Understanding the Pedophiles Among Us

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jas

theleftyinvestor wrote:

I don't recall the source but I had heard an interesting theory of a biological basis for pedophilia... basically, most of us (with "healthy" sexual attractions) have some sort of filter going on in our brains that identifies family members, children and other people who we shouldn't be sexually attracted to, and shuts off our ability to be attracted to them. Non-attraction to children is not just something we choose... our bodies are actually programmed to make that decision for us. And then for some people, that filter is just not functional, so that even if it's rationally clear that it's wrong to act on those attractions,

This is an interesting idea, but you're really describing here a biological basis against pedophilia. One would think there would be built-in biological barriers against harming our own, or harming the vulnerable. The non-working filter idea doesn't sound true to me, though. We know incest, for example, is extremely common, from its most benign manifestations to its most abhorrent. That would have to be a lot of non-working filters. But if that's the case, it's an argument for acculturation and grooming overriding natural instincts, a notion that I think may apply to porn, especially het male porn.

A biological basis for pedophilia would suggest that at some point, or under some circumstances, it was biologically advantageous, but evidently not for long as it would in that case have become a dominant characteristic. But it's an interesting concept. Again, not to excuse it.

Thing is, I'm not sure there is a standard anymore for "healthy" sexual attractions in humans. In no way do I want to excuse abuse, exploitation or violence of any kind, but I think we tend to conform to what we agree is normal, and that's a social thing. Human sexual expression has proven to be far more diverse than we acknowledge. That's why I'm curious to what degree certain sexual expressions that we "healthy" folks find abhorrent have a biological basis and/or to what extent they are groomed and acculturated (if that's a word). We can certainly agree what's legal and what's socially acceptable, but how much can we really say to someone else "that's fucked up and you need help"? It would help us greatly if we could get to the bottom of some of these questions.

theleftyinvestor

jas wrote:

This is an interesting idea, but you're really describing here a biological basis against pedophilia. One would think there would be built-in biological barriers against harming our own, or harming the vulnerable. The non-working filter idea doesn't sound true to me, though. We know incest, for example, is extremely common, from its most benign manifestations to its most abhorrent. That would have to be a lot of non-working filters. But if that's the case, it's an argument for acculturation and grooming overriding natural instincts, a notion that I think may apply to porn, especially het male porn.

A biological basis for pedophilia would suggest that at some point, or under some circumstances, it was biologically advantageous, but evidently not for long as it would in that case have become a dominant characteristic. But it's an interesting concept. Again, not to excuse it.

Thing is, I'm not sure there is a standard anymore for "healthy" sexual attractions in humans. In no way do I want to excuse abuse, exploitation or violence of any kind, but I think we tend to conform to what we agree is normal, and that's a social thing. Human sexual expression has proven to be far more diverse than we acknowledge. That's why I'm curious to what degree certain sexual expressions that we "healthy" folks find abhorrent have a biological basis and/or to what extent they are groomed and acculturated (if that's a word). We can certainly agree what's legal and what's socially acceptable, but how much can we really say to someone else "that's fucked up and you need help"? It would help us greatly if we could get to the bottom of some of these questions.

Sure, it could also be framed as a biological basis against pedophilia and incest. In the sense that attraction is biologically advantageous, but the filter was there to prevent certain types of attraction from happening.

Regarding incest, there are some instances that have shown that non-attraction to relatives is mainly a function of familiarity growing up and not biological kinship. There are some notable cases where biological close relatives who never grew up together reunited as adults and felt a sexual attraction (whether or not they knew they were relatives), and in some cases acted on it. The cognitive knowledge that they were, for example, siblings was not enough to trigger that suppression of attraction, because they did not feel the kinship of having grown up together.

If such a kinship instinct is what triggers the filter against children - in other words we inherently feel that all children are vulnerable and need to be protected - then a deficiency in the ability to develop that instinct would lead to unfiltered attractions.

theleftyinvestor

Serviam6 wrote:

theleftyinvestor wrote:
(not to mention the issues with mandatory minimum sentencing which can turn a teenage boy who receives a "sext" into a registered sex offender, but that is for another thread)

I was calling for minimum sentencing in another thread. Could you explain what a sext is and how it gets someone a minimum sentence and sex offender status?

The link posted after my post explains it pretty well. The link is Australian but it's happening in the USA too. If your totally age-appropriate teenage girlfriend/boyfriend (e.g. someone who is 15-17 and you are 15-20, and sex with them is legal) sends you a nude photo or video, you now possess child pornography. A mandatory minimum sentence could place you on a sex offender registry and require you to do hard time. If you send that photo to someone else (granted this is never something you should do, but within the realm of bad decisions teenagers typically make that should not be punished disproportionately) you could also be charged with distributing child pornography. And nowadays every teenager has a camera than can instantly send photos to friends or online sites. If forget your phone is configured to upload every photo to Dropbox or Google+ and your gf/bf says "Here, let me pose naked for a photo" then you could become a sex offender in 15 seconds. So the issue with mandatory minimums is drawing a reasonable distinction between young people doing stupid things with technology and sex offenders. There are also jurisdictions where erotic stories and illustrations are treated just as harshly.

As for child porn, I fully acknowledge that it's absolutely revolting. When I was 13, and trying to figure out my sexuality, I sought out photos of teenage guys (because, of course, the guys I desired were age-appropriate...) and only realized a few days later the ethical implications of what I'd found, and never did it again. Is that innocent enough to forgive? And like most of the population my desires aged with me... heck, at 30 I can't even deal with 20 y/o's hitting on me anymore.

