Dr. David S. Finkelhor is an American sociologist known for his research into child sexual abuse and related topics. He is the director of Crimes against Children Research Center, Co-Director of the Family Research Laboratory and Professor of Sociology at the University of New Hampshire in the United States.
Finkelhor remains a fixture in his position to report child sexual abuse politics to our government. Neither Democrat or Republican incumbents have appointed new authorities in the area of child sexual abuse research in many terms says one child sexual abuse PhD specialist I spoke with recently.
And when I do research on him, I find two positions: One that makes sense which appears to defend children, and the other which advocates for pedophiles to be legally able to be around children. On one hand he identifies that grooming exists and on the other he believes that positioning children to be victimized should be permissible.
In an article, turned book called, Intergenerational Intimacy Historical, Socio-Pyschological and Legal Perspective, Finkelhor says:
Epidemiological studies show that adult-child sexual contact is a predictor of later depression, suicidal behavior, dissociative disorders, alcohol and drug abuse, and sexual problems even when other noxious background factors are controlled for.
The public policy priority to protect children from unwanted and coercive sexual approaches by adults seems justified given the evidence of its wide prevalence and the high risk for serious effects. The (now grown) children who have had such experiences are very active in lobbying for such protection.
One of the arguments that pedophiles use is that child sexual abuse is a misnomer in cases where the child has complied, and/or physical force and violence are not used. They often say that the child has flirted with or pursued them, and that any “relationship” that comes after is one that is mutual offering no explanation to their adult responsibility to lead, train or guide a child in appropriate behaviors.
At the Penn State Conference Dr. Finkelhor (at marker 29.06 in the video) said:
One interesting feature although not well established, but speculative feature that’s been shown by some of the research is that when, particularly adult men are involved the early care giving of children, it tends to serve as a kind of protective feature and deter or at least inhibits sexual abuse later on; that’s my way of saying that we should be encouraging men to get more involved with the care of children and not keep them out of their care.
This is a pro-pedophile statement. He’s saying that while speculative he believes that allowing men who are pedophiles to be involved with the care of their children at an early age it could reduce Intrafamiliar child sexual abuse. How in the world would you know this unless children came forward and said, “My father was a pedophile but he never molested anyone in our family including me.” How would a child know that their father (or mother) was a pedophile unless they were abused?
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Is this a conversation pedophiles have around the table with their children without actual abuse taking place? On the other hand, why would the assumption be, that any adult man would need to be in the care of their children at an early age to reduce child sexual abuse? This statement is assuming that all men are pedophiles, sexual predators, inter-generationally (minor) attracted or that he was speaking to his pro-pedophile community.
A few minutes later in the video of him speaking at the Penn State Child Sexual Abuse Conference he says:
There’s a whole class of people that sort of stand in similar relationship to children, these include:
- Youth Staff and volunteers for youth-serving organizations
- Clergy and Religious Organizations
These probably the most common category is school personnel simply because those are the adult mentors and professionals that kids actually have the most contact with. But, it’s actually a group that we haven’t done a good job at counting – pay attention to.
At 31.59 he says:
These are people who have unique grooming resources because of the authority that the institution vests in them. These are cases of child sexual abuse that are very divisive because they involve a whole community of people.
And he goes on to name the all-inclusive communities that he is referring to in his statement. From this angle he positions the beginning of his teaching with the fact that adults are standing in “similar relationship” with children, yet he says himself that these adults are in leadership, authoritarian and mentorship positions over these children.
I do not see how this would make them in equal relationship. Even if we were talking about two adults in which one is mentored, and the other the mentor there is no way to say that they are in equal relationship.
At 33:50 Finkelhor begins to talk about statutory or compliant victims saying:
These are for the most part teens. They are teens who get into relationships with considerably older partners most often in a voluntary way, because they see some potential in [this] relationship for excitement, adventure, think that they’re in love; want to find out about sex and feel like this is an opportunity to do so. We see, in this group too, an unusual number of female offenders as teenaged boys get involved with older women. Older partners can have a strong allure for teenagers because of the resources they have and the confidence they exude and flattery that young people feel by the interests that the adults have. About 1/3 of the arrests for crimes against children are for statutory sex crimes.
Dr. David Finkelhor sounds like a pedophile in his presentation. I am by no means calling him one, but I am questioning the arrangement of his statements because of his level of expertise and I know that he stands on the side of protecting pedophilia. He is in the group of those seeking to legalize it.
In this part of his presentation he never once puts responsibility on the older adult to reject advances from teens. Additionally, it has been recorded that many teens who want to sexually explore with adults have been sexually active at a young age, many times as a result of child sexual abuse.
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He put all the activity, interest and responsibility on the child, as if the child can consent and the adult is given a green light to abuse the child. Pedophilia is an attraction to pre-pubescent children which he supports, so I am not surprised that he would use language that other types of “philes” use here to relax the idea that children are approaching adults for sex and it is okay to oblige.
When Dr. Finkelhor talks about human trafficking (which is not my focus area), he mentions that “children get into selling themselves” and the language concern is that he should be saying that children who are escaping foster care or child sexual abuse, who are forced into homelessness or other dynamics become vulnerable to prostitution as a result of involuntary circumstances.
He should also be sharing that “children are being sold” and not that children are selling themselves. If a child can not consent, and they may not understand the dynamics of the life that they will be involved in, it is the responsibility of the pimp or adult to ask their age, and to make sure that they are not involved with prostitution.
Instead pimps take advantage of children whom they know do not have support or family around them, who will look for them or monitor their activity. Dr. Finkelhor presents the idea that children voluntarily thrust themselves into a dangerous occupation as if it is something that they’ve aspired to do.
Does this man condone child rape and molestation?
Ressurrection Graves is a child sexual abuse grooming expert who has authored a petition to make it a felony. She writes, speaks and educates the masses on protecting children and healing as adults from past child sexual abuse.