Friday, May 2, 2014

Denying and Enabling Child Sex Abuse

As abuse advocates, we receive calls and emails from survivors that we keep confidential. That confidentiality is very important and must be respected. Survivors of abuse have suffered much, and in no way would we ever want to cause further harm by abusing the trust instilled in us as they seek to heal.

Communications, however, from people criticizing my efforts to shine the light of truth on child sex abuse, I do not feel should be afforded the same level of confidentiality. Many times, it is these communications, that can serve to shine the light of truth even more, without the criticizing party's intent to do so. Last summer, I received an email from an anonymous source criticizing me at length for my post on a former Second Baptist Church of Houston minister, Eddie Struble, containing reports from 2 police departments detailing allegations of stalking a minor and "criminal solicitation of a child."

SNAP held a media event about 2 former Second Baptist Houston ministers in January, both accused of child sex crimes, Chad Foster and Eddie Struble.
SNAP is worried about more possible victims of two former Second Baptist ministers, both accused of crimes.
The first is Chad Foster, a young minister who was sentenced in April to five years in prison after he pleaded guilty to raping a 16-year-old girl in 2011 and soliciting another teen online.
The second is Eddie Struble, a music minister who faces no civil or criminal charges but is the subject of a Spring Valley police report accusing him of stalking a boy in 2009.
SNAP says that Struble abused a boy (roughly from ages 14-17) who Struble met at the church.
Struble now helps lead worship at Birchman Baptist church in Fort Worth, TX. He has also taught private voice lessons and worked as a vocal coach at Hits Theatre in Houston.
Struble plays an active role in Southern Baptist Convention events. He was the worship leader for the NACBA (National Association of Church Business Administration) National Conference Planning Team in Houston in 2012
Last July, he led a session on “saving ministry dollars” at NACBA conference in Charlotte. 
SNAP believes that church officials have a moral and civic duty, when confronted with proof or credible allegations of wrongdoing, to aggressively seek out victims, witnesses and whistleblowers and beg them to call police and prosecute so that those who commit or conceal crimes – especially against children – will be charged, convicted and jailed which prevents future crimes and cover ups.
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I'll highlight the most startling admission in that email:
Based on rumors and the fact that he's a terrible role model, I wouldn't let my kids be alone with him. But I can't say with any reasonable certainty that he is a predator.
When it comes to kids, we believe that we should we always err on the side of caution. This week an article by Michael Reagan and Jerome Elam on Fox News highlights "The Staggering Cost of Silence: child abuse victims and stolen innocence."
The CDC estimates that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys are sexually abused before the age of 18.
According to the Journal for the American Medical Association only 1 in 20 cases of child abuse are reported. 
Child sex abuse fact sheet

CNN highlights child abuse awareness month:
Too many parents also think strangers are the biggest threat to their children, and so if they teach their kids about stranger danger, they're protected. But 93% of the time in sexual abuse cases, the perpetrator is not a stranger but someone the child knows, according to the Rape and Abuse Crisis Center.
 Mandatory reporting:
All 50 states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands have laws and policies that specify procedures for making and responding to reports of suspected child abuse or neglect. Mandated reporters are required by most States to make an immediate report when they suspect or know of abusive or neglectful situations.
Texas is a state in which it is mandatory for any citizen to report known or suspected cases of child abuse. Texas is also a state in which it is a crime for clergy to have sexual relations with a congregant.

The Wartburg Watch- Bikers vs. Neo-Calvinist Leaders: The Gospel and Child Sex Abuse
The very first part in healing is shattering the silence.

3 comments:

New BBC Open Forum said...

Based on rumors and the fact that he's a terrible role model, I wouldn't let my kids be alone with him. But I can't say with any reasonable certainty that he is a predator.

So am I to understand what this person is saying is he wouldn't let his precious children be alone with ES, but it's okay for other people's kids to be alone with him because he can't prove he's a predator?

Reminds me of the former Bellevue staff member who was quoted as saying, "Everyone knew he was a pedophile, but no one was willing to report him to the police." (This was pre-Steve Gaines, so we can't lay this one at his feet.)

Excuse me while I go bang my head against a large door somewhere.

New BBC Open Forum said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
New BBC Open Forum said...

And let me just add this... if people were accusing me of the egregious things ES has been accused of, I would be protesting my innocence from the rooftops! I would publicly call out the people who filed police reports, and I'd name names and demand they provide proof.

Instead we just see the occasional dig at "bloggers" and "unjust criticism" and a handful of defenders bemoaning the "sick, twisted thinking" that's been dealt poor widdle Eddie and his family by his accusers. I don't recall ever hearing anyone criticize his family. I consider his children victims as well... not in the physical sense (I pray), but their father's actions have victimized them indirectly nevertheless.