Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Tom Humphries and Paedophilia ??

Tom Humphries - Paedophile ??

It is very dangerous nowadays to point out certain very simple facts - including the fact that an adult who has sex with a 16 year old girl is NOT a paedophile. As per the Wikipedia definition:
"Pedophilia is used for individuals with a primary or exclusive sexual interest in prepubescent children aged 13 or younger."

On the other hand, "Ephebophilia" is the recognised term for "the primary or exclusive adult sexual interest in mid-to-late adolescents, generally aged 15 to 19".

I have been writing about false allegations of child abuse for many years now but every time I need to use the latter phrase, I have to look it up in Wikipedia or elsewhere. None of my friends has ever complimented me on my good memory but the main reason I can never recall the word is that the media are intent on demonising men who have sex with adolescents who are below the legal age of consent. But this age varies from country to country even within Europe - and in several European countries, Tom Humphries actions would not even be illegal!

I am no friend of Tom Humphries and I criticised him long before it became compulsory to do so. See my previous article "Tom Humphries, The Christian Brothers and Child Abuse Hysteria"
However what is now happening to him is wrong. Moreover the level of aggression and hysteria directed at Tom Humphries has ugly implications for anyone who works with children and increases the danger that such workers will be subjected to false allegations.

The following is from a discussion on the website regarding Tom Humphries

The Meaning of Paedophilia [1]

Originally posted by Dame Enda on 27 October 2017
The correct term for what he did might be ephebophilia. Paedophilia is when the victim is prepubescent.

My Reply [as Kilbarry1] to Dame Enda
Good point. I have posted similar comments a few times over the years but every time I have to go to the dictionary to check the word. Sex with a 16 year old is not paedophilia. I think some European countries still have 14 as the age of consent or had so until fairly recently. This is from the Wikipedia article on Ephebophilia

Ephebophilia is the primary or exclusive adult sexual interest in mid-to-late adolescents, generally ages 15 to 19. The term was originally used in the late 19th to mid 20th century. It is one of a number of sexual preferences across age groups subsumed under the technical term chronophilia. Ephebophilia strictly denotes the preference for mid-to-late adolescent sexual partners, not the mere presence of some level of sexual attraction.
In research environments, specific terms are used for chronophilias: for instance, ephebophilia to refer to the sexual preference for mid-to-late adolescents, hebephilia to refer to the sexual preference for earlier pubescent individuals, and pedophilia to refer to the sexual preference for prepubescent children. However, the term pedophilia is commonly used by the general public to refer to any sexual interest in minors below the legal age of consent, regardless of their level of physical or mental development [My emphasis]

Wiki makes it sound as though "the general public" may simply be misinformed. In fact their "ignorance" has been stoked by thuggish journalists intent on whipping up hysteria. (I bet the journalists themselves are well aware of the difference.)

Reply to Me by Lumpy Talbot
You can call it what you like but a fifty year old man grooming 14 year old girls for sex is not really something that should spark a discussion of terminology.

The judge in this case had better hope that when this man is released- in what seems likely to be a very short time considering the crime- that such a man with not even a reputation to protect from here on doesn't re-offend in short order.

Reply to Me by darkhorse
The generic term describing sex between a 50+ year old man and a 14 year old girl is paedophilia. Of course there are variants within that but that is the general term describing the events.

The meaning of Paedophilia [2]

My reply to Dark Horse
From the Wikipedia article on Pedophilia [American spelling]
Pedophilia or paedophilia is a psychiatric disorder in which an adult or older adolescent experiences a primary or exclusive sexual attraction to prepubescent children.
Although girls typically begin the process of puberty at age 10 or 11, and boys at age 11 or 12,  criteria for pedophilia extend the cut-off point for prepubescence to age 13

In popular usage, the word pedophilia is often applied to any sexual interest in children or the act of child sexual abuse. This use conflates the sexual attraction to prepubescent children with the act of child sexual abuse, and fails to distinguish between attraction to prepubescent and pubescent or post-pubescent minors. Researchers recommend that these imprecise uses be avoided because although people who commit child sexual abuse are sometimes pedophiles, child sexual abuse offenders are not pedophiles unless they have a primary or exclusive sexual interest in prepubescent children, and some pedophiles do not molest children.

