The Czech Republic as a Paedophile Paradise

2. 9. 2009 / Věra Říhová

Sexologists have filed a study on the sexual behaviour of Czechs, which shows that today's younger generation is less promiscuous than their parents` generation and that they are not rushing into their first sexual experience. The results of the study were revealed on television and in the press. At first glance the study looks good for Czechs, even sexologist Petr Weiss is speaking about a sexual counter-revolution amongst young people.

A Czech version of this article is HERE

I would like to dwell on the statistics on rape and sexual abuse of children. The study shows that 6% of women have been raped once, and 5% more than once - most often by their own husband or partner. 7% of women and 3% of men were sexually abused as children. That's 528,820 Czech citizens (I have calculated this using the population statistics). Approximately one in twenty people were sexually abused as children, which is a very high number.

Why is the Czech Republic labelled a "Paedophile's Paradise"? That definitely doesn't mean that all Czechs are paedophiles. I think that the reasons behind it are the poor criminal investigation methods and the very low punishments, or more often offenders going unpunished. In the Czech Republic it is still believed that women are here to serve men, especially the older generation still accept the ownership of women as property. The rights of young children are totally neglected or even disregarded. Children are their parents` property and their rights stay silently on paper. Home Secretary Ivan Langer resolutely denied there are problems with child abuse in the Czech Republic and, with a few exceptions, no one is interested in child cruelty or abuse.

First let's say something about the established methods of criminal investigation. As long as the child or its legal representative finds the courage to report rape or sexual abuse to the police it is precisely them who becomes the victim of the thoughtless machinery of the investigation. The abused child must tell their story directly to the police; they must describe a traumatic experience in detail, often still in shock from the brutality, with unsubsiding pains, the feeling of humiliation and psychological dirt. They must undergo a medical examination and psychological tests of truthfulness. The investigative method is built on being protracted, and the victim is between individual investigations dependent on the cooperation of the culprit, who has enough time to brainwash their victim using threats and blackmail. The investigation doesn't detain the accused to stop them influencing the witness, as happens with economic offences.

The examination of a little girl is often entrusted to male police officers and psychologists, even though she is afraid of men and it makes it difficult for her to speak at all, but that doesn't interest anyone. She is often pressured to admit that she did it herself and that she falsely accused the offender, and this includes pre-school children. She must face allusions, often very vulgar, to prostitution; she must face the accusation that she is the bad one. It's no wonder that only a mature and very strong person manages to withstand the pressure of the offender, the methods of investigation and still manage to go through the psychological investigation. And the offender? As long as they don't get frightened and don't admit anything, the majority are fine, even when there's clear evidence. I know what I'm talking about -- I was involved in the investigation into the sexual abuse of a four-year-old girl. It is disgusting and repulsive. Retired police officer, Miloslav Dočekal, spoke openly about the problem on Ms Jílková's television programme 'Máte slovo`(Have your say). The judicial sentences, when they are actually given, are ridiculously low. These methods protect the offender from the victim and make the Czech Republic into a Paedophile's Paradise.

The attitude of our society is the result of the unsatisfactory knowledge of sexual problems amongst the population. The aforementioned study shows that young people today are still learning about sex mainly from their friends. They draw from magazines, from the distorted attitude of the media with its cult of naked women and sexist men, from adverts and myths, and from the internet. Sex education in schools is disappointing. In most cases we cannot rely on education in the family because most parents understand sexuality as an instinctive experience or a marital duty. From personal experience in consulting with people I can confirm that, for example, the attitude to the hymen is completely erroneous. The purity of the Christian virgin constantly blurs our thoughts and we totally don't realise that the hymen is a girl's protection against infection, the protection of the healthy development of her sexual organs and of her future fertility, the protection of her psychological development as a women and a mother. A lot of people consider the hymen as an unnecessary piece of skin, much like the pointless appendix. The only protection that we recognise, is protection against venereal disease.

Virginity is not divine morality and for a long time we've not needed it for the purposes of recognising the paternity of a legitimate child. It's a woman's right, it's a human right. The hymen is a part of a woman's body and only she has the right to decide about losing her virginity, when she is able to make a responsible decision. Until that time comes, it is our duty to protect the girl. I don't understand why people in the Czech Republic maintain the repulsive opinion that losing your virginity is an easy and harmless injury, just like a pin prick. Most men totally don't understand why women make such a big deal of it. Even where little girls are concerned a lot of people still think that losing your virginity heals like a scratch on your hand. Unfortunately even some women think this. People deny the link between the hymen with a women's psyche and consider it being overprotective. The police investigate sexual abuse as a violation of the law which determines the age of consent, and at the most a moral danger of a child's upbringing. The courts treat it the same. No one thinks to prosecute the culprit for the offence of grievous bodily harm with lifelong consequences, whether they're physical or psychological, the possibility that the woman will be infertile or get cervical cancer. These are all possible consequences of losing your virginity too soon and the offender exposes the little girl to all these risks. No one thinks to call the rape of a child terrorist torture. Let's say in no uncertain terms that for a child rape is an instrument of terror and torture from which they cannot defend themselves by any means. Even girls in early puberty, who are physically mature early, are not capable of making an independent responsible decision. Maybe fixing high amounts of compensation for the damage to the victim's health would help, especially in the case of treating illnesses caused by the abuse, or paying directly for following treatment.

