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View Full Version : What do you think of this?? What you write vs. your job



Writing Jedi
10-13-2011, 07:46 AM
Just wondering about opinions on this. I think as important as it is to be free to write whatever we want to without judgment...it is also creepy in this case.

The end result, as per a news story the next day, was that he resigned.

I'm interested in the opinions of other writers! Is this a red flag, or merely a writer using his imagination?

http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1064763

D.M.Drake
10-13-2011, 08:02 AM
If students came forward saying he violated them I'd be angry. Other than that who cares? I was reading Danielle Steel books at 12 and I am not a deviant and I knew the facts from the fiction. He has the right to dream or imagine (It's not my place to judge) anything he wishes so long as he never practiced what he wrote out loud. I write murder in nearly every book, but I don't plan to go on a killing spree.
That's just my opinion though.

Susan Littlefield
10-13-2011, 08:03 AM
The title of the article certainly makes it sound creepy, especially since he's a teacher. But, my question is this: is the book really soft porn?

The Sexteens websit (http://www.sexteen4u.com/)e says it's a novel that deals with the issues teens face today.

I don't know, I personally would want to find out more before making any kind of judgement about the book.

Shadow_Ferret
10-13-2011, 08:03 AM
Not just his imagination, I'm thinking life is imitating art in this case. Not saying he's done it, I'm saying he's gathering story ideas from his position on that board.

But isn't teen (heck, 9th graders are still children in my book) porn illegal?

leahzero
10-13-2011, 03:14 PM
But isn't teen (heck, 9th graders are still children in my book) porn illegal?

Of course, but this isn't porn. It's fiction.

Is it troubling? Yes. I understand how parents would be uncomfortable with this teacher and ask for an explanation, even an investigation into his private life. But that is a little scary, too. Writing is the realm of the imagination. There are many, many YA books out there that deal with underage sex, rape, molestation by adults, abuse, etc. Should all writers on such topics have their private lives scrutinized if they work with children? Why don't crime writers in law enforcement face that kind of scrutiny?

Our culture is especially sensitive to issues of child abuse. Sometimes that sensitivity creates false positives and sees wrongdoing where there is none. I'm not defending this teacher's work (wouldn't judge until I'd read it), but on principle, writing fiction about topics like underage sex and pedophilia should not cast the writer under aspersion. The book should be read and evaluated on its own, irrespective of the author. If it portrays sexual abuse in an approving manner, then scrutiny of the author, especially if the author works with children, is fair. But it's important not to let concern for children's welfare turn into a witch hunt.

quicklime
10-13-2011, 04:31 PM
I'm not exactly happy with the notion of a witch-hunt into his past, but what you do in your free time is sometimes relevant to your job--if folks found out the head of the JADL was spending his free time writing a sequel to Mein Kampf, I don't think anyone would be shocked at him getting into some trouble. Religious figures routinely get tossed under the bus for after-work extracurriculars, and a judge who wrote lurid stories that seemed to glorify rape would also probably find some trouble for it. A judge who patronized hookers almost certainly would, when outed. Your home life is your home life, but some things can be so 100% in opposition to your work life that they leave doubts about how you can perform your work.

FWIW, I'm not really judging the book at all, just pointing out it was probably a bad mix with his current work, and one or the other should have perhaps been altered, or he was running a certain risk he should have accepted. Less a "is this right" than a "shouldn't he have seen this coming?"

Phaeal
10-13-2011, 05:49 PM
Many employment contracts allow the employer to fire an employee for immoral behavior off the job. Defining "immoral behavior" is the hard part.

I'd say publishing a book like this doesn't prove the author is a criminal, but it does show a lack of professional judgment that would deeply concern me.

Stacia Kane
10-13-2011, 06:14 PM
Of course without having read the book it's impossible to say with certainty that it's a problem. But for the head of a disciplinary committee dealing with inappropriate teacher-student interactions to write a book where all of the male characters are sexual harassers, and the female students seem to all be whores, and when a female student is groped it's played off like she's making a big deal over nothing, especially given what the article says about the way the committee seems more and more to be protecting bad teachers...it looks like a big old red flag to me. I'd love to know what "peer pressure" it's supposed to be helping teenagers learn to avoid.

And as Phael said, if nothing else it shows a stunning lack of professional judgment.

Were this guy head of anything at my daughters' school, I'd be wanting to read this book, and I have a feeling I'd be wanting him and his erection and his high-school-girl-fantasies well away from my children. Because it certainly sounds/looks as if he's a teenage boy in a pervert teacher's body, and like he considers teenage girls to be little more than sexual playthings, and just reading the article made me feel ill.

Again, yes, it's possible the article is misrepresenting the book. But if it isn't, that guy needs to not have a position of responsibility over young people ever again.

Jamesaritchie
10-13-2011, 08:20 PM
I wouldn't want him teaching my kids. The choices we make come with consequences. He made his choices, and he wasn't very bright to think there wouldn't be consequences.

Jamesaritchie
10-13-2011, 08:23 PM
Of course, but this isn't porn. It's fiction.


.

Most of the written porn out there is fiction. This has been true for centuries. Wherever did you get the idea that porn and fiction couldn't be the same thing? Do you think only photos are porn?

LJD
10-13-2011, 08:33 PM
this was in current events last week:
http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=226586

anyways, this is a pretty extreme case. nothing like Judy Mays, who taught high school English and writes for Ellora's Cave under a penname. Having her teach kids doesn't bother me one bit, but this guy is different.

Later news articles suggest that the Ontario College of Teachers has been quite lenient in dealing with teachers who behave inappropriately with students (eg. 1 mth suspensions for some pretty bad behaviour), and the National Post suggested he should have resigned for these reasons anyways.

NeuroFizz
10-14-2011, 12:18 AM
Whether we like it or not, some professions that involve direct or indirect interaction with children require a greater degree of public scrutiny and approval. Of course this guy has the right to have personal activities in his private time, but like others have said, his chosen subject matter is going to raise questions about his role in dealing with children or with the people who teach children. When the public shucks up tax money to pay teachers, those teachers are subject to greater scrutiny for their life's activities (fair or not fair). And while I will defend the rights of these people to have their private interests, I can't condone it when they stretch those interests into areas of questionable taste or suspicion-triggering actions. It can hurt the entire profession. We can argue artistic rights all we want, but public confidence in the education system and its employees is something that taxpayers will require.