The age of consent in Sweden is 15. In Denmark it is the same.  In the Slovak Republic it is also 15. In Spain it is 16 but was 13 prior to 2015. In Norway it is 16. In Portugal it is 14 subject to certain limitations. In Italy it is also 14.

Regarding Ireland the Wiki article on Age of Consent comments:
The age of consent in Ireland is 17, in relation to vaginal, oral, or anal sex, and vaginal or anal penetration. This gives it one of the highest ages of consent in the European Union.

Not quite the highest however, because in Malta the age of consent is 18.

Tom Humphries pleaded guilty to having sex with a 16 year old didn't he? This would never be categorised as paedophilia in ANY circumstances. In several European countries it would not even be illegal.

Reply to me by Wagmore
Listen mate- you should have a good chat with yourself. Humphries was a middle aged obese slob who groomed a young teen. It's been reported that one of his many txts requested her to "be my whore." Nothing to see here? Is that the type of country you want to live in? Count me out

The Meaning of Paedophilia [3]

My post of 27 October 2017
Since SWEDEN is often seen as some kind of liberal paradise, I will quote a few interesting snippets from the Wiki article on Ages of Consent in Europe

...Pornography laws were softened in the 1960s. In 1965 there was a review of previous laws governing pornography depicting children as part of the "child's rights to sexuality". From 1971 to 1980 it was legal to buy, sell, and possess child pornography that featured children as young as 10 or 11.....


....The Swedish age of consent [i.e. 15] also applies if the act takes place outside Sweden but the elder person later goes to Sweden. The elder person doesn't have to be a Swedish citizen or resident, but could be a tourist on a temporary visit. This is regardless of the age of consent in the country where the act took place...

And no, having sex with a 15 year old is NOT paedophilia either but if people  want to get hysterical about this kind of thing, they should really be targeting the Swedes!

Reply to me by Ellie08
Kilbarry what is your point here? This is about Ireland, and something that happened here. Stop deflecting it with what the Swedes do or do not. It looks like you're trying to make the point that is is ok by pointing to some other countries laws on this. This is Ireland, and aren't you a brother or ex brother? Surely you should be more interested in Canon law than Swedish law.

Reply to me by darkhorse
Never mind Sweden this is Ireland
We DONT legalise child sex

My reply to ellie08
Sorry it's late at night and I find it difficult to answer in a short space. There is gross and obscene hysteria about child sex abuse in Ireland and everywhere else. It is partly a reaction from the Sex Revolution of the 1960s and 70s - child pornography was legalised in Denmark as well as Sweden, the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) achieved semi-official status in the UK and in Ireland anyone who spoke out in favour of traditional values was routinely sneered at. John Cooney was religious affairs correspondent in the Irish Times at that time and later produced a biography of John Charles McQuaid containing allegations of paedophilia so ludicrous that even anti-clerics were embarrassed.

The same people who launched the anything-goes Sex Revolution are now getting hysterical about child abuse - and they can see no contradiction. It was Mary Whitehouse who opposed the PIE and British civil rights and gay liberation groups that supported them! "Liberals" seem to lack any kind of self-knowledge and rocket from one lunatic extreme to the other. I could write more but that will have to do for the time being.

And incidentally I personally was criticising Tom Humphries long before it became compulsory to do so!
My article concluded as follows:
"Tom Humphries now seems to have fallen victim to the same kind of hysteria that he once promoted."

Supporting Rape and Child Abuse? [1]

Originally Posted by petaljam 
More to the point though, if you think a support from a poster who consistently supports child abusers is welcome in making a case defending other alleged sex abusers, that really is your own problem, but I can confidently predict that it won't strengthen that case in any normal person's mind.

When he regularly defends child rapists, how could anyone imagine he wouldn't support the alleged rapists of adult women?

Reply by talkingshop 
That's a fairly appalling thing to say about a poster - Kilbarry, I assume?

Reply by myself to petaljam and talkingshop
I saw this exchange some time ago while I was preparing to post on the thread about Mary McAleese. Then I had to go out. I suppose I should have reacted more quickly but I have experienced this kind of thing so often over the years that it doesn't mean much. I remember George Orwell commenting about 1940 that the word "Fascist" no longer signifies anything except that the speaker disagrees with someone else. [I think Orwell wrote  that in an essay called "Politics and the English Language"]. Much the same applies nowadays with calling a person a supporter of rape or child abuse!

