It?s not a geographical survey, it?s something much more sinister.
Imagine me, your friendly neighborhood Trans Cat Lady as I sip my tea browsing Facebook, as one does on a warm, summer Friday night, and suddenly discover a plethora of posts across my feed referencing MAPs.
Just when you think you?re an enlightened, modern individual with your finger on the pulse of social matters, something comes out of left field and reminds you that you?re not running in mainstream anymore. I had to look deeper, realizing the context of a MAP was not by any means indicating navigation or a request for directions.
No, it?s something much more horrific than I ever anticipated. MAP is an initialism, self-created by the proud individuals it references, as ?Minor Attracted Persons.?
Pedophiles. Adults sexually attracted to and aroused by minor children. This is their self identifier. MAP.
This had to sink in. It wasn?t just one post, but several, in fact, many being shared by people far more alert (Thanks Ambien) than I am to developing news and trends.
CW: * Mention Of Pedophilia PSA!!! They made a prideflag I want 2 die Edit?
MAP?s have been using social media under this self-identifier for some time, sprouting up and organizing mostly from the blogging site, Tumblr. Currently, there is a petition to have openly expressing MAPs removed from the site.
In one facebook post, a user shared a status of collected photos of the Men and Women who were proudly identifying as MAPs. This is where I learned that a sect of the MAP community also identify as NOMAPs- or, ?Non-offending Minor Attracted Persons.? That?s their way of stating that they keep their hands to themselves despite their sexual desires directed at children. Support systems have popped up for MAPs and NOMAPs, seemingly established with the intent of intervening before they can harm an innocent child and there have even been writers who had come to their defense and claimed themselves as allies to the MAP community. They want you to believe it is a mental illness.
Mental illness never has a targeted victim. Mental illness is an affliction of the sufferer wherein we do ourselves great harm. Those will mental illness do not typically seek out specifically defenseless people to harm. Do not let these sympathizers equate mental illness with child rapists- or any violent act that robs a victim of agency. Child molesters actively and covertly plot and design their heinous acts of attack. That is cunning, not mentally ill.
What absolutely blew my mind is that they were sharing their photos and discussing their fears at ?outing? themselves as if they were victims of social oppression or religiously motivated constructs of unprovoked fear and hatred. I was startled at how they postured themselves in much the same way the LGBT community had as we squared off with politics and religion to earn acknowledgement, equality and pride. I was overwhelmed by a sense of indescribable dread. Here?s why?
Since the burgeoning of my own self awareness and subsequently imposed shame regarding my gender as a result of seeing anti-LGBT evangelists and politicians behind their podiums using fear tactics to influence their audiences against me, I have lived in fear of this false equivalency. They would typically say things like; ?This LGBT community is the downfall of civilized society, soon they?ll be adding a ?P? to include and protect child rapists and other atrocious acts like bestiality!?
I remember how scared I was that anyone would ever presume I was, or would advocate for those who victimized children and animals. Still, these influencers with platforms were forming the opinions of millions that I was no different than a pedophile or a person who was sexually drawn to animals. As a Trans woman, this is ongoing, as politicians have been declaring us a threat to their wives and daughters if we want to use a public bathroom. One propaganda film from the hate group Nation For Marriage used the act of implied pedophilia to promote anti-transgender legislation.
I?ve been warning Parents I know about the uprising of MAPs, so that they can both protect their children from predators and prepare themselves for the inevitable onslaught of comparisons that will be made to the LGBT community in November by conservatives looking to be elected and the evangelists lobbying for them.
Let?s simply make this clear now. It is embarrassing that we live in an era where I must differentiate these things.
Pedophilia is NOT a sexual preference. It is not a consensual act with a mutually informed adult. Children cannot consent. Pedophiles are child rapists, full stop.
There is no such thing as a MAP. Do not normalize or sanitize child predation by allowing them the dignity of identifying themselves as anything but a sexual threat to children. They are pedophiles. Child sex offenders. There is no pathway to acceptance by using confusing/deceiving identifiers or disarming the public perception by legitimizing their crimes.
