web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Pedophiles’

We Are Not Under Attack By the LGBT Community

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

A strident op-ed titled “We Are Under Attack by the LGBTPed Community” was published on 5TJT.com and has been picked up by YWN. The article argues that government bans on so called Conversion Therapy is an assault on religious freedom. This sort of therapy has been discussed on this blog previously. See: Conversion Therapy.

The upshot of the article is that Agudath Israel, OU, and NCYI need to lobby against these bans that, as the author concludes, “deprives both minors and therapists the freedom of seeking out therapies that will encourage redirection for those struggling with unhealthy physical attractions. This is a direct assault on religious freedoms in this state by the LGBTPed community, and we must put in an all-out effort to quash this bill.”

There is so much wrong with this op-ed. Too many of the assumptions in the article are based on familiar, and erroneous, conservative Daas Radio talking points.

The headline is obscene. It implies that there is equivalence between LGBT and pedophiles. Leaving aside the issue of whether these tendencies are inborn or learned, or whether they are deviant tendencies, LGBT and pedophilia cannot be uttered in the same sentence with a straight face. One who is LGBT and acts on those tendencies with a consenting adult may be a sinner in the eyes of some religions or God. However, they are acting in a loving and respectful manner. A pedophile who acts on their tendencies is taking advantage of a child. This is a violent, selfish, abusive act. There is no moral equivalence between the two and we should not allow ourselves to fall into the trap of equating the two under any circumstance.

There is an assumption that Orthodox organizations do not work together with Christian lobbyists. This is incorrect. The frum organizations joined Christian forces in opposing the “contraception mandate” portion of the American Healthcare Act. (See: Controlling Birth Control and OU and Agudah Unite Against Contraceptives on DovBear). There is plenty of evidence that Orthodox Jewish organizations and conservative Christians work together on many things. This is just something that they are (thankfully) choosing to ignore (so far).

Banning Conversion Therapy is not an assault on freedom nor is it an attack against religion. The 9th Circuit correctly ruled that these bans are not an assault on freedom because they do not regulate speech. They regulate professional activity. We are guaranteed freedom of speech, not freedom of professional activity. It’s no different than any law that regulates psychologists or lawyers or really any profession where the bulk of the work being done is speech. When speech is used in a professional context like therapy it is not simply speech, it becomes conduct. The government has the right to regulate professional conduct. Just because much of the conduct is speech, the power the government has to regulate the conduct does not magically become limited.

Also, as Professor Volokh notes, even though the science of whether something is harmful or helpful may change, as long as the government leaves the issue open for reevaluation based on the current science, the law is fair. It’s not an assault on freedom. Orthodox Jews are free to teach Leviticus and we are free to deny any religious rights and privileges to anyone we so choose. But the state can still regulate therapy. This is not an attack on religion.

Further, the horror stories of JONAH participants is enough to discourage any of us from lamenting laws that prohibit them from engaging in dangerous forms of therapy. Disallowing this kind of therapy protects children and teens from potential harms. I’ve been told that JONAH also provides therapy to sex abusers, oftentimes together with LGBT people. This is a clear message to LGBT people that they are viewed as equals to sex abusers. Protecting its citizens is certainly within the rights of a state. The lack of scientific evidence to support Conversion Therapy combined with the harmful activities associated with organizations like JONAH are enough to support the state’s decision to ban it.

Of Homosexuals, Pedophiles, and Differences

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013
 I was just sent a link to a blog called Together We Heal (TWH). This is a website whose stated purpose ‘is for any who suffered the trauma of Child Sexual Abuse. Provide a safe forum, educate any seeking info and expose the predators methods’.
What I read there was both shocking and yet hard to dispute. And yet I’m sure it will anger, survivors of abuse, their advocates, and the homosexual community.
The thrust of this article is that there is a movement among professional psychologists to stop calling pedophilia an illness, and to refer to it as simply a sexual orientation. We are after all dealing with a sexual orientation that is virtually impossible to change. Just like same sex attraction (SSA). SSA was once considered a mental disorder. That changed in the 70s when the APA redefined it. Which of course change the entire culture of homosexuality from one of shame to one of pride. Homosexuals who once hid their orientation are now so accepted that gay marriages are being performed by some clergy.
Now before anyone wants to come over here and shoot me, I am not saying that there aren’t very important differences. Leaving religious issues aside, homosexual sex between two consenting adults is a lot different from sex between an adult and a minor. By definition there is no such thing consenting adults when it comes to pedophilia. When an adult has sex with a minor it has been amply demonstrated that the effects on the minor will have lifelong devastating consequences.
For Orthodox Jews, more often than not that includes going OTD. But even worse – many victims drop out of society completely, some end up in the streets; some as alcoholics or drug users; and some even commit suicide. How many times have I read a survivor story about how well adjusted, productive, and studious he (or she) was prior to the abuse, only to become rebellious, unproductive scholastically,  and eventually drop out of everything afterwards. There seems to be an almost endless stream of reports from survivors with stories like that.
Which makes something I wasn’t aware of quite shocking. From the article:

In 1998 The APA issued a report claiming “that the ‘negative potential’ of adult sex with children was ‘overstated’ and that ‘the vast majority of both men and women reported no negative sexual effects from childhood sexual abuse experiences.”

Does this not fly in the face of everything we know about child sexual abuse?! This report is not a layman’s report. It is not Satmar, Agudah, or Lakewood saying this. It is the report of a professional organization that studies these things. The same one that changed homosexuality from a mental illness into a sexual orientation; an organization whose many members treat victims of sex abuse successfully! And it came out 15 years ago! I have never seen it quoted until now. I am unaware of any APA report to the contrary. And yet every professional and every survivor I have ever spoken to or seen quoted on this subject says the exact opposite! I tend to agree with the survivors and the experts I’ve spoken to. What is going on here?
Getting back to pedophilia as a sexual orientation – just like heterosexuality or homosexuality, I can obviously see the danger in equating pedophiles to homosexuals to heterosexuals. Whatever one may say about these three groups of people religiously, I don’t think there can be any doubt that their sexual orientation cannot be changed. Nor can there be any doubt about the vastly different consequences of sex between 2 consenting adults – and the consequences of sex between a child and an adult.
The question becomes how we judge people whose sexual orientation is different from the vast majority of us that are heterosexual… and whose sexual orientation cannot be changed? Do we say judge the sin and not the sinner? That is certainly the religious way to look at it. Pope Francis just yesterday said basically that about homosexuals to a shocked media. They shouldn’t be shocked. That was always the view of the Catholic Church. But it is the view of Judaism too. Who are we to judge others by who – or what – they are sexually attracted to?
At the same time, the effects of succumbing to one type of predilection are the polar opposite of the effects of succumbing to another predilection. It is also virtually impossible to live a life of complete celibacy. When homosexuals have sex in biblically forbidden ways, we can condemn the behavior from a religious perspective. But we can also understand that from a humanistic perspective, there is no psychological harm being done to anyone.
But a non celibate pedophile is a horse of an entirely different color. How can we judge only the sin and not the sinner in that case? Even if he can’t help himself? And view him as just having an alternative sexual orientation?
Here are the things for us to consider. Does saying that pedophiles should no longer to be considered mentally ill change anything? Does the 1998 APA report saying that the vast majority of victims report no negative sexual effects from child sex abuse change anything? How does this impact the original APA decision to redefine homosexuality from a mental disorder into an alternative lifestyle? And finally, how do homosexuals and survivors of child sex abuse and their advocates feel about all of this?

Visit Emes Ve-Emunah .

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/of-homosexuals-pedophiles-and-differences/2013/07/30/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: