- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 12, 2002

When America's Roman Catholic bishops meet in Dallas on June 13, they will have a lot to talk about. Finding better ways to respond to allegations of child sexual abuse will be at the top of the agenda, as well it should. But the bishops should also give careful consideration to the link between homosexuality and child sexual abuse.

As the scandal in the Catholic Church has unfolded, it has grown increasingly clear that boys, not girls, make up the vast majority of those sexually victimized by (exclusively male) priests. At the same time, there have been startling revelations of a large and powerful homosexual subculture among priests. These developments suggest that the real problem is neither priestly celibacy nor "a culture of sexual repression" (as Newsweek put it), but is instead the sexual exploitation of minors by homosexual men.

The Family Research Council has now connected the dots to show the evidence of a direct correlation between homosexuality and child sexual abuse one that existed long before the priest scandals. In a paper titled "Homosexuality and Child Sexual Abuse," author Dr. Timothy J. Dailey has documented three key facts:

• The vast majority of child molesters are male (the Journal of Sex Research says that "pedophilia does not exist, or is extremely rare, in women").

• The percentage of the male population that is homosexual is quite small (only 2.5 percent of males, according to one estimate in the journal Demography).

• Since almost all molesters are men and the vast majority of men are heterosexual, one would expect that nearly all of the children molested would be girls. However, this is not the case. In fact, a significant percentage of the victims of child sexual abuse are boys (a study in the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy found that 36 percent of male sex offenders had victimized male children).

Thus, it appears that less than 3 percent of the total male population (namely, men who are homosexual) are committing more than 30 percent of the total child sexual abuse (namely, that which is committed by men against boys). Logic thus suggests that in proportion to their numbers, homosexual men are far more likely to be child molesters than are heterosexual men.

The three legs of this argument (most molesters are men; very few men are homosexual; but a third of sex abuse cases involve men molesting boys) are essentially uncontested. So how do homosexual activists avoid the logical conclusion? Only by asserting that men who molest boys are not "homosexuals."

They support this claim with two arguments. One is that "pedophilia" is somehow a separate sexual orientation unto itself, unrelated to a "homosexual" identity. Yet a study of convicted child molesters, published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, found that "86 percent of offenders against males described themselves as homosexual or bisexual."

The second argument is that any offender who has ever engaged in heterosexual activity cannot be classified as "homosexual." But this overlooks the wide range of sexual behavior in which many homosexuals have engaged. Ironically, when they find it in their interest, homosexual activists will use a much broader definition of "gay" for example, counting as "gay parents" even some people who are still in heterosexual marriages.

Other defensive statements, like "most child molesters are not homosexual" or "most homosexuals are not child molesters," may be true, but are irrelevant. The shocking figure is the relative rate of molestation by homosexuals, not the absolute numbers.

In addition to behavioral studies like those above, the writings of homosexual authors demonstrate a strong undercurrent of fascination with what is euphemistically called "intergenerational love." Gay activist David Thorstad says, "Boy-lovers were involved in the gay movement from the beginning." Leading anthologies of "gay literature" prominently feature stories about "the love of older men for young boys." Paula Martinac, a lesbian writer for the Washington Blade, recently acknowledged that among some gay men, "adult-youth sex is viewed as an important aspect of gay culture."

Saddest of all is the evidence that homosexual child abuse is a vicious circle, increasing the chances that its victims will become homosexual themselves and that they will victimize others. One expert reports that "boys victimized by older men were over four times more likely to be currently engaged in homosexual activity." Another study found that 59 percent of male sex offenders against children reported being a "victim of contact sexual abuse as a child."

The evidence is in homosexuality is a clear risk factor for child sexual abuse. This fact should impact our decisions not only on qualifications for the priesthood, but also on homosexual adoption, "gay-friendly" policies in schools, and "gay rights" laws that force schools, day care centers and youth camps to hire homosexuals.

The "exclusionary" policy of the Boy Scouts is looking better all the time.

Peter Sprigg is senior director of culture studies at the Family Research Council.

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