The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

From Child Abuse to Child Pornography: ‘Our Society Is Quick to Judge’

Posted on | January 28, 2014 | 138 Comments

The quoted phrase is from the mother of former Republican Senate aide Jesse Ryan Loskarn:

Ms. Loskarn complained about the “media frenzy” surrounding her son’s arrest in December.
“The last month of Jesse Ryan Loskarn’s life was surrounded by a media frenzy, with what appeared to be the goal of destroying his reputation beyond repair,” Mrs. Loskarn said. “Newspapers and other media outlets depicted him mostly in a negative light and stole away any good he had done during his short but full life.”
Mrs. Loskarn added: “During this tragic time he had no voice, but in his death he can be heard. Our society is quick to judge especially when the topic surrounding his death is so difficult. This letter written by Jesse Ryan Loskarn was found after he took his own life on January 23, 2014. If his words can help just one person who is suffering in silence, it will be his greatest accomplishment.”

Blaming media scapegoats? Portraying the criminal as victim? What were those who “depicted him mostly in a negative light” supposed to do after Loskarn was arrested with “hundreds of videos depicting underage boys … in sexually explicit conduct“?

Loskarn committed suicide — a decision for which he alone was responsible — and his mother obviously doesn’t want to accept that her son was responsible for his own choices. Jesse Ryan Loskarn’s final letter is an interesting document in its own right, but his mother’s preface to the letter is . . . well, it seems rather misguided.

It was not the media that destroyed Loskarn’s “reputation beyond repair,” it was Loskarn’s own criminal actions. But we are living amid an epidemic of Special Snowflake Syndrome, typified by several bad ideas: Nothing bad should ever happen to the Special Snowflake and, if misfortune should befall him, however great his own role in bringing about that misfortune, the Special Snowflake is not really to blame.

Bad things happened to Ryan Loskarn, some of which clearly were not his fault. He was only to blame for his own choices, but those were very bad choices and if, as Mrs. Loskarn says, “our society is quick to judge,” I’m not sure we are judging too quickly.

If you think the problem with “our society” is that we are too judgmental about perversion, you obviously aren’t paying attention.



138 Responses to “From Child Abuse to Child Pornography: ‘Our Society Is Quick to Judge’”

  1. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:17 pm

    She’s likely past 60 given her son’s age. If she hasn’t been busted to date, it’s not likely to happen.

  2. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:19 pm

    Not sure what Joe Paterno has to do with this nor is there any serious evidence that she or any salient individual knew anything about her son’s interior troubles.

  3. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:20 pm

    The effectiveness of prison is to be measured in crime rates and in the trajectory of convicts versus those treated with kid gloves.

    We followed the advice of your ilk in this country for thirty years. Worked out very badly.

  4. Dana
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:20 pm

    I don’t know if people like that can be rehabilitated, but I guarantee that they can’t if they don’t try.

  5. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:21 pm

    Apologies are to express contrition. It wasn’t her act. An apology would be humbug.

  6. Dana
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:21 pm

    Well, he might not have known the abuser’s name, or the abuser might already be dead.

  7. Dana
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:25 pm

    Nobody who has any knowledge about it has said, so we have no way to know. Since we don’t know who the abuser was, there’s no way to even guess if she should have known.

  8. DunkinDonuts
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:25 pm

    You did? We have the highest rate of incarceration in the world(because of the already lost drug war) with some of the longest sentences available. No, we followed your ilk and it lead us here.

  9. SJ Reidhead
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:34 pm

    I agree. We are ultimately responsible for the messes we make of our life. We may not be responsible for some of the bad things that happen to us, but we are ultimately responsible for how we deal with solving the problems and dealing with those things. When a person goes over to the dark side, when it comes to harming children, I just don’t have any sympathy. I also don’t have a lot of sympathy for those who can’t comprehend the damage. I feel sorry for those who lives are ravaged because of something like this. It’s tragic, but people need to except the fact that they have loved ones who can do horrible things – and yet, you still love them. You can’t let them get away with it, but you don’t stop loving them – right?

  10. Nan
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:40 pm

    Because we teach that immediate gratification is our due.

  11. Nan
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:41 pm

    They changed the letter. C is for Christian.

  12. DaveO
    January 28th, 2014 @ 6:42 pm

    Sheehan’s son was a soldier, therefore a tool of the Republican-Cheney-Halliburton Hegemony and a defender of the Patriarchy. Specialist Casey Sheehan died honorably. His mother lives having dishonored herself, her family, and once Pelosi became Speaker of the House, she was cast aside.

  13. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 7:05 pm

    The probability of landing in prison due to a criminal act declined by 80% during the period running from 1960 to 1970 per Ernest van den Haag. Not surprisingly, index crime rates doubled during that decade. Not surprisingly as well, the relentless march to anarchy was arrested when legislatures build prisons and removed judicial discretion, and declined by 30% when police forces recommitted themselves to aggressive action after 1990.

