Below I reproduce some sections from the volume Painful Extractions: Looking back at a personal journey (Eye: Thornham Books, 2002) by John Henniker-Major, the 8th Baron Henniker. Henniker is of interest to those investigating organised child sexual abuse because of the fact that the notorious Peter Righton, former Executive Committee member of the Paedophile Information Exchange, author of various freely available writings advocating sex with children, and senior figure in the social work profession, took up residence on Henniker’s estate, Thornham Magna, following Righton’s conviction for importing and possessing pornographic material featuring children in 1992. Numerous groups of children were brought from Islington and elsewhere to Thornham Magna on day trips and it is feared that they were the victims of abuse at the hands of Righton; the Exaro website has cited one person alleging brutal sexual assault and violence from Righton, also involving the former PIE treasurer Charles Napier, recently jailed for 13 years for sexual offences against 23 boys, and now even a sadistic murder by Righton on the estate.
I hope to be able to post a more comprehensive guest blog post on Henniker and his relationship to disgraced former diplomat Peter Hayman soon.
When time permits, I intend to thoroughly update my blog post on Righton to take account of the amazing research collected on the blog of Charlotte Russell, drawing upon a wide range of previously unseen archival documents. I cannot recommend strongly enough that anyone interested in particular in the Paedophile Information Exchange, and its links to the National Council of Civil Liberties and to politicians therein, read the various meticulously researched posts on this blog.
In an earlier post I drew attention to the justifications for sexual abuse of children provided by Germaine Greer, in particular in the case of Helen Goddard, convicted abuser who taught at City of London School for Girls. I have just come across a quote from considerably earlier, from a 33-year old Greer. Clearly this type of view has been consistent throughout her career; I believe all of her writings and work in other media should be more closely scrutinised in light of this.
One woman I know enjoyed sex with an uncle all through her childhood, and never realized that anything unusual was toward until she went away to school. What disturbed her then was not what her uncle had done but the attitude of her teachers and the school psychiatrist. They assumed that she must have been traumatized and disgusted and therefore in need of very special help. In order to capitulate to their expectations, she began to fake symptoms that she did not feel, until at length she began to feel truly guilty about not having been guilty. She ended up judging herself very harshly for this innate lechery.
Germaine Greer, ‘Seduction is a Four-Letter Word’, Playboy (January 1972), p. 82, cited in Richard Parson, Birthrights (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1974), p. 151.
It is not surprising that Tom O’Carroll, former chair of the Paedophile Information Exchange, should have been so enamoured of Greer (see his comments on her in ‘Is PIE Sexist?’, Magpie 12 (December 1978)) , and continued to enthusiastically report her support for Harriet Harman and NCCL this year; according to O’Carroll Greer argued on Any Questions? ‘that the age of consent issue was not just about paedophiles but about young people’s right to a sexual life, which was why she and others had supported changing the law’.
Michelle Elliott, researcher into sexual abuse committed by women, in the interview below (from about 9’25”) quotes Greer’s comment to her ‘Well, if it is a woman having sex with a young teenage boy, i.e. 13 or 14-year-old, and he gets an erection, then clearly it’s his responsibility’.
Nettie Pollard was NCCL’s Gay & Lesbian Officer, and chaired the NCCL’s gay rights committee, which included Paedophile Information Exchange leader Tom O’Carroll. She was responsible for inviting PIE to affiliate with NCCL in 1975.
Nettie Pollard was member number 70 of the Paedophile Information Exchange.
Pollard played a leading role in the Campaign for Homosexual Equality, who voted to support PIE at their 1975 conference, and defended PIE’s “right to speak and organise freely” at their 1983 conference.
In 1993 she wrote an essay called ‘The Small Matter of Children’, which begins by talking of “children’s rights” but then gives the game away by quoting speeches given to American paedophile group NAMBLA, and a book called Betrayal of Youth, which was edited by PIE member Warren Middleton aka John Parratt. It also peddles the lie that child rape can be ‘consensual’, talks of ‘mutual sexual pleasure’ and…
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An Islington Gazette cutting from November 1983 shows that former Islington Council leader Margaret Hodge signed a petition to ban the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE), an organisation that wanted to lower the age of consent to 4 years old.
Mrs Hodge’s anti-paedophile stance must have been the cause of constant arguments, since her husband, Henry Hodge, and her close friends Harriet Harman and Jack Dromey, were all senior officials of the National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL), which was affiliated to the Paedophile Information Exchange.
Although Margaret Hodge was well aware of PIE’s activities, she says she was unaware that paedophiles wanted to work with children. During her time as leader (1982-1992), every one of Islington’s children’s homes was infiltrated by paedophiles.
She recently tried to explain her total failure to protect children in care from paedophile rings, prostitution, and trafficking by saying “All that happened when we didn’t really…
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NCCL Documentary Evidence 2 – Sexual Offences – Evidence to the Criminal Law Revision Committee 1976Posted: April 7, 2014
Below is the text of all sections of Sexual Offences: Evidence to the Criminal Law Revision Committee. NCCL Report no. 13 (February 1976, revised edition March 1976) which are relevant to issues concerning PIE, to whom they had become affiliated by this time. Some of this has been quoted in various newspaper articles, but the complete text should make clear the extent to which NCCL’s recommendations were being influenced by PIE-style thinking (though some of it is perfectly reasonable). I will provide proper commentary, together with other NCCL-related information, at a later date.
Differences between the February and March 1976 versions of the report, both of which I have looked at, are tiny and cosmetic.
Introduction to the second edition
The publication of NCCL’s evidence on the law relating to sexual offences has caused considerable controversy. Unfortunately, the publicity given to the proposals to lower the ages of consent did not generally make clear the distinction which we made between an area of private morality, where the individual may make his or her own choice, and the area where the criminal law should intervene. Some commentators preferred to assert the innocence of ‘childhood’, ignoring the fact that a number of people below the age of 16 do choose to have sexual intercourse. Others defended the existing law on heterosexual activity on the ground that the law is a defence of the girl who wishes to say ‘no’. There is no evidence to suggest that the existing law does protect girls who wish to avoid intercourse: NCCL’s case is that such protection, if it does exist, should not be given at the expense of making criminal sexual activity between partners who consent.
Timely illustration of how objectionable the use of the criminal law is in this area was given this month when Justice Melford Stevenson criticised the police for charging an 18-year-old man with unlawful sexual intercourse with his 15-year-old girlfriend – whose consent, according to the judge, was not in doubt. The law is, of course, very rarely enforced, and it is not clear whether those who uphold its existence wish to see such prosecutions brought more frequently.
There has been considerable criticism of NCCL’s proposals on the ages of consent some based on a misunderstanding of our reasoning. But the proposals have also attracted support from those who share our conviction that the criminal law should not interfere with private, consenting sexual activity, and from a number of young people, and those working with them, who welcome the recognition that they are capable of making their own choice. This report has already stimulated public discussion about major issues of law and morality, and we welcome continuing debate on the proposals which we have made.
One of the most empty opinions frequently given about our society is that it is a ‘permissive society’. The term is rarely defined. It is true that certain barriers to sexual activity have been lowered, but the high threshold of guilt that affects many people often distorts relationships and behaviour and makes quite legitimate sexual freedoms beyond the reach of many people. The law still operates harshly to discourage certain sexual activities, even where no harm to others is identifiable. It would be equally true to say, as Anthony Grey of the Sexual Law Reform Society recently did, that ours is a repressive society. It is quite usual for advocates of any sexual freedom to be regarded as if they were calling for sexual licence. The test of any freedom – and there is no reason to exclude sexuality from this rule – is its effect on the legitimate freedoms of others.
Although in the past it was accepted that ecclesiastical laws and, subsequently, civil laws could properly enforce a moral code, in more recent times the feeling has been growing that Acts of Parliament should not, and cannot, control the moral side of our lives. It was put forcibly in a perspicacious sentence of the Wolfenden Report (1957) : ‘Unless a deliberate attempt is to be made by society, acting through the agency of the law, to equate the sphere of crime with that of sin, there must remain a realm of private morality and immorality which is, in brief and crude terms, not the law’s business.
The NCCL believes that the main function of the law on sexual behaviour should be protection; the only reason for making a sexual activity illegal is because it may result in other people being harmed. This rules out all laws concerned solely with morality. It also rules out paternalistic laws which attempt to stop an individual from harming himself; it is quite difficult in reality, to harm oneself by having too much sex.
There are, in NCCL’s opinion, two areas where a protective law may properly restrict sexual behaviour:
i) Where one or more parties to a sexual act have not consented;
ii) Where sexual behaviour results in demonstrable suffering or offence to other people.
Age of Consent
True consent has not been obtained unless all the participants have freely entered into the activity. The law must prevent individuals from forcing their attentions upon others by using violence, threats, fraud, blackmail or other improper pressures, such as taking unfair advantage of those under one’s authority or those who are handicapped in some way. Most people would agree that the law must intervene in such circumstances. The problem of consent becomes controversial when one has to decide at what age a child is responsible for his/her actions and is therefore capable of giving consent.
Many people hold strong opinions about the age of consent, but there is very little real evidence that can be used to support any one particular age. It is possible to use very similar arguments to support the age of 12, 13, 14, or 15. The choice of any particular age is quite arbitrary; this may seem inevitable to lawmakers, but one should not forget that this appears ridiculous to young people who are told sexual intercourse is illegal one day and legal the following day.
Some doctors support the present age of consent in the belief that the cervix is more liable to damage by sexual intercourse at 14 than at 16 but this is disputed by other medical experts and the evidence either way is far from convincing. The main arguments in favour of a high age of consent are psychological and emotional. It is said that adolescents may be physically capable of exercising their sexuality, but they are not mentally prepared for this experience. People who put forward this argument are really thinking about emotional commitments more than physical acts, but there is no law that can, or should, control romantic attachments.
It is also said that adolescents cannot have a very realistic idea of the possible consequences of their sexual activities and that giving expression to their desires could lead to a pregnancy with unfortunate consequences for the offspring, as well as for the adolescents, their parents and the community. Against this it can be argued that there are now fairly efficient ways of avoiding an unwanted pregnancy, if adolescents can be persuaded to make use of them. But many of these young people, who need contraceptives and advice about sexual matters, may be reluctant to ask for help when they know that they are breaking the law by engaging in sexual activities below the age of consent. Counsellors, doctors and others who wish to help adolescents are also put in an awkward position because in theory, at least, they are aiding and abetting an offence. Furthermore, the law making heterosexual sexual intercourse illegal under 16 is often broken and rarely enforced. (This argument, about prevention of pregnancy, does not of course apply to sexual activity between persons of the same sex.)
The law also takes no account of the fact that the age of puberty is much lower now than when it was decided to make 16 the age of consent. There is no real biological justification for any particular age. Less than a hundred years ago, the age of consent was 13. It was changed in 1885 following a scandal concerning child prostitution. Most girls have reached puberty by the age of 12 and most boys intend to have early sexual experience, whatever the law may be. Contemporary psychological research has shown that children have sexual feelings and desires from a very early age. As the age of puberty covers a wide range, any age of consent will be too high for some and too low for others. In any case, it is not sensible to choose one age when suddenly boys and girls are permitted to engage in heterosexual activities without fear of legal sanction. The ability of teenagers to make suitable judgements and control their impulses depends upon upbringing and education, not upon the law of the land.
The severity of the present laws affects relationships that cross the age of consent even when they are, in the ordinary sense, mutual. In the public mind, the legal term ‘assault’ that is applied in these cases probably suggests brief, violent encounters. In fact, the law, as well as prohibiting such undesirable sexual acts, may bring to a crushing end caring and mutual relationships of long standing, and some where the partners are close in age. Although in these cases, the ‘harm’ that the law is meant to discourage evades scientific discovery. The harm that flows from the law’s operation is all too evident.