Despite valiant efforts to eradicate child porn it's still all over the Internet. I would imagine if it was that easy for me to find it at 13 when the Internet was in its fledgling years, one wouldn't have to look very hard to find it today. It's probably much easier to find child porn online than to find good legitimate support resources for struggling with attraction. Yes, child porn is a depiction of others' abuses. But if a successful intervention can happen at the viewing-only stage, with long-term follow-up, I don't believe that should be treated as harshly as direct abusers.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

On CBC Newsworld: Priest in Sorel-Tracy facing child porn charges.

56-year-old priest worked with church youth group and scouts

A priest from Sorel-Tracy has been arrested in connection with the posession and distribution of child pornography.

Daniel Moreau, 56, appeared in court Friday morning for a bail hearing after he was charged Thursday at the Sorel-Tracy courthouse, via video-conferencing.

The Diocese of Saint-Hyacinthe acknowledged Moreau's charges in a statement released on Friday.

According to diocese policy, the priest has been automatically relieved of his duties and is no longer permitted to exercise his pastoral ministry.

"We deplore and condemn the fact that such acts may have been committed. We understand the distress that such an event can cause within the entire community of Sorel-Tracy, as well as among all those who knew him through his ministry," said Jean Marc Robillard, vicar general of the diocese.

 

Mods: this is the most current open thread I could find. You can move it elsewhere if you wish.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:
Thing is, I'm not sure there is a standard anymore for "healthy" sexual attractions in humans. In no way do I want to excuse abuse, exploitation or violence of any kind, but I think we tend to conform to what we agree is normal, and that's a social thing. Human sexual expression has proven to be far more diverse than we acknowledge. That's why I'm curious to what degree certain sexual expressions that we "healthy" folks find abhorrent have a biological basis and/or to what extent they are groomed and acculturated (if that's a word). We can certainly agree what's legal and what's socially acceptable, but how much can we really say to someone else "that's fucked up and you need help"? It would help us greatly if we could get to the bottom of some of these questions.

What ever happened to the standard of "degree of mutual consent"? Sex is supposed to be a pleasurable way of expressing and sharing love between two consenting adults.  It about people giving something mutually for the pleasure and benefit of the other person.  The degree of appropriateness would then be measured by the degree to which both parties are mutually benefitting from the encounter through giving and sharing.

The problem arises when we teach our children at an early age that girls are to be passive, obedient, and not to enjoy sex and to not talk back.  Boys are taught to be tough, rough, emotionless, and to use women as a commodity for their own selfish sexual desires.  Women are to give of themselves whenever and wherever, and boys are to receive whatever they want, whenever they want.  It is about one gender giving, and the other one taking.  It is also about culturally teaching men that it is socially ok, if not appropriate, to show no remorse for the consequenses of their actions. Globally, men are trained at a very young age to be only heterosexual, and to be sexually narcissistic, and to use heterosexual sex as a statement of power and control over women. (I am not saying that all men are sexual narcissists, and that all men are bad)  Sexual violence then becomes natural and normal to some men.

Refer to the website

The truth about Canadian Peacekeepers 

Quote:

"In 1993 in Bosnia, Canadian military personnel who took over the Bakovici mental hospital shot at, raped, and battered patients; others engaged in countrywide black marketeering and fraud."

 

This is called "Canadian Peacekeeping".

After Japan invaded Hong Kong during the second world war, Japanese Troups mass raped Chinese women. Serbian Forces used mass rape as a weapon of war to terrorize their opponents. There was the horrific Ethnic Cleansing in Kosovo. Forty-eight women are raped every hour in the Congo, Study finds. The 1994 genocide in Rwanda and the mass rape of women and children.

In 1969, there was the infamous My Lai Massacre where American troups mass murdered and raped and pillaged an entire community. If you read the article, the only soldier charged got a reduced sentence, and the three soldiers who tried to stop the pillaging and helped the people were harassed and condemned by US politicians.

A really good article on Rape in the Canadian Military gives a poignant account of how unsafe our Canadian female military personnel are and how horrifically our military system treats the women who do speak out about their experiences.

Far too many men, in far too many cultures, and throughout time, have found sexual gratification with extreme violence, and have felt the divine entitlement to use sex for the direct purpose of causing extreme harm to women and children.  In all these cases, these men have a proud sense of satisfaction in what they have done, and show no remorse for their actions.  The organizations they represent defend and cover up these crimes.

Therefore, when we read articles of some men getting sexually aroused with the very young and vulnerable, why do we act surprised? It is the very same power dynamics at play, the very same sexual narcissism, the very same lack of regard for the other person, the sexual rush of having power and control at the expense of another person's welfare.  It is a universally and culturally ingrained sexual selfishness.

 

 

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:
This is an interesting idea, but you're really describing here a biological basis against pedophilia. One would think there would be built-in biological barriers against harming our own, or harming the vulnerable. The non-working filter idea doesn't sound true to me, though. We know incest, for example, is extremely common, from its most benign manifestations to its most abhorrent. That would have to be a lot of non-working filters. But if that's the case, it's an argument for acculturation and grooming overriding natural instincts, a notion that I think may apply to porn, especially het male porn.

