Has the DSM really been changed to make pedophilia a “sexual orientation”?

Has the DSM really been changed to make pedophilia a “sexual orientation”? October 30, 2013

It would appear not, according to Greg Popcak.  For which, I am grateful.

The distinction the DSM appears to make is between those who feel the temptation and those who act on it.  As Catholics, we need to be aware such a distinction ourselves since the mere fact of a disordered desire does not mean a sin has been committed.  At the same time, of course, those who struggle with such temptations should be helped, prayed for–and kept from temptation whenever possible.  I mention this because at least one site that I saw discussing this distinction of the DSM was full of people calling for the indiscriminate castration of anybody struggling with this particular form of concupiscence.

Our culture, having lost the capacity to talk about temptation, sin and mercy, still has to deal with the reality of these things.  Typically what we do is make excuses for sin until we strain reason past the breaking point, then we select certain sins that are “unforgiveable” (to show we are deeply moral people) and visit merciless judgment on those who are so much as tempted by them. (A website I saw discussing the DSM had lots of combox comments calling for the castration and murder of anybody so much as tempted by pedophilia.) The selected forms of unforgivable concupiscence and sin can vary from one subculture to the next, but the point is that they are “unforgivable”.  Meanwhile, the Catholic tradition presents us, right from that start, with a Savior for whom there is literally no sin in the world that cannot be forgiven–except of course the sins of those who wilfully and finally refuse the gift of forgiveness (which is what “blaspheming the Holy Spirit” really means).  He very deliberately associates himself with just about everybody that first century Jewish culture greeted with, “Ewwwww!” whether they were ritually defiled (lepers) or morally defiled (tax collectors and prostitutes).  His point (good news for us) is that there is nobody beyond the reach of God’s grace.  His point (bad news for our dreams of comfiness) is that people with the most disgusting sins and temptations can never be written off as “unforgivable”.

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  • Smithgift

    Strange, how the culture of “born this way” cannot tolerate the people who are “born that way”.

    • kenofken

      It’s not strange in the least, if I assume correctly that you are trying to draw a parallel between homosexuality and pedophilia. We cannot tolerate the latter because its expression always involves an assault on minors, who cannot give proper consent and who do not have the emotional tools to enter a relationship of that sort on equal footing.

      • MarylandBill

        But what is proper consent? Lets keep in mind, that 50 years ago, homosexuality was considered a mental disorder and it could have been argued that someone suffering with it was incapable of giving proper consent.

        In practice proper consent means legal consent. I suspect the argument for changing the definition of legal consent will argue that since minors (at least those 12 and up anyway) are having sex with their peers (facilitated by adults pushing for them to be given condoms), they should be able to consent to sex with adults as well. Then they can start pushing to lower it even further.

        • kenofken

          The only people pushing the consent-by-children issue, outside of NAMBLA, is the anti-SSM movement, which needs it to validate a slippery slope argument.

          • Alma Peregrina

            Well, of course the SSM movement is not pushing that issue… it’s not their goal… and, furthermore, destroys their narrative.

            But the very existence of a NAMBLA validates the slippery slope argument. The only one engaging in fallacies here is you (ad hominem and ignoratio elenchi):

            Does this make sense?
            – Person A:”If we keep attending the LGBT agenda, what comes next? Pedophilia?”
            – Person B: “Don’t be silly! The only ones pushing for pedophilia are pedophiles. You know, the ones you claim will use the LGBT arguments to push pedophilia on society”
            – Person A: “Oh sorry, I guess I was wrong then. My bad.”

            • kenofken

              The existence of NAMBLA validates nothing except the First Amendment. Short of incitement to violence, people can advocate for whatever they like, no matter how vile. Translating that speech into action is another matter entirely. The anti-SSM movement has a very long and well document record of equating pedophilia and homosexuality, either directly, or more often these days, through simple juxtaposition.

              There is nothing at all factually to this DSM “controversy.” A Catholic mental health professional on these forums has said as much. And yet, this controversy about nothing is being puffed up and shopped around the blogosphere. “Well, ok, so maybe the DSM isn’t normalizing pedophilia as an orientiation, but if it does, we all know who would be responsible for that. Wink wink…”

              • Alma Peregrina

                Again, ignoratio elechi. You simply dismiss the slippery slope by saying “Translating that speech into action is another matter entirely” as if it were not possible… and then by saying completely unrelated things.

                Which is simply what every pro-LBGT does when confronted with the slippery slope. Dismiss it. Which, in my mind, just proves the argument’s validity… it’s too uncomfortable for you to refute, so you bypass it.

                Instead of trying to shift the atention (I never said anything about the DSM, nor have I disagreed with what Mark said), why don’t you simply address Maryland’s arguments?

                • kenofken

                  Maryland made no argument to address. He put forward a hypothetical which he imagines someone might argue in favor of legalized adult-child relations. Neither he nor anyone else has offered any evidence that there is any serious move afoot to do so, nor more importantly, that such a sentiment is finding traction anywhere in mainstream medical or psychological circles nor the general public.

                  I can only engage and refute the slippery slope argument as it exists in reality, not someone’s darkest doomsday fantasy about what might happen. The reality is that our legal system and society makes a deep, fundamental distinction between consenting adults and minors. There is nothing in the legal rulings surrounding gay marriage, nor in the advocacy of gay marriage, which has affected the age of consent.