And possibly he could have partially defused some of the criticism by making the characters 18 years old instead of 16 years old, which puts a very different legal spin on the behavior of those characters. I'm not naive enough to think 16 year-olds don't do that kind of stuff, but if the works of this author involve detailed description of the sexual adventures of underage teens, he has stepped into some rather ragged territory.

AlwaysJuly
10-14-2011, 12:34 AM
You know, it's hard for me to judge the book without reading it (and from the lines quoted, I don't care to, thanks) but I am quite sure of one thing.

You have to be a damn idiot to put a story like that out there given his day job. Fair or not, some actions are going to have consequences, and the consequences for this one are hardly surprising given the contents of this novel.

Or the cover art, alone.

skylark
10-14-2011, 12:52 AM
I'm torn. On one hand, I think it's pretty dreadful if a teacher can't write adult stories intended for an adult audience.

On the other hand, I don't get the impression that this is really an adult story. And it isn't a teen story either. Okay, I'm basing this on the extracts...but this isn't about adults falling for other adults, or even about teen romance and sex. This is the sort of style of language which is used in adult erotica being applied to 15 year old girls' bodies. That's what makes me uncomfortable here - that this is an adult-style sex fantasy about not very old teens.

I'd be intrigued to know whether the excerpts are biased, because in the article they are all based on the sexiness of young girls. I'd probably find it slightly less disturbing if it presents young men in the same light.

Drake, I'm pretty sure the objects of sexual desire in Danielle Steele aren't children. That, to me, is the issue here, not the fact he's writing stories with sexual desire in.

veinglory
10-14-2011, 12:55 AM
It is the author's goal for the story to be read by teens if you go by the website.

bettielee
10-14-2011, 01:04 AM
I find the whole thing creepy.

And considering he used the word "concupiscence" in a teen book, a little pretentious.

It all strikes me as an older man's fantasy rather than a book meant to "to empower teenagers, to encourage them to be strong and resist or avoid peer pressure."

Paul
10-14-2011, 01:16 AM
concupiscence?

wow.

where'd he get one from? a new word (to me). yippee!

(as re: OP, doenst sound good, but i'd have to read the material as the tone in the article seems a tad hysterical)

skylark
10-14-2011, 01:21 AM
And considering he used the word "concupiscence" in a teen book, a little pretentious.

I have just learnt a new word.

I'm not sure if that says more about the pretentiousness of his language or my sheltered upbringing, given that the target audience for this book is allegedly my daughter.

Paul
10-14-2011, 01:23 AM
I find the whole thing creepy.

And considering he used the word "concupiscence" in a teen book, a little pretentious.

It all strikes me as an older man's fantasy rather than a book meant to "to empower teenagers, to encourage them to be strong and resist or avoid peer pressure."
ha ha. snap - didnt see your post. Some interesting def on the net for it. esp the Catholic Ency def.

as for old man's fantasy, possibly, but i do remember these type of novels, Onward Virgin Soldiers etc back in the day.

Anyway, as i'm notgoing to read the novels, i cant make a judgement

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04208a.htm

In its widest acceptation, concupiscence is any yearning of the soul (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14153a.htm) for good; in its strict and specific acceptation, a desire of the lower appetite (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01656a.htm) contrary to reason. To understand how the sensuous and the rational appetite (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01656a.htm) can be opposed, it should be borne in mind that their natural objects are altogether different. The object of the former is the gratification of the senses; the object of the latter is the good of the entire human (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09580c.htm) nature (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10715a.htm) and consists in the subordination of reason to God (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06608a.htm), its supreme good and ultimate end.

D.M.Drake
10-14-2011, 02:56 AM
I'm torn. On one hand, I think it's pretty dreadful if a teacher can't write adult stories intended for an adult audience.

On the other hand, I don't get the impression that this is really an adult story. And it isn't a teen story either. Okay, I'm basing this on the extracts...but this isn't about adults falling for other adults, or even about teen romance and sex. This is the sort of style of language which is used in adult erotica being applied to 15 year old girls' bodies. That's what makes me uncomfortable here - that this is an adult-style sex fantasy about not very old teens.

I'd be intrigued to know whether the excerpts are biased, because in the article they are all based on the sexiness of young girls. I'd probably find it slightly less disturbing if it presents young men in the same light.

Drake, I'm pretty sure the objects of sexual desire in Danielle Steele aren't children. That, to me, is the issue here, not the fact he's writing stories with sexual desire in.(I am pretty sure some of them are written with child rape and teen aged sex. My point was more that children will read these things, it seems better to make sure they understand it isn't real.)

I would have been very worried if he tried to hide it, say a pen name? Then it would seem he was aware what he was doing wasn't going to be ok. As is I am sure he assumed his imaginative fiction wouldn't be read as if it were a Memoir. Again, I read 'Firefly' by Piers Anthony at the kitchen table during dinner in my Grandmothers home at the tender age of thirteen. No rules to what I read, but I am pretty sure I have not suffered for it. Just as I am sure the teens who read books like this will be fine. Kids want to think their parents don't have sex and parents don't want to think their teen have sex. The more taboo we make it the more thrill kids get from doing it.

Just my two cents.

Susan Littlefield
10-14-2011, 05:07 AM
After further reading of the preamble at their website, I would not want to read the book. It's poorly written and talks all about this secret teen sex society. Believe me, teens do not need any help in discovering their sexuality. Never have.

Why does this teacher think it's his place to deal with teen sexual issues at all? He's a teacher, he supposed to teach that which will help them go on to the next step of work or college. If I had kids, I would have something to say to the school board. I wonder how parents are reacting to his book at that school?

Someone else said here said they would be more worried if he wrote under a pseudonym. I partially agree with this, because then it would appear he was trying to hide. However, that he is own in the open with his name makes it just as bad.