A biological basis for pedophilia would suggest that at some point, or under some circumstances, it was biologically advantageous, but evidently not for long as it would in that case have become a dominant characteristic. But it's an interesting concept. Again, not to excuse it.

Thing is, I'm not sure there is a standard anymore for "healthy" sexual attractions in humans. In no way do I want to excuse abuse, exploitation or violence of any kind, but I think we tend to conform to what we agree is normal, and that's a social thing. Human sexual expression has proven to be far more diverse than we acknowledge. That's why I'm curious to what degree certain sexual expressions that we "healthy" folks find abhorrent have a biological basis and/or to what extent they are groomed and acculturated (if that's a word). We can certainly agree what's legal and what's socially acceptable, but how much can we really say to someone else "that's fucked up and you need help"? It would help us greatly if we could get to the bottom of some of these questions.

I think it is very dangerous to focus on biological reasons for child sexual exploitation.  Once one starts discussing "appropriate" sexual urges versus "inappropriate" sexual urges, one has to define what is appropriate and what is not? Who gets to make these decisions?  Whose interests are going to be served, and at whose expense and why?  Remember that sexual urges are personal and individual, and unless acted on, are innocuous.

Psychiatry makes up cute little latinized words like heterosexual and homosexual and paedophilia, and nymphomaniac, etc. to medicalize human interactions.  Heterosexual for many years was simply a medicalized way of saying that a person is straight.  Homosexual was not a way of simply saying that a person is gay.  Homosexual was labelled as a sickness or a disease in need of treatment or medical intervention.  This conclusion was not based on any science or scientific research but rather on popular social attitudes which were not supportive of gay people.

Some evangelical Christian organizations even went so far as to design therapy programs to "cure" people of their same sex sexual urges.  Exodus International and Elizabeth Moberly, in particular, led a movement to  medically "treat" gay people.  They were to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour, and pray for forgiveness and eternal salvation for their sinfullness.  Behaviour modification programs were established to have lesbians engage in sexual relations with men and to learn to wear make up and look pretty and dainty, and for gay men to sleep with women and to take carpentry courses and learn to play football and other masculine sports. They were prohibited from acting on their natural feelings.

Some people killed themselves in these programs because they could not transform themselves from what they naturally were to what society expected of them. Today, there are those who attend daily 12 step programs to help them abstain from carrying out on their urges, seeing themselves as sinners and diseased rather than repressed by an organization that hates who they are.

I am not saying that child molesters are in this category.  Not even close.  Mutual consent validates most gay relationships. The lack of mutual consent in child sexual exploitaton is an abhorrent and represhensible crime against humanity.

While women have sexual urges, they are culturally expected to be disciplined and to refrain from acting on their feelings outside of marriage, and even in some cultures, within marriage as well.  Why then, do some of these males expect so little of themselves?

About 25 years ago, I had an engaged argument with a Lutheran minister who "treated" so called "paedophiles".  He said it is a biological issue and one of inappropriate sexual urges. I told him that it is an issue of violence and an issue of power and control.  He hollered at me insisting that it wasn't.  He was involved with a program that treats them with electro shock on the testicles to dissuade them from getting sexual urges when presented with pornographic pictures.

Another high profile United Church minister publicly advocated for the mandatory castration of child sex offenders.

I am not an expert on this, but I do firmly believe that you cannot address this issue properly without discussing it in the context of violence and power, and on how this is seen as normal when it comes to women and little girls.  You also have to be very careful to find out who is conducting these biological studies and what credentials they have.  Even psychiatrists need to have their credentials carefully scrutinized.  Remember, psychiatrists labelled homosexuality as a disease in need of "treatment" or "medical intervention" in the past based on no studies or science to back up what they did.  They caused a great deal of unnecessary harm in the process.

When people banter around that treatment programs need to be set up, they are passing the buck to somewhere else to deal with the issue. Then we do not have to look at ourselves and how we relate to one another and the values we instill in our children. 

Do we care if our sons go to bars and make cat calls at the women?  Do we care if our sons have "dogfight" contests to see who can bring the ugliest girl to the bar and think it is funny

 

Quote:
"In a UCLA study, 35% of college-age men said that they would violently rape if they knew that they could get away with it (Malamuth and Donerstein)."

Do we ever wonder if our sons are one of this 35%?  Do we give it much thought?  Do we ever think of setting up mass programs on a national scale to identify these 35% and advocate for castrating them?  What about shock treatments on their testicles? Why the conspicuous silence on this?

As mothers, do we buy our little girls barbie dolls and our sons GI Joe and tonka toys?  Are WE the problem?

Why do we expect so little of our sons?

 

 

jas

While I agree with you, Goggles, I think you're conflating pedophilia with child sexual abuse and with sexual violence against women, which may be different things. One of the premises of this thread was that pedophiles are not necessarily child abusers - meaning, I assume, that pedophiles do not necessarily act on their urges. I am still wondering whether child sexual abusers are necessarily pedophiles. I think it's an important subject to try and understand.

The quote of mine you've used here surprises me because it seems so much in opposition to my position in this thread, where I definitely argue that personal consumption of violent porn must indicate an emotional or psychological problem, and mass consumption of this kind of porn must indicate a social problem. Which I think it does. And I think pedophilia is also a social problem.

jas

See my above post. I would like to know if there is a difference between pedophiles and child sexual abusers.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

While I agree with you, Goggles, I think you're conflating pedophilia with child sexual abuse and with sexual violence against women, which may be different things. 