Although it is both logical, and consistent with modern knowledge about child development, to suggest that the age of consent should be abolished, we fear that, given the present state of public attitudes on this topic, it will not be politically possible to abolish the age of consent. Accordingly, we propose a series of ages of consent, which would have the effect of reducing the harmful effects of the present laws.
i) A person aged 14 or over should be legally capable of giving consent.
ii) A person aged under 10 should be presumed legally incapable of giving consent.
iii) Where both partners are aged 10 or over, but under 14, a consenting sexual act should not be an offence.
iv) Where one partner is aged 10 or over, but under 14, the law should presume that consent was not present, unless it is demonstrated that it was genuinely given and the child understood the nature of the act.
v) As the age of consent is arbitrary, we propose an overlap of two years on either side of 14, so that, where the participants are aged 12 or over, but under 16, a consenting sexual act will not be an offence.
vi) The exception provided in S 6 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 should be retained, with the amendment that a person be not guilty of unlawful sexual acts with a child under 14 if he is under the age of 21 (not 24, as at present), has not previously been charged with alike offence, and reasonably believes the other person to be aged 14 or over.
We are particularly concerned that the present review of the law should not introduce new restrictions where none exist at present. The ages of consent would therefore continue to apply only to girls participating in heterosexual acts, and to boys participating in homosexual acts.
In the second paragraph of this memorandum, the blunt words of the Wolfenden Committee were quoted to support the proposition that people’s private morality is not the business of the law. That statement was made in that part of the Wolfenden Report which was specifically concerned with homosexuality. There is no logical or sensible reason why homosexuality should be treated differently by the law from heterosexuality. But the law discriminates against homosexuals – and mainly male homosexuals – in the following ways:
i) Homosexual acts between consenting adults in private, which became lawful in England and Wales after the Sexual Offences Act 1967, are still illegal in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
ii) Homosexual acts are still illegal in the Armed Forces and aboard UK Merchant ships.
iii) The age of consent for female heterosexuals is 16, but for male homosexuals is 21.
iv) The penalty for indecent assault on a male is a maximum of ten years, but the maximum for indecent assault on a female is two years.
v) It is illegal for a man aged over 21, to have sexual relationships with a man under 21, even in the reasonable belief that the younger man was over 21 and when the two men were close in age.
vi) The definition of privacy is more restrictive for homosexual acts.
vii) It remains an offence for a third party to procure a homosexual act, even though such an act is now quite legal. (This especially includes the publication of contact advertisements).
viii) It is an offence for a man persistently to solicit another man for an immoral purpose, but not for a man persistently to solicit a woman.
ix) Local bye-laws are used against homosexuals in a way that they are never used against heterosexuals.
These anomalies cannot be justified. Most of them were compromises made to facilitate the passing of the 1967 Act. It might have seemed to be good tactics at the time, but there is no logical reason for discrimination between these two forms of sexual behaviour.
At the very least, the same laws on sexual behaviour should apply throughout the United Kingdom. There should be no special prohibitions applying to the Armed Forces or the Merchant Navy. The definition of privacy should mean that a sexual act should not take place where it might be observed by others who might object. The age of consent should be the same for homosexuals and heterosexuals. The law on soliciting should be implemented without reference to the sex of the people concerned. No enactment of bye-law should prohibit conduct between persons of the same sex if it does not also prohibit similar conduct between people of the opposite sex. Penalties for sexual offences should be set at the same level for equivalent offences, whether they apply to male homosexual, or heterosexual offences.
Homosexual and Heterosexual Offences
It is not necessary to discriminate between homosexual and heterosexual behaviour in any of the laws regulating prostitution, brothel keeping, pornography, advertising for sexual partners, or in the application of any of the vague all-purpose common laws like conspiracy to corrupt public morals or breach of the peace.
We propose that the offences of buggery (S 12 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956) and assault with intent to commit buggery (S 16) be abolished. As the law [end p. 10] stands, a man and woman who have anal intercourse are both liable to a maximum term of life imprisonment, but the Sexual Offence Act 1967 allows a man over 21 to be lawfully penetrated and to penetrate another man over 21.
Section 32 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 re-enacts an older law which was originally intended to catch prostitutes’ touts or bullies, but has been used almost exclusively against male homosexuals. Indeed a recent judgment in the Divisional Court (Cooke v Edmondson, 1966) held that S 32 cannot be used against a man who solicits a woman. The law which prohibits homosexual conduct has been reformed, but this law on importuning is still the cause of much injustice.
Although the use of the word ‘persistently’ in the original wording of the Act suggests that the intention as to protect members of the public from interference or annoyance, the interpretation by the courts means that in practice the world of a plain-clothes policeman is usually accepted by the magistrate. In such a situation, it is not necessary to stress the possibility of exaggeration or perjury.
So fearful is the homosexual of the social repercussions that he can often be persuaded to plead guilty to lesser charges under a local bye-law on the promise from police of no publicity. A policeman is neither authorised to give such a promise, nor is he able to prevent publication of the proceedings in the press. It is not sufficient to argue that the penalties are comparatively light, for the ignominy that follows a conviction for importuning for homosexual purposes can still have a shattering effect on a man’s relationship with his family and friends, and on his circumstances at work.
As the law stands, it is not even necessary to show that someone has been annoyed or offended. The courts convict on police evidence alone, sometimes after doubtful means of entrapment have been used, such as an agent provocateur who incites a person to commit an offence. Someone who shows that s/he is available for sex by being in a certain place or by giving another person an enquiring look cannot be said to be acting in an offensive manner.
Soliciting only becomes annoying if it is directed towards the same person persistently and pressingly. The police should be required to produce the evidence of the person who has been persistently importuned. Consequently the law on soliciting should be amended to require that a person cannot be convicted of this offence unless it is proved that at least one member of the public (i.e. not a policeman) was offended by his or her conduct. It should also be a defence to show that the member of the public encouraged the soliciting.
As homosexual relations between consenting adults are no longer illegal, the existence of the offence of importuning or soliciting for an immoral purpose means that a person may be charged, convicted and punished for attempting acts which are not in themselves unlawful. All soliciting, from begging to high pressure salesmanship, can reach a stage when it becomes offensive, but it is doubtful if the public really requires extra protection when the soliciting is for sexual purposes.
For hundreds of years the crime of incest has given rise to such intense feelings of revulsion that public discussion on the subject has often been uninformed and irrational. The incest taboo is world wide and has a close connection with religious cults and magic. Recent researches (Maisch, 1973) cast some doubt on these historical and anthropological beliefs. The present day case against incest is firstly, that genetic damage may result in the offspring and secondly, that an incestuous union is disruptive to the cohesion of the family.
The first objection is strongly held, but recent studies on human reproduction do not give much support to this theory, and it is in direct contradiction to the practices of successful animal breeders. In any case, the advent of reliable contraceptives and safer abortion weakens this argument. As for the second objection, the evidence (Gebhard, 1965) suggests that families in which incest occurs between parent and child are often disturbed before it starts. To this extent, incest is not the cause but is one symptom of a disrupted family.
Although some of those charged with this crime are mentally or emotionally inadequate, this is not always the case, especially when the incestuous union is between brother and sister. In our view, no benefit accrues to anyone by making incest a crime when committed between mutually consenting persons over the age of consent. When force of threats are used, or when one of the partners is under the age of consent, the law on assault should come into operation.
We would therefore propose that the crime of incest be abolished. It may be argued, with some justification, that in cases of parent-child incest, undue pressure to consent could be placed on the child who is economically and emotionally dependent on the older party. This is just the sort of situation where bringing in the law could do immense harm to the child, the father and the rest of the family. A young person is far more likely to confide in a teacher, social worker or member of the family if this would not result in bringing down the full force of the law, with the possible outcome of the break up of the family with the father being sent to prison, the child having to appear in court and perhaps being put into care. There are many cases where the victim does not appear to suffer from any obvious psychological disturbance until after the case has come to court. It is often the publicity in the local press and the reaction of neighbours that is most damaging to the whole family.
The strong emotions that surround the subject of paedophilia make it particularly difficult for justice to be done in such cases. Feelings of revulsion are often shown by parents, police, witnesses, magistrates and judges, and even by the lawyer briefed to defend the accused. In such circumstances, a wish for retribution can easily take precedence over a concern for the child’s welfare. Where the child was a willing partner in the sexual activity the strength of prejudice surrounding the case and the visible psychological effect on the defendant (who may have been a friend of the child) will be highly disturbing. Where the act involved force or was otherwise without consent, the need is to assist the child overcome the trauma, which may only be reinforced by legal proceedings.
Although clearly in the case of a genuine assault on a child, action has to be taken to protect other children from the offender, there is a growing feeling that the present legal system causes unnecessary suffering for the child victim of a sexual assault. In their report for the Institute for the Study and Treatment of Delinquency, Gibbens and Prince make the point that isolated events are unlikely to have any profound effect on a child who would probably soon forget about their experience if it were not for the significance given to it by parental concern and legal proceedings. They point out that several children appear to be undisturbed at the time they are required to give evidence in court, but later have a breakdown and become increasingly unsettled. It is important to realise that in some cases the child will have felt coerced into giving evidence damaging to someone s/he was fond of, and will at the same time have had his/her feelings of sexual guilt raised to a high pitch.
The lay person is often unaware that an ‘indecent assault’ in law can be committed without violence or physical harm being done to the child. A man can be convicted of an indecent assault without there being any physical contact with the child’s genitals; thus, putting a hand on a child’s thighs can be an indecent assault. Virkkunen (1975) studied a group of 64 paedophiles and reported : ‘Aggressive behaviour was not as a rule a characteristic of these offenders: on the other hand they seemed to be in a pronounced manner gentle, fond of children and benevolent.’
Parents, police and lawyers find it hard to believe that the child may actively seek the sexual relationship. Bender and Blau (1937) report : ‘This study seems to indicate that these children undoubtedly do not deserve completely the cloak of innocence with which they have been endowed by moralists, social reformers and legislators . . . frequently we considered the possibility that the child might have been the actual seducer, rather than the one innocently seduced.’ Other researchers (Gibbens, Virkkunen) agree that the children often take the initiative; some of them have sexual experiences with several adults.
Childhood sexual experiences, willingly engaged in, with an adult result in no identifiable damage. The Criminal Law revision Committee should be prepared to accept the evidence form follow-up research on child ‘victims’ which show that there is little subsequent effect after a child has been ‘molested’. Several researchers (Gagnon, 1965; Gibbens and Prince, 1963; Tolsma, 1957; Doshay, 1943) have shown that it is possible to exaggerate the damage done to the child. Bender and Grugett (1952) write: ‘Modern psychiatric follow-up studies of a sizeable series of individuals who as children had known these types of sexual experiences have not disclosed any directly adverse effect of the early incidents upon later social adjustments’. A large number of people (one researcher estimated it to be about one third of all children) have one or more pre-pubertal sexual experiences with an adult. So at least some of the readers of this report should ask themselves whether their early sexual activities with an adult have resulted in any unfortunate after-effects.
As many male paedophiles are attracted to boys, there is a fear that the boy who has sexual relations with an adult man will grow up to be a homosexual, but again there is no evidence for this. Rainer (1960) writes : ‘Homosexual seduction in itself was not found to determine homosexual behaviour, nor deter heterosexual behaviour’. Coon (1957) writes : ‘To assume categorically that these relationships are going to be traumatic for the boy is prejudgment of a type which certainly has no place in dynamic psychiatry’. The Speijer Report, recently produced by the Dutch Council of Health for the Ministers of Justice and of Social Affairs, concluded that homosexual experiences might benefit boys who later would live heterosexual lives, in the same way that young male homosexuals could only benefit form sexual experiments with both girls and women.
There is little doubt that a law court can be an alarming place for a child. During a trial on indictment the number of people present in court may be thirty or more, not including ordinary members of the public. A child is apt to be overwhelmed by the formality of the court. Although many of them will have seen court scenes on television, recognition of a familiar scene will be offset by the fear that their words may be twisted by a clever lawyer. The circumlocutions of lawyers can be confusing for a child, even when the lawyer is not directly challenging the child’s evidence. If the child has been a willing partner in the offence, s/he will know that retribution can be avoided by claiming to be an innocent victim – which is what parents and others will want and expect to hear. Furthermore, the child will be required to repeat the story to parents, police (sometimes more than once) and then in court, with the risk that the child’s memory may become faulty and that details may be elaborated.