LJD
10-14-2011, 05:25 AM
for me, the issue is not:
1) That he's writing about sex
2) or even that he's writing about teens having sex.
I mean, if Judy Blume were in this role, I don't think I'd be complaining.

It's the way in which he's apparently writing about teens having sex with what sounds like zero sensitivity. I can't know for sure without having read the book (which I have no desire to read); this is just based on the article.

Anna L.
10-14-2011, 07:40 AM
I'd like to point out that a lot of moms write porn of the underaged variety. Twilight porn, Harry Potter porn, anime porn (tons of anime characters are about 15 and this deters no one). Incest is also popular.

Somehow I doubt these moms are perving on their own kids or urging them to try incest...

Shadow_Ferret
10-14-2011, 07:48 AM
I'd like to point out that a lot of moms write porn of the underaged variety.

Really? Can I see actual statistics to back this up?

Rhoda Nightingale
10-14-2011, 09:34 AM
I'd like to point out that a lot of moms write porn of the underaged variety. Twilight porn, Harry Potter porn, anime porn (tons of anime characters are about 15 and this deters no one). Incest is also popular.

Somehow I doubt these moms are perving on their own kids or urging them to try incest...
Smutty fanfiction is its own universe with its own audience, and I don't think it bears any relevence to this article.

This guy strikes me as a creepy perv trying to justify his creepiness by calling it ~~Art~~. "But you can't censor me--it's litrachuh!" I'm not buying it. If he were a writer of adult erotica aimed at adults, that'd be one thing. This sounds like he's self-published his own fantasies of hyper-sexed teens and trying to pass it off as "empowering" so he can justify it.

D.M.Drake
10-14-2011, 10:26 AM
The way I see it is that if a child reads this book and 'blows a teacher for a better grade' there are bigger issues than what this child reads. If any child is uneducated enough to blindly do what a character in a book does... Well, think Twilight, Harry Potter, Narnia, Hunger Games, Naughts & crosses...

I mean the list goes on and on, I am sure every one here can think of some YA books with steamy scenes, nothing is off limits, so long as it's handled with care, and since I have not read the book I don't know what the pages contain.

From a psychologists stand point- (My husband is licensed in the state of Washington) If he was a predator to young girls he would not leave a paper trail. He would hide it and deny any charges. The fact that he wrote and published means even if these are his fantasies he will not act on them.

food for thought :)

Satsya
10-14-2011, 10:49 AM
From a psychologists stand point- (My husband is licensed in the state of Washington) If he was a predator to young girls he would not leave a paper trail. He would hide it and deny any charges. The fact that he wrote and published means even if these are his fantasies he will not act on them.

When it comes to psychology, one conclusion never fits all.

How open someone is about their habits may have more to do with how private (or public) a person is rather than the nature of their habits.

D.M.Drake
10-14-2011, 10:58 AM
When it comes to psychology, one conclusion never fits all.

How open someone is about their habits may have more to do with how private (or public) a person is rather than the nature of their habits.

The science of psychology is proven, profiling helps spot and catch criminals. A persons habits are very much dictated by personality. Part of the reason you have to pass a psych evaluation to be a cop or join the military is so they can screen for dangerous traits.

Sure it isn't 100%, but it is very accurate.

If everyone was an exception there would be no rule. :)

Satsya
10-14-2011, 11:28 AM
The science of psychology is proven, profiling helps spot and catch criminals. A persons habits are very much dictated by personality. Part of the reason you have to pass a psych evaluation to be a cop or join the military is so they can screen for dangerous traits.

Sure it isn't 100%, but it is very accurate.

If everyone was an exception there would be no rule. :)

The science of psychology is very much not a concrete thing. If people were that easy to understand, crime and psychological disorders would be nearly a thing of the past. Criminal profiling can even be detrimental to a case, if the investigator leaps to the "obvious" assumption without taking time to review all of the facts in detail.

The psych evaluations you mention are there to weed out some of the worst of the bunch -- that is all.

D.M.Drake
10-14-2011, 11:58 AM
The science of psychology is very much not a concrete thing. If people were that easy to understand, crime and psychological disorders would be nearly a thing of the past.

I am unsure how understanding a personality type would make them cease to be a problem. Understanding them is one thing, medical science to fix or reverse them is another thing entirely. We understand cancer, and AIDS, but we lack the skills to fix them.

Criminal profiling can even be detrimental to a case, if the investigator leaps to the "obvious" assumption without taking time to review all of the facts in detail.
In extreme cases I believe this, but it isn't the main issue. Sure, you can mishandle evidence too, but that reflects on the investigator, not the process of evidence handling, same as profiling. If done properly it yields fairly accurate results.


The psych evaluations you mention are there to weed out some of the worst of the bunch -- that is all.
So they work, or cops and military people would be dangerous. Besides, the very teacher we are talking about had to pass one meant to 'weed out' pedophiles. Sure, some slip through the cracks, some teachers have sex with students. I wont argue it isn't perfect, but I can tell you that there are a lot of teachers who DON'T have sex with students. How many pedophiles do you think apply to be teachers? I am willing to bet a lot, since that would be prime roaming ground, forgive the image.

The idea behind profiling is that most of the population 'fits' in some category. We are all a lot alike, and there are millions of dollars that have been poured into these sciences to help keep people safe. If they didn't work they wouldn't be used. It's easy to say someone could skew results based on misinformation, or lack of scrutiny. That burden falls on the person who made mistakes, not the misused tool.

Momento Mori
10-14-2011, 01:37 PM
The article's talking about a self-published book, i.e. one that's not generally available in the shops and (I would suggest) is not generally regarded as a bestseller on line. In other words, this is something that people have had to go out to find. How likely is it that teens or anyone else in Ontario or Canada who isn't related to Jacques Tremblay has read it or (before this article) was likely to read it?

I would suggest that the journalist, Kevin Donovan, found out about it as part of a wider investigation into what is happening in Ontario's education system and it's being used as another stick to beat them with - certainly there's no reference in the article to concerned parents or other people bringing the book to Mr Donovan's or the Star's attention.

I don't know anything about the situation in Ontario re teacher discipline, but while the facts presented don't look good, my feeling is that it's not a situation that warrants people drawing in Mr Tremblay's writing, which is something that clearly isn't a secret.

