Pedophilia is Not a Sexual Orientation: Some Thoughts on the BBC’s Coalinga Treatment Center Report

When I read the BBC report on California’s Coalinga sex offender treatment facility I was struck by the assumptions of both the reporter and the California judicial system regarding what kind of people rape children and how we as a society should best treat those criminals. The piece begins with a brief profile of one of the sex offenders remanded by California to the center after his sentence ended that should have elicited more than a passing curiosity in a journalist:

I’d been at Coalinga a couple of days when Mr Rigby showed me his dormitory. He’d been a high school sports coach before being convicted of molesting some of his students.

He told me he was a great appreciator of the male physical form.

Above his bed were photos of classical statues of male nudes. These gave me pause, since I knew some paedophiles like to justify their proclivities by citing the ancient Greeks’ famous enthusiasm for pederasty.

There was also a reproduction of a painting of young male ballet dancers, which had a definite erotic overtone. I asked one of Mr Rigby’s social workers, who was standing by, if it was okay for patients to have mildly sexual imagery on their walls, especially since it seemed to me it was in the area of the patient’s offences. He said it was – “as long as they’re of age”.

Mr Rigby’s room, which he shared with three other men, was airy and spacious. There was a large window with no bars on it. Mr Rigby had told me he was married with two sons, but that he’d also been in a physical relationship with another of the men at Coalinga, who was also a child molester.

This too, apparently, was not in violation of hospital rules. Mr Rigby’s therapists told me he’d been making good progress in his rehabilitation. In theory, if he carried on with counselling and group sessions, he might be back outside in less than a year.

Child molester Rigby was married and able to perform well enough with an adult woman to impregnate her twice, molested underage boys and is in a physical relationship with another adult child molester. This last relationship is seen by the hospital as evidence of his “rehabilitation” taking, but the question is rehabilitation from what? Though child rapists may claim otherwise, it is patently obvious that the Mr. Rigby interviewed is not uncontrollably attracted to children only, but seems to be satisfied with sexual relationships with any and every kind of person.

The article however goes on to give us the standard medicalized definition of pedophilia which relieves child rapists of their moral and perhaps legal responsibility for their crimes:

Though no consensus exists as to whether paedophilia is genetic or environmental in origin, therapists at Coalinga agree that it can’t really be cured. There is evidence to suggest that a sexual attraction to children may be an “orientation” and no easier to reprogramme in a person than, say, heterosexuality.

To make this square with the example of the omnisexual Mr. Rigby in the earlier section of this piece would require Olympic level mental gymnastics. Pedophiles routinely act out sexually in ways that don’t conform to their “orientation” and despite the claims of pedophilia activist groups, most are not simply people romantically attracted to children and unable to control themselves. Child rape is a crime of deviance, but it is a mistake to assume, as the medical and legal community do, that there is a class of mentally ill or “differently oriented” people out there with no control over their desire to rape and defile children.

I would suggest that in most cases, pedophilia is an expression of mental illness or social maladjustment and not the underlying pathology. Most child rapists are as different from one another as they are from decent people, but what all seem to share in common is a sense of entitlement to their own sexual and emotional gratification so exaggerated that they feel they have the right to exploit children.

Mr. Rigby reminds me of Harold Spurling, an active online pedophile who went by the name Aztram. Spurling claimed to have an “age of attraction” or AOA, as online pedophiles call it, of 4- to 9-year-old boys. Yet when Spurling was arrested with his roommate and rumored lover Jeffrey “The Night Raven” Brisson, police found the pair making pornographic videos using a threemonth-old girl and a 14-year-old boy. Brisson claimed to have an AOA of 2-6 for boys and 3-8 for girls. Both, however, went outside of their supposed orientation to satisfy their disgusting desires.

Serial killer Joseph Duncan’s first arrest for molestation was when he was a teen and his victim a younger boy. He is thought to have killed several children of various ages and genders before massacring the Groene family and kidnapping 8-year-old Shasta and 9-year-old Dylan Groene. Both were raped during their weeks long ordeal and Dylan murdered; Shasta was only saved by a quick thinking waitress at a Denny’s. Duncan was a sex offender advocate who blogged about how unfair it was that people would put him on a registry and discriminate against him. His actions prove both that such registries are necessary, and that yet again this “pedophile” did not have a set orientation. There is some evidence that Duncan fits the profile of the “mysoped” pedophile but there is also evidence Duncan “bottomed” in prison and while released apparently enjoyed it.

Litigious degenerate Tom Madison is a sex offender advocate who works with pedophiles to change sex offender laws, but his own offense was the sexual abuse of a 16-year-old girl. It should be obvious that a grown man molesting a 16-year-old is not “differently oriented” than a heterosexual, but simply lacking the morals and boundaries that make civilization possible. Madison is not attracted to children, he was simply an amoral opportunist who felt entitled to his sexual gratification and used a teen because she was the most convenient female he could dominate.