It is important that courts dealing with paedophilia should arrange to have the child’s evidence given in court at second hand, unless this is unfair to the defendant. If the statement from the child is not disputed, it can be treated as evidence. Where the defence wants to cross-examine the child, a magistrate can see the child with one representative form either side, but following less formal procedures than in a courtroom.
This suggested change in the law is merely a palliative. The real need is a change in the attitude which assumes that all case of paedophilia result in lasting damage. The present legal penalties are too high and reinforce the misinformation and prejudice. The duty of the court should be to inquire into all the relevant circumstances with the intention, not of meting out severe punishment, but of determining the best solution in the interests of both child and paedophile.
[Texts referred to in the above]
Lauretta Bender and Abraham Blau, ‘The reaction of Children to Sexual Relations with Adults’, American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 7, 500-518, 1937.
Lauretta Bender and Alvin Eldridge Grugett, ‘A Follow-up report on Children who had Atypical Sexual Experience’, American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 22, 825-37, 1952.
Earl A. Coon, ‘Homosexuality in the News’, Arch. Crim. Psychodynam., 2. 843-65, 1957.
L.J. Doshay, The Boy Sex Offender and his Later Career. Grune and Stratton, 1943
John Gagnon, ‘Female Child Victims of Sex Offences’, Social Problems, 13, 176-92, 1965.
T.C.N. Gibbens and Joyce Prince, Child Victims of Sex offences, ISTD, 1963.
J.D. Rainer, A. Mesnikoff, L.C. Kolb and A. Carr, ‘Homosexuality and Heterosexuality in Identical Twins’, Psychosomatic Medicine, 22, 251-9, 1960.
F.J. Tolsma, De Betekenis van der Verleiding in Homofeile Ontwikkelingen, Amsterdam Psychiatrical Juridical Society, 1957.
Matti Virkkunen, ‘Victim-precipitated Paedophilia Offences’, British Journal of Criminology, 15, April 1975.
Various people looking into the Paedophile Information Exchange have mentioned the volume Warren Middleton (ed), The Betrayal of Youth: Radical Perspectives on Childhood Sexuality, Intergenerational Sex, and the Social Oppression of Children and Young People (London: CL Publications, 1986). This book contained a wide range of articles mostly from a pro-paedophilia point of view either by PIE members or sympathisers; the fact that Peter Tatchell contributed a chapter has been the subject of various controversy (to which I will return in a later post). The following constitute the contents of the volume (see here for a selection of pages including more details on contributors):
Part One: Five Controversial Areas
Clive Coliman, ‘Incest’
Richard Green, ‘Child Pornography and Erotica’
Warren Middleton, ‘Child Prostitution’
Liz Holton and Kathy Challis, ‘Gender Differences’
Eric Presland, ‘Power and Consent’
Part Two: Miscellaneous Chapters
Tuppy Owens and Tom O’Carroll, ‘Love and Let Love’
Michael Ingram, ‘Children and Sex: A Child Counsellor’s View’
Beatrice Faust, ‘The Pedophiles’
Peter Tatchell, ‘Questioning Ages of Majority and Ages of Consent’
Roger Moody, ‘Ends and Means: How to Make Pedophilia Acceptable…?’
John Lindsay, ‘Socialism, Class, and Children’s Rights’
Part Three: Protection or Oppression?
Warren Middleton, ‘Childhood Sexuality and Pedophilia: Some Questions Answered’
Part Four: How Youth See the Issues
Jeff Vernon, ‘The Oppression of the Young: An Inside Perspective’
Appendix 1: Steven A. Smith, ‘PIE, from 1980 Until its Demise in 1985’
Appendix 2: Timothy d’Arch Smith, ‘The Uranians’
The first of these two appendices is informative as an insider’s history of PIE. As with all writings by PIE members themselves, this should be read sceptically, aware of how much might have been omitted or distorted in the interests of the author or other members. My earlier post on PIE and the Home Office clarifies how Smith (also known as Steven Freeman) essentially ran the organisation from the Home Office itself. He fled the country for the Netherlands soon after writing this article, as detailed below, and was eventually jailed in 1991, and then more recently was given an indeterminate sentence in 2011 after being convicted of producing drawings of children being raped (‘Ex-paedophile group leader Freeman jailed over child rape drawings’, BBC News, July 15th, 2011). Nonetheless, there is clearly lots of important information to dissect in this chapter which I reproduce complete, without comment, below.
Steven A. Smith, ‘PIE: From 1980 until its Demise in 1985’, pp. 215-245
The name of PIE has cropped up several times in this collection. Since the group had, in its time, been so thoroughly misunderstood and misrepresented, it was deemed only fair to allow Steve Smith, its last chairperson, an opportunity to redress the balance. Accordingly, he now takes up the story from where Tom O’Carroll left off. –ed.
Questions of Priority
It seemed to me, when I succeeded O’Carroll as chairperson in 1979, that the most sensible order of business for PIE was firstly to regulate its internal affairs (MAGPIE  was appearing very erratically – partly my own fault – and members were receiving nothing else of value from the group); secondly to begin an energetic recruitment drive to replenish our depleted executive committee; thirdly to formulate collectively a coherent body of policies on key issues; and fourthly to tackle our campaigning objectives as a group, rather than as one or two individuals speaking on behalf of the group. More than simply addressing an occasional CHE branch, student gaysoc or academic conference, what I wanted to see was PIE producing a manifesto on video for the widest possible circulation (as GYM had done), or trying for ‘community access’ slots on TV and local radio, or producing posters and broadsheets aimed at the public rather than potential members, or even working in concert with the NUSS (the now-defunct National Union of School Students) to redress the steady flow of anti-paedophile propaganda which the police were imparting to schools all over the UK.
PIE had always felt a sense of kinship (not often reciprocated) with the gay movement, and a firm commitment towards autonomous youth liberation (children’s rights), but I wanted to see develop a far closer interaction – on practical as well as philosophical levels – between PIE and the various paedophile groups in Europe and the States. I felt we should lend considerable effort to the formation of an international alliance along similar lines to the International Gay Association (this was before we discovered how bureaucratic the IGA was in practice). Lastly, with the abandonment of PIE’s Contact Page under the menace of further prosecutions, the EC felt very keenly that members still needed something from PIE in the way of social support; something beyond the ad hoc counselling which many committee members undertook on a one-to-one basis. If British law prevented paedophiles from writing directly to one another through a simple small ad service, then some alternative had to be found which would abrogate the profound isolation which had driven them to the desperate resort of joining PIE in the first place. We began to look afresh at the establishment of local groups, which PIE had attempted in earlier years without much success.
In the event, PIE failed to draw onto its committee the kind of radicalised, hard-working people that were needed, and not one of the above objectives was realised. Year by year, PIE had sunk deeper into a state of collective torpor, grimly determined to survive, if only in catatonic immobility. So, we failed to attract into PIE useful paedophiles who were commited [sic] both to political action and to the development of a mutual support framework – this was due in part to PIE’s consummately negative image in all quarters (the radical leader was quite as easily duped by the press stories about us as anyone else, judging from the strange impressions of PIE that had reached our ears), but due also to obstruction and non co-operation wherever we sought wider publicity for the group’s address. Many gay and alternative journals must share the blame for PIE’s then continued parlous, debilitated condition. I’m convinced there are still many thousands of paedophiles in the UK alone who are ignorant of PIE having ever existed, and I know for certain there are many others who saw the various ‘exposés’ and shock reports about us, but were thwarted in their efforts to find us.
Perspectives on Pearl Harbour
A former treasurer, on resigning from the EC, put it to me (though not quite in these terms) that PIE’s reputation across the board had become so desperately negative that the groups’ mere existence could only harm the paedophile cause, whatever we tried to do about it. We were a pariah among alternative movements, evil incarnate to society at large, and by continuing to exist so doggedly in the face of all opprobrium, PIE was doing for British paedophiles what AIDS was doing for the gay community. A harsh judgement, I feel. If AIDS had not existed the Moral Majority would’ve had to invent it. If PIE had not existed, it would have been necessary for the NEWS OF THE WORLD to invent us. And in one sense it’s true to say that the gutter press did invent PIE – or at least, the image of PIE which had been in general coinage since 1977; that of a secretive international ‘cult’, probably with underworld connections, certainly with influence in ‘high quarters’; a porn-producing syndicate of callous men intent upon nothing but their own sexual gratification. But if PIE’s early strategy had been different, how different would its public image have been?
Several times the idea of folding PIE and replacing it with a new paedophile grouping was mooted on committee, but we’d never have successfully jettisoned PIE’s reputation by the simple expedient of a name-change, and even a substantially different alignment would not for long have escaped the vitriolic attention PIE had enjoyed. This rose by any other name would have smelled no sweeter. There was nothing endemic in PIE itself which another broad-based group could have avoided and thus somehow bridged the ‘credibility gap’. NAMBLA in the US, for example, has placed its emphasis exclusively on gay paederasty (men attracted to teenage boys and youths), thus neatly sidestepping the two most controversial planks of PIE’s platform – heterosexual and pre-teen paedophile relationships. Notwithstanding this, NAMBLA has been attacked, boycotted and obstructed every bit as much as PIE had been by the media, women’s groups, sections of the gay scene, and has come in for just the same intimidation and harassment from the authorities. So much for tactical compromise. PIE’s trajectory into the public eye in 1977 can be compared to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour, after which Admiral Yamamoto observed: “I fear that all we have done is to waken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve”. Doubtless, many paedophiles wish we’d let this particular giant sleep on, but neither they nor children can be liberated from his tyranny without at least waking him in the process.
The conflicting demands of our campaigning and befriending objectives from the start presented a fundamental dichotomy in PIE. What for years we viewed as one of PIE’s greatest strengths may in truth have been its greatest weakness, or at least its greatest liability; our acceptance into the group and onto its Executive Committee of paedophiles, whatever their attitudes, abilities or political persuasion (with the exception of the far Right, of course). By straining to be all things to all paedophiles I doubt that we fully satisfied any, and we certainly alienated a few. There is a very powerful argument which runs thus: that the accommodation of a passive, inert membership consumes so much of the energies of a small group’s activist core that the raison d’être of the group is lost in a sea of ‘club-shit’. In other words, committee devoted so much of its time and attention to the routine of organisation and providing reading material and other services for consumption by the Moloch that vital campaigning work was neglected. After six years hard labour on the PIE committee I can only say that this was absolutely true.
Probably the only way ahead for paedophilia in the UK will be the emergence of two distinct groupings – though working in concert – attending to these differing needs. I for one did not wish to see the majority of paedophiles abandoned while the few activists diverted their attentions elsewhere, as some would have had us do, but equally I recognised that our political momentum had been retarded by a plague of part-time paedophiles – those who wanted to know what was going on without getting involved any deeper; who wanted to see changes made but not to help bring them about. PIE’s committee did not comprise many true activists anyway – it never did – so it alone did not have the capacity to diverge, and the very few paedophile activists who could be identified outside the group showed no interest in helping the metamorphosis come about.
Perhaps PIE’s mistake was in tackling non-paedophile prejudice in the first place? Perhaps instead we should have operated under the most stringent security precautions as a kind of Masonic network through which paedophiles might have contacted one another in safety? I’ve heard this view from outsiders. I don’t think that locking oneself in the closet would have been a terribly progressive move; by its nature such a network would have benefited only a tiny minority of those ‘in the know’, and the outside world would have been vindicated in its suspicions about us if we had behaved so furtively and were so indifferent to public opinion and the political imperative of children’s liberation.
The most bizarre misconception about PIE was held by a guy who later joined the committee for a short while – Lee Edwards. He’d visualised PIE being as affluent and neatly-organised as the Mormon Church, with smoked glass offices in the City of London and a full-time secretariat. He was, let’s say, a shade disillusioned by the reality. PIE did actually have an office in Westminster only a smirk away from the desk of the Home Secretary, but more of that later. The group’s silence in recent years had done nothing to dispel the illusions of people – friend and foe – about us, but then Pie itself had been undergoing an identity crisis of sorts, uncertain about which direction it should be taking. But one thing is quite certain – if we were none of the things people expected us to be, we were certainly none of the things the press had claimed us to be in their haste to deceive the British public.