    It should be noted in this regard that courts are hardly draconian in this country. Only about 40% of defendants are sentenced to any incarceration at all.

    The world’s social workers and psychotherapists are understandably resistant to the idea that cops produce results while the helping professions spin their wheels. Still, humbug is humbug.

  14. Art Deco
    January 28th, 2014 @ 7:07 pm

    He was not ‘clearing his name’ in committing suicide nor was he doing so in his letter. The letter merely offers an account of his history. (One commits suicide out of grief or shame).

  15. Rosalie
    January 28th, 2014 @ 7:31 pm

    I disagree. I believe an apology, if sincere, would have been appropriate.

  16. tlk244182
    January 28th, 2014 @ 7:59 pm

    That was my experience with it. What health I’ve managed to achieve after my 36 year bout with progressivism/nihilism has derived from proper catechesis and the confessional, which, incidentally, are also cheaper.

  17. tlk244182
    January 28th, 2014 @ 8:05 pm

    Road to hell is paved with good excuses.

  18. tlk244182
    January 28th, 2014 @ 8:36 pm

    Yes, but why? Can you explain why it would have been appropriate?

  19. Ivory
    January 28th, 2014 @ 8:40 pm

    Right on the mark, sir. We, as a society, are much TOO slow in calling out perverts in their corrupting perversions. I can have sympathy for victims, I can forgive those who sincerely ask, but I cannot call evil people, good or special. I will never understand why we are always wanting to allow others to get away with harming others and then propel the criminal to hero status. Now we want to make martyrs out of them as well? Good grief I think too many parents have lost their freaking minds.

  20. pabarge
    January 28th, 2014 @ 9:03 pm

    Here are part of the contents of the WHOIS entry from Network Solutions for the URL at which the letter is published:

    Registrant Name: charles loskarn
    Registrant Organization:
    Registrant Street: 6496 ken mar drive
    Registrant City: sykesville
    Registrant State/Province:
    Registrant Postal Code: 21784
    Registrant Country: US

  21. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:37 am

    Art Deco – what evidence do you have about anything in this woman’s life – much less her entire psychology??? You don’t know ANYTHING about her at all! Serious or non-serious evidence – you have nothing. She could have abused 10 children for all YOU and all of us know.

    There are plenty of cases of abuse where the victims do not speak out.

    The best thing you could do is to go investigate why you go on tirades of denial about EVERY case involving possible cover ups of child abuse. Suspicious to say the least.

  22. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:38 am

    The day you learn the difference between psychotherapy and psychoanalysis let us know.

  23. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:41 am

    True for what he claims happened when he was 5. Now at 9, not that he must have known the name of the alleged abuser, but most likely he would be able to describe the circumstances, at least partially.

  24. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:47 am

    As you can see- viewing child porn is NOT mentioned in this list. To note as well, the list was specifically written about male survivors. While I would agree with the list above is applicable for both male and female survivors, I definitely think you are quite wrong to think that it is common for survivors (male and female, or just male) to view child porn. But if you have any studies on this particular question, I’d be interested to read them.

  25. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:51 am

    Doesn’t mean at all that she may not have done plenty of harmful or criminal acts in her life.

  26. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 2:53 am

    Happens all the time in cases of child abuse, even the gravest ones. And this is clearly my suspicion with Sandusky’s wife. And Frank Lombard’s homosexual pig of a “husband.”

  27. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 3:00 am

    There was an interesting comment over at Rod Dreher’s blog post on this case. Rod Dreher with his cheap and sleazy brand of GLAAD and Hustler “orthodox Christianity” was so very eager to gulp down the entire letter as the truth and nothing but. But a wiser commenter noted:

    @Rod: I know his mother released the letter. He also hung himself in his parents’ basement. That suggests some hostility.

    Very interesting indeed.

    Not saying there couldn’t be many other alternative explanations, but his choice for the place of his suicide is intriguing.

    And what is/was the rest of his family like, we wonder?

  28. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 3:03 am

    I simply cannot understand why the death penalty isn’t at least an option on the table in cases of grave child abuse where the evidence is clear.

  29. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 3:33 am

    I liked this comment -The_Ron_May:

    He ends the letter with “… for the rest of my life” and then
    committed suicide. Cowards, weasels and monstrous rogues don’t carry burdens. One might sympathize with the desperation and shock of a loving mother but technically publishing the last politically crafted
    statement of a criminal after a judge restricted the criminal’s access to the internet is at least arguably a last crime and moral failing. Of course, one cannot automatically blame the pedophile’s associates and
    family. Every individual makes their own choices in their heart of hearts. Not everyone can easily afford a shrink or even afford to buy online videos (let alone have a job which allows the freedom to spend so much time buying and using online videos).

