Friday, August 30, 2013

Of cartoons and pedophiles


TL;DR: jump to "The point I wanted to make"!

Foreword

Sensitive topics require a serious attitude and disclaimers. This foreword will be used as the necessary disclaimer to this sensitive topic.

Democracy is not just about majority rule. If the majority wants to abuse the minority, that's not democracy! That's exploitation. In democracy, the vote of the majority determines who gets elected but we have rules, laws, constitutions which make it so that we're supposed to stand for each other even if we have differences. I'm not a woman but I stand for gender equality. I'm white in a dominantly white country but I stand against racism. That's pretty simple to understand, right?

I'm going to talk about pedophilia. I'm not a pedophile. Nor am I an ephebophile (people attracted to teenagers). I'm a straight guy, attracted to women my age.

Because this subject is difficult, I will leave aside humor and illustrations. So it's all gonna be just text. It's less fun but more fitting.


What are we talking about?

In political discourse and propaganda, there are 2 topics that are brought up whenever politicians want to abuse citizens and pass crazy laws that do away with liberties: these 2 topics are terrorism and pedophilia. The discourse always goes like this: "either you're with us, or you're with the enemy". George Bush used this tactic to sell his wars. They don't propose the alternative where people take a step back and think for 5 seconds, realizing that it's a false dichotomy and that there are more intelligent ways to consider the issue.

The media, newspapers and TV alike, have understood that what gets people's attention and what therefore contributes to making money is shock. So when they get a chance to get to us with a shocking headline, they won't hold back and they will serve us the short shocking version of the story rather than the balanced intelligent account of events. To this end, they will always employ the word "pedophile" to refer to a child abuser. But that's wrong. That's incorrect. A child abuser is a pedocriminal. A pedophile is someone who is sexually attracted to children. That's not the same! There's plenty of pedophiles who realize that their natural attraction to kids cannot be satisfied without harming a little human being. These people, while being pedophiles are not criminal and they will resort to alternative solutions to be able to live with their problem without harming anyone. These alternatives consist of mainly psychological counseling and cartoon kiddy porn.

People unfamiliar with the topic of pedophilia might think: "it's their nature so how can they hold back from raping children?" so this question needs to be addressed. As a straight man attracted to women my age, it's in my nature to be attracted to 30 year old women. It's in my nature to be attracted to women and still I don't rape them. Well, for pedophiles it's the same. They are attracted to children but they don't want to harm other people so they refrain. It's that simple.


So about those videos

Shooting real videos with real children involved in sex acts is a crime legally and morally. So, using videos from real child rapes as porn material to satisfy pedophiles is not acceptable. On the other hand, there are cartoons depicting sexual acts between fictional child characters and fictional other characters of whichever age. Creating these cartoons doesn't involve any real child therefore nobody gets hurt.

The n°1 scientist who published studies regarding the availability of porn material and the effect on rape statistics is Milton Diamond from the University of Hawaii. In relation to the present article, I would recommend people to check out the first 2 articles listed for the year 1999:


The summary of these studies is that when pornography is available legally, statistics of sex crimes go down and the explanation for this is that people with a sex drive will be able to legally satisfy their desires. On the specific case of cartoon child pornography, which was legalized in Japan and is known by the name lolicon (contraction of "lolita complex"), the same observation was made: the legalization of it drove the statistics of child rape down. And since religious people often assume that everything sexual is sinful and that pornography encourages people to have more sex and reproduce criminally what they may have seen in porn videos, I need to mention this clearly: those studies simply prove them wrong. Legalizing pornography DOES reduce criminality.

In 2010, the French branch of ReadWriteWeb published a fantastic PDF book explaining the story of the online commerce of child abuse videos and advocated against electronic censorship since it only swept the problem under the rug and would have made the job of the police more difficult by pushing these activities to places and web technologies more difficult to track. What's more, censorship is bad for civil liberties and ALWAYS end up being used abusively by people in power against their opposition. That book (French version only) is available from that page and has been written by people with amazing street creds:

  • Robert Menard (founder of Reporters Without Borders)
  • Fabrice Epelboin (author at ReadWriteWeb and teacher at Sciences Po)
  • Guillaume Champeau (journalist at Numerama)
  • Jérémie Zimmerman (founder of online liberties advocacy group La Quadrature Du Net)
  • Tom Morton (expert counsel to England's tribunals)
  • Hervé Recoupe (adjudant investigator at Gendarmerie Nationale, the French military police)
  • Matthieu Pasquini (founder of book editions InLibroVeritas)

If you can read French, go and read at least the first 50 pages! It's as down to Earth as can be and explains how criminal distribution groups came to prominence, how they built technology that is far in advance of everyday's Internet usage, how numerous their customers are, how these organizations are structured, and also how irresponsible teenagers having their personal sexual videos leaked on the Internet are creating an unexpected disruptive alternative to the commercial criminal distribution of underage pornography.


The point I wanted to make

But back to the subject: even though lolicon is distasteful to the majority of people, its legalization would help preventing crimes against children. But politicians are NOT legalizing it. I can only speculate as to the reason for keeping it illegal, and I suppose it's simply difficult to have an intelligent discourse inside parliaments when radical religious officials will refuse to hear the factual arguments. Also, keeping the status quo means that they can keep using the pedophilia card for passing crazy laws in the future, claiming that we're either with them or with the enemy.

In France, transfering lolicon to another person or simply being in possession of lolicon material was punishable by law and it still is. But the repression is actually increasing, and that's the reason why I am writing this article today. It is now also illegal to draw lolicon by yourself for yourself at home, as reported in this (French) article (here's a link to the google-translated version).


Conclusion


  • There is an obvious good and efficient thing we can do to prevent some sex crimes against children but we're not doing it.
  • And you have learned some things about pedophiles which might help you think about this topic in more rational terms than just following the lynch mobs who get excited by the deceptive headlines of television and newspaper.

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