...

The quote of mine you've used here surprises me because it seems so much in opposition to my position in this thread, where I definitely argue that personal consumption of violent porn must indicate an emotional or psychological problem, and mass consumption of this kind of porn must indicate a social problem. Which I think it does. And I think pedophilia is also a social problem.

I'm not saying that you are supporting child molestation, and I agree with you that child sexual inclinations is a social problem.

I really really really really hate the term paedophilia. First of all, it is a medicalized and contrived term that is of little value.  If you get a dictionary out it benignly refers to adult sexual attraction to underage children. 

However, it is also more commonly used in association with adult males feeling sexually attracted to little boys like "some" Catholic priests and their feelings towards altar boys, and boys in orphanages, etc., just to use as an example.  The general misconception then is that so called "paedophiles" are so called "homosexuals" and in a homophobic society, that means that they are to be hated and reviled because when they act out on their so called "paedophilic urges" they are targeting little boys, who are more valueable than little girls. No one really seems to care if little girls get abused because that would be heterosexual sexual abuse, which simply does not happen. They call this "False Memory Syndrome".

Jas, you have to read between the lines and you are playing into their little name games and the power dynamics of child sexual abuse.

Theo Fleury was even hailed as a hero in this thread.  When Sheldon Kennedy came out that he was sexually abused, Sheldon Kennedy suffered a lot of wrath by speaking out.  He went to Theo for support, and Theo denied that he had been abused.  He had no support to give to Sheldon to make his journey more bearable.  OK, he wasn't ready to face his abuse.  However, after his entire $50 million dollar hockey earnings was spent, and he had no money left, then, he decided to write a book, and now Theo is a hero and a champion to so many.

The context of this violence is about male coaches abusing boys wanting to get into professional hockey or any other professional sport. Yet, female athletes face the very same problems with some of their male coaches, but there is no media coverage of this.  For some reason, it doesn't boil our blood to the same degree.

For many years, womens' organizations had to fight and lobby for funding for sexual assault centres and abuse shelters.  They receive very little recognition for the work they do, and then along comes a hockey player, and he is a hero, and is now an expert.

It seems to me that there is something deeply homophobic and convoluted in our anger choices.

 

 

 

 

 

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

See my above post. I would like to know if there is a difference between pedophiles and child sexual abusers.

Jas, what is the medical label for a male university student who admits that he would forcibly rape a woman if he knew that he could get away with it? If they showed these young adult males a snuff movie, would they get sexually aroused?  And how many of these religous "experts" really do care?

What is the difference?

jas

Goggles Pissano wrote:
I really really really really hate the term paedophilia. First of all, it is a medicalized and contrived term that is of little value.  If you get a dictionary out it benignly refers to adult sexual attraction to underage children. 

However, it is also more commonly used in association with adult males feeling sexually attracted to little boys like "some" Catholic priests and their feelings towards altar boys, and boys in orphanages, etc., just to use as an example.  

I'm not sure this is true. I think pedophilia is thought of in terms of abuse of both boys and girls. Pederasty is the attraction of older men to younger men and boys.

Quote:
The general misconception then is that so called "paedophiles" are so called "homosexuals" and in a homophobic society, that means that they are to be hated and reviled because when they act out on their so called "paedophilic urges" they are targeting little boys, who are more valueable than little girls.

Yes, I think there is some validity to this point, at least with regard to sexual abuse of boys.

Quote:
No one really  seems to care if little girls get abused because that would be heterosexual sexual abuse, which simply does not happen.  

I don't think this is true at all. I would think in fact it was primarily the women's movement that brought to light the extent of the social problem of child sexual abuse, and the famous statistic for women of 1 in 3 (I believe). If anything, sexual abuse of girls has traditionally received more attention than that of boys, probably in part because of the male reluctance to speak of it.

Quote:
They call this "False Memory Syndrome".

This doesn't follow for me at all. False Memory Syndrome is the alleged manipulation of a person's memory by a therapist to recall acts of abuse. (And while we're talking about it...) While it's certainly feasible that memory can be suggestible, to relegate all recovered memory to "False Memory Syndrome" is bogus, pseudoscientific crap. It is also extremely dangerous and, at times, hostile to contemporary therapeutic approaches to child sexual abuse. I mean, if you're going to cast doubt on all memory processes in this fashion, who's to say anything happened to anybody, ever? It's stupid, pseudoscientific garbage. And there are people here on Babble who will argue in its defence. You can probably guess who.

Quote:
Jas, you have to read between the lines and you are playing into their little name games and the power dynamics of child sexual abuse.

I don't agree with your analysis of the use of the term pedophilia. And if I accept there's a distinction between pedophilia and child sexual abuse, what other term would I use to describe a pedophile? 

Quote:
....For many years, womens' organizations had to fight and lobby for funding for sexual assault centres and abuse shelters.  They receive very little recognition for the work they do, and then along comes a hockey player, and he is a hero, and is now an expert.

It seems to me that there is something deeply homophobic and convoluted in our anger choices.

Yes, I think this observation, made by others as well, is accurate.

jas

Goggles Pissano wrote:

jas wrote:

See my above post. I would like to know if there is a difference between pedophiles and child sexual abusers.

Jas, what is the medical label for a male university student who admits that he would forcibly rape a woman if he knew that he could get away with it?