    The obvious question is how a thinking individual in possession of a 179,000 a year salary (only a small fraction and his senate connections would have purchased the best in medical help) and supposedly in
    possession of vast skills as a leader (at least as hired as a supposedly brilliant young rising staffer by a number of prominent elected leaders) was not possessing of choice and reason enough to make the corrections.

    The suicide letter is a final scheming, cynical and manipulative attempt to scam the public (similar to trying to hide the hard drive on the window sill) by a conniving political artist and master of propaganda, manipulation and corruption.

    Burn in Hell Jesse Ryan Loskarn

    and …..

    Have a Nice Day!


    My feelings as well, although I don’t yet discount the possibility that he was also abused. But nothing reported in Jesse’s history (albeit there has been so very little reported overall) matches or gives any clue to a truthful claim of a history of abuse.

    A life of enormous privilege, huge salary, and never going to see a therapist for what he claims was profoundly disturbing abuse and trauma?

    Sounds like a cynical, manipulative bastard all the way to the end.

    And why was the letter found only quite some time after the suicide? The pohlice didn’t find the letter? Why not? Where was the letter found?

    Was the letter hand written, at least? Or did the mother find the letter on her printer by chance?

  30. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 3:44 am

    Dec. 16, 2013:

    Building a case for his release from jail, defense attorney Pamela Satterfield said Loskarn had no previous criminal record, “strong ties” to the D.C. community where he has lived for 14 years and had done nothing to suggest that he might be contemplating suicide.

    “It’s not a concern,” Satterfield said. “It’s simply not a concern for Mr. Loskarn.”

    I wonder what information either the DA or the prosecutor were able to uncover about Loskarn in the last few weeks, if anything at all. You would think that it would be this DA that might know something.

  31. Dana
    January 29th, 2014 @ 7:09 am

    To quote Inspector Clouseau, after he had destroyed a piano:

    That was a precious Steinway!

    Not anymore.

    Whatever secrets he had, have gone to the grave with him.

  32. Dana
    January 29th, 2014 @ 7:13 am

    The Supreme Court ruled several years ago that capital punishment is unconstitutional in cases which do not involve murder. But, in this case, the criminal in question meted out capital punishment to himself.

  33. Alessandra
    January 29th, 2014 @ 7:51 am

    That’s what I don’t understand. How a society can be so lenient to cases involving the torture of children. I’m not talking about this one, because we don’t know what happened – but there are other cases where the evidence is clear – and it involves grotesque torture.

    In this case, he didn’t mete out his own capital punishment, I don’t think. I think he was more likely trying to get out of whatever non-capital punishment the state would dole out to him. Like that guy that kidnapped those girls and kept them in a dungeon.

  34. Art Deco
    January 29th, 2014 @ 10:56 am

    There is no ‘difference’. One is a species of the other. Nevertheless, I spell it out for you: people who make a living at this do not have a vocational or ideological interest in looking too closely at whether it actually does much good.

  35. Art Deco
    January 29th, 2014 @ 10:57 am

    I am not the one making declarative statements about her.

  36. sarah wells
    January 29th, 2014 @ 11:11 am

    Assume he “rewired” which I think is likely – biological changes related to stimulation that change responses are plausible and happen with other conditioning. Humans have will. They have conscious will as well as unconscious drives, desires, reactions. Self restraint and self denial were in his power.

  37. Alessandra
    January 30th, 2014 @ 5:52 am

    It seems the day you learn there is a tremendous difference between the two has not come yet! And I wager you’ll be ignorant about the difference your entire life.
    Along with not being capable of realizing that therapists aren’t always the evil clones you paint them all to be. I can say for sure, just by your blabbering here, that I know of a few therapists who are much more ethical and do much more good than you do in the world. However, I do agree that there should be much more evaluation and supervision of the work that therapists do in general. That is one of the most terrible structural problems with therapy. Mechanisms for accountability can be non-existent or quite faulty. But, contrary to your ignorant stereotyping, it varies from individual to individual, so it’s not always the case.

    “people who make a living at this do not have a vocational or ideological
    interest in looking too closely at whether it actually does much good”

    That’s your profile right there. You don’t care to learn about the cases where therapy has worked and in what way. In other words, you have never followed the work of even one therapist that has been able to help anyone in any way, so here you are blabbering your ignorance. While there are therapists who are in it for the money, not for the ethics, you can find such people in any profession – starting with your church – and what a corrupt church it is.

  38. DunkinDonuts
    January 30th, 2014 @ 12:15 pm

    I think it’s 98% certain that Sandusy’s wife knew what he was, and instead chose to live in denial while he went on having “sleepovers” and destroying lives.