It is highly unlikely that producers of Nevermind, one of the best-selling albums of all times, ever thought that Spencer Elden, whose naked photo they used in their chart-busting album, would return to ‘bite’ them through a law suit many years later. But that is the current story. Spencer Elden is now 30years old and he wants compensation for the ‘abuse’ he suffered. He is asking for financial compensation and not that the persons concerned should be jailed. He is asking financial compensation and not that the persons concerned should be committed to a mental institution.
The case is instructive particularly on the possibility that it could begin a trend where adults who were exploited as children, begin a trend by demanding compensation for all the exploitation they suffered as children. Without doubt, the world is currently attentive to the cries of victims of any sort. It is the season. Former children who have proofs of their abusers and what things were done to them as children, may take the Spencer Elden case as cue, to begin their own fight. The prognosis is not good for those who once took delight in abusing children because time has passed and most of those children are now adults who can speak for themselves and fight, unlike what the situation was like when they were young. While their former abusers may have become weak and vulnerable.
Another aspect of this discourse is the fact that child abuse is not limited to sexual exploitation. There are so many sides to the problem. Children are abused in many ways. Most abusers know the red line they are not supposed to cross but they do so gleefully because there has not been a strong pushback. But if it is established in the consciousness of culture that children who are abused as children return as adults to get justice from their former abusers, the trend will definitely change.