Until Wednesday night, Amazon.com was selling an e-book called The Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure.
The book was self-published by author Phillip Greaves, who says he is not a pedophile, but thinks it is possible to have “loving sexual relationships” with children. As quoted by ABC News, Greaves said he wrote the book “to establish guidelines so that people would behave in a manner that is non-injurious to each other, for one, and, for two, to communicate the fact that these people who are so different in maturation, etc., that when they develop relationships, they use certain principles that regular people, adults, would be well to attend.”
His subsequent comments suggest the author’s true purpose was to make money by being a colossal jerk. Amazon received over 3000 complaints from customers before terminating sale of the e-book. Speaking of these complaints, Greaves said, “I can see where they would come to that kind of conclusion and to a certain extent I wanted that kind of notoriety to affect the book. I wanted it to effect sales.” It didn’t work, since he claims to have sold only one copy. This speaks well of the rest of the human race.
Amazon said it “believes it is censorship not to sell certain books simply because we or others believe their message is objectionable.” That’s not “censorship,” it’s good judgment. Private companies are not obliged to carry any book they don’t want to sell. They are responsible for the decisions they make. Assuming they stock dictionaries, Amazon should crack one open and look up the definition of “censorship.”
This shameful incident comes on the heels of Elizabeth Smart’s testimony against the lunatic who kidnapped her from her bedroom at age 14 and held her captive for nine months of relentless sexual abuse. On the same day, investigators in North Carolina reported finding new evidence in the disappearance of 10-year-old Zahra Baker, who was a bone cancer survivor. A local TV station has sources who say they might have found her remains. They found her prosthetic leg last week. In Michigan, a fourteen-year-old rape victim took her own life, causing charges to be dropped against her accused assailant.
Those are just a few stories from today. Those are just the headlines.
Child safety group Enough Is Enough told Fox News that selling Phillip Greaves’ pedophilia manual “lends the impression that child abuse is normal.” This is exactly right. The adults of the world have a responsibility to the children under their protection. The defense of children is a prerequisite of maturity. Men and women keep predators away from children, and make it clear predatory interests will not be tolerated in the slightest. No one who falters in this duty is truly a man, or a woman.
The modern world is filled with pools of electronic light, surrounded by a vast darkness in which too many children disappear. Communities are thin. People don’t always know much about their neighbors. There are too many places for monsters to hide. Children are surrounded by a confusing storm of data, and seductive whispers can slip past even the most vigilant mothers and fathers. Amazon.com has no business making the situation worse. Hopefully the lone customer who shelled out $4.79 to download Greaves’ wretched book is properly ashamed of themselves.