All these “pedophiles” are very different from each other except in one important aspect: they all used transgressed societal norms to sate their lusts. Thieves are not steal-o-sexuals who are oriented toward banditry, they are people who think they deserve the wealth of others. Likewise the three people above, and the high-living Mr. Rigby, are simply degenerates who use children for their pleasure for a variety of reasons which are totally under their own control.

That isn’t to say some people who are child rapists aren’t mentally ill, but certainly no one benefits from treating child raping as a hard wired orientation like hetero or homosexuality. Not society, not the criminals who may want to change (though I doubt they do after reading the BBC peice) and certainly not the children they prey upon. In our age of rationalism we have lost sight of the most basic metaphysical truth of existence in our zeal for science to explain the very minutiae of our lives. Some people are simply bad people, they choose to do horrific things out of greed, selfishness, envy and anger. Some people rape children simply because they can’t find an adult to rape, some because they like the feeling of power that comes from dominating someone weaker than themselves. All have the ability to stop themselves unless suffering from legal insanity, which so far no pedophile I know of has ever been diagnosed with.

The BBC and the media have spread this medicalized view of criminality to the detriment of society and especially our children. It is time we reexamine the idea of the hapless pedophile and refocus our sympathy on their victims.

h/t Ann Althouse

25 thoughts on “Pedophilia is Not a Sexual Orientation: Some Thoughts on the BBC’s Coalinga Treatment Center Report

  1. Rob Taylor,

    Even If it turns out there is any genetic predisposition to pedophilia, it still would not make it okay. Having consensual sex with a mature man or women of either gender, regardless of your gender is not the same thing as an adult having sex with a child. Children are not mature enough to consent, and any non consensual sex is rape. That means that all practicing pedophiles are rapists. Some people maybe more genetically predisposed to aggression, but that doesn’t make it okay for such people to assault anyone they happen to come across.

  2. Sorry about that,

    What I meant to say was,

    “Even If it turns out there is any genetic predisposition to pedophilia, it still would not make it okay. Having consensual sex with a mature man or women of either gender, regardless of your gender is not the same thing as an adult having sex with a child. Children are not mature enough to consent, and any non consensual sex is rape. That means that all practicing pedophiles are rapists. Some people maybe more genetically predisposed to aggression, but that doesn’t make it okay for such people to assault anyone they happen to come across.”

  3. Understood and I agree totally. I just think the push to find some medical reason for Pedophilia is leading to a much more liberal treatment of child rapists and child porn.

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  5. Rob Taylor,

    Unfortunately you maybe right, or at least it will be used by pedophiles to try to get people to accept their depravity.

  6. Right “Dr” let them go back to the steeper sentences they need and onto the sex offender registry.

    These people are not “innocent’ they are rapists and degenerates. Like yourself. people who are simply selfish and evil.

    While I agree that claiming pedophiles are “mentally ill” is a prevarication, they still need to be punished, and society needs to be protected from them.

  7. They have saved their time.

    If steeper sentences had been available, they would have been serving them.

    Yes, on a less draconian SOR, would be fine, for a time.

    No, they are civilly-committed, they are innocent people.

    They have been punished, in law.

    You know I do not respond to, or invoke, emotive and irrational language, if you claim any advanced education, I suggest you do not too.


  8. Again they aren’t innocent. They are rapists and our SOR is very fair here.

    I care little for what you desire, being that you’re a child rapists which means you put your own selfish desires for sexual gratification over the child’s desire to not be abused

    I suggest you return to trolling the Absolute Zero site if you need attention so badly, but I will not hodl a polite discussion with someone so vile. You have argued, more than once, that raping children is acceptable. This is literally evil. Why would any rational person do anything but shun you?

    As for your comment on my education “Dr”-Yawn. I don’t need the validation of people on the Internet. Especially of degenerates and perverts.

  9. I suggest you check the legal definitions of ‘Innocent’ and ‘Civil Commitment’.

    Given that you live in the USA, you have the most draconian RSO system on the planet … recently and once again, almost certainly, leading to the unfortunate and unacceptable death of another minor.

    You are ranting and making false claims, again – it is a pity, as I give you more credit than that, or I would not be devoting any time or effort time, here.


  10. I suggest you read the article, which states that these people were committed after serving time for rape. For a supposed doctor your reading comprehension is surprisingly bad.

    The RSO system is responsible for killing minors, sex offenders are. And none of the claims I make are false. Can you say the same?

  11. Yes indeed.

    (1) They serve their allotted sentence for their crime.
    (2) They are then civilly-committed, for no crime, to a hospital. It is a contrived, post-facto, pre-crime issue.

