Reader complains about child pornography article

On Friday, I received a complaint from a reader about an article The Chronicle published last week about a local man's sentencing in a child pornography case. Jesse Ward, a 27-year-old former firefighter and law enforcement officer, was given 20 years - the maximum sentence - for collecting child pornography and sending such images out on the Internet.

The paragraph that the subscriber found offensive is likely this: The judge "noted that Mr. Ward had 968 images and 21 videos of children, some only babies, being raped by men -- children who were obviously in pain and crying, and children who were bound and held down."

The reader's comment: "It is completely unnecessary to print all the lurid details. Your fine newspaper is a family newspaper and as an adult, I don't want to have this stuff smack me in the face. There will be other news items on simila subjects, unfortunately. Please rethink what you are printing for all to read."

I’m sorry the article was upsetting to her and possibly others. I found the contents shocking as well. But as a parent, I also felt informed. In my response to the subscriber I explained that I believe it is important for us to alert parents to the danger that even people we think we know well might pose to our children. The specifics, while horrifying, make it clear how serious this problem is and how watchful we must all be.

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adrian22 07/15/08 - 03:38 pm
Great response Mrs. Adams.

Great response Mrs. Adams. We all need to be informed as a public the extent of these lewd and heinous acts on children who should be protected instead of exploited.

shamrock 07/16/08 - 12:30 am
I have to agree with the

I have to agree with the reader. You don't need sick, disgusting details to be informed as a parent. If you don't know by now how dangerous the world is for kids, how important it is for them to be continually protected and how sick some people are, you may not be ready for parenthood. Don't insult my intelligence with some lame excuse for a reporter who obviously would be more comfortable writing for a sleaze magazine than the Chronicle. It was nothing more than an unnecessary decription intended to sell papers. That is not being informative! GIVE ME A BREAK!

whatahoot 07/16/08 - 08:13 am
Unfortunately, this article

Unfortunately, this article (as well as a lot that is put out by the media) has probably been more informative to future offenders rather than parents.

bluerose 07/16/08 - 08:18 am
Sounds to me like everyone

Sounds to me like everyone is more upset about the content of the article more so than the person who wrote the article. Seems to me that she was reporting facts, no different than television or any other news media source. If she had said she felt some way, that might be different, but she reported facts. That is what we need. A reporter who will report facts to us and keep us informed. We have had reporters "sugar coat" or even lie to us for years, it's time someone gives us the facts even if its hard to hear it or read it. And to everyone who has complained about the content of the article, what exactly did you expect to read when the title of the article clearly stated child pornography. If it is too much for you, don't read it. That is your right, but the rest of us have a right to be fully informed without the "sugar coating" And for anyone who wishes to say something to what I said, I do not like what I read, I don't wish that on anyone, I had horrible images when I read it, but it was not because she reported the truth, it was what that horrible man did! I do not agree with what he did, but I am happy someone finally will report all the facts so we know what is truely happening around us.

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