June 5, 2013

“More than 50 parents of alleged child victims in the Edenton day care sex abuse case issued a statement Tuesday criticizing ‘Innocence Lost’ (after) reviewers in the national press hailed the show as a compelling portrait of a small town that may have become overcome with mass hysteria:….

“ ‘ “Innocence Lost” conveyed the false impression that parents of the children came to the conclusions of sexual abuse as a hysterical reaction to rumors of abuse.

“ ‘We, as parents, came to the devastating conclusion of the sexual abuse of our children after great reluctance and only after the most convincing evidence, evidence which could not be revealed in interviews for “Innocence Lost” and can only be revealed during the trials of the defendants.’

“Specifically, the parents faulted the show for:

  • “Failing to make clear that parents could not discuss ‘the factual reasons for the determinations of sexual abuse’ because of pending trials.
  • “Suggesting to viewers that three state-sponsored, local therapists were responsible for evaluating the children when ‘in fact, the children were evaluated by no less than eight independent therapists, none of whom live or practice in Edenton, N.C.’
  • “Giving the impression that the families who used the day care center were a ‘prestigious group’ when they represent a ‘broad economic and social cross-section of the town of Edenton.’ ”

– From “Day care parents resent implications of hysteria” (News & Observer, May 15, 1991)

Most disingenuous is the Little Rascals parents’ claim that “the most convincing evidence… could not be revealed in interviews for ‘Innocence Lost’ and can only be revealed during the trials of the defendants.”

In fact, it was the parents themselves who had so excitedly “revealed” the supposed evidence and sent it coursing unchecked through the town’s consciousness, reproducing and mutating as it spread, and resulting in unimaginable tragedy.