    This is all available on-line.

    “The RSO system is responsible for killing minors” … an increase in, yes.

    Not my source (although I do subscribe to the proposition), but it was suggested by Lanning, just this week. When there is nothing to lose (being a RSO, for many), killing the victim offers the best chance of escape.

    This is also available on-line.

    “care little for what you desire, being that you’re a child rapists ”


    “You have argued, more than once, that raping children is acceptable”


    “they are rapists and degenerates”

    They are not all rapists (‘degenerates’ is an archaic term, meaning nothing in these times) …

    ,,, and, yes, unless I say I ‘believe’ in something, then it is true.

    Drop the adhoms and try a debate, it looks much better for you.

    There is no shame in being proven incorrect, that is how we achieve wisdom.


  12. Having served time for their crime they are not “innocent” they have simply served their sentence.Going to jail does not wash away your crimes.

    By your logic harsh prison sentences for anyone will lead to killing victims. You do understand people decide to kill people, and that they wouldn’t have to worry about being on a registry if they weren’t raping people. You are excusing rape by saying “at least they didn’t kill them” which makes you a degenerate.

    Tell me how it’s false that you have argued for raping children. i recall seeing a TV interview with you were you advocated adult child sex.

    But as I said, you’re need for attention from people disgusted by you is not something I will be fulfilling. Run back to “boychat” with the rest f the scum.

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  14. As a paedophile and RSO, I feel I should add my two cents. First off, I’ve never raped anyone. Nor do I have such a desire to cause such pain to anyone. I spent a considerable amount of time in prison for my crime of performing oral sex on a child. I broke the law, I was wrong. Fine. We all agree on that. Today, I have two kids and a girlfriend. I am attracted to my girlfriend because she is quite beautiful and I do love her as my companion. However, given my paedophilic desires, I’d much rather be married to a 12 year old and be down with. But, Western culture no longer condone such unions and it is against the law, so I play by the rules.

    I’ve been a paedophile since I was nine or ten. (Something to consider for all of those who merely focus on paedophile men). At that age I was attracted to 4-5 year olds. Borderline paedophilia, paedophilia none the less as dictated by the law.

    If I had to be besieged by a sexual deviancy, then I wish it homosexuality and not paedophilia. But, that is not the hand that was dealt to me. Being on the registy, I’ve been victimised (and I will use this word) by a community far removed from where my crime took place. I had to stop going to church and was threatened that if I pick my kids up from daycare that I will be thrown into jail. My neighbours point fingers at me and have pretty slandered my name. Why? Because they drew their conclusions from the registry. Even the fact that I have two kids was met with scorn: “I hope he’s not hurting those kids.” was what I overheard on lady saying.

    So, my supposed trying to re-enter Society as a productive member of Society is merely a fairy tale existence. Because of this reality, I’ve become angry and extremely antisocial. Relying on the fact that you never know your enemies until it’s too late, so I strongly feel that everyone is my enemy. Less, I let my guard down a let one in.

    My rage against Society only deepened when I learnt that my registration, once for only 10 years, has been been uppped to life. So my plans of truly enjoying life with my kids by attending school plays and pageants and other activities has been thrown out of the window.

    I don’t want sympathy. I’m not innocent (but then again, no one is truly innocent so I’m pretty sure the Holy Rollers know what to do with that innocent finger of theirs). I made some regrettable mistakes in my past. A lot of things in my life I’d love to change. But I sure as hell don’t want to be a victim. In the end, I am a victim. We are victims. When the Nazis made Jews wear incriminating yellow stars on their clothing simply for being Jewish, were they not victims? And don’t hand me that crap about them being “innocent”. Some of them were probably embezzlers, adulterers, thieves, and maybe even a rapist or two (and dare I say a child rapist) who just hadn’t been caught.

    I see life through different perspectives. I have been on both side of the debate: A sex offender and now a father. No one wants to side with the sex offender, it is political and social suicide to do so. The media has made it that way.Everyone is blinded by disgust and hate. Our culture preaches love and acceptance, and the need to forgive and move on with to better things. Yet, they victimise a group of people because they screwed up some time ago. We say nobody’s perfect, yet we mark those that fall.

    I’m am grateful that I am able to understand exactly what is inside of me and find ways to unleash that anger and hurt.

    The killing of a child by a RSO? I’ve mulled that over so many times, asking myself Why would a person do that? I asked myself the hardest question of all: Would I be willing to do that? And I had to be completely honest with myself. I say no because believe it or not, I am empathic to others. Some would disagree, but I’m sure those persons don’t make it a habit to think outside their comfort zones.

