone to shoot people. But people with violent histories can't have guns, and neither should child molesters have access to this material.

(1) http://www.michiganlawreview.org...
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by funwiththoughts 4 years ago
funwiththoughts
@SitaraPorDios: Not necessarily, you can use animation or have adults playing children. Of course porn using real children shouldn't exist to begin with.
Posted by SitaraPorDios 4 years ago
SitaraPorDios
My argument is that thoughts can turn into actions. If pedophile thinks about children that way, he or she will be a high risk to commit that crime. Also, child sexual abuse is required to make child porn.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 4 years ago
Ragnar
AtragspankmeTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Composure is the main place pro won this, while I agree with killing actual pedophiles (as con suggested), someone in possession of an image probably need not spend 10 years in prison for it (unless it's evidence that connects them to involvement in another crime). Pro's case being in essence 'leave it illegal, just not so severely punished' makes a lot of sense. It's still punishing them, it's still registering them as a danger to the community. Further by con's argument to kill them, that would not be a lengthy jail sentence.