THE BLOG

Child Abuse - Who is standing up for the helpless?

02/08/2013 16:42 BST | Updated 01/10/2013 10:12 BST

"A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members."

~ Mahatma Ghandi

Let me start out by saying this; irrespective of how much hand-washing we attempt to do, we are a nation of child abusers.

Now that you have sufficiently retrieved your jaw from the floor, maybe I may be allowed to explain why I have come to this horrible conclusion, as once again we are confronted with another episode of unspeakable horror visited upon another child in the British isle.

So, a four-year old, Daniel Pelka, suffers a series of extreme acts of violence, from water-boarding, starvation to being force-fed salt! He subsequently emaciates right before the eyes of family members, police, social workers, teachers and NHS staff, before finally succumbing to his inevitable fate. The truth is this....if he were a dog or a cat, poor Daniel would probably be alive today. This has now become the British way of doing things as inexplicably, we somehow value animal life more than those created in our image. It is a disgraceful situation which not only exposes our ever-growing evil streak, but one which indicts all of us, bar none.

Let us look at the facts.

Ever since the days (and before) of the callous duo of Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, the unbelievable catalogue of child abuse has been nothing short of bewildering. In the interim, we have had Maria Colwell's stepfather who killed her systematically, Fred West and his missus with their litany of sins visited on their own, Victoria Climbié in 2000 and Peter Connelly in 2007.

Don't forget Holly Marie Wells and Jessica Aimee Chapman, the two schoolgirls from Soham, who were murdered by Ian Huntley, who just happened to be a caretaker at their school! The endless list also has the likes of Tia Sharp who was recently murdered by her grandmother's boyfriend and so many more we will never know about.

Add to this list the thousands of child abuse cases (alleged and otherwise) which have recently scandalised the BBC, with the prolific abuser Jimmy Saville at the helm of some very shady activities, which have no doubt destroyed more lives than we can count. As I write this, there are shocking statistics being gathered on how many children go missing every day and how many end up in the vile grip of sex gangs determined to poison innocent lives, as they satisfy their morbid appetites.

All across the country, police forces expend copious amounts of resources tracking, nabbing and bringing immoral paedophile groups to book, as the sick bastards devise new ways of preying on the most vulnerable in society. The NSPCC http://www.nspcc.org.uk/ who are charged with collating figures of incidents of child abuse in the UK recently published its statistics covering the last five years (2008-2012) and concluded the number of children who are now subject to protection plans has risen every year, culminating in a figure of 50,573 in 2012! For those of you, who require the information, visit:

http://www.nspcc.org.uk/Inform/research/statistics/unitedkingdom_wdf81294.pdf

As if this were not bad enough, there are also shameful figures for incidents of abuse against the elderly and disabled. It appears our collective desire to be known as the most civilised nation on earth is a warped 'delusions of grandeur' yearning, steeped in the most extreme form of denial. I realise I may offend some by making these assertions, but how is it possible that a society strikes such fear in the hearts of its defenceless, without the quiet acceptance of its citizens?

When one digs to the heart of the numerous cases over the years, there are always individuals who well aware of these odious offenders, decided to turn a blind eye and allow the dastardly acts to fester. How else would the likes of Saville and his circle of friends take advantage of so many for so long without anyone blowing the whistle? Rarely do these predators work alone and rarely do they get exposed at the crucial moment and it has become a national disease which has been ignored for too long.

Contrary to what some people believe, one damaged psyche actually damages us all. We are arteries and tentacles all intertwined with each other in a symbiotic understanding that ruptures once we ignore each other's woes. One abused child or elderly person is enough to fracture a so-called civilised community, because abuse morphs into the darkest recesses of the human mind and when left unattended, can become a very aggressive and insurmountable monster which eventually feeds on us all.

Even more sobering is the fact that abuse as described above, has now taken on a global cloak. A few minutes of research on Google will reveal frightening figures which to my mind, show how much work we have on our hands to stem a malady which is clearly a threat to the very humanity we so claim to cherish. From the USA to China to the African continent, children rights are being viciously trampled. A few weeks ago, the Nigerian Senate in its perverted wisdom decided to vote in favour of a change to the country's constitution, which will legalise girls as young as twelve to marry!

Of course I am not naïve enough to believe this piece will make a difference to the overwhelming situation, but one would hope it may prick one individual's conscience and they may report any abnormalities they observe in a child. It is the easiest thing to do these days, as it can be done anonymously if need be. That one good act of citizenry may end up saving one life and breaking what could be an unrelenting cycle of abuse. I have no doubt it would have helped in Daniel's case. Let us not forget this was a four-year old that was seen riffling through the bins at school, because he was so starved.

At the time of his unfortunate death, Daniel was a few months short of his fifth birthday. His vital statistics read as follows:

Height: 39 inches (six inches smaller than the average), Weighed 1st 9lbs (same as an 18-month-old child), Physical condition: more than 30 distinct injuries, which included a fatal bleed on the brain, caused by a blunt trauma to the head.

The police officer in charge of the case, Detective Inspector Chris Hanson, concluded:

'Those with the ultimate duty of care turned Daniel from a beautiful and bright-eyed little boy into a broken bag of bones'

In case you are wondering who he is referring to, he means you and I. He means everyone from the ineffectual parliamentarians in Westminster to Daniel's blind-eyed neighbours in Coventry.

He means all of us in our broken society.