The 'Convention on children's rights`, which was ratified by the Czech and Slovak Federal Republic on 7th January 1991 and came into effect on 6th February 1991, amongst other things says:

"16.1: No child should be exposed to wilful interference into their private life, family, home or correspondence or unlawful attacks on their honour or reputation"

"16.2: A child has the right to legal protection from such interferences and attacks"

Is the Czech Republic really not able to protect the most defenceless from perverted individuals?

Many people see the rape of a woman with the feeling that most likely she was asking for trouble with provocative behaviour or by denying her man his rights. Especially with teenage girls some think that physical maturity gives the right to sexual self-realisation and they point out the lower age of consent in other countries. We don't even manage to look at child abuse as something horribly disgusting, primitively animal, something suitable for illiterate barbarians, totally incompatible with an intelligent society. I still remember the internet debates around the case of Bohumil Kulínský, a choir master [who was accused of serially sexually abusing the young female members of his choir], and other well-known cases in the media, that are still accesible today on websites. We are constantly defending a man's right to sexual self-realisation and crushing a woman's right to not have her own body violated without her permission. Many consider it to be women's primeval duty to be sexually obliging. We are even tolerant to pornography, which we can randomly have a look at at any age in magazines, on television and on the internet. We consider it as free self-realisation of a person, same as we do drugs, jukeboxes, mafia groups terrorising citizens. We consider it all a part of democracy. Perhaps we wouldn't be very surprised if someone found the courage to order compulsory controls on regular virginity examinations performed yearly by a paediatrician, starting with girls when they begin the first year of primary school.

There should be adequately high penalties for child abuse -- children's bodies should be a total taboo in a civilised society. Not even animals rape their own young, so what caused people to do it? We should demand absolute sexual abstinence towards underage children, and when I say children, I mean boys as much as girls. According to research the sexual abuse of boys is surprisingly high. Tolerance is misguided even on account of keeping things quiet in the family, it's always a case of protecting the culprit from the child, and the abused child senses it very well. Secret-keeping in the family circle is assisting the crime and it turns the family members into accomplices. An adult is fully responsible for themselves and should be given the maximum punishment for destroying their victims` lives.

I am speaking here mainly about men, but I must not forget about abusive women. I will never understand how a mother can allow a man to sexually abuse her child. Such cases make me want to vomit. It's the same whether she is coerced into it by her partner or if she does it of her own free will. She should get the maximum punishment for such behaviour, for harm to the body and soul, because she abused a child that is biologically linked to her and her behaviour is especially contemptuous. For me, as a women and a mother, it is as digusting as the torture of prisoners, because whatever you call the powerless "suffering" and endurance of pain without medical treatment and without the possibility of complaining, the child becomes a prisoner of the slaves in the hands of a violent parent without having done anything to bring this situation on themselves. It is difficult for such a child to grow up into a self-assured, free thinking person. Yet we still haven't managed to act decisively against the brutality and sadism of some parents, for society as a whole to condemn violence and abuse. Unfortunately it's not only human cowardice that makes us indifferent, still using methods that punish the complainer instead of the offender. There is also the opinion that parents can do what they like with their own children.

We can't even crush paedophilic pornography, which is spreading throughout the world. If ever a seller of child pornography is brought to trial, they are tried for circulating and selling illegal goods. No one takes an interest in the children being abused in the photos or films. There are no police victim records that could develop into a search for the authors of the films and photographs, on the basis of which the confiscated material could be used as the evidential weight lacking during the investigation of their cases. Or perhaps someone thinks that the abused child or their legal representative can go to the offender and ask about his creation so they have evidence for the prosecution. Child pornography is filmed and photographed in the Czech Republic -- we can take the example of the confiscated paedophilic pornography in Ostrava. And on the internet it is still cheerfully being sold, being sold in stock catalogues. It's enough to put the right word into a search engine, for example 'deflowering`, and you can get a free DVD. Does it bother anyone how old the girls in the film are?

Translated by Hannah Dent


Obsah vydání | Pátek 26.2. 2010