I'm not going to make any comment about the nature of the book or the quality of the writing. I will say that it's a sad state of affairs when any media outlet seeks to condemn someone for the fiction that they write. If this attitude prevailed, then people would have been baying for William Golding to be sacked from his teaching post for writing LORD OF THE FLIES.

If there's any evidence that Mr Tremblay is or has engaged in protecting teachers accused of sexual harrasment or other inappropriate behaviour, then I'd be happy to join the baying mob. However, in the absence of such evidence I don't see why he should be castigated for writing a work of fiction or why the fact of his writing a work of fiction should be used to imply that he is not doing his job properly.

MM

Captcha
10-14-2011, 03:17 PM
The idea behind profiling is that most of the population 'fits' in some category. We are all a lot alike, and there are millions of dollars that have been poured into these sciences to help keep people safe. If they didn't work they wouldn't be used. It's easy to say someone could skew results based on misinformation, or lack of scrutiny. That burden falls on the person who made mistakes, not the misused tool.

I'm not sure on your reasoning, or the facts you're basing it on. For one, I think there are a significant number of people who would disagree with you on the idea that police and soldiers aren't dangerous. I'm also not clear on what anti-pedophile test this teacher took...

Rob_Haines
10-14-2011, 03:40 PM
Looking at the wider issue (and less about this specific case), I think it does come down that that sense of professionalism. My day job is for a company which conducts clinical trials for pharmaceutical firms, with an emphasis on good clinical practice and ethical behaviour, so if I were to publish a novel under my own name about doctors forging clinical trial results, a simple Google search on my name could reflect badly on my employer, and therefore I think they woud be within their rights to either ask me to remove it from sale or fire me.

Keeping such concerns in mind whilst working for an organisation is basic professionalism. In this case the backlash was clearly amplified by his position being one which requires strong professional judgement, and stoked further by the borderline legality/taboo nature of the work in question.

Matera the Mad
10-14-2011, 03:55 PM
If you go to Amazon and take a peek inside, it's pretty obvious what the book is. Porn. Doesn't have to be well-written (clunky all-tell-and-no-show present tense) because it's chock-full of tits and ass. If somebody finds his thing in the wringer, I think he asked for it in this case.

Momento Mori
10-14-2011, 03:56 PM
Rob_Haines:
so if I were to publish a novel under my own name about doctors forging clinical trial results, a simple Google search on my name could reflect badly on my employer, and therefore I think they woud be within their rights to either ask me to remove it from sale or fire me.

Why would a work of fiction about forging clinical trials written by you, in your spare time, reflect badly on your employer?

I'm not trying to be facetious, but I honestly don't see how any work of fiction can justify either an employer firing you or be seen as entitling the media to call for your firing.

I work as a lawyer and if I were to write and publish a novel about shady lawyers doing criminal things and my employer decided to sack me for it, I would have a field day bringing an unfair dismissal claim against them and the resulting publicity from that would be far worse for them than anything the book may have done.


Rob_Haines:
Keeping such concerns in mind whilst working for an organisation is basic professionalism. In this case the backlash was clearly amplified by his position being one which requires strong professional judgement, and stoked further by the borderline legality/taboo nature of the work in question.

Well unless you've read the book in question you don't know whether it has a borderline legality/taboo nature - you only have the selected reports from a journalist who, for all we know, was taking and exaggerating certain bits.

I agree that everyone needs to display a basic professionalism in what they do, but just because you work for a company does not mean that they own you and they certainly do not have the right or the privilege to dictate what you can and cannot write about.

MM

Momento Mori
10-14-2011, 03:59 PM
Matera the Mad:
If you go to Amazon and take a peek inside, it's pretty obvious what the book is. Porn. Doesn't have to be well-written (clunky all-tell-and-no-show present tense) because it's chock-full of tits and ass. If somebody finds his thing in the wringer, I think he asked for it in this case.

So under your reasoning if anyone working within an educational context chooses to write and release erotic or pornographic material under their own name, then they deserve to be sacked from their job.

Good to know.

MM

quicklime
10-14-2011, 05:14 PM
The science of psychology is proven, profiling helps spot and catch criminals. A persons habits are very much dictated by personality. Part of the reason you have to pass a psych evaluation to be a cop or join the military is so they can screen for dangerous traits.

Sure it isn't 100%, but it is very accurate.

If everyone was an exception there would be no rule. :)

sometimes there isn't even consensus. When the BTK killer was first "identified" as his MO became repeated in multiple homicides, the police in Wichita went to a number of psychologists, including folks pioneering profiling, practicing "shrinks", and academics. They got a host of possibilities, with a relatively small number of commonalities. When they later want to them asking about the wisdon of publishing some of BTK's notes, they again got multiple opinions on the effectiveness of this in bringing him out, placating him, or enticing him to kill again.

As for the careful predator, there certainly are. There are also careless predators, predators with minimal awareness of the people around them, and predators who simply want to get caught--they may get caught much sooner, but they are absolutely out there, and profiling a guy off one article plus "what other folks tend to do" is not what I'd call "science" at all, despite actually being a huge believer in psych.

On the flip side, predator or no, this creates certain impressions, and just as a judge is supposed to recuse himself from certain cases to maintain impartiality, this leaves some questions about him being an educator for teens and part of any disciplinary group in charge of the teachers.

Like it or not, what you do in your free time counts. His raises a lot of questions in relation to his job that it simply wouldn't if the guy was an auto mechanic, or a full-time writer, or whatever else.

quicklime
10-14-2011, 05:14 PM
So under your reasoning if anyone working within an educational context chooses to write and release erotic or pornographic material under their own name, then they deserve to be sacked from their job.

Good to know.

MM


that's not at all what she said....also good to know.

quicklime
10-14-2011, 05:16 PM
Why would a work of fiction about forging clinical trials written by you, in your spare time, reflect badly on your employer?

I'm not trying to be facetious, but I honestly don't see how any work of fiction can justify either an employer firing you or be seen as entitling the media to call for your firing.