Loaves and Fishes
I found PIE in 1978 entirely by accident through a classified ad in TIME OUT magazine. Many others came to us through a regular listing in GAY NEWS. However, both sources of new blood had been closed off long before the trial.  Occasionally, we would discover a listing in some unexpected place, inevitably giving an old address, but in general PIE was unable to get a listing in any gay or alternative paper in the UK. After the trial we attempted to retrieve this situation by a general approach to dozens of such papers here or abroad, asking for either free listings or concessionary advertising rates. A special appeal was made to the membership for donations to fund this advertising drive. MANCUNIAN GAY was the only paper in the UK willing to help us. Abroad, our ad was accepted without qualm by THE BODY POLITIC (Toronto) and GAY COMMUNITY NEWS (Boston) – both excellent gay papers whose unequivocally supportive stance on paedophilia put the faint-hearted GAY NEWS to shame – also by REVOLT (Sweden), CSC NUSLETER (California) and several others. But where we needed members most of all, where members were potentially of most value to the group, here in the UK, the drive got us nowhere. TIME OUT kept our hopes up for several months with repeated promises of a listing, but finally backed out with the feeble excuse that, as PIE wasn’t strictly a gay group, it was inappropriate to include us in a gay listings column. The only option left to us – a rather desperate one – was to litter PIE’s address around the streets by means of a sticker campaign, and this is what we did.
The sticker featured the silhouette of a standing child embracing a seated adult encircled by our name and address. We decided on this low-key format, foregoing bold and provocative slogans, as the object was simply to attract new members, not to outrage every parent that saw them. Even so, we were politely requested by one (prospective) London MP to desist planting them in his constituency (they had been discovered rather close to schools, you know!). Well, the campaign brought us just a handful of new people – too few members had been planting the stickers on a regular basis for fear of being caught red-handed and beaten up; those that were planted were being far too eagerly torn down; and worst of all one committee member made the terrible gaffe of not renewing the postal address on the sticker, so that later mail was never redirected to us at all. Perhaps the act of planting stickers, like writing political graffiti, is little more than a satisfying gesture of defiance for the individual, but I think we made a mistake in not concentrating our efforts on a far smaller area – probably London itself – and perhaps, if there had been a next time, we should have gone for those bold, provocative slogans.
There were a number of projects in various stages of completion during this period – none of which had any significance to non-paedophiles. The PIE Press Service was revived, making available once more all PIE’s early material (UNDERSTANDING PAEDOPHILIA and CHILDHOOD RIGHTS, for example) together with items like Tom’s book PAEDOPHILA: THE RADICAL CASE,  which PIE subsidised to its members; the early US boylove magazine BETTER LIFE; and the celebrated BODY POLITIC article ‘Men Loving Boys Loving Men’  (which has been subjected to not one, but two trials of its own). We owe thanks to Julian Meldrum of the Hall Carpenter Archives for supplying us with much early PIE material. So many important documents were lost whenever Scotland Yard descended on the homes of committee members that arrangements were made with the Brongersma and Bernard Foundations in Holland to deposit copies with them for safe keeping.
A reading list of paedophile fiction was added to the press service, complied by Lewis Grey, David Joy and Leo Adamson, and later a non-fiction list condensed by Tom O’Carroll from the copious bibliography of his book. Work was also begun on a film guide and on a survival guide for paedophiles in the UK.
A growing number of our members were captives in US prisons. Coping with the special needs of these people prompted us to set up a prisoner support scheme which, under Peter Bremner and later Tony Zalewski, found correspondents for these prisoners and sought sponsors to cover the expenses of their membership, mailing them recommended books and items from the press service. It hardly needs saying that our attempts to operate the scheme with inmates of British prisons were scotched by this country’s Draconian censorship restrictions. Mail from US prisoners often carried an apologetic stamp on the envelope which read: “Prisoners’ mail uncensored. Not responsible for contents.” I look forward to the day when British prisons need to be so apologetic – I had a long and fractious correspondence with the governor of Wormwood Scrubs over the confiscation of several letters of mine and other items sent to Tom O’Carroll. As with all things in the US, prison regulations vary wildly from state to state, so while some members were receiving regular visits from the boys for whose ‘protection’ they had been imprisoned, others were not even permitted to receive MAGPIE. NAMBLA was far better placed than we were to defend the interests of these people, and is now doing so. PIE was powerless to help prisoners in the UK without some referral arrangement with the social services, and the Home Office lifting restrictions on visits and correspondence.
Given the monstrous treatment of many paedophiles in prison, and the squalid, dehumanising conditions that prevail throughout the prison system, it is a marvel to me that people can emerge from this ordeal without a deep and burning animosity towards the society that abused them so. Imprisonment is the grossest indecency.
If there was one venture that I expected to be an unqualified success and firmly supported by the membership, it was the re-establishment of social meetings through local group organisers. This was the sort of freedom which other oppressed groups – blacks, gay men and women, and many more – took entirely for granted. Any attempt by PIE to arrange social venues (this applied equally to workshops, AGM’s, marches and demonstrations of any kind) carried with it the implicit danger of press harassment, police observation, and physical attack from fanatics of every species. Accordingly, such precautions had to be taken to insulate these meetings from the hostile gaze that the people who had most need of them – frightened, solitary people with zero political awareness – were the last to be invited to them. Where possible, committee members attempted to meet new people in order to establish their bona fides, but there was always a substantial part of the membership who could not be directly vouched for, and we knew there was an agent of the NEWS OF THE WORLD among them.
Having an EC member in Birmingham, the first step was to organise meetings in this area for members in the midlands. Several meetings took place, but then the host was arrested and sent to remand prison on an unconnected charge, and interest petered out. With my help, an Australian member attempted to generate support for a PIE branch in his country (we had more members in Australia than in Scotland and Wales together), but the majority of those approached preferred to keep the breadth of the globe between them and the kind of flak which PIE attracted. This was not too surprising when one learnt that an earlier bid to establish an independent Australian paedophile group – SYBOL – crashed when a conservative gay group threatened to hand the organisers’ names and addresses to the police. Plans for a Canadian branch of PIE went awry also, but happily NAMBLA was able to establish a chapter there soon after.
Our greatest concentration of members had always been in London and the home counties. All but a handful of PIE’s workers through the years had lived there. From August ’82 we booked a private room one night a week in a series of West end pubs, inviting along all members who were known to us. The average attendance was very disappointing: always the same few faces. Presumably, everyone feared that a press plant would be present, as had in fact happened once before in 1979: A known freelance operating for the NOTW, had turned up half drunk at one pub meeting and begun asking those present to procure boys for him. “I know there are kids around who’ll go with you for money,” he said, “but where are they? Why don’t we do something instead of just sitting here?” No such investigative journalist graced any of the more recent meetings. TIME OUT reporter, John Gill, came along once or twice, but he was there at our invitation, preparing a feature on the anxieties and expectations of paedophiles living in London (a feature subsequently suppressed by the magazine’s editors). Other guests present at those meetings included many GYM members and one or two representatives from CHE – one of them a woman who was entirely supportive. Discussions with these people were on the whole constructive and stimulating, and made the meetings worthwhile for us on the EC, but the objective of a social forum for members outside the committee was never realised.
Babel Wasn’t Built in a Day
In August 1980 PIE circulated an open letter among every known paedophile group in Europe, Scandinavia and North America, and also to prominent individuals such as Dr. Edward Brongersma, Dr. Frits Bernard, Drs. Theo Sandfort, and Valida Davila of CSC (Childhood Sensuality Circle). The letter outlined an ambitious, some would say grandiose, proposal for a new transnational paedophile federation through which member groups would collaborate on material projects and share resources at the same time as working towards a common philosophical platform. As I wrote in MAGPIE 15, “Much more than a simple mutual aid society, such a federation would be the consolidation of a coherent international paedophile and children’s liberation movement out of the present chaos of tiny national groups working largely oblivious of one another”. This initiative was very much a personal commitment of my own – my committee colleagues were not all so inspired by this euro-vision. I had learned through PIE that there were groups in Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Portugal, Belgium, yet we knew virtually nothing about these people and their organisations, what they were doing in their own countries, or how their political analyses differed from that of PIE. Any contact we had established had been of a token kind, genuine in spirit but superficial in practice, so it was safe to assume that these groups were in the same state of ignorance about us. It seemed important to me that a full and penetrating dialogue be established at least with the strongest of them.
Inevitably, there were language obstacles. We mustered a few members to translate from French, German and Dutch for us, but although our files were brimming with magazines from these groups we could hardly ask people to translate whole magazines, and in any case one could not always rely on forming an accurate view of a group’s thinking merely by reading its general literature. (There had been no language barrier for Tom O’Carroll when he represented PIE at an Oslo conference ‘Amnesty for Love and affection’ hosted by the Norwegian group, NAFP, in 1979. There had even been discussions there on forming a new, broad-based international group called ‘Amnesty for Child Sexuality’, but nothing had come of this.)
The Open letter included a proposal for an early ‘summit’ conference of interested groups to discuss the general concept of an IGA-type alliance, and areas of practical collaboration between us. The most enthusiastic responses we received came from people and groups who had least to gain from the proposed alliance: “I am in complete agreement with your plans,” wrote Valida Davila; “Some people are ruined by oppression and persecution, and others are fired to fight back. I see your committee has chosen the latter road.” “We think the idea of an international association for paedophiles excellent,” wrote REVOLT of Sweden; “If there is anything we can do to support, never hesitate to ask.” Pasteur J. Doucé of the Centre du Christ Libérateur, Paris, wrote: “If I can be of any help in the formation of an international paedophile fellowship please let me know.” An anarchist commune for young people in Nuremberg, the Indianner, said that although they had deep reservations about the German group, DSAP, they still wished to “join a basic form” with us.
The groups themselves were not prepared to take a lead. They wanted to see PIE set up the conference itself. What better demonstration of the poor grasp our friends had on the political realities for PIE? We were possibly the only group among them which was unable to hold a general meeting for its own members without grave risk of injury to those attending, and prosecution of the organisers. After the events of 1977 for PIE, did anyone seriously expect an international paedophile conference to be permitted in the UK? NAMBLA chose to “wait and see what leadership develops on these concepts”. The paedophile wing of the Dutch civil rights umbrella organisation, NVSH, felt that their priorities should be domestic, and that international co-ordination should be left to the auspices of the IGA itself. NAFP in Norway “sympathised” but wanted “more concrete ideas”. 
The first months of the following year saw the emergence in France of a new paedophile organisation – the Groupe de recherché pour une Enfance Différente – and four of us from PIE sped along to its inaugural congress in November. Also present on that occasion were David Thorstad representing NAMBLA, Frits Bernard representing DSAP, and a member of the Belgian Paedophile Studygroup [sic]. The atmosphere at that opening day was something I had not experienced before even at PIE’s 1978 AGM – an intensity, an electric urgency of expression that welled as much from the floor as from the platform. The strength of the GRED committee was plain to see, as one after another they all addressed the meeting with equal vigour and self-assurance, and everyone it that packed hall (including, to our delight, a handful of women paedophiles) was involved, not quietly receiving the transmitted wisdoms of the committee. With the promise of an imminent reduction in France’s homosexual ‘age of consent’ from eighteen to fifteen, the liberation of children was for these people far from a remote utopian objective.
I came away from that conference profoundly frustrated, both with the inadequacy of PIE and my own inadequate French. I went to listen, but came away having understood little that I’d heard. I went to contribute my views, but came away without having said a word. I went to take part, but was obliged merely to observe. It’s not entirely unreasonable, of course, that a French group meeting in France should conduct its meeting in French, but I had rather hoped that, at least in the workshop on international collaboration, some concession would be made to a humble Anglophone like myself. Unfortunately, GRED’s English was only a little better than my French. One might think such a lesson in futility would have made me reconsider the practicality of collaboration on the level suggested by the Open Letter but, on the contrary, I felt all the more keenly how much we had to gain from a close dialogue and mutual co-operation with people such as GRED. If we left them with a rather poor understanding of PIE and what we had to deal with over here, that was entirely our own fault, of course, but even among the extrovert committee of GRED, and in its journal, PETIT GREDIN, there was a hint of the same parochialism displayed by the NVSH paedophiles and others, confining their analysis of the problems and solutions within national boundaries. Perhaps PIE was unique in this respect – that more than half our membership lived abroad, scattered among twenty or so countries, and it was plain to us that the ignorance and intolerance of paedophilia knew no frontiers, as with the inhibitory myths of childhood. While the police and the agents of ‘moral’ conformity were concerting their efforts internationally against us, would we not even collaborate in our own defence, if for no better motive?
