Addressing the elephant in the room

A German medical student sparked online backlash after she was filmed telling an audience that “pedophilia is an unchangeable sexual orientation, just like… heterosexuality.”

Mirjam Heine gave a lecture in defense of pedophiles during the “independently organized” TEDx Talk at the University of Würtzberg in Germany in May. The title given to Heine’s talk was “Why our perception of pedophilia has to change.”

Introducing her theme with the “story” of “Jonas,” a 19-year-old pedophile who studies law and plays soccer, she asked her listeners to put aside their revulsion for pedophiles.

“Anyone could be born a pedophile,” she told them.

According to the medical student, pedophilia is just another “unchangeable sexual orientation just like, for example, heterosexuality.” Heine asked her audience to differentiate between sexual attraction to children, which she believes should be accepted and tolerated as involuntary “feelings,” and child sexual abuse, which she underscored was always wrong.

“The difference between pedophilia and other sexual orientations is that living out this sexual orientation will end in a disaster,” she said.

Meanwhile, Heine made the surprising assertion that “scientific studies” show that only 20 to 30 percent of all child molesters are pedophiles.

“The vast majority of perpetrators are not pedophiles but are sexually interested in adults,” she stated. Her example was a man who sexually abuses his step-daughter because he’s angry at, or jealous of, her mother.

For Heine, pedophilia is not something that someone actually does but something that someone would like to do, as a sexual preference that they would “live out freely,” if only it weren’t contrary to leading “an upright life.”

Openness about one’s sexual feelings is crucial to Heine. She believes that a pedophile’s ability to be “frank” and have his “orientation” acknowledged, tolerated, and accepted is key to preventing child sexual assault.

“We shouldn’t increase the sufferings of pedophiles by excluding them, by blaming and mocking them,” Heine said. “By doing that, WE increase their isolation and WE increase the chance of child sexual abuse.”  

Central to Heine’s argument is that pedophiles are not to blame for their feelings and thoughts, only for their actions. She does not, however, address the topic of deliberate fantasizing or the use of pornography. And, at the same time, while arguing that pedophiles cannot change their “feelings,” she encouraged her audience to change their own feelings of revulsion for pedophiles.

“Just like pedophiles, we are not responsible for our feelings,” she said. “We do not choose them…but it is our responsibility to…overcome our negative feelings about pedophiles and to treat them with the same respect we treat other people with.”

The speaker has asked that the video be removed from Youtube after backlash. This does not not mean it changes her belief or the belief of the left. Everything is permissible to the left and everything should be added to the lbgtqtzrspklvbnmcxzqwre flag. Pedophillia an unchangeable sexual orientation. Think it can’t happen? Did you ever think a college would list unlimited sexual orientations?

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Elephant Address
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