Can children be ‘born evil’?

11 Feb

Jamie Bulger’s mother thinks so, and who can blame her. Your son, a toddler, murdered by two ten year old boys has got to be something that will be for ever in the news, and never far from her mind. 

denise fergus

Denise Fergus: Jamie Bulger’s mother

Venebles and his friend, Robert Thompson were ten when they abducted and killed little Jamie Bulger, but Venebles has since been arrested and imprisoned for possessing child pornography. 

‘People say children are not born evil, but Venebles was’

says Ms Fergus. 

Is that possible? I posted a poem a few weeks ago, by Louis MacNeice: Prayer before birth. Have a read. It is written as if the horrors of the world are inevitable and is pleasing that we protect the child, even before it is born. 

Is a child not a product of its upbringing? 

We have heard here and there in the news shocking stories about children raised feral, child abuse, all sorts of horrific goings on, so, is a child a product of its upbringing? What on earth might have happened to Jon Venebles to make him grow up like he has?

I used to teach an autistic boy, who at the age of 15 still slept in his mothers bed. He and his mother both thought this was OK  I found out almost ten years later, that a number of years after he left school he was arrested and imprisoned and is now a convinced pedophile. 

Was he born evil? I doubt it. Was he given the wrong messages as a child that, along with his autism, made it difficult for him to integrate into society and understand right from wrong? probably. 

Could this have happened to Jon Venebles? Who knows. Was he ‘born evil’? I struggle to agree with that statement. 



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