Another item under preparation for the PIE Press Service at that time was a comprehensive directory of paedophile/children’s liberation groups – the first such guide ever to be published in the English language, filling in a little detail to that cold, unwelcoming expanse of acronyms: SAP, DAP, DSAP, PAC, AKP and so on. Questionnaires were distributed hot on the heels of the Open Letter, and the information that came back immediately helped to dissipate our own ignorance a little. We discovered, inevitably, that some of the groups had already collapsed. In Germany, for example, the Deutsche Studie und Arbeitsgemeinschaft Pädofilie had disintegrated over an ideological clash between anarchists, conservative reformists, and revolutionary socialists – notably about the nature and extent of freedom it wished to seek for young people. Blackmail threats had come into play here too, as with SYBOL in Australia, but this time one paedophile against another, to the utter damnation of those that made them. NAFP in Norway also, sadly, dissolved. And for each group that vanished another would suddenly appear elsewhere on the map – Stiekum in Belgium, for instance.
At the GRED conference it was agreed that the groups represented there would all follow NAMBLA’s example in joining the IGA itself and through it lobbying the gay movement directly for firmer support. The extent of our links with the gay political scene was an essential aspect of PIE’s strategy (insofar as PIE had such a thing) which I want to consider separately but, in the absence of a constructive dialogue with gays (or anyone else) in our own country about the radical means to accomplish our short and long term objectives, other paedophile groups abroad remained the only people from whom alternative strategies could be learned, our own analysis refined, different perspectives examined. Practical alteration to the law and its institutions is an objective necessarily specific to one’s own country, but awakening a whole culture to the living realities of sexuality and of youth is the promulgation of an idea, a new system of living, and is not confined to the arbitrary frontiers of states.
Prodigal Son? _ Or A Cuckoo in the Nest?
1983 was the first time in PIE’s nine-year history that a handful of members carried a PIE banner at the London Gay Pride march. The banner read simply: ‘Adults Loving Children loving Adults’ – a bisexual extension of the famous BODY POLITIC caption. This bold initiative was largely due to the efforts of one EC member, Leo Adamson, who, in a very short time of involvement in PIE, had propelled the group a deal closer to the gay movement than it had been for a considerable while. As a member of GYM (Gay Youth movement), Leo was able to speak for PIE at their annual conference ‘Gym’ll Fix It’, and he also took an active role in the group’s lobby of Parliament. In July ’83 he represented PIE at the IGA conference in Vienna. One could say that PIE had waited a long time for individuals with Leo’s stamina and conviction to come along and fulfil this vital liaison role.
Eric Presland, writing in CAPITAL GAY,  rejoiced in the appearance of PIE’s banner at the Gay Pride march, and bade us a hearty ‘Welcome back!’ While there was no doubting the sincerity of Presland’s support for PIE, nor his personal commitment to the liberation of children, there was an assumption behind his remarks that PIE had somehow drifted away from the gay movement in recent years, had now seen the error of its ways and returned – like the prodigal son – to its spiritual home. But it was not PIE that moved away from the gay movement in the UK, it was the gay movement that moved hastily away from us once the muck began to fly; and not because it viewed PIE as too reformist, sexist or reactionary – these tags were slapped on us much later – not because our proposals were insufficiently radical; they were too radical by half for the majority of gays. If we had concentrated, as NAMBLA had done in the US, simply upon sexual relationships between men and teenage boys, gays might have been rather more sanguine about solidarity with us. We were not prepared to barter away the interests of so many paedophiles and of pre-teenage children to realise that support.
If anything, the political leaning of the EC had become further to the Left than ever before, though unfortunately there was no output from PIE to attest to this. Committee may have been radical in its sympathies, but was singularly reticent to express this thinking through MAGPIE or CONTACT.  Repeatedly it was put to them that committee should buckle down and talk through some coherent policy positions on key questions – I prepared a discussion paper on pornography to set this process going – but there was no enthusiasm at all for the hard graft of policymaking. Little wonder then that Pie was seen as complacent and insular when it could not produce a single political position or line of analysis to promote wider debate. Those people who troubled to look for evidence of PIE’s philosophy or political credentials were left to glean what they might from the tone and content of MAGPIE, or from documents published years ago by a very different EC – the ‘Questions & Answers’ booklet  and our ‘Evidence to the Home Office Criminal Law Revision Committee’.  I don’t think there was anyone active in PIE at this time who was happy with the proposals contained in the ‘Evidence’ paper; many would have liked to see them publicly rescinded. All in all, if gays regarded PIE with some suspicion as being an unknown political quantity we had no-one but ourselves to blame for that.
“I don’t think the time is yet read,” wrote an editor of REVOLT in answer to our Open Letter, “for a great association that would support both gays and paedophiles. There are still too many prejudices in the various camps, and paedophile liberation has some very specific aspects which certainly would be overlooked (or neglected) in a general gay association.” I entirely agree with that view. Whereas those paedophile groups that had sprung initially from the gay movement (PIE, NAMBLA, GRED) had tended to survive without the umbilical intact, those which tried to submerge back into the gay movement, becoming just one of several special interest groups within it, (NAFP for example) expired in the process. It is manifestly obvious that the struggles and obstacles faced by paedophiles in the UK today, and indeed the major arguments marshalled against us, bear a striking resemblance to those which gays themselves were confronted with a scant few decades ago. Many of the tasks that face us are the same – combatting the monolithic heterosexuality of ‘educational’ propaganda, for one – and there is great scope here for joint action, but our demands of society are far from being identical, and nor are they at the same stage of accomplishment.
To pluck a metaphor from the mouths of our critics, in any relationship between paedophiles and gays, it is gays who are demonstrably the stronger partner, far greater in size and power, their social status much higher. In contrast, paedophiles are weak, vulnerable, and – as a political force – lacking in experience, our status just about the lowest there is. Can true equality ever be realised in such a relationship? Will gays not simply abuse their power advantage to silence or control paedophiles? Does the gay movement really care about the needs and aspirations of its younger protégé?
Well, you may be sure that PIE did not endorse that kind of negativistic approach. The assumption that the strong will tend inevitably to exploit the weak is true of fascists, not of sexual groupings. I believe that the gay movement in the UK neglected PIE’s struggle to establish a discrete paedophile consciousness, as it has largely neglected the predicament of gay people younger than sixteen or seventeen. From its position of comparitive [sic] strength it had much to offer us by way of philosophical analysis as well as options for positive action. Instead, we found ourselves forced consistently onto the defensive, perpetually having to justify our very sexuality, to avouch our responsibility as caring people. We were nothing beyond a coffee-table controversy to most gays, and our demands for acceptance and support were given barely more credence here than that which society gives to demands for gay equality. I’m afraid the movement itself has much to answer for the continuing misery and frustration gay children in this country are compelled to endure.
It was a measure neither of PIE’s ineptitude, nor of the political vacuousness of British paedophiles, that so few radical activists materialised among us. It was rather too facile to apply to us the logic of gay and feminist activism, as though the realities were no different for a paedophile coming out in a militant way. Every risk that a gay or lesbian accepts in entering a career of sexual politics, on whatever level, is multiplied many times for a paedophile doing likewise. It is a simple equation of greater risks equalling fewer volunteers. Beyond this rather elementary observation, it is in the nature of paedophilia that the greater number of us will channel their whole energies into working with and for children (however misguidedly), whether this be as youth workers, teachers, nurses or, yes, as scoutleaders. Individuals who would have been of immense value to a group such as PIE either never contemplated joining because their attention was squarely focussed on working with the young, or shied away from deeper commitment for fear the publicity would disable them from continuing such work. True, many of these people themselves inadvertently abet the social conditioning of youth, but they are sincere in the belief that their work is beneficial and constructive. The essential point is that a paedophile’s natural first loyalty is to children – not to other paedophiles.
Unlike gays and feminists, who seek the company of people like themselves for social and sexual reasons, and then develop a political consciousness within that society, drawing strength from their community for ‘coming out’ and embarking on political work, paedophiles do not tend to gravitate so readily into one another’s company, (those that would have no means of doing so, of course) and the breeding medium for radicalisation is so much less fertile for this often-overlooked reason. In the company of a thirteen year old boy one can learn a good deal about the realities of powerlessness and dependence and the frustration of being thirteen in this society – all the more so from a girl – but this is a long way from assimilating a commitment to political struggle. The younger the children a paedophile seeks for company, the more this argument applies.
Thanks in large part to PIE, some paedophiles did befriend one another, but all too often in such meetings the differences of perspective were more apparent than the congruences. There was a commonality of interest without a commonality of awareness. Therefore among paedophiles this consciousness has to be cultivated in an altogether more deliberate and artificial way. Those paedophiles who regard themselves (sometimes mistakenly) as the most revolutionary are generally those that move largely in gay circles. Undoubtedly, coming out as a paedophile via the gay movement increases one’s exposure to radical though – though anyone acquainted with CHE might laugh at this – but it may also leave one with a smug and false sense of security.
While my own sexual tastes extend to eighteen or nineteen year old guys, I confess I never had much inclination to join a gay group or frequent any gay clubs. I think my perspective might have been rather less parochial if I had, but this is to illustrate that there are many paedophiles like myself who wish to work in close harmony with gay society, not to join it. To those who say, “So why didn’t PIE make more effort towards a rapprochement with radical gay groups?” I reply, “Why didn’t the stronger, more numerous, and better-equipped gay groups approach PIE with advice, criticism, active support, even when we were reeling in the wake of an Old Bailey trial?” Why should we have had to make all the running? Let me cite one or two instances of the positive vibrations PIE was receiving from the mighty ‘λ’.
At the 2nd annual conference of the IGA (Barcelona, 1980), the only group to abstain from a general motion calling on member organisations to support paedophile groups more vigorously was Britain’s CHE, who insisted on their exception being noted for the record. At GYM’s 1982 lobby of Parliament (which only twelve of some four hundred MPs felt obliged to attend), it was a vice-president of CHE, Martin Stevens, MP (Conservative, needless to say), who favoured the retention of the homosexual age of consent at twenty-one (for males), whilst others present were quite willing to negotiate an initial reduction to eighteen. Stevens’ rationale – if we may dignify it by that term – was that if homosexual behaviour was legally sanctioned among teenagers, “teenagers might in later years regret their youthful flings”. Similarly, at the IGA’s 1983 Vienna conference, it was Michael Brown of Britain’s Conservative Group for Homosexual Equality who supplied the most stentorian opposition to every paedophile motion put before the conference. In this case, where one of the motions called upon PIE to urge all other paedophile groups to affiliate as we had done, Brown was joined by Denmark’s F48, Norway’s DNF48, and Lavender Left of New York, who had apparently determined by explicit resolution to vote against all paedophile-supportive motions. The excellent ‘Gay Youth Charter’ composed by GYM in 1982 was rejected by CHE’s own conference until a reference to paedophilia had been expunged from it. A comparison between GYM’s ‘Gay Youth Charter’ and CHE’s ‘Charter for Gay Rights’, published in the same year, is extraordinary – the one is detailed, uncompromising, bold and lucid; the other bland, timid and cursory.
CHE’s dilemma was summarised by their own Law Reform Committee thus: “CHE has hitherto directed its campaign towards achieving equality under the law relating to heterosexual and homosexual behaviour. The reasons for this, while in large part tactical, are nonetheless important. The argument for equality is much easier to explain to a prejudiced audience and can be forcefully advocated on grounds of simple justice.” It goes on to ask, “Would adopting a position in favour of the abolition of all ages of consent laws risk appearing, in the eyes of the general public, to be so extreme as to make (CHE’s) aims on other issues more difficult to achieve; or has it reached the position where no further significant advance can be made without working – in collaboration with other organisations – for reform of these and the other laws relating to sexual behaviour generally?” 