The people who do MOST to protect rapists and child abusers are those who make false accusations and I have posted some examples on my blog
"Are There Very Few False Allegations of Rape and Child Abuse ?[1]

In the end the public will become cynical and disbelieve ALL accusers - including those who are telling the truth!

Supporting Rape and Child Abuse? [2]

Reply by petaljam
Well, actually IMO those are the people who do third or fourth most to protect them.
The ones who do the most are those who actively cover up for real abusers. Then there are those who know of abuse and possibly of a cover up, but still choose not to get involved by corroborating allegations that they know to be plausible.

Only after those groups is it reasonable to put people making false accusations - and of course the reality is that by false allegations you often mean unproven ones.

Response by myself

"and of course the reality is that by false allegations you often mean unproven ones."

You didn't even bother to read the article did you? I refer to SEVEN false allegations. In five cases the accuser was convicted and jailed, in the other two, the accusers admitted that they had lied. (One of the latter was a conscience case - her lie would never have been exposed otherwise; the second was a thug who had already been discredited).

I have a follow-up article to the above. It concerns someone like yourself who made a reckless statement without bothering to consider the evidence (and "reckless" is putting it charitably where this gentleman is concerned.)
Are There Very Few False Allegations of Rape and Child Abuse ? [2]


  1. I recognize some of these posters on It really is uphill work. I had forgotten about Mary McAlese. How have we been so foolish in our choice of recent presidents? I have been following your posts and it is not that I cannot think of anything to add but rather there are so many things to say that I cannot decide between them!

    I think you may well be right about Colm O'Gorman. I had been amazed when I first read your accounts of him as I had had a different picture of him from the media. Your Nora Wall article is excellent and I have read it perhaps four or five times by now. (The Wiki entry for her was also unusual in that it painted her in a good light.)

    As for 'paedophilia' you might find this article by the late 'Anna Raccoon' (who died earlier this year) interesting:

    I think she wrote another article which does not seem to be available any more. As a girl she was taken by her father on a visit to Pitcairn.

    1. Thanks for your comments Sean. I think that the other article that the late "Anna Racoon" wrote about Pitcairn Island is entitled "Robinson Crusoe Fantasies" and is here.

      Some quotes;
      "Now Pitcairn had its own body of laws in place. The 1966 Justice Ordinance which conferred jurisdiction in criminal matters on the Island Court provided in section 88 that “any male person who shall have carnal knowledge of any female child of or under the age of TWELVE years shall be guilty of an offence and liable to imprisonment for one hundred days.” [My emphasis]

      "Until [police constable] Gail Cox arrived in 1999, nobody had ever suggested that any other law applied. Suddenly the men of the island were being charged under British law – and it was on the legality of this act that the case turned. Neither the women nor the men denied that sex habitually occurred at around the age of 13, but it was the British law which determined that this was ‘child abuse’ and therefore ‘rape’, not the law to which the Island community had acceded. ....

      Apparently the publication of the law that increased the age of consent to 16 was done on the island of Fiji, about 5,000 kilometres away (!) but nevertheless half the adult males on Pitcairn were convicted of having sex with under-age girls.

      ONE of the trial judges Lord Hope wrote that "No steps were taken to bring to the notice of the Island’s Council or its inhabitants … any of the laws of England that might be invoked on Pitcairn to deal with any serious criminal matter not covered by the [Justice] Ordinance [1966]".
      However the majority judgement was that "ignorance of the law is no defence."

      It was certainly a remarkable case!

  2. Barbara Hewson makes a case for reducing the age of consent (in Britain) towards the end of this short clip.

    I am not saying I agree with her. I don't, but it puts things in perspective.

    1. I looked at the video and she makes very good points about media hysteria, the need for a statute of limitations and the folly of police investigating the dead etc. HOWEVER, irrespective of any theoretical justification for reducing the age of consent, in practice it's going to be described as condoning paedophilia, so there is no point in raising this issue. Incidentally the age of consent in Sweden (15) is lower that that of the UK (16) and Ireland (17). However Sweden is seen as a "progressive" society and they can get away with anything!