April 7th, 2009

Children's author KP Bath arrested on child pornography charges

I've never heard of this guy, KP Bath, but KGW reports that a local children’s author has been charged with three felony counts involving child pornography. "Kevin Patrick Bath, 50, was arraigned in U.S. District Court an indictment charging him with distributing, transferring and receiving child porn. ... The writer publishes under the name K.P. Bath and had previously volunteered at a local children’s library, according to charging documents. Bath's works include the Castle Cant series of mysteries. [Here's an example: The Secret of Castle Cant]. Federal authorities said Bath was trading child porn with others in Washington and Ohio. More than 100 video files and thousands of child porn images were found on his computer, many depicting sexual abuse of very young children."

The Oregonian has an even worse article here, in which he told someone online "I wish a nine-year-old were doing that to me," and saying that many of the videos showed crying as they were molested, and some of them were tied up.

Has anyone read his books? Or met him? Little, Brown, which was supposed to put out a new book in 2010, is probably not very happy right now.

My friend's husband who is a defense attorney says "chi-mos" (child molesters) don't fare well in prison. Somehow, I'm not feeling too sorry about that right now.



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Alexander McCall Smith on "It's only a story"

Alexander McCall Smith has an interesting essay in the Wall Street Journal about what writers owe readers, and how people react to fiction. In part, it says, "It can be very inhibiting for an author if he or she knows that what happens in fiction is going to be taken so seriously. I write serial novels in newspapers and have learned the hard way that people will readily attribute the views expressed by characters to their authors. In one of my "Scotland Street" novels a character called Bruce, a rather narcissistic young man, made disparaging remarks about his hometown. Although these were not the views I hold about that particular town, I was roundly taken to task, with the local member of the Scottish Parliament suggesting that I should be forced to apologize to the offended citizens. I pointed out that these were the views of a fictional character, who was just the type to make such remarks. That did not help."

"In another novel, I had Isabel Dalhousie give up breastfeeding rather too quickly for the liking of the leader of a pro-breastfeeding organization. Again I was told that I should make a public apology to those who believed in persisting with breastfeeding. That sort of thing is quite alarming, and it is such people who need to be told, politely but firmly, that it is just a story.""

Read more here.



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