It was the same dilemma which confronted broader civil rights groups like the NCCL (National Council for Civil Liberties) when the rights at issue were those of PIE. Any association with our particular cause threatened to undermine their own political credibility cross the board. PIE was the hottest potato of all, and triggered off all kinds of atavistic terrors in more respectable reformist groups. We were therefore sacrificed on the altar of short-term tactical compromise.
Not to confine this criticism to gay and civil rights groups however the producer of London Weekend Television’s ‘Gay Life’ programme (screened once a week in the late night horror slot) promised me there would be a programme on paedophilia in the second series to which PIE might be allowed to contribute. Alas, there was not. Among the helplines which consistently declined to give PIE’s address to paedophile callers were Icebreakers, London Gay Switchboard, Brighton Gay Switchboard, and Friend. One of these told me their solicitors had advised them that by passing out our address it might be construed that they were acting as agents for the organisations.
The fact that PIE was not exclusively homosexual represented part of the reason for this moratorium. GAY NEWS and TIME OUT both quickly zeroed in on this objection, though as with the ubiquitous power argument, it often serve as a radical justification from the mouth for a decidedly unradical prejudice in the mind. I think it stood to the credit of the PIE EC (whose most active members had always been boylovers) that we did not cave in under such pressure. No heterosexual paedophiles ever stepped forward to defend their own ground, and this made it rather difficult for us to answer the challenges of the gays and feminists with total conviction. Between gays and our heterosexual members the strand of mutual acceptance was very thin indeed (between them and feminists it did not exist at all).
David Thorstad, while still spokesperson of NAMBLA, expressed his own position all too clearly: When Anita Bryant would say that gay men are child molesters, they would say ‘Oh no, we don’t do that; gay people are not molesters, it’s the heterosexual who are the molesters’. I’ve used that argument myself; I believe it’s true.”
Many heterosexual paedophiles are just as ready to swallow society’s stereotype model of gays, their masculinity squirming uncomfortably at the prospect of too close an association with the world of such caricatures. This kind of stupidity is an obstacle we can all do without.
No-one will be astonished to hear that the facet of gay politics in the UK for which PIE felt the closest affinity was gay youth, and that GYM came top of our list of groups to form an alliance with. The first meeting between members of our two committees only reinforced this feeling. As we sat about a table in a London pub, no more than a dozen of us, it was not a bunch of middle class, middle-aged liberal paedophiles confronted with a bunch of radical gay teenagers suspicious of our motives. In fact the majority of both committees were in their mid-twenties. The youngest PIE representative was twenty-one, the oldest GYM representative, twenty-six. Some suspicion was evident on GYM’s part, or rather a wry scepticism about PIE’s political soundness, but it was expressed with candour, not hostility. For our own part, the only major criticism of GYM was its arbitrary self-imposed age limit of twenty-six (a strange paradox in a group whose existence is a reaction against arbitrary age boundaries), in that this tasted a little of ageism in reverse – the idea being that, without an upper age limit, GYM would be taken over by older gays (older than the then committee guiding lights), or that gays would flock to it like moths to a flame in search of teenage boyfriends.
Strategically, so much more can be accomplished under the banner of gay youth than would ever be possible for an overtly paedophile organisation, but that apart, GYM has a freshness and directness which PIE lost long ago. Whereas we talked years back of producing a general information video, GYM have gone and made one. While PIE made ginger overtures to carefully-chosen MPs, GYM staged a general lobby of Parliament. While PIE agonised over whether or not we dared to call another AGM, GYM revels in mass meets.
It is time that gay society in this country woke up to the crucial role it has to play in the foundation of a stable, vigorous and independent paedophile movement which is committed to radical change. What emerges may not be PIE, nor will it be a clone of the gay movement itself, for paedophiles are more than simply gay and straight adults who like their partners particularly young. Ours is a whole different sexuality, our needs and priorities are very different. We are brothers with the gay world, not twins.
PIE in the Face of Fleet Street
Journalism is one of those unsavoury professions – advertising is another – in which an individual’s potential for success is inversely proportional to that person’s scruples. Note that I do not say there are no journalists of conscience or integrity in Fleet Street, only that such people had never been to the fore when the focus of attention was on PIE, or paedophile matters, or rights (in their totality) of people under sixteen, and that such exotic blooms must seem strange indeed in that arid, thorny habitat. Doubtless there remains one detective at Scotland Yard who really believes the police are the servants of the community, and not its warders; or doubtless Thatcher has one Cabinet Minister who genuinely believes in equality of opportunity. These are all, however, statistical freaks. If we find journalism itself to be venal and corrupt – as I believe it is – then this is a profound cause for alarm. As one American commentator observed succinctly, (but glibly), “The news media have become Orwell’s Big Brother of ‘1984’ – all pervasive, all influencing. The freedom of the press is eating away the freedom of the individual”.
Television long ago supplanted religion as the opiate of the working class, and most of the criticisms I make here of the press apply with equal force to the broader media, notably television. There is a disturbing trend towards tabloid-style presentation in TV news programmes, with the same crass, superficial coverage, the same rampant sexism and imperious moral tone, and the same calculated imbalance. Recent reports, for example, of a mother seeking legal compulsion on doctors to inform parents before prescribing contraceptives to girls under sixteen were invariably followed or preceded by progress reports from police investigating the sexual murder of a five year old girl. Such judicious editorial juxtapositions are common. (A contemporary report in a local Harrow paper on similar demands from the ‘Harrow Child and Family Protection group’ appeared on the same front page as an overtly sexist pin-up – of a fifteen year old girl.)
As to the quality of the coverage – in a Central TV news report on the swelling number of teenage runaways in the midlands (‘minors’ voting with their feet?), it was emphasised throughout that the principal fear was not of physical, but ‘moral’ peril; that girls would be “drawn into drink, drugs and prostitution”, and that boys would “fall into the hands of homosexuals”. (TV journalists, like their Fleet Street counterparts, do not care to use the word ‘paedophile’, you may notice.) As always, the people who had most to say on the matter, the people most directly affected, whose anxieties and exasperations had driven them to take off in the first place, were the only people not consulted. It might have been a report on lost dogs or stolen cars. So much for the objectivity and impartiality of British television news.
Every year since PIE had come into being, during the slow news time of parliamentary recess, the minions of the soft-porn tabloids had scurried out with their indignation and their power-winder cameras to rake together another shock story about the group. We were a silly-season staple for the NEWS OF THE WORLD, the SUNDAY PEOPLE and the DAILY STAR. The danger with papers of this vulgar, facile kind is that they are widely dismissed as being of no consequence to significant trends in popular opinion. The NOTW is generally regarded as a joke, but without the implicit malevolence and cruelty behind the joke being fully appreciated, or the extent to which the paper’s four million readers are being duped by the fantasies of its squalid-minded editor and staff. There is no room here to catalogue all the misshapen, libellous reports that have appeared concerning PIE over the last few years. An analysis of the coverage of the Old Bailey trial alone would require a full chapter, and in any case, such a virulent poison permeates this sea of press cuttings that the mere task of reading them all through is grossly offensive and unhealthy for one’s state of mind. Confronted with such wholesale, indiscriminate hatred a sense of proportion is difficult to maintain. There had been several major stories on PIE since Tom O’Carroll was convicted, each of which had repercussions far beyond the immediate distress inflicted on the committee members named, and illustrate well the harm which the gutter press can cause.
The first of these stories (NOTW, March 22nd., 1981) was occasioned by PIE having to open a new post Office box, the sponsor of our previous box, David Grove, having died. The Post Office leaked the home address of our new sponsor, Peter Bremner, to the NOTW so fast that the reporters were at his door before the box had even been used, and before the Executive Committee itself, let alone our members, knew where the P.O. Box was located.
Inside, the paper ran a feature on PIE, and the child pornography industry, being careful to blur any distinction between the two. The reporters were Charles Sandell and George Edwards. ‘The Dreadful Web of Child Corruption’ began as follows: “The evil men of Britain’s child sex organisation, the Paedophile Information Exchange, are just the tip of an iceberg. Behind them lies a web of pornography and degradation that spreads its tentacles worldwide – and even involves the Mafia.” After another couple of paragraphs which could leave no doubt in the reader’s mind that PIE was in fact a front for the manufacture and distribution of pornographic material, Sandell and Edwards went on: “The magazines… they produce do not stop at sexual abuse. Some show the systematic slow torture and even murder of children and young people.” Now if that was not a cut and dried case of libel, what is? Who could blame the public for its outrage against PIE when such nightmarish tales could be published about us with complete indemnity?
Someone else who spreads his tentacles worldwide is Rupert Murdoch, the Jehovah of yellow journalism, and the essence of this NOTW story quickly resurfaced as far away as Australia and in Sri Lanka where, in the SUNDAY OBSERVER (April 5th), PIE was described as “the sick porn merchants of the West”. Sri Lanka, like the Philippines, had long been celebrated among paedophiles and gays for its tolerance to homosexuality in general, and sudden government moves late in 1981 to curb sexual contact between local youth and Western tourists have been attributed in part to the scare campaign triggered by the NOTW. Perhaps this is overestimating the impact of that tawdry little paper, but the snowball effect of press hysteria was a very real phenomenon, as later stories demonstrated.
It was an open secret among anyone linked to the Executive Committee that for four years I was employed by a firm of electrical contractors, Complete Maintenance Ltd, to monitor a control panel of alarm systems at the Home Office, Westminster. The job entailed practically no work on my part, beyond attending the panel, and in fact I had a furnished office completely to myself seven days a week on a rotating shift basis. Much of PIE’s less sensitive file material was stored in locked cabinets there, where no police raid would ever have found them. Each year my security clearance was renewed by Scotland Yard without my connection with PIE being discovered. I’d known from the start that such a marvellous snook could never be cocked forever and sure enough the News of the World got hold of this information eventually. The paper contacted the Home Office immediately of course and gleefully drew this oversight to their attention. My security clearance was cancelled on the spot, my employers notified and I found myself not sacked but ‘rendered without employment’ – on the same day that reporter Alex Marunchak greeted me on my doorstep. ‘Child Sex boss in Whitehall Shock’ ran the headline.
And what do you suppose? – “Home Office security chiefs knew all about Steven Adrian Smith’s links with PIE”, claimed the report; “A Home Office spokesman said, ‘We’re aware of Smith’s background, and since the NEWS OF THE WORLD contacted us he has been told he’s no longer acceptable to us. He no longer works here. It would be true to say that he would still be here if you hadn’t been in touch.’” This silly bit of official face-saving apart, Marunchak went on to concoct a brief interview with myself. Instead of slamming the door in his face, which I seem to recall having done, I appear to have told him (with a swirl of my opera cloak), “Yes, I’m the chairman of PIE. So you’ve found out!” and so on. There was possible libel here too, for he alleged that at an EC meeting I had “bragged of (my) relationships with boys and urged members to organise a ‘dirty weekend’ with children at a south coast hotel.” This is imputing to me a specific criminality, but nonetheless – we were advised by a solicitor – whether I won a libel suit or not, and I stood every chance of doing so, that the sympathies of the jury would be wholly against me, and any damages derisory.
Some of us had fondly hoped that my inevitable discovery would at least throw such egg on the face of the government as to oust the Home Secretary (then, Mr. Whitelaw), but in the event, this story was curiously not picked up by any other paper (obviously, the ‘ruling class’ had to be protected), and our own attention was diverted by a plague of visits from DAILY STAR reporters the very next week. (Incidentally, the extent of security chiefs’ knowledge of my activities did not prompt them to investigate the content of my filing cabinets and a carload of PIE files was safely spirited from the building before it could occur to them to intervene.)
