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2. Denmark 2006

Henning Bech is a Great Shining Light of Hope

As I see it there are at present four major negative social phenomena that represent the present situation in Denmark:

1.) A family man rented out his 12-year-old daughter to some twelve men for sex. The media have continued to whip up hysteria over this for this entire year, ever intensifying anti-pedophile sentiments. Fortunately, Professor Henning Bech is a strong counterweight in this cultural struggle.

2.) A man committed suicide after the media falsely stigmatized him for supposedly having had sex with two minor boys. After the poor man's death, the boys came out saying that it was not true, they had never had sex with him at all. Nevertheless, the Danish Court of Repeal refused to begin a retrial to clear the man posthumously - in my opinion a demonstration of completely unacceptable injustice in Denmark. 

3.) Feminists are wining more support to criminalize the customer side of prostitution as has been the case in Sweden for some years now. 

4.) Some 30 children in Greenland, in a country that is still part of the Danish Kingdom despite extended self rule, are said by the media to have been sexually abused. Two men, one of whom has committed suicide, are allegedly the sole "perpetrators."
A national newspaper Politiken has just started (Sunday, June 18) running a series on these Greenland children and two men. Yesterday morning (Monday, June 19) I sent them my commentary on this issue along with an anthropological illustration of a Greenland mother and child, and a caressing nursery song. Here is what I sent the newspaper:

Pedophilia and Cultural Clash
by Peter Schmidt, cultural activist

[The national newspaper] Politiken wrote the 18th of June:
In Greenland one person out of every 629 inhabitants is charged with sexual abuse. In Denmark the equivalent figure is one out of every 23.348 Danes. The article does not unequivocally point to any single cause and there probably isn't any such singular explanation. Maybe the cause is not exclusively to be explained as stemming from poverty and abuse in general, but has deeper roots and probably can also be seen as a clash of cultures.

[To see the anthropological sketch I┤ve sent the newspaper click on the following link: < http://www.just-well.dk/groenlan.htm > ]

The sketch depicts a mother and a child expressing love in play illustrated by the Greenlander Paul-Emile Victor and below in the nursery song with a child being orally caressed by an adult mother could easily be seen by many Danes as an illegal act of incest. 

Both the sketch and the song are published in the anthropological work on Greenland culture: La Civilisation du Phoque. Legendes, rites et croyances des Eskimo d┤Ammasalik. Editions Raymond Chabaud, Bayonne, by Paul-Emile Victor and Jo÷lle Robert-Lamblin. The work was reviewed in the magazine Research in Greenland / tusaat 4 / 94 by the Danish scientific book reviewer, Hans Chr. Gulloev, Dr. of ethnographic science, senior researcher at the Danish Polar Center and employed by the Danish National Museums Ethnographic Collection. Dr. Gulloev describes the daily life of the Greenlanders, as among other things, represented by the sketch above:

"I read the book as a report by Paul-Emile Victors Ammassalik and found that belief in the here and now is very strong and an important element in the struggle for survival. Belief in the here and now embraces the joy of life, love and caring for the next generation as illustrated in one of the children's nursery songs by Victor (p. 194 og p. 199):

[The nursery song:]
You are like an old wooden bowl,
Like a simple wooden bowl,
A wooden bowl one licks,
A wooden bowl one eats from.

The nursery song says in words what we see in the sketch: The illustration and the song shows how different Greenland culture was and to some extent still may be, from the Danish, in that an old traditional act as seen in the drawing and described in the poem is most certainly quite unacceptable to any sex abuse professional. 

Irrespective of whether this culture is still widespread in Greenland or not, it is my opinion that one can, with some certainty, conclude that this sketch and poem represents a more relaxed attitude towards sex in Greenland than in Denmark. Therefore, one may with good reason ask whether the Danish authorities maybe see more sex abuse than actually exists. 

Does the inherited Danish authoritarian system itself in Greenland contribute more to the dissemination of the problem than to solving it? Is it possible that this is more a question of difference in cultures than a question of sex abuse with respect to the many alleged cases of pedophilia in Greenland? With so many more charges for sex abuse than in Denmark? This aspect of the "problem" is worth considering.

One very positive and massively represented current phenomenon is the Danish sociology professor Henning Bech's critical attack on the classical feminists who are out to criminalize almost anything and everything. Politically, they seek support from the center to the political left. Henning Bech is presently the shining hope for Denmark to get out of the current "Gloomy Age of Ignorance"!

Please read my translation of a book review of Bech┤s book, "Women and Men." Moreover, I have translated some quotes from his section of the book on Pedophile Panics

A local witch hunt against me that failed

Personally I'm occupied with winning a little local witch hunt that landed on me personally. It hit me because I defended Muslims being attacked for their religion which was said to be suppressing all Muslim women without exception. 

Right now it looks like I've completely won for two reasons: 

Being local and because many people personally know me they refused to sign a statement saying to the effect that I'm a pedo who should be thrown out of the Cultural Center where I've been a voluntary activist for some 6 years. 
The other reason is that their only source of "incriminating" evidence against me is my own website, just-well.dk. On this site there are also well known cultural personalities who defend me saying that I'm not even a pedo, but just a person who defends the rights of numerous persons of so called "ill" repute. 

This to me is also a little success story. I feel very good about this and I now also have a little pamphlet describing the mechanisms of a witch hunt that ended well. Not bad, and I'll do my best to get that pamphlet circulated everywhere and anywhere.


May you all have a wonderful meeting. I've just been released from the hospital a few hours ago (Thursday 3 PM) and have been most strongly discouraged from going to see the lot of you at the meeting tomorrow - really bad luck indeed! But I'll be thinking of you splendid folks every minute and wish the best to you and like minded friends.

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