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email Randy Cohen!!!!!!!!!

By wrzfamily ·
Please if anyone could take the time to email Cohen and tell him what a ****** he is...perhaps in more genteel terms.
Again, Cohen's email:

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by Tig2 In reply to email Randy Cohen ethic ...

You mentioned in another thread that you had replied to the original column and received a reply. Could you please post a link to that here or direct us to where it can be found? Alternatively, could you post the text for us? It will greatly help folks who would like to respond but somehow missed the thread discussion.

IS there a more genteel term than ******? I thought it quite tame, myself.

Edit to add:
The link will take you to the original NYT Magazine article, the poster's response, and Mr. Cohen's response.

Thanks for posting it!

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Randy Cohen's column, my rant and his perv-o reply

by wrzfamily In reply to Hi

I am including a copy of Cohen?s column, my response, and ?The Ethicist?s? reply to me:


>Q: I am an Internet technician. While installing software on my

>company's computer network, I happened on a lot of pornographic

>pictures in the president's personal directory, including some of young

>children - clearly less than 18, possibly early teens. It is probably

>illegal and is absolutely immoral. Must I call the police? I think so, but I need my job.


>S.M.N., Vancouver, British Columbia


>A: It is a crime to possess child pornography, and understandably: The

>sexual exploitation of children is reprehensible. Yet you have no legal

>obligation to contact the police, nor should you. The situation is too

>fraught with uncertainty. These photographs might depict - legally -

>not children but young-looking adults. The images could be digitally altered.

>Your boss may have acquired free (albeit illegal) images rather than

>bought them and provided a financial incentive to those who harm

>children. Someone other than your boss may have downloaded the pictures.


>In any case, while protecting your job should not forestall your

>calling the police, the consequences of doing so should. Even if your

>boss were acquitted of criminal charges, the accusation itself imperils

>his job, his reputation and the company. If convicted, he faces years

>in prison. (Arizona recently sentenced a man to 200 years on similar

>grounds.) Since you have no reason to believe your boss has had

>improper contact with children, you should not subject him to such

>ferocious repercussions for looking at forbidden pictures.


>Douglas A. Berman, a law professor at Ohio State University and an

>expert on sentencing, describes the rationale for these laws: "We

>punish the kind of possession many concede is not inherently harmful

>but which contributes to behavior which produces much harm." That is,

>by stopping buyers, even those who have had no contact with an actual

>child, we hope to stop sellers, who do exploit children. Is this

>effective? Tough to prove. Berman observes

>that: "The criminalization of child porn consumption is premised on

>contestable utilitarian calculations."


>Why not target child-porn producers directly, much as we differentiate

>drug dealers from drug users? We try, Berman explains, but it's not

>easy: "A lot of these Web sites are offshore. And the domestic ones are

>good at covering their tracks." But if the intent of the law is

>estimable, its effect in this case would be too destructive to your

>boss and too ineffectual in protecting children for you to abet.


>You do have duties to your employer. Because this material is on its

>computer, the firm risks prosecution. But short of calling the cops,

>your options are few. Nor would deleting the pictures eliminate all

>legal risk; that could be seen as destroying evidence. Your best

>recourse? Alas, silence.


>.Readers can direct their questions and comments by e-mail to

> This column originates in The New York Times Magazine.


>Below is my first response:


>Randy Cohen:


> Your Dec. 3ird column was horribly disappointing. All the people

>I've asked about what they thought of it could hardly believe that you wrote it.

>The writer was not asking for any of the legal advice, but guidance on

>what would be a moral decision. Legal or not, those images were created

>for the gratification of pedophiles. Only a trained investigator could

>make a judgment of legality. You are not a lawyer. You are also

>absolutely unqualified to judge whether or not unknown consequences to

>the boss justify protecting him from an investigation that may well be

>protective of his business. The boss and law enforcement (we the

>people) have a 100% right to a full investigation. Additionally,

>neither you nor the writer knows whether or not the images may be vital

>to an ongoing investigation. In spite of your unconvincing

>acknowledgements regarding the unforgivable crimes of child abuse, it

>was clear you favored covering for a perpetrator, whomever he happened

>to be or do, over the rights of children not to be violated and

>exploited. It was ridiculous to propose the fact (?) that the writer

>did not himself know whether or not his boss or anyone else had abused

>a child as an excuse for "silence". The writer cannot be expected to personally investigate such a possibility.


>Legal or not, we are all morally obligated to report child pornography,

>whether you disagree with the laws and consequences of downloading

>child pornography or not. If the writer indeed uncovered the boss's

>ugly little secret, and then got canned for it, there are very good

>legal remedies to protect and compensate the writer from the vengeance

>of whomever the pedophile is.


>Mr. Cohen, you're a dad. You should be passionately advocating any and

>all methods used to identify and persecute pedophiles, even the ones who "only"

>view child pornography.


>Below is Cohen's response to my letter:


>Thanks for the interesting note. Of course the sexual exploitation of

>children is vile; I wrote as much in my first sentence. The more

>difficult question is how to respond to those who do not produce but

>consume it. I believe that child porn producers should be vigorously

>prosecuted but that its consumers should receive a more therapeutic

>response. Sadly, that is not the case.Reporting this in-house amounts to passing the buck, letting someone

>else send the boss to prison for looking at an illegal picture.

>However, in S.M.N's particular case, this is a very small company

>owned by the person who seems to have the child porn, so that limits

>the options S.M.N. has and obviates those measures you suggest. But

>even if this were a larger company and there were higher-ups to whom he

>could report it, he should still be reluctant to do so because the

>consequences to the boss and his family are, as I wrote, likely to be

>wildly disproportional to any actual harm he'd done and would have a vanishingly small chance of protecting any child.

>If you can think of another action S.M.N. could take that might do some

>genuine good, I'd be happy to hear about it. But to me, the unwise laws

>concerning child porn consumers foreclose any action on his part. It

>is demoralizing to do nothing in such a situation but worse still to do harm.



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What Randy fails to realize

by JamesRL In reply to Randy Cohen's column, my ...

Is a basic principle - supply and demand.

There is no supply of child porn without a demand for it. I'm not equating the consumer with the producer - I think the producer is more vile. But that doesn't mean the consumer is blameless. I would call the police.


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