Miami Herald - Letters to the Editor re Series on Sexual Predators
Beginning on Sunday January 29, 2006 The Miami Herald
published a four-part front-page series titled Predators
Among Us along with over a dozen ancillary articles and
editorials. This series was based on a six month
investigation. Even after a six month investigation,
however, there was no mention in any of these reports of
female sexual predators.
The letters below were published in The Miami Herald
in response to this inexplicable omission.
Women molest, too
January 31, 2006
Thank you for publishing the series Predators Among
Us. However, the Jan. 29 installment does not mention a
growing group of sexual predators: teachers who take
liberties with their students. Best known of this group is
Debra Lafave, who is accused of repeatedly raping a
14-year-old boy. Her trial is slated for April 14.
Other Florida teachers are similarly accused. Sadly, a
double standard surrounds these cases. As CNN's Nancy Grace
put it, "Why is it when a man rapes a little girl, he goes
to jail, but when a woman rapes a boy, she has a breakdown?"
The story says that, "Florida's program for screening,
confining and treating sexual offenders who pose the
greatest threat to women and children is failing." In the
interest of protecting all our children, we need to remember
that many teenage boys are at risk of sexual exploitation by
their female teachers.
Women molest, too
February 22, 2006
Re the Feb. 17 story, Predator program faces
overhaul: Published reports of clinical interviews with
adult female sexual predators indicate that they began
molesting children when they were baby sitters.
Because of underreporting and the unwillingness of parents
and police to believe that female teachers, nannies and baby
sitters molest children, I believe that the few reports that
do surface represent just the tip of the iceberg.
For Florida's children to be truly safe from sexual
predators, we must go down a politically incorrect road and
face the reality that female sexual predators exist. They
must be given the same treatment as male sexual
predators. Anything less represents gender bias and
continues to leave our children at risk.
Gordon E. Finley
Professor of Psychology
Florida International University
February 28, 2006
Re the Feb. 22 letter Women molest, too:
As a parent of a daughter who was sexually abused for five
years by a female live-in nanny, I know all too well that
people fail to recognize how many adult female sexual
predators live among us.
The Miami Herald's sexual-predator series shed new
light on issues involving sexual predators and offenders in
our state. I hope that through this series and further
review by state lawmakers, policymakers will better
understand that the issue of female predators is larger than
most people realize.
It is the underreporting and the unwillingness of parents
and police to believe that females commit these heinous
crimes that add to this. It is only through the
communication provided by the media that our community will
fully understand the magnitude of this issue.
Ronald L. Book