All Paedophiles Are Not Child Abusers: Experts Call for New Approach

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By Kalyan Kumar | July 23, 2014 12:28 PM EST

The issue of paedophiles is under global debate. Amidst calls for harsh laws, fresh advocacy for humane approaches to the malady is in the air. Some such votaries say paedophiles can come out of their impulses if there is more empathy from the society, reports CBC Canada. 

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Members of a Star Wars fan club in Thailand, dressed as Stormtroopers, interact with children during a Star Wars Day celebration at the Phayathai Babies Home in Nonthaburi province, on the outskirts of Bangkok, June 7, 2014.

The report by Amber Hildebrandt pointed to an initiative launched by Ethan Edwards (pseudonym) who in his mid-50s has confided to be a paedophile in the past. Edwards, himself the father of three daughters, realised that he was attracted to young girls but claims he never acted on it.

Online Support Group

Today he wants to support people afflicted by such impulses and devoting his energy to ensure that no child is victimised. His online support group is helping pedophiles to talk through their conditions and control the dangerous desires.

Initiative Hailed

James Cantor, a leading expert on paedophilia at Toronto's Centre for Addiction and Mental Health said misunderstanding exists about the condition itself. He begs to distinguish paedophilia from child molestation and calls it a certain sexual interest. It is different from people who actually act on the sexual impulse and touch a child.

Canadian Teacher Held

Recently, two Canadian teachers were detained in Indonesia in connection with a child sexual assault case. The case was reported by the Toronto Sun and it involved a former Calgary teacher and an Indonesian colleague. They were taken as suspects for the alleged sexual abuse of three young students at an International School in Jakarta.

Afraid to Speak

James notes that the stigma attached to paedophilia is so strong that those with that affliction are afraid to reveal their troubling thoughts. At the same time, laws are also scaring them from speaking out to their therapists.

Brain Phenomenon

James Cantor argues that many studies have shown that MRIs of paedophiles have indicated that their IQs are10 points lower than the average person, plus their memory scores are also poor.

A Sexual Orientation

In 2013, David Goldberg, a Montreal based newspaper editor wrote a column in The Atlantic magazine about his arrest as part of an international child-porn bust.

Goldberg claimed he never hurt a child. During the jail term, Goldberg put his journalistic skills to work and researched on the root cause of paedophilia, and concluded that it was nothing but a sexual orientation. 

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(Photo: REUTERS / Chaiwat Subprasom)
Members of a Star Wars fan club in Thailand, dressed as Stormtroopers, interact with children during a Star Wars Day celebration at the Phayathai Babies Home in Nonthaburi province, on the outskirts of Bangkok, June 7, 2014.
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