    But, I think I understand why another RSO is more likely to kill a child as one poster has already brought up. Most certainly, the killing of the child is a result of 1.) a attempt at secrecy and 2.) if discovered, the perpetrator hopes to face the death penalty. The problem is that the homework doesn’t get done. Death penalties are usually sought for extreme, well-planned, thought-out murders. Basically, anything under a first degree murder and you’re most likely looking at a mere life sentence.

    If the case has enough media coverage, then the perp will be isolated from the rest of the population and the taxpayers will foot the bill.

    I attest that paedophilia is a sexual orientation. I believe it because I suffer with it. However, I don’t see man-child sex as viable, as much as I’d like it to be. There is a very thin line in such a relationship. A very thin line that shifts with each individual child. The boy I performed oral sex on was want is considered a YF or “young friend”. We knew each other for two years. I was arrested when my yf confided in a buddy that we were in a relationship. His buddy immediately told someone else who told someone else. And eventually an adult found out and I was arrested.

    Today, I’m still friends with my yf. He’s a man now, married with kids of his own. He keeps telling me how bad he feels because he never wanted me to get into trouble. I keep telling him that I knew the costs, and that I don’t regret it one bit.

    How is the registry fair? Being on the registry is hell. And no one gives a damn because they aren’t the ones whose lives are displayed for the world the see. For a crime that (in my case) happened over 10 years ago. Everyone on the registry aren’t child rapists. To say so is narrow-minded and ignorant. There are 15 year olds who have to register for life for having sex with a 13 year old student! Five years from now, you’ll see that same teenager on the registry and you and a whole new generation of parents and activists will look at his face lassify him as a child rapist. Forever.

    The registry is a joke. If I wanted to molest a child, I have ample opportunity to do such on a day-to-day basis. Hospitalisation? Why? If I’m determined to try and make the most of the haphazard life that’s been handed to me why should I be committed to a hospital? Beside I might be a threat? In that case, we should hospitalise everyone drinking in a bar, lest they get into a car and kill someone.

    Sorry to barge in, just passing through.

  15. This is total garbage.

    Thankfully real experts have taken into account that humanity is not as morally guided or spiritual as you idiots believe we are. I’m not a nihilist, but I at least know that human beings are animals, and just like every other animal we have sexual inclinations which may not seem logical or moral.

    In the wild we see animals engage in incest, pedophilia, rape, homosexuality, and even sodomy. So the idiots who try to justify their notions of right and wrong, calling those who are wrong ‘degenerates’ obviously overlook the truth that is natural behavior.

    I won’t go so far as to say that pedophilia is a good thing. Far from it. I think the act is wrong, because the child is harmed in the process. I might even be as emotional as you, and say that those who actually engage in sex with children are disgusting, but that’s an emotional response, and emotional responses tend to be as meaningless as this entire drab article.

    Pedophilia IS a preference, just like homosexuality IS a preference. A couple decades ago and you might be including homosexuals in your ‘degenerate’ category. The difference is the ability to get consent from a willing partner. This can’t happen with a pedophile. There are some are erroneous in thinking that the child can enjoy the sexual activity the same as an adult, and there are some who are sociopaths who don’t care about the well-being of the child… the same could be said about a rapist who rapes middle aged men or women, who thinks his victim enjoyed it or doesn’t care.

    Should we just destroy these people? I think our society has advanced enough that we should learn to identify the behavior early on and give the person proper counselling… instead of waiting for them to act on these behaviors and then send them to death row… there will be fewer victims if we take the time to study and figure out the right way to deal with these people. Articles like this just prove that there are still people who would rather think that pedophiles are some sort of anomaly that will fade over time. The truth is, pedophiles are extremely common. It’s estimated that 1 in every 10 men have some sort of sexual inclination towards girls who are very young. Though it’s probably much higher, given that it’s like people lie during testing.

  16. I can’t believe that Doesnt Matter (sic) compared pedophiles to Jews. Are you kidding me? Jews were forced to wear yellow stars because a madman hated them for no reason. They were victims, by the definition of the word. They were suppressed and killed without provocation. You have to be a registered sex offender because you want to be married to a twelve year old.

    Perhaps there is a biological element to pedophilia; research has yet to determine this conclusively. However, don’t most serial killers have a mental imbalance of sorts? I am not equating murder to child molestation, but I just wanted to make a point about the biological factors associated with crime, and whether or not they should be grounds for deeming a perp as a ‘victim.’

    I really liked this article. I am a conservative, and it is nice to see an article written by a fellow conservative who does not link homosexuality inherently with pedophilia.

  17. LOL – just wanted to add: I googled ‘Dr Nigel Leigh Oldfield’ and sure enough, the first thing that popped up was ‘convicted child pornographer.’ Creeeeper.

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