MM


for me, because I work in a biotech that sells stuff to pharma companies. And fiction or no, we'd stand to lose millions in contracts if someone matched my name to such a book. They'd choose the millions of pretty dollars over me, despite my radiant smile....

iRock
10-14-2011, 05:27 PM
I'd have a fit if he was my kid's teacher. Even if the guy isn't a sicko, he's still displaying incredibly poor judgment. What kind of moron "publishes" that kind of thing under their own name when they're working in close quarters with kids? What kind of moron working with kids "publishes" that kind of thing at all? C'mon. The guy is a creep, an idiot, or both.

I wouldn't have any kind of problem with it if this was adult fiction, except to say he should have had the good sense to use a pseudonym. But this is different.

quicklime
10-14-2011, 05:48 PM
at a minimum, this shows some poor judgement on the writer's part, and reminds me of the Chmura rape trial here in wisconsin, where the defense basically was "no, he did not rape her. He was just a 30-something athlete who was drinking beer in a hot tub with a bunch of high-school girls, then followed a seventeen year-old into a bathroom, locked the door, and was in there alone with her for about fifteen minutes. But at no point in that was anything sexual or inappropriate."

That WOULD fall short of rape, but still pegs pretty high on the "wtf?!" meter, especially as a defense.


here you have a guy where the defense is "oh, no, he just writes a lot of pseudo-porn about schoolkids with boundary issues and ill-behaved faculty when he ISN'T at work as part of the oversight committee.....working with schoolkids and making sure faculty doesn't do any of the stuff he writes about."

Susan Littlefield
10-14-2011, 06:43 PM
If you go to Amazon and take a peek inside, it's pretty obvious what the book is. Porn. Doesn't have to be well-written (clunky all-tell-and-no-show present tense) because it's chock-full of tits and ass. If somebody finds his thing in the wringer, I think he asked for it in this case.

The preamble is up at the Sexteen website (link in my first post). It's poorly written, but it's clear what the book is about. I did not realize it was self published, though.

Bubastes
10-14-2011, 06:57 PM
I work as a lawyer and if I were to write and publish a novel about shady lawyers doing criminal things and my employer decided to sack me for it, I would have a field day bringing an unfair dismissal claim against them and the resulting publicity from that would be far worse for them than anything the book may have done.



Good in theory, but reality isn't so kind. Deidre Dare wrote about sex, not criminal activity, yet she was fired from a big law firm in 2009 and wasn't able to find full-time work as of 2010. She's still suing, though.


Because she no longer has a full-time job, Dare is unable to afford a lawyer for the forthcoming court case, and is spending most of her time reading up on employment law so that she can represent herself. “I'm in a better position than, say, a taxi-driver, because I have a law background,“ she says, “but it’s not in litigation, so I'm comparatively uneducated. I do wish I could afford one, but I'm still confident about the case’s success. I think it’s important I win. If I don’t, it will be a real suppression of creativity.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/expat/expatlife/8045772/Deidre-Dare-life-after-Sexpat.html

D.M.Drake
10-14-2011, 11:11 PM
Well I guess my current novel with sixteen year old friends who at seventeen have a bit of an awkward encounter means I shouldn't be home schooling my kids then, since I must be fantasizing about teens. Or does it only count if it is other peoples kids? Sure there is no porn, but I am still 'thinking' about teens having sex. It's a sad day when our stories must remained trapped in our heads. Maybe I am just looking at this all wrong.

Oh, and as far as psychology being a science, and profiling being used... I mean really? I live with a psychologist who has been practicing for years. He has his silly little group of guys who play poker every friday night. They don't talk about their patients, but they do discuss cases long since solved with profiling. You can find proof proving it doesn't work all you like but honestly, anyone who has studied serial killers or is a psychologist by practice knows it works.

As for saying soldiers are dangerous maybe you should take that to their attention. Those people fight for your freedom to write what ever you want. I think bit of respect is in order, my uncle served in the navy and had to have a metal plate replace part of his skull to protect ingrates who just bad mouth troops. Leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

amergina
10-14-2011, 11:29 PM
I have no issues with educators writing erotica for adults that feature adults having sex.

I have no issues with educators writing YA novels that include teens having sex with each other. And certainly, I have no issue with educators writing books on subjects like rape and child abuse. (see also #YAsaves)

I do have an issue about an educator writing a (nominally) YA book that included high school students giving their teachers blow jobs for better grades, as if that's an okay thing to do.

There is a line there somewhere, and in my opinion if the article's portrayal of the book is even half accurate, the man in question crossed it.

quicklime
10-15-2011, 12:19 AM
Well I guess my current novel with sixteen year old friends who at seventeen have a bit of an awkward encounter means I shouldn't be home schooling my kids then, since I must be fantasizing about teens.


I guess the question is: Can you honestly not see a difference between your "real life" book and an educator writing childrens erotica, or are you just building straw men so you can smash them?

By your logic, films like American Beauty and Lolita should be no different than child softcore porn......


I don't see your case as the same as a guy in charge of disciplining faculty writing something that appears to glorify teen sex and especially teen/teacher sex.

Let's take this a bit off writing, since sometimes "art" gets elevated to magical unicorn pony status:

Do you think it should be illegal to have a hunting camp called "Camp Niggerhead"? Probably not--it is offensive as fuck, but we generally allow people on the whole to be as offensive as they like in America. On the flip side, should the President of the United States hunt at "Camp Niggerhead", or do you think that is also much ado about nothing with Mr. Perry? How much you are in the public eye, and your position, matters. This guy is in a spot where his writing and his career are incompatible, and he should absolutely be able to do whichever he chooses, but I see no hypocrisy in insisting he's going to have to shoose when the two are that incompatible. Even if he doesn't do anything, it completely obliterates the faith of the people around him in his ability to do his job.

D.M.Drake
10-15-2011, 02:43 AM
I guess the question is: Can you honestly not see a difference between your "real life" book and an educator writing childrens erotica, or are you just building straw men so you can smash them?
You cant aim erotica at children, I didn't read his book, so I am not going to claim it is. (Though I think someone said he is self published.) In that case, if it is erotica then the children can't buy it anyway. Back to parents needing to regulate, or teach.

