By now, you've probably heard the comments made this week by Waupaca County Judge Phillip Kirk during a sentencing hearing for a convicted child molestor. If you missed Bob Burnell airing those comments yesterday here on WOSH here's a link to video of the sentencing hearing:
While some have chosen to focus on Judge Kirk's strange choice of words: "sweet smelling jock strap" and "penis floating in the Wolf as walleye bait"--the real focus should be on the shocking ignorance shown in trying to equate homosexuality with pedophilia.
It is hard to believe that someone who is entrusted with sitting in judgement of others can be allowed to hold a blatently homophobic and scientifically incorrect personal belief. Ask any psychiatrist or consult any study of pedophiles and you will find ZERO CONNECTION BETWEEN SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND PEDOPHILIA. Pedophilia is an adult psychological disorder characterized by a preference for prepubescent children as sexual partners; this preference may or may not be acted upon. Homosexuality is attraction to adults of the same gender. Many child molesters don't really have an adult sexual orientation. They have never developed the capacity for mature sexual relationships with other adults, either men or women. Instead, their sexual attraction focuses on children – boys, girls, or children of both sexes.
So for Judge Kirk to spend seven minutes trying to convince a pedophile that he is gay is not only a waste of time--but seems like an overt effort to perpetuate an unfair and painful stereotype. The Catholic Church has been another good one for that--claiming gays infiltrated the clergy to have access to children--in an effort to explain away the priest sexual abuse scandal and its criminal and pathetic efforts to cover it up. What would Judge Kirk's "explanation" have been if the defendent had molested little girls? "Your urges are normal--just make sure they are a little bit older next time, OK?"
If the defendent in this case was actually homosexual and was looking for illilcit gay contact he could have gone to that certain bookstore here in Oshkosh or the nearby park that police are raiding all the time to get his fix. HE WOULD NOT HAVE CHOSEN BOYS ON HIS SCHOOL BUS!
In talking with a reporter who has covered several other similar hearings in Judge Kirk's courtroom, this is a pretty normal admonishment that he delivers to child molestors whose victims are boys. So don't think that this is just a guy who had a bad day or chose a few bad words when the cameras just happened to be the courtroom. This is obviously a deep-seated belief that Judge Kirk holds and is not afraid to share. Maybe the people of Waupaca County are comfortable having such an ignoramus representing them in the dispensation of justice--but to the rest of us outside the county, it just makes you look like a bunch of backwoods bigots.