Labeling Is Lazy; Precision Takes Intelligence

Many people wrongly apply the terms pedophile and/or predator to any person anywhere who is convicted of, charged with, suspected or accused of a sexual offense.

That’s like labeling every woman a whore or every man a rapist or every reporter a liar or every cop a killer. It’s so easy to turn labels into demonizing perjoratives.

Fred S. Berlin, MD, PhD, is Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. He’s written a cogent and useful editorial for the The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law titled Pedophilia and DSM-5: The Importance of Clearly Defining the Nature of a Pedophilic Disorder.

Dr. Berlin’s primary audience here is professional, and the journal involved is far from being a “popular” publication. But his piece includes a lot of common sense and we recommend it — especially to those who think everyone on Nebraska’s public-shaming website is a pedophile or a predator. Read it here.

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