By your logic, films like American Beauty and Lolita should be no different than child softcore porn......

I think you are missing what I am saying. He is teacher he shouldn't have teens having sex with one another or the teachers in his work of fiction, right? However, in American Beauty, an adult has sex with a teen. But it seems that is ok because... a teacher didn't write it?


I don't see your case as the same as a guy in charge of disciplining faculty writing something that appears to glorify teen sex and especially teen/teacher sex.

I am pretty sure sex in any book is somewhat glorifying. Poetic scenes of love and passion? Sounds glorious to me. Besides, if I publish a book with teen sex will my fellow mommy friends with teen kids think I am a creepy perv? Hide their kids from me and whisper "That's the sick lady who writes about kids having sex. Don't go near her Jimmy, she is a predator."

Let's take this a bit off writing, since sometimes "art" gets elevated to magical unicorn pony status:

Do you think it should be illegal to have a hunting camp called "Camp Niggerhead"? Probably not--it is offensive as fuck, but we generally allow people on the whole to be as offensive as they like in America. On the flip side, should the President of the United States hunt at "Camp Niggerhead", or do you think that is also much ado about nothing with Mr. Perry? How much you are in the public eye, and your position, matters. This guy is in a spot where his writing and his career are incompatible, and he should absolutely be able to do whichever he chooses, but I see no hypocrisy in insisting he's going to have to shoose when the two are that incompatible. Even if he doesn't do anything, it completely obliterates the faith of the people around him in his ability to do his job.

I think people will lose faith that he can do his job because people are quick to panic and have a mob mentality. We learn when we are four and five years old to separate life and fantasy. Did he really lose the ability? From a psychological stand point, no. Has he done anything wrong from a psychological stand point? No. But mobs will panic and the very suggestion that a teacher may have ever considered sex with a teen, thinks about teens having sex, or the thought of blow jobs for better grades means he must be a monster. "You can't think those thoughts without acting on them!" Screams the mob before decapitating him and going home to watch American beauty. It's perfectly ok for the parent and child to watch it at home. Just so long as the child doesn't read it from a teachers words.

Captcha
10-15-2011, 03:02 AM
Oh, and as far as psychology being a science, and profiling being used... I mean really? I live with a psychologist who has been practicing for years. He has his silly little group of guys who play poker every friday night. They don't talk about their patients, but they do discuss cases long since solved with profiling. You can find proof proving it doesn't work all you like but honestly, anyone who has studied serial killers or is a psychologist by practice knows it works.

As for saying soldiers are dangerous maybe you should take that to their attention. Those people fight for your freedom to write what ever you want. I think bit of respect is in order, my uncle served in the navy and had to have a metal plate replace part of his skull to protect ingrates who just bad mouth troops. Leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

I wasn't going to, but...

Even if you WERE a psychologist, I'd expect you to provide a bit more to back up your assertions, but just living with one doesn't make you an authority on this.

I'm not sure what tests you're talking about that catch all the bad apples. First, you haven't clarified which pedophile-weeding test you think the teacher passed, but also, I've done a bit of reading and I can't find a psychological health test that military recruits are subject to, either. A reliable source (from a .mil website) (http://www.bordeninstitute.army.mil/published_volumes/recruit_medicine/RM-ch16.pdf) says that recruits take two tests: a general aptitude battery; and a test of educational achievement. The source specifically states that "there are no specific testing measures used to further assess personality and other psychological dimensions in screening processes before accession into any military service." I was actually surprised by this (I was looking for results on how accurate the tests were, not whether they exist!) - can any of our military members confirm this?

In terms of profiling - The Journal of Professional Psychology has an article (http://people.uncw.edu/myersb/292/readings/readings/profiling.pdf) that mentions the Hollywood view of profilers and states "this popular image is more fiction than fact, and the process and limits of real profiling work are often misunderstood." According to the same article, profiling evidence is only sometimes accepted as evidence in court, and "fewer than half of the forensic mental health professionals felt that either profiling or criminal investigative analysis was reliable, was valid, or had enough scientific support to be admitted into court." An article (http://www.investigativepsych.com/Criminal%20Profiling%20Typologies.pdf) in The Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology comes to the conclusion that, "On the whole, criminal profiling methods are inherently flawed due to weak operational definitions and inferred deductive assumptions made about offender actions and characteristics."

And I wasn't cherry-picking those results to find the ones that support the criticism of profiling. All the reputable sources that I looked at expressed significant reservations about it. I guess you'll just dismiss this as me finding"proof proving it doesn't work all [I] like," but, please, don't say that "anyone who has studied serial killers or is a psychologist by practice knows it works," because these articles make it pretty clear that lots of professionals in the field have serious reservations.

And for me, the police and military are dangerous because they carry guns. The military is especially dangerous because they are trained to KILL HUMAN BEINGS. I don't subscribe to the Us and Them theory that apparently means that killing "The Enemy" means that they aren't killing humans. I'm not saying soldiers are evil, or even wrong (although I do have a pretty deep pacifist streak), just that they're dangerous. That's the whole point of having a military.

D.M.Drake
10-15-2011, 03:38 AM
I wasn't going to, but...

Even if you WERE a psychologist, I'd expect you to provide a bit more to back up your assertions, but just living with one doesn't make you an authority on this.

I'm not sure what tests you're talking about that catch all the bad apples. First, you haven't clarified which pedophile-weeding test you think the teacher passed, but also, I've done a bit of reading and I can't find a psychological health test that military recruits are subject to, either. A reliable source (from a .mil website) (http://www.bordeninstitute.army.mil/published_volumes/recruit_medicine/RM-ch16.pdf) says that recruits take two tests: a general aptitude battery; and a test of educational achievement. The source specifically states that "there are no specific testing measures used to further assess personality and other psychological dimensions in screening processes before accession into any military service." I was actually surprised by this (I was looking for results on how accurate the tests were, not whether they exist!) - can any of our military members confirm this?
Look at the dates on the references.
1997, '98, 2000, '97, '98, '99, 2000, 1920, 1920, 1985, 1982, 1948, 1940, 1941, 1944, 1966, 1950... nothing newer than 2000. So are you saying there is NO CHANCE they have changed standards in 11 years? I am sure the antiquated version is exactly the same as the current one.