Not "pedophile".

Quote:
If they showed these young adult males a snuff movie, would they get sexually aroused? 

I don't know. This is one extreme of a continuum of sexual violence. It is presumably not pedophilia.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

Goggles Pissano wrote:

jas wrote:

See my above post. I would like to know if there is a difference between pedophiles and child sexual abusers.

Jas, what is the medical label for a male university student who admits that he would forcibly rape a woman if he knew that he could get away with it?

Not "pedophile".

Quote:
If they showed these young adult males a snuff movie, would they get sexually aroused? 

I don't know. This is one extreme of a continuum of sexual violence. It is presumably not pedophilia.

There is no medical term, and that is the point.  I also do not agree that this is an extreme of a continuum.  If 35% is accurate, this is mainstream, and it is the norm.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

Goggles Pissano wrote:
I really really really really hate the term paedophilia. First of all, it is a medicalized and contrived term that is of little value.  If you get a dictionary out it benignly refers to adult sexual attraction to underage children. 

However, it is also more commonly used in association with adult males feeling sexually attracted to little boys like "some" Catholic priests and their feelings towards altar boys, and boys in orphanages, etc., just to use as an example.  

I'm not sure this is true. I think pedophilia is thought of in terms of abuse of both boys and girls. Pederasty is the attraction of older men to younger men and boys.

That is right.  However, the general public on the street uses paedophilia to mean the attraction of older men to younger men and boys, and this is the context in which it is commonly used.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

Quote:
No one really  seems to care if little girls get abused because that would be heterosexual sexual abuse, which simply does not happen.  

I don't think this is true at all. I would think in fact it was primarily the women's movement that brought to light the extent of the social problem of child sexual abuse, and the famous statistic for women of 1 in 3 (I believe). If anything, sexual abuse of girls has traditionally received more attention than that of boys, probably in part because of the male reluctance to speak of it.

Yes, it took many many years of fighting by the womens' movement to get this issue acknowledged, and it was not an easy process.  I do recall on another thread that I posted the psychiatric textbook "scientific research" on this issue from the year 1975 which dismissed sexual abuse as a legitimate concern citing that the sexual abuse of little girls by their fathers occurred in 1 in 1,000,000 families.  I also posted on another thread the discovery that psychiatry curriculums devote 1-2 pages of their entire textbook readings to womens' issues.  Male doctors focus research on issues that they seem to find relevant.  Womens' issues and the sexual abuse of little girls does not register on their radar. Psychiatrists and medical doctors should be the leaders in this field of study, but they aren't.  It took women themselves to organize and force people to take notice, and it was never an easy course of action because people generally are indifferent.

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

Quote:
No one really  seems to care if little girls get abused because that would be heterosexual sexual abuse, which simply does not happen.  

,,,

Quote:
They call this "False Memory Syndrome".

This doesn't follow for me at all. False Memory Syndrome is the alleged manipulation of a person's memory by a therapist to recall acts of abuse. (And while we're talking about it...) While it's certainly feasible that memory can be suggestible, to relegate all recovered memory to "False Memory Syndrome" is bogus, pseudoscientific crap. It is also extremely dangerous and, at times, hostile to contemporary therapeutic approaches to child sexual abuse. I mean, if you're going to cast doubt on all memory processes in this fashion, who's to say anything happened to anybody, ever? It's stupid, pseudoscientific garbage. And there are people here on Babble who will argue in its defence. You can probably guess who.

Exactly! So, why does this not follow for you?

First of all, Sigmund Freud, a psychologist, coined the term "Oedipus Complex", which meant that little girls who were being sexually abused by adult males were responsible for the abuse and initiated their own abuse and that adult men were passive victims in the whole process. 

Then came the denial medical studies which concluded that father daughter incest occurred in 1 in 1,000,000 families, which meant that child sexual abuse wasn't happening and girls who spoke out about it were wicked liars. They had their scientific proof.

Then came the womens' movement with their studies which proved their finding to be wrong.

Then came "false memory syndrome" a new medical term which meant that little girls who were being sexually abused were NOT being sexually abused.  Ideas were being planted into their heads by evil therapists who were brainwashing them into thinking that these things were happening, and that these memories are not true.  You yourself called this "bogus pseudoscientific garbage".

The mainstream medical community has come up with every angle it can to deny the existance of child sexual abuse of little girls by adult males.  They have resorted to fraudulent research and "bogus pseudoscientific garbage" to wager an organized "scientific war" to discredit the reality of womens' childhood traumas.   They prefer to pretend that girls don't get sexually abused rather than face the reality that there is a real problem out there. They call this "medical treatment" and "scientific expertise".  These so called medical experts will even use these terms like false memory syndrome in court to testify against women who claim that they were abused as children in order to discredit their stories of abuse.

Caissa

The following case has been absorbing Saint Johners this year.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2013/03/11/nb-donnie-snook-plea.html

jas

Goggles Pissano wrote:

That is right.  However, the general public on the street uses paedophilia to mean the attraction of older men to younger men and boys, and this is the context in which it is commonly used.

No, I still disagree with this. I think the general public uses the term, correctly, to mean a predator of both boys and girls. You may have a point that the term pedophile is now possibly the worst thing you can call anybody - worse than rapist, probably - and that this vilification is fueled in large part by homophobia (meaning it's bad and wrong to abuse girls, but utterly sick and vile to abuse boys). However, I do not see evidence that the term itself is used to denote exclusively homosexual predation.

