Now here’s an interesting twist on an all too familiar story…
TACOMA—Ronald Harold Young, the Pierce County foster parent charged yesterday with 44 crimes of child pornography and rape involving six boys in his care, gave his family the impression that taking in broken children was his personal “ministry.”
Young, 41, became “super-religious” about two years ago, said his 25-year-old niece, who only gave her first name as Bev. She said Young presented himself as “a good, God-fearing Christian of all things, super foster dad.”
For most of his adult life, he told family members he was an atheist, said a woman who identified herself only as Young’s sister and Bev’s mother. One day, she said, “he started wearing a cross and preaching.”
Neither Young’s sister nor his niece knew what caused the transformation.
About that time, in July 2002, Young and his wife received a license to become foster parents.
So this guy was an atheist for most of his adult life, decides to become a Christian and dedicate his life to caring for foster children, and ends up molesting them. Interestingly enough, this guy has already raised two boys of his own who are adults now and haven’t indicated that they were ever victims of sexual abuse at the hands of their father nor does Young have any pre-existing criminal record.
It’d be very cynical, not to mention a perfect example of the cum hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy, to suggest his conversion to Christianity is responsible for his becoming a pedophile. Still, it does leave one to ponder why Young converted to being ‘super-religious’ before his pedophilia came to the surface or why it took so long for this problem to come to the forefront.
If we’re to believe, as David has suggested in the past, that atheists aren’t trustworthy because we have an ever-shifting moral base as opposed to the rigid foundation being a Christian supposedly gives you, then why wouldn’t Young’s perversion come to the forefront during his time as an atheist? You’d think it would be easier for an atheist with no fixed moral foundation to rationalize away molesting small children than it would be for someone following a specific religious system.
The one logical possibility that comes up is that Young took on the airs of a religious person to cover up his crimes, but that seems like the sort of thing you’d do after you’d been engaged in the activity and thought folks might be catching on to throw them off the trail. I suppose it’s also possible to assume that the switch to being religious made it much easier to gain the trust of the authorities as well as the community.
Ultimately, it demonstrates why folks shouldn’t assume that a seemingly pious individual should be given any more trust than any one else. Of course, if that much isn’t obvious after the Catholic Priest Child Molestation scandal then there’s little reason to think that this latest example will sink in.