Once upon a time a reporter in the alternative press wrote (with just a hint of sarcasm) that it was about as difficult to ‘infiltrate’ PIE as to infiltrate Piccadilly Circus. He was absolutely right. One of the hazards of keeping our door wide open (as any counselling group must) is that all manner of creepy-crawlies are apt to find their way in along with more welcome visitors, and such a one was Charles Oxley, principal of two public schools, Christian fundamentalist, and wizened protégé of Mary Whitehouse.  Under the name of David Charlton he joined PIE with offers of practical help in EC work. He was good enough to type out for us Tom O’Carroll’s copious non-fiction booklist, and to photocopy at his own expense many other items for the PIE Press Service. As with anybody else who expressed a willingness to work, he was first met by an EC member to assess his character and reliability, then invited along to a couple of committee meetings. His sensational findings formed the basis of a four-page spread in the DAILY STAR (‘Child Sex Spy Tells All’ – August 21st, 1982) and many subsequent radio, press and police interviews. On the strength of just two meetings with the EC, Oxley had become the Establishment’s trusted authority on PIE. Who was taken in the more by his fantasies, PIE or the Establishment, is open to question. STAR reporters Paul Henderson and Barry Gardner played Woodward and Berstein [sic] to Oxley’s ‘Deep throat’.
Four committee members were named – David Joy, Peter Bremner, Lee Edwards and myself, and photos appeared of three of us (my mother was later to comment that the STAR photo was one of the best of me she’d seen!) It was no coincidence that the three committee members who were to be raided by the Obscene Publications Squad, almost exactly a year later, were David Joy, Peter Bremner and Lee Edwards. Not content with publishing our addresses, the DAILY STAR carried photos of our homes too, for greater ease of identification by neighbourhood vigilantes, mums’ armies, and neo-fascist groups.
The text itself was rather lame, even amusing in comparison to the previous year’s NOTW extravaganza, and only of interest for the crude, obvious manner in which colour was added. To convey the impression of PIE as a shifty, back-street organisation, our homes were variously described as “dingy”, “seedy”, and “an old mansion that comes straight from a horror movie”. Meetings were arranged, it said, “through a complicated exchange of letters and coded telephone calls” using “secret codes and passwords”. This was total fantasy and a familiar lie printed about the group – arrangements were far more mundane and prosaic than that, I’m afraid. Oxley knew that no pornography had been handed round at the meetings, but he was determined to create that impression at least: “Various paedophile books and magazine were mentioned and passed around” he hinted darkly. As I remember, Oxley took away one of these magazines himself for closer inspection, and never returned it – it was the latest issue of PAN (Paedo-Alert-News).
The news-gathering tactics of the DAILY STAR rate a mention here. We learned later that they had used menaces toward several children in Lee’s home street who would not answer their questions (Lee was staying with a family at the time, and the two daughters were tailed by the press for several days). When this proved fruitless, they set up a couple of young boys to accost Lee in the High Street and make conversation just long enough for him to be photographed form a parked car across the road. (Even when he called on me, Henderson had attempted to force his way into my house.) It was a standard routine for reporters on this kind of story to make a point of visiting all one’s neighbours and filling their heads with who-knows-what horrific yarns. There was a knife attack on Lee shortly after the story appeared, but as Lee is an ex-boxer he managed to send his assailant away with a bloody nose, never to return. Another standard hurdle with these reports was the local press follow-up, a boringly predictable after-shock when your local paper contrives to regurgitate the story for those of your neighbours who missed it the first time around. In this particular instance the STAR itself ran a follow-up story a few days later (‘Ban the PIE Men’) in which glory-hunting Tory back-bencher, Geoffrey Dickens, vowed he would table a Private Member’s Bill at the next session of Parliament which would proscribe PIE explicitly, and outlaw any other pro-paedophile organisations.  Dickens was the same stalwart who named diplomat Sir Peter Hayman, under House of Commons privilege, as the PIE member whose identity had been concealed throughout the trial (some six months after Hayman had been publicly identified in PRIVATE EYE magazine). Dickens did not win the Private member’s ballot, as chance would have it, and nothing more was heard of that pledge, but it seemed to us a serious threat at the time. Even a bungling oaf of Dickens’ calibre could hardly have failed with such an intimidatingly populist Bill, had he won the ballot.
By the winter of ’82, the papers were full of the Geoffrey Prime affair. Prime was exposed as a Russian supermole who worked at the government’s intelligence HQ at Cheltenham. Imprisoned for sex offences against young girls, as well as spying, it was alleged, unsubstantiated of course, that he either had links with Pie or was actually a member under an assumed name. As with the much earlier Sir Peter Hayman affair (he was the former British high Commissioner to Canada), and the later revelation that I myself and an EC colleague, Barry Cutler, were both employed on security at the Home Office, this latest scandal must have caused considerable embarrassment to the government. By now, PIE’s name must have been truly hated in the corridors of power. 
In June, 1983, the NOTW ran yet another of its regular silly stories, this time claiming that top TV stars and MPs were members of the Exchange. No names were mentioned, of course – except those of EC members. As a result of this and follow-up stories in such scandal sheets as the STAR and the SUN, committee members Mike Williams and Richard Travell lost their voluntary work as a scoutmaster and Sunday School teacher respectively. Travell was later denounced by his father, a church minister, and forced to move out of his home.
It would be possible to go on and on about the shock/horror stories concerning PIE, but this would serve little purpose since the point has been made. Suffice it to say that press harassment of the group was real, and it seemed that reporters were prepared to use any means, fair or foul, to ensure the organisation was destroyed. The time is coming when something will need to be done about the press in this country – and the sooner the better.
If paedophiles have little faith in the press, they have certainly got even less for the criminal justice system in this country, for being a paedophile is an invitation for every sort of injustice there is. While baby batterers walk away with derisory sentences after being slapped on the wrist and told not to do it again, people whose only ‘crime’ is that they love children can expect to have the book thrown at them and endure years of attacks in squalid prisons from real criminals. One can inflict horrendous physical suffering on a child, but if one is unfortunate enough to be a paedophile who has consensual sex – oh well, that’s classed as worse than murder.
Similarly with ‘corporal punishment’ which is, in truth, nothing more than a euphemism for legal assault. This practice is widely supported in these isles, and it is no coincidence that the organisations and people who were most opposed to PIE were the very ones who endorsed it most. The message is clear: abuse is okay as long as it is socially approved.
Back in its earlier days, PIE itself initiated a campaign against this practice and received letters of support from such well-known people as Baroness Wootton, and Sir Alfred Ayer, the philosopher. But PIE, being a tiny organisation, could only do so much.
For PIE, the time has now run out; but the ideas behind it will continue to survive.
Editor’s note: Soon after the above article was written, its author along with two other PIE EC members were arrested on incitement charges in connection with issue No. 6 of the group’s internal bulletin, CONTACT. Before the trial, Steve Smith fled to Holland where he still resides. The two other defendants were subsequently found not guilty of the incitement charges, but guilty of a lesser charge. After renewed threats to proscribe PIE, the group finally succumbed to political pressure, and the organisation disbanded in early summer, 1985. Because of this, all articles in this book referring to PIE, including the above, have had the tense changed from present to past.
NOTES AND REFERENCES
1. A journal of PIE
2. Lee Edwards was later alleged (though unproven) to have given or sold confidential information about PIE and its members to the NEWS OF THE WORLD, which published the details, much of them erroneous, in a front page splash.
3. I refer, of course, to the notorious Conspiracy to Corrupt Public Morals trials of early 1981.
4. Tom O’Carroll (Peter Owen, London, 1980).
5. ‘Men Loving Boys Loving Men’, by Gerald Hannon (BODY POLITIC, March/April, 1979).
6. It was Kenneth Clarke in CIVILISATION who said that ‘nearly all the upward steps in the history of civilisation have been internationalist steps.”
7. CAPITAL GAY (July 15th, 1983).
8. CONTACT! Which was edited by myself, was the internal bulletin of PIE.
9. PAEDOPHILIA: SOME QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS (PIE, 1979).
10. EVIDENCE ON THE LAW RELATING TO, AND PENALTIES FOR, CERTAIN SEXUAL OFFENCES INVOLVING CHILDREN – FOR THE HOME OFFICE CRIMINAL LAW REVISION COMMITTEE, ed. by Keith R. Hose and Michael Burbidge (PIE, 1975).
11. THE LAW RELATING TO CONSENSUAL SEXUAL ACTS: A DISCUSSION PAPER (prepared by The CHE Law Reform Committee’, 1980).
12. Oxley was, at the time of writing, chairman of the right wing National Campaign for Law and Order, which incidentally supports hanging and corporal punishment, and deputy chairman of Mary Whitehouse’s Viewers’ and Listeners’ Association.
13. Even revelations that he was consorting with two other women, despite the fact that he was married, didn’t stop Dickens attacking PIE. Hypocrisy has no bounds, it seems. I often wonder what the dickens the man would do if it weren’t for paedophiles???
14. Well before the Hayman affair, another Establishment figure, Lord Bingham, had also been revealed as a PIE member.
[ADDENDUM: The ‘Lord Bingham’ in question here was Richard Maurice Clive Bigham, Viscount Mersey (1934-2006), who admitted PIE membership and contact with a 10-year old girl, who would remove her clothes when offered money and sweets by him; the girl’s mother went on trial in Manchester Crown Court in 1978 on charges of inciting one of her daughters to commit gross indecency with Bigham. See ‘Peer’s son in sex case ‘revolted”, Glasgow Herald, July 20th, 1978]
The following is the complete text of the PIE Chairperson’s Report from 1975/76, authored by Keith Hose, the first chair of PIE after the organisation had moved from Scotland to London. It contains important information relating to NCCL, the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE), and the National Association for Mental Health, MIND. Some of the writing referred to in The Guardian can be read here. See also this and this.
PIE CHAIRPERSON’S REPORT 1975/76.
PIE c/o/ Release, 1 Elgin Avenue, London W9
BL Cup 351/61
The year that has passed since our inaugural meeting in 1975 has been an extremely important one for PIE and Paedophiles. We have seen our membership shoot up from 43 to 171, a successful London group which meets regularly has been formed, the contact page is now sent out once a month, and the Newsletter which is already greatly improved is to be turned into a magazine. On the campaigning side PIE will go down in the pages of history as contributing to changing social attitudes to sexuality. We have spoken in support of paedophilia to many groups, numerous letters have been written to newspapers and various other bodies, and articles have appeared in several journals. Hundreds of letters from paedophiles all over Britain, and abroad, have been answered.
Among our major achievements are the following:
The passing of a motion at the Campaign for Homosexual Equality’s conference in Sheffield, August 1975, in which the delegates held that paedophilia was an important subject. The result of which was the first positive publicity ever achieved on the paedophile issue in a British national daily newspaper in which the guilt free paedophiles viewpoint was expressed. Positive articles appeared in the Guardian, the Times Educational Supplement, Time Out and Gay News. This achievement, although slightly marred by an attack by John Torode a few days later, was magnified by the resulting discussion of the issues in both CHE and which appeared in the national press as a consequence of the motion.
Another conference causing quite a stir was the ‘Sexual Minorities Workshop’ held by MIND, the National Association of Mental Health, in September last year. At that I spoke about my own personal experiences as a paedophile. Not as an adult, but as a child growing ujp with an awareness of sexual feelings and of the social taboos. This awareness gradually formed from my earliest memories of them at 7 and 8 to the extreme guilt and isolation I felt when I became conscious of the unacceptability of first my homosexuality and then my paedophilia at 16 and 23. The candid nature of my speech shocked some conference delegates and touched others, and the lively and electric workshop group that followed effected many there. MIND-OUT the magazine of the institute ran a precis of my speech and published PIE’s address. However, not everyone likes to be told the truth, and News of the World reporters visited the offices of Tony Smythe the director of MIND after the conference to ask, in what I was told was rather an impertinent manner, why he was giving support to paedophiles. A female social worker who attended the conference also complained to Tony Smythe, and it was when criticising evidence supplied to the Criminal Law Revision Committee, in an article in the TIMES that Ronald Butt quoted part of the speech I gave at MIND.
