This is from a session about a paper called “Najib Ali, A One-Woman Campaign Against Pedophilia,” by Louise Feather. There were many problems with this paper, including repeated conflation of pedophilia, a sexual orientation, with child molestation, an act that is typically a crime. There were numerous remarks about fighting, preventing, combating pedophilia.
Pedophilia can be neither fought nor combated. It’s a sexual orientation. It simply is. It exists. Once it sets on in a man, it’s for life. 3% of men are primary pedophiles who are more attracted to children under 13 than to mature persons. That’s 3.3 million men in the US. Good luck putting them all in prison! Pedophilia needs to be managed.
Pedophiles who have not offended deserve our compassion. They didn’t choose their orientation. Pedophiles need to get with a caring therapist and see them regularly to keep from offending. Many pedophiles can go decades without offending. A followup of pedophiles released from prison found that 25 years later, only 50% had offended. So 50% of a cohort of offending pedophiles were able to go 25 years without molesting a child.
Consequently, pedophilia cannot be prevented because we do not have any idea what causes it in the first place. We simply know that 3% of US adult males end up with this orientation.
Here in the UK we have finally come around to the understanding that any form of abuse, be it verbal, physical or sexual will have a lasting and detrimental effect on the victim.
From a comment from a session on “Najib Ali, A One-Woman Campaign Against Pedophilia,” by Louise Feather
There is no evidence that this is true. See Ritter et al for the definitive statement on CSA. Far be it for me to defend psychological, physical, or sexual abuse of children, but there’s no evidence that any of those has lasting harmful effects on everyone subjected to it. My whole family was subjected to a lot of psychological abuse. I’m certainly not harmed by it but choice of my own.
I have no idea about physical abuse. Most people can work their way out of whatever damage this sort of thing caused. Of course, in some cases, there is long-lasting harm.
I work in mental health and I seldom find a client who is damaged from a bad familial upbringing, barring extreme situations. Instead most seem damaged from peer relations, especially those from junior high and high school. Many of these folks are still suffering decades later in their 30’s.
It’s not helpful to tell the hundreds of millions subjected to this sort of thing growing up that they are damaged for life unless you want to create hundreds of billions of professional victims, which I suspect is the feminist project.
Back to child sexual abuse, meaning molestation of children under 13. That leaves out all the childhood sex play, peer sex among teens, and statutory rape, which usually leave no ill effects at all.
I certainly don’t wish to advocate CSA of little kids.
However, in many cases there was no coercion. That is, the molestation was consensual. Kids can consent to sex of course; it’s just that legally we say they can’t because they are too young to make that decision.
At any rate, molestation is divided into with and without coercion. Even coercive molestation usually does not rise to the level of rape. Child rape is terrible and should never be conflated with run of the mill molestation. It is usually done by a stranger, a weapon is often used, the child is often abducted, and injury or death is not uncommon.
The psychiatric literature is clear. Coerced child molestation can and is often quite harmful to the child, with harm extending to adulthood. However, non-coerced child molestation usually does not leave lasting ill effects. That is, most subjected to it simply work their way out of it over time. I have been involved with a few women who were molested and worked their way out of it without lasting harm.
The fact that many are able to get over being molested does not mean it should be allowed. Most of us don’t want to live in a society where adults have sex with little kids, regardless of whether the kids work their way out of it eventually or not.
Promoting perpetual victimization or lifetime victimization is not a feminist value IMHO. It certainly does not benefit the victim.