Pitcairn Island

Months before, maybe even as much as a year before we found out that C was a sexual predator we heard a segment on NPR about Kathy Marks’ book about the child sexual abuse on Pitcairn Island. 

Most people know Pitcairn for its role in the mutiny on the Bounty.  Pitcairn packages itself as a remote paradise but it is not.  It is a classic example of what happens when the rule of law is not enforced.  Possibly from the beginning of its troubled history Pitcairn has been the scene of sexual abuse and domestic violence.  Men would routinely rape young children and the islanders turned a blind eye to the abuse.

I have to admit that I did not want to own the book Ms. Marks wrote about this situation.  I hate all of these stories.  But eventually I did buy it and I now recommend it for everyone.  It is well-written and informative.  I want to personally thank Marks for writing it and to tell the victims who spoke out  that they are not alone and that their story helped me to do the right thing for my kids.  I was so outraged by what happened to them that I knew what to do to help my kids.  They did the right thing to speak out.

And the predators who hurt them got a slap on the wrist.

Pitcairn is an example of what happens when you ignore, make excuses for, or protect sexual predators.

If you are a survivor of abuse, please know that you are in my prayers

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3 thoughts on “Pitcairn Island

  1. Thank for expressing this condemnation of all the people who call themselves Pitcairn islanders. However, when you stop and think about it, is Pitcairn Island far different from the so-called, civilized world as a whole? When you compare the numbers of the guilty on Pitcairn (6) with the total number of people on the Island at the time, and then compare those numbers with those of the same such guilt in many if not most countries of the world with the whole of the country, is there a great difference? Of course, this is not excuse wrongdoing anywhere in the world, but it does put the matter in a bit more objective perspective. Yes, there was sexual wrongdoing on Pitcairn from long ago, and for many decades before the trials in 2004 such wrongdoers were tried on Pitcairn Island under laws written for the island by the British, and yes the guilty were found guilty and confined to the little-used Pitcairn jail. The record of all that is spelled out in “An Account of the Development of the System of Government and Laws on Pitcairn Island in the Twentieth Century” by D. McLaughlin, B.A., L.L.B. The difference between that long record of justice administered under law written by the British, and “The Pitcairn Trials of 2004” which Kathy Marks has so unnecessarily sensationalized (which has, incidentally, lined her pockets with Australian dollars), is that the British through their then governor of the islands (who today sits 3,500 miles from Pitcairn in Wellington), decided to hold all the Pitcairn people up to worldwide very public hatred, ridicule and contempt – libel if you will. They did this by inviting a cadre of newsmen and women to the island for the trials so they could “cover” it. In essence, through that act the British decided to diminish all Pitcairners in the world’s eyes, an act for which there was absolutely no legal requirement, and certainly gave no humanitarian benefit. Your posting here is proof of that the Pitcairners have been and are still – after nearly eight years – being unnecessarily diminished by the British thoughtless action of close to a decade ago. But have no fear, Pitcairn today, with about 45 adults who call themselves Pitcairners, is being watched over minutely by a New Zealand policeman, a Pitcairn Islands policewoman, a governor’s administrative assistant, a physician, and a school teacher – all watching 24/7 for any inadvertent move by any Pitcairn man (all the guilty, incidentally, having paid the price for their guilt and all (remember 6) having returned to their much-needed helpful upkeep and ongo of the island.). The Brits today won’t allow families with children under a certain age to come to the island on visits, afraid, perhaps, that in spite of all that “watch-care” the child or children might somehow be abused even though their parents would certainly be with them practically 100% of the time of their visit. I reckon there is no spot on earth today that more of a true police state than is Pitcairn Island, South Pacific Ocean. Wrongdoing is always exactly that – wrong – and it never be dismissed or nor the administration of justice for it belittled. At the same time, it should never be used to diminish an entire indigenous people as it has been in this case – a belittlement of all Pitcairners; for careful examination will find that the clear majority of those on Pitcairn Island were in no way guilty. – Herbert Ford, Director, Pitcairn Islands Study Center, pitcairnstudycenter.org.

    • I thank you again for your thoughts, please see my post for my reply and I hope if you know anyone who has been the victim of sexual abuse you will let them know that I am praying for them.

  2. How many more victims?? How many more abusers?? Silent. Mothers silent. Fathers silent. Decades of victimization. Decades. And from personal experience with sexual predators stealing innocence – that predator/abuser can never, nor should ever, be trusted again around children, even if 100 people were watching his every move. Because he is just that a predator.

    What price is equal to payment for sexual abuse of a child? No price is fair enough. No price harsh enough. The innocence of a child stolen for and by the perverted act of another.

    This is true for every place on earth. And it is true that no place on earth is safe or unaffected by this issue.

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