 

Goggles Pissano

jas wrote:

Goggles Pissano wrote:

That is right.  However, the general public on the street uses paedophilia to mean the attraction of older men to younger men and boys, and this is the context in which it is commonly used.

No, I still disagree with this. I think the general public uses the term, correctly, to mean a predator of both boys and girls. You may have a point that the term pedophile is now possibly the worst thing you can call anybody - worse than rapist, probably - and that this vilification is fueled in large part by homophobia (meaning it's bad and wrong to abuse girls, but utterly sick and vile to abuse boys). However, I do not see evidence that the term itself is used to denote exclusively homosexual predation.

I do not have evidence to back up what I am saying.  I simply have had many conversations with a lot of people about the topic, and I am sure that if someone conducted a poll and asked the general public on what they thought paedophilia was, a lot, ie. the majority of people would say that they believed it meant adult males being attracted to young boys, and that it is simply another word for homosexual male but with a young boy obsession.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I don't agree. My anecdotal evidence tells me that the people I have talked to think it is about the abuse of children.  I find the debate over whether pedophilia is different than child abuse rather disingenuous.  At least the Catholics know that seriously contemplating things that are morally wrong is itself wrong.  The act of raping children is illegal and rightly so but in my mind contemplating it is also morally reprehensible just as much as thinking about raping women is morally reprehensible.  Both need to be condemned in the strongest terms not seen as just another sexual preference.

Bacchus

Not to mention the act of cotemplating it (or acting on desires) shows no ability for empathy. NO empathy and you are a psychopath

theleftyinvestor

Well, there's act of abuse - clearly and flagrantly wrong, no argument. I believe treatment is an important part of addressing and preventing abuse, but that doesn't mean abusers get off the hook.

There's the act of seriously contemplating abuse - if you have never abused anyone but you have reached this stage, are you beyond help? Or can an intervention still prevent someone from being harmed at this stage?

One step further down the ladder is the state of having desires for abusive acts, but also having the empathy to know that they are wrong. The desire itself is not a crime, but it is evidently problematic. And here we also have to differentiate - there are people who have desires involving abusive scenarios that can be absolutely satisfied by roleplay with consenting adults. (Yes for most of us it's icky to think about adults roleplaying child abuse, but if nobody gets harmed, the nation has no business in that bedroom, right?)

And then somewhere in a grey area are the people who have abusive desires, cannot fulfil them in a consensual manner, have never abused, have not abused and are not planning to because they know it's wrong, but are still at risk of being future abusers. If these ones could come forward safely to seek treatment, I believe it would reduce the number of future abuses. That's not to say that all abusers come from this place - certainly some are completely unable to recognize the ethical implications of their actions.

jas

theleftyinvestor wrote:

(Yes for most of us it's icky to think about adults roleplaying child abuse, but if nobody gets harmed, the nation has no business in that bedroom, right?)

As long as the role play stays private and is not reproduced for public consumption, yes.

 

jas

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I find the debate over whether pedophilia is different than child abuse rather disingenuous. ..  The act of raping children is illegal and rightly so but in my mind contemplating it is also morally reprehensible just as much as thinking about raping women is morally reprehensible.  Both need to be condemned in the strongest terms not seen as just another sexual preference.

I think there may be validity to the argument. I've certainly seen accounts of pedophiles not feeling good about their sexual preferences. Do we see the same from men who like to view violent porn? 

[Edited:] I also wonder if the sexual abuse of girls by men comes from a different psychology and power dynamic than the exclusive attraction to/abuse of children, boys or girls, by men, and this is what I was asking above. Are men who rape little girls necessarily pedophiles - people who can't get aroused with adults - or are they equally comfortable raping women? Do men who exclusively prey on children also rape women and other men? I think there may be more to the story here. 

[Fixed my confused dichotomy there.]

Bacchus

Um the depiction of child abuse for public comsumption (IE porn) is actually illegal.

 

You cant portray under 18s nor can you pretend to portray under 18s, even if the actors involved are all over 18

jas

Yes, that's why the nation would then have business in that bedroom.

Bacchus

You can however, write about it all you want.

 

I guess you could use dolls too, I dont know about that

jas

Bacchus wrote:

You can however, write about it all you want.

I guess you could use dolls too, I dont know about that

Not according to the law.

theleftyinvestor

jas wrote:

theleftyinvestor wrote:

(Yes for most of us it's icky to think about adults roleplaying child abuse, but if nobody gets harmed, the nation has no business in that bedroom, right?)

As long as the role play stays private and is not reproduced for public consumption, yes.

And that gets into a whole other discussion. E.g. if a scene of adults roleplaying child abuse is written as erotica, and the writing makes it clear they are adults... Nobody wants to be the one to test that case in court. (But on the other side of the coin, erotica depicting consensual adult rape role-play already exists and is out there. An example was included in a class reader for a sexualities course I took, and there were little hints throughout of the fact that it described a planned consensual scene.)

Bacchus wrote:

Um the depiction of child abuse for public comsumption (IE porn) is actually illegal.

You cant portray under 18s nor can you pretend to portray under 18s, even if the actors involved are all over 18

What if adult actors play the role of adults who present themselves as adults and then engage in age role play? Again I doubt anyone wants to be the one to test that case in court.

jas

theleftyinvestor wrote:
Bacchus wrote:

You cant portray under 18s nor can you pretend to portray under 18s, even if the actors involved are all over 18

What if adult actors play the role of adults who present themselves as adults and then engage in age role play? Again I doubt anyone wants to be the one to test that case in court.