                  It is also not true that sex among underage peers has been legalized. Adults know it happens, and try to minimize the harms through education and yes, condoms, but its not approved of nor legal. A number of teens have faced child pornography charges for sending risque photos of themselves to each other. They face the possibility of a lifetime as a registered sex offender for this. That doesn’t sound to me like a society that is moving toward legalizing underage sexuality.

                  I would also note one other thing. If LGBT acceptance is the primrose path to child abuse, why is it that ALL of the countries with widespread adult-child marriages (parts of Africa, the Middle East, etc.), are also the most virulently homophobic on Earth?

                  • Alma Peregrina

                    “Maryland made no argument to address.”

                    Yes, he did. And you, again, refused to acknowledge that.

                    And, even though all that lengthy text is again ignoratio elenchi, I’ll say some things, because they need to be said.

                    You say you can only talk about what happens in reality. Then you disregard NAMBLA (which exists in reality).

                    You say that sex among underage peers as not been legalized. Which is laughable on the face of it. Talk about reality!

                    And, again, you fail to respond to this simple question. If underage kids can choose to have sex with other underage kids (yes! It is accepted! It is aproved! And it is legal, not merely tolerated!), what’s to stop the same arguments to be used between an adult and a consenting underage kid?

                    I don’t care if those arguments are used today or not. If they will be used tomorrow or in 1.000 years or never.

                    What’s to stop us from using the same arguments?

                    Since you keep disregarding this simple question, I’ll do as you did and simply disregard your loaded question.

                    PS: By the way, I would be much more kinder in words if your persistent line of reasoning wouldn’t be to compare the “anti-SSM” movement with wingnuts like NAMBLA and, now, underdeveloped theocratic muslim countries *wink, wink*.

                    • kenofken

                      What’s to stop us from using the same arguments? Nothing stops anyone from making any argument. Reason and legal traditions determine whether those arguments will translate to policy.

                      Conservatives and their slippery slope fears posit that human beings are hopelessly dumb, vicious animals by nature who need to be kept on short choke leash at all times by a virtuous elite (ie them), for everyone’s own good. Allow the animal one extra inch on it’s leash, one second off its leash, one behavior or even stray thought of its own, and it’ll turn feral and run amuck. This is the very model employed by China and every other totalitarian regime. Allow one impure thought, one “disharmonious” or “counter-revolutionary” speech or act, and it will the snowball that triggers an avalanche of chaos. A slippery slope.

                      This country was founded on the explicit rejection of that model. We are not beasts, and kings, priests and noblemen are not our handlers. We don’t seek to gag our citizens for fear that some will express and advocate crazy ideas. We know they will. We let everything into the marketplace of ideas but buy damn few of the wares in the end. An idea has to sell to a majority before it can go anywhere, and even then, it must pass muster with a judicial branch of some pretty smart, sober and skeptical people who sift it through centuries of precedence that serves as a filter for what we are “about” as a nation.

                      Is that failsafe? No. Slavery and the internment of Japanese made it through the net, to name a couple. But over the long haul, it’s pretty damn good. I don’t disregard NAMBLA, but I also don’t fear it, for that reason. People like them can and will argue for adult-child relations. They can argue it from historical/family values, as traditional societies do. They can argue it from evolutionary biology. They can even try to argue it from the same direction as gay marriage. But it ain’t happening. The idea had no currency in society or our legal system before gay rights, and no more after.

                    • Alma Peregrina

                      “What’s to stop us from using the same arguments? Nothing stops anyone from making any argument”

                      Thank you, sir. That’s all I needed to hear.

                      Everything else you said is (as usual) an absolute knee jerk reaction, coupled with the usual dogmatic litany of ad hominems. So vicious, that I will decline to comment on that.

                      No, I’m not a totalitarian who wants to create an elite that mantains everyone on a leash.
                      I’m a concerned citizen that is seriously preocupied with the path that we’re taking, with all this absolutization of sexual freedom and this hyper-romanticized view of relationships.
                      A concerned citizen who has not, to this date, received a satisfactory response from the LGBT lobby regarding his concerns.
                      A citizen who, in the spirit of the freedom of democracy, is exposing his concerns and arguing why he is against some political measures. Or is it only freedom when we agree with you? Isn’t that elitist in itself?

                      You guys keep positing that Reason and Legal Tradition will keep us from aproving pedohilia.
                      Well, guess what? I think that Reason posits that two men are not a marriage! I think that Legal Tradition posits that two women are not a marriage! That is aburd to my eyes! Like pedophilia is absurd to yours!

                      So, when you say that Reason and Legal Tradition, or the american model or whatever, will prevent us from accepting absurdities… pardon me if I’m not soothed. That has already happened! You say “it ain’t happening” with a certainty that is only rooted on “because I say so”, like you could predict the future. You keep dodging the issue and that, francly, scares me.

                      I’ll just finish my intervention by saying that I’m quite disapointed with you. From all the non-catholic comenters on this blog, you were one I read with enjoyment, for you seemed honest and impartial. I’m quite saddened to see that it is not the case.

                      Good day to you sir. I’m leaving this conversation now, for good. God bless you.

    • Comraderie

      Time to change the LGBT letterhead to LGBT&P