Skip to comments.Paedophilia thesis comes under fire Doctorate could justify child sex, say experts
Posted on 12/05/2004 8:29:34 AM PST by aculeus
An academic awarded a doctorate by Glasgow University for his thesis which described sex between adults and children as sometimes positive was criticised last night by child abuse experts.
Richard Yuill said his research, based on interviews with paedophiles and their victims, "challenged the assumption" that sexual relations between adults and under-16s were inherently abusive.
"The conclusions are that in such relationships I think you've got the good, the bad and the ugly, and that's where I stand on that," he said in the Times Higher Education Supplement.
But child abuse experts said his thesis would play into the hands of paedophiles who justified their actions by claiming their victims were willing participants.
Chris Harrison, a senior lecturer in social work at Warwick University said: "Whatever his intention, one of the things we know about sexual offenders is that they seize on this kind of thing and use it to support their position."
Mr Yuill, who was awarded his doctorate this week, interviewed paedophiles by describing himself as a "boylover" and said his work could challenge the law which states that children under 16 are incapable of giving informed consent to sex with adults.
"The law may well take that view," he said. "The only thing I'm reporting is that the research findings do not concur with that overall picture. A number of respondents would concur with the law ... but others found positive experiences or at least what I'd call neutral."
Glasgow University said last night the thesis did not represent its views but defended the decision to award the doctorate.
"This student and his research was the subject of a full investigation by senior university staff. His research material was examined by Strathclyde police who were satisfied that nothing of an illegal nature had taken place," it said.
But other academics criticised Mr Yuill's research.
Andrew Durham, author of the book Young Men Surviving Child Sexual Abuse said victims of abuse sometimes reported positive experiences, but this was often a result of manipulation by the abuser, or simply a coping mechanism.
"When I work with people who have been abused it often feels like you're talking to the abuser in the child's head," he said.
Natalie Cronin, head of policy at the NSPCC, said the suggestion that the research could result in a change in the law was unacceptable.
"The age of consent sends a clear message to adults and young people that sexual intercourse and sexual activity under 16 is wrong in law. This is the age at which young people can give sufficiently mature and informed consent to sex. The NSPCC does not agree with the introduction of a lower age of consent," she said.
Mr Yuill said his research included "a lot of interviews with a lot of different groups" including victims of abuse who reported only extremely negative experiences.
Liz Kelly, professor of sexualised violence at London Metropolitan University, said: "Within its own terms the thesis may be fine but that is not the same question as whether its contents are strong enough to carry such big claims as that made with respect to the age of consent.
"A lot of young men and almost all young women in our study who had intercourse with an adult when they were a child regarded it negatively."
The same people who argue that abortion is not and will not lead to infanticide. This kind of thinking presents a cogent argument for defining Thoughtcrimes.
NAMBLA wet dreams are up 32%!
Teachers to Tell Them What Their Itching Ears Want to Hear Alert!
"Paul, PAUL! Your great learning has driven you mad!"
Children under 16 are incapable of giving informed consent PERIOD.
There just is a lack of will to prosecute for statutory rape anymore. We've even got exemptions for adults who are "near" the age of their minor partners (heterosexual AND homosexual now, so much for the lie that the erradication of sodomy laws only affected consenting ADULTS).
Another soon-to-be tenured professor.
By the same reasoning one could say the use of nuclear bombs isn't that damaging by counting only the survivors.
Rather he were tethered.
As a male survivor, I can say that those victims that say it had a neutral or positive effect are saying that only as a coping mechanism
It took 40 years for me to seek help and to even start beginning to understand the depths which sexual abuse distorts your thinking. Pedophiles should be thrown into prison and NEVER see the light of day again. Pedophilia destoys the life of the victim. The manipulation, shame, and guilt of the abuse stays with you forever.
I may never overcome what it has done to me, but I can warn others.
THIS KIND OF PERVERSION MUST BE FOUGHT TO THE DEPTHS OF OUR BEINGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The article misses the point completely.
For example, the fact that some individuals may be capable of giving informed consent prior to sixteen is probably TRUE. Likewise, there are probably a great percentage of people who are unable to give informed consent at age 17, 20, or even 35.
The laws concerning consent are not intended to reflect the age at which the typical person reaches maturity. They are intended to make possible the prosecution of sexual predators. There is no justification for introducing uncertainty into the prosecution of these criminals. Just as we arbitrarily decide how many dollars constitute "grand theft" versus "petty theft", we must likewise clearly define the crime of statutory rape.
Establishing the age of consent based upon when the typical person reaches such maturity will assure that half of such people are unprepared to make such decisions. That seems plenty loose enough to me.
If the "research" was demonstrating that 99% of twelve year olds were mature enough to make this decision, then a change in law might be justified. Instead the article doesn't even suggest that ten percent of sixteen-year-olds can make such decisions.
But when did facts ever get in the way of a liberal agenda?
Anyone who lives near Mr. Dick Yuill would be well advised to keep their children away from him lest he attempt to bring to them a "positive" experience.
Touch one of my kids and he will find himself in the middle of an experiment that proves the usefullness of the second ammendment.
The right people aren't dying.
I wish I could remember the handles of all the Freepers who pooh-poohed the idea that same sex marriage would lead to the breakdown of laws agaist other practices, cause I sure would ping them to rub their noses in this.
The slide continues....
A child's life is like a piece of paper on which every passerby leaves a mark.
Heck, I'm still trying
to get the Freepers who thought
letting women vote
wouldn't wreck the world!
Name one good thing that's happened
And note post #12.