There exists a group of people possessing what some refer to as a mental disorder, while others refer to it as a personality or behavioral disorder characterized by the urge to have sexual relations with those of a non-consenting age. Initially this paper will examine why exactly this is a deviant behavior. We will then go on to analyze their structural organization.
Why people would want membership in such a group will then be scrutinized. An in-depth examination of what causative factors exist that nutrient to this form of deviance will then ensue. We will conclude with the various theories of deviance that could further explain the actions of the group. The group known as pedophilia’s is deviant because sexual interactions with those younger than the age of consent is by its own right considered to be a non-consensual encounter.
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Prepubescent children and teens are not properly informed or physically developed well enough to engage in sexual activity without it having a damaging effects on them mentally, psychologically, and sexually. Many times the direct impact of child sexual abuse is not made manifest until well in to adulthood. Depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, insomnia, alcohol and or drug abuse, hypertension, obesity, sexually transmitted diseases, lack of trust and marital problems are all more frequent in the demographic of adults who were sexually abused or coerced as children (Child Sexual Abuse l: An Overview).
Pedophilia were previously known to be organized under a group known as the “North American Man/ Boy Love Association” which was founded in 1978 and used to have regular national meetings (Amble: Who We Are). As of the late sass the group either ceased to meet or simply made their meetings more subversive so as to avoid police involvement. In 1995 it was discovered by an undercover police officer that they had over one thousand members.
In 1978, police raided a house located in a Boston suburb wherein 24 men were arrested and indicted for running a sex ring where they lured boys between the ages of 8 and 1 5 into the house and photographed them engaging in sexual activities (Schools, M. , 1999). There are other similar subgroups today that mostly focus on internet chat rooms and the production of child pornography which is circulated on the internet. No doubt members of such groups are in them for a source of comradely and acceptance amongst a world that calls the roof perverse and deviant.
Another reason to Join such a group is to rationalize its focus of sexual contact with those who are underage. According to the welcome page on amble. Org, the purpose of the group is to “build understanding and support for such relationships”, to educate the general public on the benevolent nature of man/ boy love, and to support the “liberation” of persons of all ages from sexual prejudice and oppression (Amble: Who We Are). Participation in the subgroup of Amble is of course voluntary, but whether or not the choice to be a pedophilia is actually a choice, is up for debate.
According to James Cantor, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and senior scientist at the Sexual Behaviors Clinic of the Center for Addiction and Mental Health states that there are a number of studies that provide evidence that individuals can actually be born with a psychological predisposition to sexual to children. Professor Cantor states, “Pedophilia men have significantly less white matter, which is the connective tissue that is responsible for communication between different regions in the brain.
Pedophilia perform more poorly on various tests of brain function, tend to be shorter in height and are three times more likely to be left- ended or ambidextrous (characteristics that are observable before birth). Although non-biological features may yet turn up to be relevant, it is difficult, if not impossible, to explain the research findings without there being a strong role of biology. ” Cantor makes the valid point that not all pedophilia indulge these sexual interests and he goes on to mention that there is little support for individuals wishing to abstain from such behaviors.
Support groups created for the purpose of preventing child abuse and offering counseling and a safe haven to pedophilia have appeared in Germany ND Canada. People struggling to resist their sexual urges from all over the globe have contacted these two establishments and while it is still too soon to tell if these programs will leave a positive and lasting impact, preliminary reports are propitious (Cantor, 2012). According to a study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry another causative factor of pedophilia is early abuse.
The study examined 747 males and found a definite correlation between those who reported sexual abuse and those who went on to abuse others (Glasses, 2001). John Woods is a Psychotherapist and Consultant at the Portion Clinic as well as a member of the British Psychotherapy Foundation and the Institute of Group Analysis. He works with children and adults who have participated in or expressed interest in harmful sexual behavior. He has seen first-hand that many times youngsters become addicted to child-pornography and then go on to act out violently on siblings and even teachers (Woods, 2012).
Pedophilia can be considered deviant by the positivist theory of deviance because the damage done to children by sexual abuse is tangible in that its effects are lasting and far reaching for the victim. The above evidence specifically points to the social learning theory in describing the causes of pedophilia. The definition of social learning theory in that deviance is learned. Pedophilia, in some cases can arise when a child is exposed to it as a victim early on in life. This usually occurs with a family member or someone that they know.
This can and does instill deviant ideas in the child. They then grow up and seek acceptance and association with likened individuals in groups such as Amble. This is what Sutherland defined as the positivist theory of differential association which states that “If an individual associates with people who hold deviant (or criminal) ideas more than with people who embrace conventional ideas, the individual is likely to become deviant. ” (Thai, et al, 2013) The constructionist perspective of labeling theory also fits pedophilia appropriately.
According to this theory, “we should not focus on the deviant person alone as positivist sociologists do but rather on the interaction between the supposed deviant and other, conventional people… ” (Thai, et al, 2013) This is especially imperative when it comes to pedophilia because as previously stated, Just cause someone is a pedophilia in that they have a strong attraction to those that are underage does not necessarily mean that they are going to act on these urges that their psychological makeup could possibly predispose them to.
Nevertheless, the label of “pedophilia” is apropos in order to differentiate the desires and in some cases behaviors of the pedophilia from that of the norm. The downside to this theory however is that it is quite ostracize to the pedophilia and can further isolate them from relationships with family as well as consenting adults their own age leading hem to the sort of loneliness, and desperation characteristic of those that do go on to commit incest and child molestation.
One must surely utilize phenomenological theory when trying to understand pedophilia as there are a multitude of factors that can play into the creation of the pedophilia. It is the only theory that delves into the mindset of the pedophilia (Thai, et al, 2013). This theory strives to subjectively delineate one person’s deviance by taking into consideration the many multifaceted social causes of pedophilia. Childhood abuse, an addiction to pornography and even such things as covert incest could all be causal in producing the mindset of this particular disorder.
In conclusion, while it is always good to examine what motivating factors play into a person’s deviant behavior, when it comes to pedophilia and incest, these are serious matters that must be dealt with carefully in order to prevent child abuse. It is my opinion that what we allow our minds to become immersed in can have catastrophic effects when not analyzed and scrutinized honestly. While it is true that we must strive to understand why it is that people do what they do, sexual abuse and incest are still deviant behaviors and in order to keep their prevalence down to a minimum, it is of utmost importance that that view must be maintained.
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