Pedophilia as Mental Disorder?

When we argue that an act of deviance is committed because of a mental disorder it changes who responds (doctors v. police), what the response should be (treatment v. punishment), and their responsibility for their actions (not their fault v. their fault).  If this is the case, then we treat pedophilia in contradictory ways in our culture.  We tend to think of pedophiles as ‘sick,’ yet we do fault them.  In doing so, we conflate the attraction with actions.  As such, we do not offer any preventative treatment.

In “You’re 16.  You’re a Pedophile.  You Don’t Want to Hurt Anyone.  What Do You Do Now?” Luke Malone interviews a number of people who are attracted to but have not abused children.  The US approach can be compared to that of Germany, where there is no mandatory reporting. As a result they concede punishing some who have abused in exchange for providing others care before abuse occurs.

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