There is no relationship at all between pedophilia and gender identity or sexual orientation. Pedophilia is not a sexual orientation, despite how anti-LGBT activists will push this misleading narrative until it fits their agenda. It is a sickness that manipulates and abuses power over vulnerable children and young people who don?t understand what is happening and causes them long-term emotional distress and psychological damage.
Watch how quickly anti-LGBT lobbyists and politicians forget that the biggest pedophilia scandal came right out of the Catholic church wherein thousands of young boys were groomed, not by gay men or transgender women, but by heterosexual religious leaders who they, and their families, trusted.
Here is the bottom line, folks. In the act of sex, there should never be a victim. There should never be engagement with an entity who cannot give- regardless of reason- permission or who inherently cannot understand via means of rationale or awareness the concepts or consequences of sexual activity.
Watching self-described MAP?s discuss the day they can be ?Out of the closet? has been one of the most audacious and disturbing things I have ever seen- and I?ve seen a lot. Part of me reacted impulsively, with disgust and disbelief as I flipped through their photos- some of them young, some of them old. Men and women. They looked like typical college students and every day senior citizens you might see sitting on a park bench reading a book. That alarmed me the most. We have this mythology in our minds of what a child sexual predator looks like? it wasn?t any of these people. Then it occurred to me how comfortable they?ve gotten, clearly, in order to have the confidence to share their own photos with each other so casually fearing no judgement or persecution. Utterly enabled. Making their own representative flag.
Yet, LGBT people who harm no one are trying to thrive under this oppressive administration wherein we?re thrust constantly under the foot of moral and religious justice. We transwomen are being persecuted and declared dangerous to women and young girls while these individuals who actually prey upon children with sexual intent are developing active communities and supportive encouragement?
How long before someone declares me intolerant for rejecting criminal behavior or child rapists- active or inactive. How many times have we stood to fight hate and been told ?Don?t fight hate with hate? as if defending ourselves against a bile-spewing opposition is the the same thing as inciting hatred toward innocent people. I won?t allow a gaslighting here. I won?t be told that defending marginalized or voiceless communities who stand under assault and terror is reverse-hate. Children have no voice against the pedophiles who place them in their crosshairs.
Showing no tolerance for those who intend to harm children is not hateful- if that is your reaction, you need to deprogram. Your concern shouldn?t be resting on predators; Your concern should be firmly on the children whom it is our duty to protect from them.
A shocking development recently came to my attention via an investigative journalist who shared with me some of her own discoveries. She states that most self described MAPs aren?t, in fact, MAPs at all, but members of a nefarious organization of trolls from the website 4Chan who have, in the past, created and distributed fake posters targeting Oregon Pride by advertising that the organizers of the annual event were suddenly inclusive of NAMBLA- a controversial group of male pedophiles that, in reality, the LGBT community patently rejects. The goal of creating such false and misleading advertisements was specifically to discredit, or call into question the alignment of LGBT Oregonians by deceiving the general public regarding its activities and intentions.
Fake Poster created by anti-LGBT members of 4Chan implying the inclusion of pedophiles at Oregon gay pride
There is no question that it is entirely plausible that MAPs- at least the ones campaigning for visibility and inclusion so vocally online- could be shill groups intent on targeting and damaging the reputations, calling into question the ethics, and creating diversions with the goal of derailing the progressive mission of the LGBT community by feigning inclusivity beneath our umbrella. That would of course, be an ingenious way to mold external perceptions of us, even of our most staunch supporters, by slipping deceptive, toxic propaganda into the mainstream and branding it with our ?Pride? message.
Yes, it?s getting more and more challenging, as LGBT people, to filter what is real and what is not. Not only are we under a barrage of attacks daily from political activists, now there are shill organizations pretending to be supporters or members of the community who are intent on maligning us from the inside with the deliberate intention of, not just discrediting LGBT people and advocacy groups, but demonizing transgender people specifically by means of association with pedophiles.
In any case, be aware that MAPs are out there, some fake with an anti-LGBT political agenda, but some, unquestionably, very, very real. 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse. The best course of action for all of us is to continue unanimously rejecting it, because those who put children in danger do exist, whether ?Out? or not? and that is a fact we cannot tread lightly on, but instead come down upon with a heavy fist.