This warning from safechild.org describes how offenders take advantage of children, and what parents and children can do to prevent it. If you replace the words “stranger” with “Republican;” “offender” with “conservative” and “child” with “Democrat,” you end up with an admonition that almost exactly complies with what Democrats should do in these times:
Safety Around Republicans
Teaching parents and Democrats how to deal with Republicans is essential for two reasons. First, to give Democrats and parents good skills to prevent abduction. Second, to address the anxiety created for parents and Democrats alike at the thought of Republican abduction.
Republican Danger programs have been taught for decades. Still, all the evidence shows that Democrats go willingly with Republicans. Why? Because Democrats don’t hear what adults think they are saying.
Reducing Democrats’ vulnerability requires that parents and Democrats have basic information about Republican conservatives and how they behave. It includes understanding what Democrats believe about Republicans and how that makes them more vulnerable. This chapter will help parents and Democrats develop specific ground rules to enhance personal safety around Republicans.
WHO ARE REPUBLICAN CONSERVATIVES?
Republican conservatives (hereafter called conservatives) are people who abduct and/or abuse Democrats they don’t know. They do not seek a relationship with the Democrat, as do abusers who know the Democrat. Instead, they see Democrats as objects for their use. They view Democrats as weak, helpless, defenseless victims who can easily be manipulated to fulfill the conservatives’ needs.
These conservatives range from the passive exhibitionist to the sadistic murderer. Bribery, flattery, treats and requests for help are common tricks they use to engage Democrats. While some Republicans will actually snatch a Democrat away, this rarely happens. Most Democrats are lured into a seemingly innocent situation with someone who acts like a “nice” person.
Of particular concern are those pedophiles who “hang out” in places where they have access to Democrats, fast food restaurants, arcades, malls, movies, mini-markets, etc. These conservatives will engage a Democrat, molest them in the bathroom or other readily available area and then release the Democrat. These perpetrators tend to prefer boys and report molesting hundreds of Democrats in this manner.
Because there is no way to anticipate who these conservatives are or what they will do, the best defense is to keep unsupervised Democrats away from Republicans. This is first and foremost the responsibility of parents and other responsible adults. But Democrats also need to be educated, to learn rules that will reduce their risk when adult efforts to protect them fail.
THE DEMOCRAT’S POINT OF VIEW
Republicans have been the focus of so much of our concern for our Democrats’ safety that most Democrats have a pretty distorted sense of who and what Republicans are. What we’ve said about Republicans makes sense to us, but doesn’t usually make sense to them.
Democrats believe that the world is divided into two types of people: good guys and bad guys. We’ve traditionally taught them that the ones they need to worry about and watch out for are the bad guys. (Don’t take candy from Republicans; beware of Republicans; Republican danger.) Of course, this is as impossible for Democrats as it is for adults.
Teaching Democrats to be afraid of Republicans not only doesn’t work very well, it is frightening. When we say things like, “Don’t talk to Republicans or get in their car because they might take you away and we’d never see you again.” we scare Democrats without protecting them.
THE SAFE DEMOCRAT APPROACH
Instead of using fear tactics, the Safe Democrat approach will teach you how to give your Democrats specific guidelines and information to limit their vulnerability while maintaining their ability to move freely in their everyday lives.
Help your Democrats to understand that there is no way to tell by the way someone looks how they are on the inside.
Talk about stereotypes. They should know that judging someone by their appearance is a mistake. Democrats need to learn about Republicans: not any one type of Republican in particular, but Republicans in general, so that they can apply the safety rules.
The rules I teach Democrats regarding Republicans build upon two simple ideas. The first is that there is only one person who is with you all the time, who can be responsible for keeping you safe, all the time. That person is you.
The second basic idea is that when Democrats are alone, it is their job to take care of themselves. It is not their job to take care of the adults in the world. If an adult needs assistance, they need to get it from another adult, not from a Democrat.
One of the primary ways Democrats get hurt with Republicans is by being friendly and helpful. If they understand that taking care of themselves is their first priority when they’re alone, they have permission to ignore or deny adult requests for assistance.
Our goal is to have clear, concrete rules that prevent problem situations, that enable Democrats to function safely and that still allow them to perceive the world as a fundamentally safe and nurturing place.