In terms of profiling - The Journal of Professional Psychology has an article (http://people.uncw.edu/myersb/292/readings/readings/profiling.pdf) that mentions the Hollywood view of profilers and states "this popular image is more fiction than fact, and the process and limits of real profiling work are often misunderstood." According to the same article, profiling evidence is only sometimes accepted as evidence in court, and "fewer than half of the forensic mental health professionals felt that either profiling or criminal investigative analysis was reliable, was valid, or had enough scientific support to be admitted into court." An article (http://www.investigativepsych.com/Criminal%20Profiling%20Typologies.pdf) in The Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology comes to the conclusion that, "On the whole, criminal profiling methods are inherently flawed due to weak operational definitions and inferred deductive assumptions made about offender actions and characteristics."
Published in 2002. How much has medical science changed in nine years? How much better do we understand things nine years later? Look at you cell phone and tell me the world is still as we knew it nine years ago.

And I wasn't cherry-picking those results to find the ones that support the criticism of profiling. All the reputable sources that I looked at expressed significant reservations about it. I guess you'll just dismiss this as me finding"proof proving it doesn't work all [I] like," but, please, don't say that "anyone who has studied serial killers or is a psychologist by practice knows it works," because these articles make it pretty clear that lots of professionals in the field have serious reservations.

Then the FBI must be being facetious. Wasting taxpayers money or some other silly thing, right? http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/training/bsu

And for me, the police and military are dangerous because they carry guns. The military is especially dangerous because they are trained to KILL HUMAN BEINGS. I don't subscribe to the Us and Them theory that apparently means that killing "The Enemy" means that they aren't killing humans. I'm not saying soldiers are evil, or even wrong (although I do have a pretty deep pacifist streak), just that they're dangerous. That's the whole point of having a military.

So think for a moment. They are TRAINED TO KILL HUMAN BEINGS, yet they come home and DON'T kill you, your friends, their families (Well, occasionally, but judge a group based on a few?) They don't shoot up schools, or flip out. Dangerous yes, I wasn't arguing that, but dangerous to you? Do you see men in uniform and run inside and close your curtains and lock doors? Cause I thank them for their services.

I can post a million web pages for you to rip apart, but honestly based on the opinions and sites you've referenced I would feel the time could be better spent doing almost anything else. I agree to disagree and I never claimed to be an expert. I leave that to my husband who has his degree and 10 years experience to know what he is talking about. Just as I trust my doctor to treat my illnesses. After all, schooling is there to educate. If someone has been through it then they are the expert on the subject over someone who has not, correct?

Captcha
10-15-2011, 04:22 AM
"As for saying soldiers are dangerous maybe you should take that to their attention." and "So they work, or cops and military people would be dangerous" vs. "Dangerous yes, I wasn't arguing that." = ?

Also, I'm not American, but I'm betting you are. So, yeah, if I saw American troops in my country, I'd consider them dangerous. Perspective.

Your FBI link is interesting in that it refers to "the art of what is sometimes called 'profiling'" - Art. Not science. And if you look at what they're dealing with, there's a lot there that doesn't fall under what I think you're referring to when you think of profiling. And, finally - I don't have the faith that you seem to have in the FBI being an infallible body of complete logic, and I absolutely expect that they waste a good bit of taxpayer money. (A fun example (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/daily/may99/twa11.htm) is their hiring of a psychic to investigate the crash of TWA Flight 800, but that's from 1999, so I guess it's 'antiquated'.)

I'm not saying that I see no value in profiling. But I, and others, object to your blind faith in it. And being married to a psychologist does not give you the authority needed to convince me that you have anything more relevant to say about this than anyone else on the board. When you say "From a psychologist's standpoint", you ARE presenting yourself as an expert, even though you are, at best, echoing what your husband has said. And do you understand that the people who write for scholarly journals are, traditionally, scholars? So when you say, "After all, schooling is there to educate. If someone has been through it then they are the expert on the subject over someone who has not, correct?" I say... YES. That's my point. The articles I linked to were written by people who've had a lot of schooling, and studied the research done by OTHERS with a lot of schooling. That doesn't make them infallible, but it makes them exponentially more credible than the wife of a psychologist who may or may not even work in the field of criminal psychology.

It's lovely that you have faith in your husband, and I guess it's okay that you have faith in the institutions of your government. But there's not much room for faith in an argument about ideas; if you have ideas, I'd love to hear them.

quicklime
10-15-2011, 04:41 AM
Oh, and as far as psychology being a science, and profiling being used... I mean really? I live with a psychologist who has been practicing for years. He has his silly little group of guys who play poker every friday night. They don't talk about their patients, but they do discuss cases long since solved with profiling. You can find proof proving it doesn't work all you like but honestly, anyone who has studied serial killers or is a psychologist by practice knows it works.

As for saying soldiers are dangerous maybe you should take that to their attention. Those people fight for your freedom to write what ever you want. I think bit of respect is in order, my uncle served in the navy and had to have a metal plate replace part of his skull to protect ingrates who just bad mouth troops. Leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Nevermind; since nobody said profiling did not work, only pointed out it isn't an absolute, you clearly DO want to build straw-men.

By the way, when I mentioned BTK earlier, several profilers looked and disagreed on many things. That also isn't at all unusual in profiling......just saying, since it is clearly an area that has your interest.


In any case, none of that matters. I noticed you carefully avoided the "Niggerhead" analogy, rather than say anything.....sometimes some folks just have to choose their job or some of their freedoms. That's how it is. Think a lawyer for the JADL or Souther Poverty Law Center wouldn't lose his job for blogging hate-speech? Think a pastor who moonlit in porn would be "railroaded by the torch-bearing mob" if they booted him? Or is writing sacrosanct?

Stacia Kane
10-15-2011, 04:44 AM
I think if you're (as in the general "you") honestly incapable of seeing the difference between American Beauty and THE SEXTEENS, then perhaps this sort of discussion is simply too much for you.


(Also, just to be clear...there is no actual teen/adult sex in American Beauty.)

quicklime
10-15-2011, 04:45 AM
I leave that to my husband who has his degree and 10 years experience to know what he is talking about. Just as I trust my doctor to treat my illnesses. After all, schooling is there to educate. If someone has been through it then they are the expert on the subject over someone who has not, correct?



on a side note.....as someone who troubleshoots for people with an average PhD-level education, as well as someone all too familiar with special, pretentious English majors who could write beautifully, except for um, themselves, I will say this is also an over-simplification. Not everyone with the degree is an expert, not everyone without is a paste-eating boob. And your hubby is not a profiler in the first place--I have a PhD in kinase biology and cell signaling; it hardly makes me an expert in neurogenesis or mitochondrial oxidative stress.....

Satsya
10-15-2011, 05:06 AM
So they work, or cops and military people would be dangerous. Besides, the very teacher we are talking about had to pass one meant to 'weed out' pedophiles. Sure, some slip through the cracks, some teachers have sex with students. I wont argue it isn't perfect, but I can tell you that there are a lot of teachers who DON'T have sex with students. How many pedophiles do you think apply to be teachers? I am willing to bet a lot, since that would be prime roaming ground, forgive the image.

Others have covered the rest of your posts pretty well, but I just wanted to add that your phrasing here comes across as derogatory to those interested in teaching, military, and criminal justice professions. You make it sound as though without a supposed evaluation test to weed out recruits, these professions would naturally be filled with pedophiles/violent individuals.

If that was your intention, I disagree, based on my own experiences with those that pursue the military/teaching/criminal justice. You assume the worst of some of the most selfless professions out there.

D.M.Drake
10-15-2011, 05:08 AM
"As for saying soldiers are dangerous maybe you should take that to their attention." and "So they work, or cops and military people would be dangerous" vs. "Dangerous yes, I wasn't arguing that." = ?

Also, I'm not American, but I'm betting you are. So, yeah, if I saw American troops in my country, I'd consider them dangerous. Perspective.

Your FBI link is interesting in that it refers to "the art of what is sometimes called 'profiling'" - Art. Not science. And if you look at what they're dealing with, there's a lot there that doesn't fall under what I think you're referring to when you think of profiling. And, finally - I don't have the faith that you seem to have in the FBI being an infallible body of complete logic, and I absolutely expect that they waste a good bit of taxpayer money. (A fun example (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/daily/may99/twa11.htm) is their hiring of a psychic to investigate the crash of TWA Flight 800, but that's from 1999, so I guess it's 'antiquated'.)

I'm not saying that I see no value in profiling. But I, and others, object to your blind faith in it. And being married to a psychologist does not give you the authority needed to convince me that you have anything more relevant to say about this than anyone else on the board. When you say "From a psychologist's standpoint", you ARE presenting yourself as an expert, even though you are, at best, echoing what your husband has said. And do you understand that the people who write for scholarly journals are, traditionally, scholars? So when you say, "After all, schooling is there to educate. If someone has been through it then they are the expert on the subject over someone who has not, correct?" I say... YES. That's my point. The articles I linked to were written by people who've had a lot of schooling, and studied the research done by OTHERS with a lot of schooling. That doesn't make them infallible, but it makes them exponentially more credible than the wife of a psychologist who may or may not even work in the field of criminal psychology.

It's lovely that you have faith in your husband, and I guess it's okay that you have faith in the institutions of your government. But there's not much room for faith in an argument about ideas; if you have ideas, I'd love to hear them.

This is petty at best. You don't agree with my views. I don't agree that I have no credibility when writing the words of an expert. Anyone can use the internet to look up decade old documents. I'm sorry, 10 years experience plus 4 years of school and current knowledge of the field seems more credible than out-of-date journals and a random person with no credentials. It's like arguing Darwin vs. creationism. Each feels the expert regardless of facts and/or proof. I'm walking away now, have a wonderful weekend.

quicklime
10-15-2011, 05:20 AM
darwin vs creationism?

wow. Just wow.


it is nice you admire your husband that much, it really is, but I suspect if you bothered to ASK him before taking this as some sort of assault on him and his career, he would tell you that:

1. Profiling is very effective

2. It still fails at times

3. Different profilers routinely come to differing conclusions; solving a case often involves taking multiple opinions and condensing areas of commonality, or simply going through each profile, despite them not being the same, because they still narrow the field considerably. However, different profilers do hit differing conclusions and draw differing profiles from the same information.

4. 2 and 3 do not negate or somehow threaten #1.

5. No personality test is anywhere near 100% accurate, helpful though they may be

Captcha
10-15-2011, 05:32 AM
This is petty at best. You don't agree with my views. I don't agree that I have no credibility when writing the words of an expert. Anyone can use the internet to look up decade old documents. I'm sorry, 10 years experience plus 4 years of school and current knowledge of the field seems more credible than out-of-date journals and a random person with no credentials. It's like arguing Darwin vs. creationism. Each feels the expert regardless of facts and/or proof. I'm walking away now, have a wonderful weekend.

Dude - YOU are not a psychologist. YOU do not have four years of school and ten years experience. YOU are also a random person with no credentials. And if your husband only has four years of school... is HE a psychologist? I was assuming he was a PhD, at least.

I do agree, though, that this is kind of like arguing evolution vs. creationism. Science and scholarship and research vs. "My husband says..."

I appreciate that you're trying to walk away, and I guess I can understand why. And maybe it would be charitable for me to just let it go, but you were really pretty snarky in your earlier comments. "So think for a moment" was the one that really got my back up, but I also wasn't a fan of the whole my-uncle-has-a-plate-in-his-skull-so-your-argument-is-invalid bit, or the dismissal of other people's opinions with "You can find proof proving it doesn't work all you like". ETA: And calling me petty. I forgot that one!

You've gotten in over your head and made claims you couldn't really back up. It's probably happened to all of us. But when it happens, we have a choice. We can extricate ourselves with class, or we can... well. I think you're pretty familiar with the second option.

Have a good weekend.

Soccer Mom
10-15-2011, 06:39 AM
Geez Louise people! I'm at a football game. I'm locking this for a bit to let everyone chill. I may unlock at a future point