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"LMIRL is a real, important danger that all students and parents/guardians need to know about and understand." "MySpace Statistics and Adult Responses," by Wesley Fryer, Moving at the Speed of Creativity, 8 Jul 2006.
Patrick Henry, in his Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death speech 231 years ago this week, said, "For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth, to know the worst, and to provide for it." Tonight, despite the pain it may bring us, we will learn the whole truth about children and the dangers of the Internet, the worst of this truth, and what can be done to stem the damage. Patrick Henry never said LMIRL.
The Internet as we all know is a wonderful resource for recreation and learning. But it has a dark side. It enables criminals and others to lead your children into great danger, sometimes even death. Hiding our eyes from the problem does not make it go away. We must learn about the dangers, then act to protect our children.
As Debra Burlingame said, she's the wife of the downed Pennsylvania 9-11 pilot, "I think people, when they get the right information, do the right thing." [11 Mar 2006, WABC AM Radio] We all need to recognize the dangers of the Internet and do our part to protect children. Here's what you can do, and I have handouts to remind you.
As Patrick Henry said all those years ago, "We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty?" Are we wise to close our eyes to how the Internet, pedophiles, and the American Library Association endangers our children? As Patrick Henry might say, we learned the whole truth about the dangers of the Internet, the worst of this truth, and what can be done to stem the damage. Now each of us, all of us, let's get out there and do something about it. And if someone ever says to your child LMIRL, you need to act, and act fast. Will you know how?
Dan Kleinman is certified in "Presenting Internet Safety Programs to Teenagers" by the Morris County (NJ) Fire Fighters and Police Training Academy in June 2007. This speech is updated from time to time. Dan is available to present this speech and more upon request.
Initially the speech was only about the ALA, but based on audience reaction to the crude graphics the ALA pushes on children as young as twelve, the speech was changed to remove the shocking material. This first speech version in its original form drew complaints that the graphics and content intended for twelve year olds was too jarring, too explicit. So that led to the next major revision. Kind of proves a point, huh?
This second speech version in its original form actually drew rave reviews with multiple requests for more information. Sadly, one of the people who heard my speech said how very important it was—his parents knew Megan Kanka's parents when they were going through the ordeal that became Megan's Law. However the speech was still too long, too loose, and too detailed for the 5-7 minutes allotted for the speech, and it had no graphics at all. Later, I noticed an interesting theme I could use to pique the audience's attention: LMIRL and the danger that may mean.
Folks, this is serious. Someone read this page and reached out to us for help. (Since then many more have contacted us so we published "We Recommend.") Therefore, we will post this letter and our response to help others who come here. We appreciate those who link to us, so we help them however possible:
From: [Anonymous]Here was our reply:
Date: Feb 2, 2007 7:43 PM
Subject: I really need a reply, I need help.
I have no idea how to go about this but I found your LMIRL article and I don't know where else to go about this.
I was talking on MSN messenger just now with a girl from Canada, she says her name is [Miss Canada], I don't know whether or not that's her real name. Either way as we were talking she started expressing suicidal feelings to me and started to talk about how she doesn't want to live. I challenged her on it because I thought she might be like a lot of teens whom I know who just say that kind of shit to get attention. After we talked about it for a while she was quiet for a long time and then she said that she was raped almost every day, and that's why she gets so depressed. She'd never told me anything like this before, i've only known her about 5 months, but she's told me before about an abusive boyfriend that she finally left. At first she wouldn't tell me who it was but she finally told me that it was her abusive ex, a guy she calls [Mr. Abuser]. Eventually I asked her why she doesnt report this and she said because he threatens to kill her if she does. While we were talking about it she had said that her mother had come into the room and read the convo, and was in the process of calling the police. I have no idea if any of this story is true or not, least of all whether or not her mom is involved, but I can't let myself live if I don't get into contact with someone who might be able to help me get this to the authorities. She lives in Canada and I live in the US, so it's not like I can simply call 911 and report it. I'm sorry if i've wasted your time but I need some guidance here. I check this email 4 to 5 times a day and I have the whole conversation in my MSN archives and can provide it. I told her that i'm reporting this, only I told her I was reporting it to someone else, not you, but she is really trying to stop me from reporting it, I just can't not report it. Please contact me. Thank you.I will try to help. I'm no expert though. Just so you know.We also blind carbon copied the security resources we named in our letter. They then directly contacted [Anonymous] with further important information from RMCP Contact Us:
From what you described, it sounds, at least to me, as if someone is trying to gain your confidence for nefarious purposes. Be that as it may, I have some potential resources for you to contact -- real experts. And I'll look over LMIRL and if I don't see something like this added there, I'll add it. DO NOT REVEAL ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION TO THIS PERSON!
Check here: http://perverted-justice.com/ However, they say:- If your email is in regards to an internet predator you have found or someone who has hit upon your children, we empathize with the occurence but at this point we cannot take tips in regards to predators from the general public. We encourage you to submit such information to Cybertipline.org.Sure enough, right at the top of http://www.cybertipline.org/ there is a link to report what you have reported to us at SafeLibraries.org. I highly recommended you submit your information to http://www.cybertipline.org/
Another useful resource: http://www.wiredsafety.org/ and specifically see this page: http://www.wiredsafety.org/911/index.html
Another resource generally is http://www.cyberangels.org/
[Anonymous], you are right to take this matter seriously. You are right to reach out for help. While SafeLibraries.org can help no more than this email, we are happy to provide you with the links we have that provide help for people with your situation as you reported it to us.
Good luck, [Anonymous], and thank you for writing. Understand I've written this email as fast as possible so it may not be perfect.
-SafeLibraries.orgTo report a crime [in Canada], or for immediate police assistance, contact your local RCMP detachment or the police service of jurisdiction in your area.
If you live outside Canada, please contact your local police service and ask them to make a request for assistance from the appropriate Canadian law enforcement agency.