The doctor practiced in a poor area of the city for decades, with no allegations of improper behavior toward anyone, let alone children. He had no criminal record.
“If the allegations are true, it just sickens me,” said D.C. Council member Yvette M. Alexander (D-Ward 7). Alexander lives near the doctor and said many friends and associates, and their children, had been Dickey’s patients.
“He practiced in the neighborhood,” Alexander said. “He’s been there for years. He’s had generations of children. He was very quiet, very professional, it seemed. . . . Just to think that someone you entrust your children to might have that mind-set. No one in their right mind would entrust their child to a child pornographer.”Watching child porn makes you a child pornographer? Only if watching The Little Mermaid makes you an animator.
People in their right minds have been trusting their children to the doctor in DC for decades and no one reported anything fishy going on with their children. So now we're all scared of him? That makes no sense.
This doctor had a long history of treating the poor, charging them on a sliding scale so that the very poor paid much less for medical treatment than those who had a better income. How quick the DC Council member was to make assumptions about the doctor's "mindset." How do we know what the man's mindset was? Mind-reading hasn't come too far as a science, the last I checked.
I know of a doctor who looked at the same images my husband looked at, and yet he is not in prison. This doctor looked at the images because law enforcement asked him to estimate the ages of the young people in the images. Doctors are asked to consult in child porn cases to provide age estimates.
Law enforcement officers can be drawn in by child porn, just as many citizens have been. I make no excuses for those who use child porn. I am saying that those who look at child porn because they are paid to do so are also susceptible to whatever illicit allure child porn may carry. Law enforcement officers (and their medical consultants) are only human. (I am not suggesting the DC doctor was a consultant for law enforcement; I have no idea if he ever did that.)
Ah, you say. But the age-estimating doctors and cops are not aroused by the images! I ask, how could you possibly know?
Just for kicks, perhaps we could hire a penile plethysmographer to see who is turned on by child porn and who is not. Penile plethysmography (PPG) is a controversial test that measures penile engorgement while the subject is viewing child porn to decide if the subect is aroused by the images or not.
Did I say viewing child porn? Isn't that illegal? Well, yes, but it is legal for a plethysmographer to keep a supply of child porn images for this purpose and I'll bet he or she has more than fourteen images, too.
Perhaps the prosecution in the case of the DC doctor will be reasonable and let him serve probation. Elderly people in prison have it particularly hard. Medical care is iffy. Not all facilities even have a doctor on staff. Health care--physical and mental--is hit or miss.
For someone who dedicated a great part of his life to caring for children--and evidently did so without abusing them--this would be poor payback, indeed.