Yes, this is just what I was going to ask.

If you take the hypothetical case of porn that clearly shows adults (not a young-looking adult intended to look like a child) but clearly an adult dressed up as a child, in a kind of caricature, I would be surprised if this was prosecutable. 

 

Bacchus

jas wrote:

Bacchus wrote:

You can however, write about it all you want.

I guess you could use dolls too, I dont know about that

Not according to the law.

 

That was overturned on an appeal for a convicted pedophile, the only success he had actually in any of his appeals.

jas

If you're referring to Robin Sharpe, that was discussed here, and the exception seems to be for works of the imagination intended for private use.

Bacchus

Yes but regardless, they dont seem to prosecute the many many sites that have written erotica including that.

 

Im guessing they leave it alone on free speech/literature grounds (you know, the argument that goes if you pull this guys story and prosecute, then 'Lolita has to go off the shelves)

jas

It might simply be that those sites are in the States, which, according to this legal observer (linked by pookie in the Flanagan thread) only prohibits materials using real children.

Bacchus

The few investigators I have talked to have all said they would never prosecute a written version ever and were warned not to by a proscutor unless accompanied by photos or other offenses first.

 

Too great a chance for a total dismissal based on freedom of speech, expression etc

There are a few of those sites in canada and many have canadian contributors on the american ones, which could still be prosecuted

 

jas

That wouldn't surprise me too much. You've talked to child porn investigators? More than one? :) Under what circumstances?

Bacchus

More than one, as well as CAS and other officials. Helping an investigation, having a friend who is pals with a lot of cops and dealing with officials at various hospitals when my kid (now almost 4) was an infant.

 

It was very lumminating to talk to them all, especially CAS

 

Fidel

jas wrote:
I'm not convinced that children in poverty are more at risk of a range of abuse, and I certainly don't think a connection has been established that they are more prone to sexual abuse specifically, and I think that would be a dangerous assumption to make.

Poverty and Sexual Violence (U.S.)

Quote:
Research shows an undeniable link between poverty and sexual violence. ...

People with the lowest socioeconomic status are at greater risk for violence (Jewkes, Sen, Garcia-Moreno, 2002).

And a University of California study says that political conservatives have greater tolerance for economic inequality. Society reaps what they sow.

jas

I'm now officially confused about what this thread is about.

Fidel

jas wrote:

I'm now officially confused about what this thread is about.

We're talking about understanding pedophiles and the way they roll.  And if you are wondering whether there is a perfect one to one relationship between poverty and sexual abuse of children, I would guess that there probably isn't. But it appears that poverty is a contributing factor in a wide range of sex abuse cases in general.

Children are the most vulnerable.

Foster children are vulnerable, for example.

And foster children tend to come from broken homes and of a certain socioeconomic status. They are taken from the familial home and placed in the care of strangers and so on. What part of this is difficult to understand? Do we require detailed case by case examples? Is anything less than a direct relationship not worthwhile noting?

I'm afraid that like very many phenomenon,  pedophilia and sexual abuse of children are probably not black and white issues. Black and white might be how political conservatives view the world and everything in it, but it does not describe my POV nor the views of a large subset of human beings on this planet. Real human beings are more complex than that.

jas

The report you cited discusses a link between poverty and sexual violence, of which child sexual abuse is one aspect. It makes a good argument for the vulnerability of children in financially unstable upbringings. As I've stated before, I think that it's dangerous to assume that child sexual abuse occurs mainly in poor families. It doesn't. It occurs across socio-economic categories, and may even be under reported in higher income social circumstances.

And I still have no idea what any of this has to do with pedophilia.

From the report you cite:

The most common offender relationships to child victims in substantiated reports of sexual abuse were: 18% father, 18% babysitter, 12% paramour of parent, 12% other household member, and 11% sibling. 

Goggles Pissano

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I don't agree. My anecdotal evidence tells me that the people I have talked to think it is about the abuse of children. 

I asked around at work yesterday, and you and Jas are right. Most referred to children in general, and one mentioned little girls.

Goggles Pissano

Fidel wrote:

We're talking about understanding pedophiles and the way they roll.  

Why not set up a thread which discusses understanding men biologically and psychologically who like say "plus sized" women?  We can even discuss the filters that go off in men's brains that would discourage this kind of "socially inappropriate" attraction.  We can even hypothesize the superior vs inferior genetic attraction rationale throughout evolution to support our ideas while we are at it, assuming that non-plus sized women are, in fact, genetically superior, because we have a multi-billion dollar fashion industry telling us daily that this is how we are to view women based on their size. 

Why not examine paedophilia from the viewpoint that children are simply an expedient channel for male penetration?  They are easy to penetrate, they are available in large numbers, and it is hard for children to fight or to talk back.

Men get urges, and there are men who like the sense of power and control they have over another person while they are getting themselves off.

 

theleftyinvestor

Goggles Pissano wrote:

Fidel wrote:

We're talking about understanding pedophiles and the way they roll.  

Why not set up a thread which discusses understanding men biologically and psychologically who like say "plus sized" women? 

Because... an attraction to plus-sized women can be satisfed in ways that are non-abusive, ethical and legal?

