I'd like to see much more discussion about the subject across the media, Izzy. If people were able to say "Yes, we accept that adults are attracted to children : it's an undesirable aspect of human sexuality but it's a part of it nonetheless and it's not going to go away. Now how do we go about making sure that children are not abused or exploited".
The less a subject is taboo, the easier it is to come to terms with. If there was open discussion about paedophilia and the reasons behind it without hysteria and recrimination, my gut feeling is that child abuse cases would start to fall, not increase.
The problem with that article is not it's defense to treat paedophiles as human beings we should understand and accept, as long as they don't harm children. I think most people agree that being paedophile is not the same thing of being a child abuser. The problem, at least for me, was the first part of the article. It seems it was excusing child abuse (I don't think it was the authors intent, by the way), and, as long as the child "consent" with the sexual contact, it may not be harmful, using as source thesis written 15, 25 years ago and the review of a book written by a paedophile. He completely ignores the concept of grooming and the power adults have over children. Then, by the end, the subject changes on treating paedophiles as humans, saying we should understand paedophila to prevent child abuse, etc. I mean, what is the conclusion?The article lacks objectivity. What was he saying after all? That a sexual contact with an adult and child may not be harmful as long as the child "consents", but we should treat paedophiles as human beings, not monsters, because it may help to prevent child abuse? What the first part has to do with the second part.? The problem most people had was with the first part, not the last. I agree the comments on it are way better the the article itself.
I don't think there is a hysteria over child sexual abuse. It is a subject that was ignored for a long, long time and it was finally brought to light in the last years. I understand people may be sensitive over the subject. When it comes to children people generally see their child being harmed.