Public opinion in the last few years, particularly since the Jimmy Savile case, has finally pushed the police into seriously investigating sex crimes against children. The Home Office has disclosed that the police are now investigating 261 celebrities, including 76 politicians. Previously, whenever the police . . . did so, it was feebly done because investigating teams were invariably got at by more senior officers — no doubt in turn warned off by the politicians themselves or their colleagues.
In the case of the now-notorious Liberal MP, Cyril Smith, who forced himself on boys for most of his political life, police at city level tried to prosecute him on two or three occasions. On one occasion, he was even formally charged with the offence. But no, he got away with it, and he remained unsullied in the eyes of the unsuspecting public and remained a highly popular politician.
Besides politicians, the list also includes 135 television, film and radio personalities, 43 musicians and 7 sporting personalities. The head of the main investigation, Chief Consable Simon Bailey, says that there are more than 1,400 on a more extensive active list (Operation Hydrant) and that these are still the tip of the iceberg. And, now that we have the Internet, this is revealing that there are at least thousands more of the paedophilia inclined public — perhaps tens, or even hundreds, of thousands in the country if the number were accurately known.
The three facts that are 99.99% common to all these suspected cases is that (a) they all involve men as the predators, the victims being of either sex and of all vulnerable ages; (b) the victims have rarely said anything about abusive events either out of shame or because they’ve been threatened with dire consequences; (c) in many cases the trauma of early events can often stay with the victim for the rest of his or her life. But what of all these crimes? Are they ever going to be prosecuted? Are their crimes as serious or as frequent as those of the celebrities who are now well and truly named in the police files?
The answer to the last question can never be answered in any definitive way but scientific research is very clear that sexual need is very much correlated with social rank. Testosterone levels in males’ bloodstreams is in almost step-by-step relationship with their perceived social rank order. And this applies whether groups of chimpanzees have been investigated or the most establishmentarian world of Whitehall civil servants.
Even the most modestly raised social levels — such as promotion at work — have their effect on sexual demand. Sexuality in individuals with very high status levels can be so powerful as to be almost unbelievable when they become known. The sexual predations of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the man who was destined to be a French President — though in his case on adult women — were in this category.
What can be done about it? As discussed in my post yesterday about financial crime, nothing can be done about it because sexual need, like greed and deviousness, is instinctive — and, if anything even more powerful. When we lived in small hunter-gatherer groups, sexual need by, say, the leader of the group could never grow to the enormous proportions that it can today in large powerful organisations or where its members have high social status. The House of Commons, for example, has been described as the hottest sexspot in the country. And I dare say much the same applies at the highest levels in the civil service (and including the secret services) and in large businesses.
What can be done, however, is to minimisee it by making all large organisations with many status levels within them much more transparent in exactly the same way as banks and financial organisations will have to be in due course if they are to retain the trust of the public. This can only be by the voluntary decisions of the organisations themselves in ways that they will have to devise, not by legislation or regulations. The latter will always be avoided. And if this is not a satisfactory answer on the grounds that we will always need to have large and powerful organisations in modern civilisation, so be it. We will have to accept that man is the most super-sexed species that nature has invented yet.