Stop using the word pedophile to refer to child molesters
This petition had 79 supporters
This is a moral issue, not a semantic one.
It is not the fact that no credible academic would use the word in this way, because the people are indeed in control of meaning. If a significant number of people start referring to the color 'red' as 'blue' or saying that the number after nine sounds like 'two', then we can argue all day but the fact is that dictionaries would be right to include that extra line, providing that extra definition.
No, the problem is that using the word 'pedophile' to mean 'child molester' leaves no space for non-offending pedophiles to exist. It is strange that, in a time when society seems to be concerned about this issue more than any other, we would give pedophiles one less reason to care about breaking the law: after all, we treat them as if they have already.
Because of the hysteria and ignorance promoted by mainstream media, pedophiles are terrified of approaching anyone about their inclinations, and may never even hear of supportive organisations like Virtuous Pedophiles.
Broadcasters hide behind the repulsive logic of 'everyone else uses the word this way', quite unconcerned about their contribution towards the creation of criminals and even encouragement of vigilante acts against people whose only crime is to have an attraction that they didn't choose.
We feel that the BBC, highly respected as it is, should lead the way.
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