Goggles Pissano wrote:
Why not examine paedophilia from the viewpoint that children are simply an expedient channel for male penetration?  They are easy to penetrate, they are available in large numbers, and it is hard for children to fight or to talk back.

Men get urges, and there are men who like the sense of power and control they have over another person while they are getting themselves off.

Are you suggesting that any man who likes a sense of sexual power would naturally be attracted to children? That just doesn't jive with me. I have been with guys who very much enjoy having sexual power and control... over adult men. And they have no trouble meeting other adult men who want that experience. And they are not into doing the same with women or any other "channel for male penetration". (I can't speak to the ones who are into women.)

Sure, there are some men out there who would penetrate a tree stump if it were warm, but to me it just seems that there's something biologically or psychologically miswired if an adult is turned on by young children.

Fidel

jas wrote:

And I still have no idea what any of this has to do with pedophilia.

From the report you cite:

The most common offender relationships to child victims in substantiated reports of sexual abuse were: 18% father, 18% babysitter, 12% paramour of parent, 12% other household member, and 11% sibling. 

I don't understand what it is you're saying. Are you suggesting that none of them are pedophiles?

ennir

I think GP has a point, we live in a profoundly misogynistic culture yet certain behaviors towards women are not pathologized whereas other behaviors towards children are, in both cases we are talking about those who cannot protect themselves from the aggressor.  I don't want to sidetrack the issue of understanding pedophilia but I think it is critical to recognize that what we refer to as pedophilia is just the extreme of what is dysfunctional and that the dysfunctional is the norm.

jas

Fidel wrote:

I don't understand what it is you're saying. Are you suggesting that none of them are pedophiles?

No, but they are likely not all, are they?

I think I may understand a bit more what GP was getting at. At the very least, here's how I see it: pedophilia becomes the scapegoat for all child sexual abuse when in fact there are child sexual abusers who are not pedophiles. Child sexual abuse occurs both within and outside of pedophilia, but pedophilia becomes the whipping horse partly because of its associations with man-boy predation, and cultural indignation around that. And this scapegoating actually serves to mask the problem (perhaps greater problem?) of child sexual abuse occurring outside of pedophilia, and which is part of a larger problem of misogyny and sexual assault in general.

But for this reason, I see it as all the more important that we separate the issues of child sexual abuse and pedophilia, and try to understand how much, or how little, pedophilia factors into overall incidence of child sexual abuse.

 

Fidel

jas wrote:

I'm not convinced that children in poverty are more at risk of a range of abuse, and I certainly don't think a connection has been established that they are more prone to sexual abuse specifically, and I think that would be a dangerous assumption to make.

Poverty, early childbearing, and child maltreatment: A multinomial analysis Bong Joo Lee, Robert M. George, University of Chicago (1999)

    Quote:
    We examine child maltreatment among the 1982–1988 birth cohorts in Illinois specific to three categories of maltreatment allegations: sexual abuse, other types of abuse, and neglect. Using multinomial logit regression, we examine the effects of seven independent variables on allegation-specific child maltreatment. The independent variables examined are mother's age at birth, community child poverty rate, birth year, region, sex of the child, birth order and race or ethnicity. We find that, even after controlling for other sociodemographic variables, maternal age and poverty are each strong predictors of a substantiated report of all types of child maltreatment. The results indicate that the two factors combined compound the risk of being a victim of substantiated child maltreatment. This finding suggests that a more comprehensive approach that aims to lessen the economic stress of young mothers while addressing their parenting skills may have a direct effect on reducing child maltreatment.

    And this was analysis of cases of "substantiated maltreatment."  For what reasons would child abuse remain unsubstantiated? 

    Wilbur Latch wrote:
    Dr. Wilbur Larch: Goodnight, you princes of Maine, you kings of New England.

    What an awful thing it would be to know that you are not wanted. Just terrible.

    Goggles Pissano

    theleftyinvestor wrote:

    Are you suggesting that any man who likes a sense of sexual power would naturally be attracted to children?

    No, I'm not saying that at all.  It depends on what you mean by sexual power, and in what context.  Two adult people who engage in role playing are doing so as adults and in a consensual manner.  No one hopefully is getting harmed.  I am saying hopefully because I cannot speak in absolute black and white terms and I don't want to get into trouble by people who object to say S & M or other arrangements because of the power dynamics involved.  Having said that, the idea of consent is implicit in the framework you alluded to in your post, and I believe it to be consent.

    I think for SOME men, it is more like robbing a convenience store. Some people who steal get a rush from the threat of getting caught. They know that what they are doing is wrong, but they love the thrill and excitement, and the exhileration can become addicting.

    theleftyinvestor wrote:
    Sure, there are some men out there who would penetrate a tree stump if it were warm, but to me it just seems that there's something biologically or psychologically miswired if an adult is turned on by young children.

    It could be that some of them are turned on by young children.  I believe that they are tuned in only to themselves.  It all boils down to using other people for their own selfish purposes.  Children are young. That makes them fresh, easy, and accessible.

     

     

     

     

    Goggles Pissano

    I believe that it is seriously misguided to focus on the biological reasons for paedophilia.  The biological focus implies that men are somehow incapable of controlling their sexual urges.  Therefore, we need to understand why paedophiles become aroused by children so that we can remedy these arousals. We must never expect men to somehow control their urges nor to behave responsibly when confronted with these urges.

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