Sixty years of social work condensed into three years of writing...you get the results in one book that aims to:
- Draw a parallel between sex offenders who have been convicted and those who have not. The excesses of powerful men in clergy, media and politics in recent years proves the case that not all those with "criminal thinking" have been apprehended, punished and treated for their violent sexual behavior.
- Show how one label - Sex Offender - is not adequate to describe a wide range of illegal acts. At one end of the spectrum there are teenage males serving time for having sex with their underage girlfriend. At the other end of the spectrum are the pedophile priests, coaches, television and film industry icons, and politicians who abuse their privilege and power to victimize those with less power.
- Talk about treatment, in its myriad forms. Treatment is mostly about the offender deciding that he (or she) wants to change. After that, the person must systematically work with professionals to untangle the mess of their life, including their own victimhood.
Finally, the book is an appeal to the millions of people whose lives have been affected by sexual violence. There is power in a society demanding accountability from abusers. It's healthy to take part in your own recovery from trauma. Likewise, there is a healing benefit when we can accept back into society those who have repented and who show they are trustworthy again.
There's a big piece of the puzzle missing in our national thrall with sexual abuse, and this book can add a lot of dimension to the conversation, making room for growth, safety and public health.