The evidence that we supplied to the Home Office Criminal Law revision Committee in November 1975, proposing the abolition of ‘ages of consent’, and the removal of consensual sexual activity at all ages from the criminal law, was our most ambitious achievement so far, and I have been told by researchers and people involved in other pressure groups that it is the best evidence on the ‘age of consent’ issue they have seen to date. However, despite sending out a well prepared press release together with the report, to a comprehensive list of newspapers, radio and television companies and press agencies, the media coverage was sparse. Peace News, Gay News, Time Out and a little later Ronald butt in the Times carried mentions of the report, and I had unreported interviews with the Scotsman and the Daily Mirror, but there seemed to be a deliberate editorial silence. In fact the more I see printed about paedophilia and the more newspapers who refuse to publish letters of reply and journalists refuse to publish letters of reply and journalists refuse even to speak to me on the telephone, the more I feel that except for a few newspaper and magazines there is a policy to write only the negative arguments about adults who are sexually interested in children.
But despite the low level of press coverage of our PIE report it has affected many people who have read it. At a meeting of the Gay Rights sub-committee of the NCCL that I attended, changes were proposed to the draft NCCL evidence, including an incorporation of a few of the ideas and a couple of research quotes from our evidence. Copies of our evidence were sent to the executive of NCCL before their decision on their policy in this area was reached, and some of the proposals of the gay rights sub-committee were adopted. The section on paedophilia in the report would undoubtedly not have been as positive had it not been for our lobbying. Our report therefore had some effect on the NCCL evidence, which because of the sensational press coverage, has done more to raise the issue of the ‘age of consent’ than any other document. As a source of positive ideas and arguments towards paedophilia our report will continue to influence researchers, pressure groups and paedophiles who read it for a long time.
Presently we are near to the completion of the first stage in two other areas of work. We are compiling evidence on the ‘treatment’ of paedophiles with anti-libidinal drugs, that is chemical castration. We are particularly interested in those who are or were sex-offenders and who were treated with drugs such as Androcur, Benperidol, Oestrogen, etc. However, any information on this particular ‘treatment’ or any other maltreatment (including aversion therapy, physical violence etc) of paedophiles in or out of prison, is useful. We have started a campaign against this chemical castration, and we attempted to pass a motion calling on the NCCL AGM to condemn the practise [sic] on sex-offenders, but a move to refer the motion to the Executive Committee of NCCL was passed marginally. It is important therefore that we collect enough evidence to force this committee to use their organisation to campaign against chemical castration in the coming year. I spoke for the motion openly as a paedophile and this and another paedophile proposal certainly went a long way to educating NCCL members attending the meeting about paedophilia.
Data obtained from the PIE survey has been collated, and a report written, which will be published shortly. This contains some interesting results. PIE is no longer an exclusively male homosexual paedophile organisation. More and more male heterosexual and male bisexual paedophiles are joining. Another interesting fact is that the majority of our membership also relate sexually to adults as well as children. We must realise that we are a pan-sexual organisation and may have to work on all sexual liberation issues, while concentrating on paedophilia and children’s sexuality. In our survey, to help explain our results, it has been postulated that the definition of sexuality plays an important part in who is defined or who defines themselves as paedophile. An act which is objectively or subjectively defined by one person as sexual may not be by another person. This definition varies from culture to culture, sex to sex and from person to person. Females are treated differently from males and many acts which are regarded as being sexual in men are not regarded to be so in women. For instance, two men embracing is considered more a sexual relationship than two women embracing which is considered to be more of an emotional relationship. This could effect the definition of a woman as a paedophile, and explain why PIE has such few women members. Paedophilia is used to describe a sexual relationship with a child. Men are seen more in terms of sex than women and therefore would be more likely to define themselves as such. But this should not be used as an excuse nor the sole reason why we have such few women, and considering the nature of women’s oppression as woman, we should accept that a group in which the vast majority of members are men is not likely to attract women. PIE should as soon as we have enough women to do it, try to set up a separate group for women. We should allow them to use separate advertising and campaigning if necessary to attract more women paedophiles to join the fight with us.
As with a group for some areas of the UK, a group for those male paedophiles interested in little girls is already a viable proposition. A group can be formed on, a letter writing basis if someone co-ordinates this. How about volunteer co-ordinators for this, or any regional groups contacting the PIE executive committee as soon as possible?
Despite all this progress and activity, any achievements have been made under difficult circumstances. The press and police harrassment [sic] of PAL, the Playland Trial and the ‘Johnny Go Home’ programme have all contributed to make sure paedophiles remain oppressed. The ‘expose’ of PAL caused panick [sic] among some of the then serving E.C. members of PIE. Michael Hanson had planned to resign many months before the Sunday People article because of a move to live in Greece. Other E.C. members however, caught fright and it was left to me and co-opted E.C. member Warren Middleton to keep PIE alive. We did this believing that the only way for PIE to survive was to seek out as much publicity for the organisation as possible and that if we got bad publicity we would not run into a corner but stand and fight. We felt that the only way to get more paedophiles joining PIE, particularly more male heterosexual paedophiles and female paedophiles in general was to seek out and try to get all kinds of publications to print our organisations name and address and to make paedophilia a real public issue. But PIE has not come out of all this without receiving all kinds of attacks. John Torode in the Guardian wrote three articles condemning us and our ‘Sheffield motion to CHE’. The hysteria in this article showed that even some of those who are regarded as serious and liberal journalists cannot even discuss paedophilia rationally. Ronald Butt, not the most egalitarian of people, wrote an attack on our aims and my speech to the MIND conference and this was printed as the Times newspapers somewhat pathetic contribution to the discussion on sexual law reform. The NCCL evidence was received with a kind of paranoia by editors and journalists. The Daily Telegraph was still twitching with snide editorials about it weeks after it had been released. Some members may see these attacks as nothing but harmful and I would agree they are biased against us, but even some of the worst attacks have quoted some of what we say, and some of the quotes are even in context. The Ronald Butt article is an example in question, although he attacks Lord Beaumont savagely he obviously believes that we will be condemned by our own words. What I say is let them continue – we will win in the end!
More serious a handicap for PIE was the loss of our British Monomark address. This was as a result of the News of the World (they seem fond of us) harrasment [sic] of the staff of this mailing service. The directors reused to handle our mail from then on, despite our obvious victim role in the whole affair. As a consequence we had no address for a period of 2 or 3 weeks. Through very hard work a new address was found. Many commercial firms refused to handle our mail after they heard about British Monomark and some were too expensive, and because we felt the same thing might happen again, we tried alternative and left wing organisations. We knew that it was more likely that they would accept we had a right not to be molested and help us. RELEASE did, and we are truly grateful to them. They have assured us that visiting News of the World reporters would not get a comfortable ride. Since we used to pay for the BM address, I move that we give release the same amount each year in donations. At the moment we pay them nothing. The loss of our address meant that many letters sent to us have had to be destroyed and that many people despite being informed of our new address may refer people to our old address by mistake. It is a mammoth task contacting again all those organisations informed of our existence and let me apologise publicly to any we may have overlooked.
We have had an extremely rough ride due to outside attacks but this has not been the only cause of hardship. With inflation and the rise in membership we have been running at a very substantial loss. Approaching a 50% loss! If it had not been for donations generously given in the past, particularly by Warren Middleton and past Newsletter editors, there would be no PIE. Despite this we have improved the Newsletter size and content, we have now started to run the contact page once a month, meetings in London are meeting more regularly and a series of campaigns and special projects are under way. We do this not because we are mad, but because we believe we are still only doing the minimum to achieve our aims. We want to see many more improvements to the services to our members, but to do this we have been forced to raise the membership to four pounds for U.K. and Ireland (Two pounds for non-earners) and seven pounds in other countries. Yet to achieve all that is necessary we need more money still. We have a number of ideas for making money for PIE, and need others, and help, to bring our ideas into practise [sic]. If you think you can help lease make contact with the E.C.
8th May 1976
Back cover says ‘This report was adopted at the Annual General Meeting 8th May 1976.’
[NOTE OF WARNING: In absolutely no sense whatsoever does the printing of the below material constitute any type of endorsement; in fact the very reverse]
Below is a range of material from PIE’s first journal Understanding Paedophilia, the predecessor of Magpie. I have copied the most significant material from those issues I was able to access.
Vol. 1 No. 2, June/July 1976
Cover pic: tearful Mark Lester, from film Run Wild, Run Free (1969)
p. 2. ‘Notices’
Ed: Warren Middleton (p)
Research Director: Humphfrey Barton (p)
Regular Correspondents; Steve Barker (p), USA, Graeme Parrish (p), New Zealand, Bernard Beafort (p), France, Richard Docker (p), Australia, J E Rekustad, NAFP/Norway.
Regular Contributors: Keith R Hose, John Bradshaw (p), Humphfrey Barton, Dr Frits Bernard, Dr Edward Brongersma, Warren Middleton, Tom O’Carroll.
[‘(p)’ indicates a pseudonym]
Dr Edward Brongersma, ‘Love In Education: The Unapproachable Risk’, pp. 2-4
Cyril Halley (p), ‘Lewis Carroll Revisited’, pp. 4-5
Lewis Carroll spent his life sublimating what he regarded as ‘abnormal desires’. Yet his love for children was hardly surpassed in his own, or any other age, and his contributions to world literature certainly need no further appraisal. He died at Guilford on January the 14th, 1898, and his gravestone carries the name Charles Lutwidge Dodgson made immortal… HERE LIES THE REMAINS OF LEWIS CARROLL, AND CHILDREN THE WORLD OVER CAN REMEMBER THEIR LOVING FRIEND.’ (p. 5)
Review of William Kraemer (ed), The Forbidden Love: The Normal & Abnormal Love of Children, reviewed by Humphrey Barton (p) (a lecturer in sociology at a British university), p. 5.
Alan Stanley, ‘Angels of the Lyre’, p. 6. Reviewed by Warren Middleton.
‘It’s the Magnificent Six’, p. 7
Keith Hose – re-elected to serve as National Chairperson for the coming year
Warren Middleton – re-elected as National Vice Chairperson/PIE Magazine Editor
Tom O’Carroll – elected as PIE General Secretary/responsible for the formation of local groups/PIE members’ contact service/Publicity
David C Grove – elected as Director of PIE’s forthcoming children’s rights campaign/responsible for distribution of mail
Charles Napier – elected as Treasurer/responsible for recruitment of new members.
Peter Righton – elected as Organiser of prison-hospital visits/general correspondence/PIE befriending.
Want applicants for Legal adviser and Director of Research.
‘PIE has asked U.P. to convey their thanks to all who attended the AGM, especially Miss Nettie Pollard of the NCCL, and PIE member No. 149 who came direct from France for the event.’ (p. 7)
‘Concern over List 99’, p. 7
NCCL concerned about an envelope which has gone missing, containing a ‘secret’ government file, a DoE blacklist of 1000 people said to be unfit for the teaching profession.
Nettie Pollard has appealed for anyone who thinks they may be included on the list to come forward.
‘Judge Slams Sex Law’, p. 7
Justice Neil McKinnon, QC attacked age of consent law as ‘An attempt to protect fully mature young women against their own natural inclinations’. After 22 year old Jonathan Groves and his brother David were in court having admitted having intercourse with two 15-year old schoolgirls. Jonathan received conditional discharge, and David a suspended 9 months jail sentence.
‘P.C. ‘Whacko’ Quits’, p. 8
Ex P.C. Anthony Betteridge, 36, fired after admitting to five charges of assault, indecent assault and gross indecency with young boys.
‘PIE’s New Campaign’, p. 8
An inquiry into physical/chemical castration of sex offenders.
Vol. 1 No. 3, Aug/Sept 1976
Cover ‘The Modern Ganymede: Bjorn Andresen’, photo from Death in Venice
Douglas Sarff (‘NewsWest’ Editor), ‘Sex Begins At A Very Early Age: The Work and Theories of the Guyon Society’, pp. 2-4
Reprinted from an American gay journal
Tom O’Carroll, ‘News Report: The PIE Survey’, pp. 4-5
A questionnaire, basic things
In 2 years PIE has attracted over 200 members. 96 took part in the survey. Two were women.
Of men, 68% attracted to boys only, 13% to girls only, 19% to both.
One in five of male paedophiles were married. Much higher for heteros (75%) than homos (7%)
Majority (59%) also attracted to adults. (p. 4)
‘Your Letters’, pp. 5-6
One from ‘Charles Gerriovenski’, saying similar things to in later issue
Also from a former headmaster, ‘Michael Gooch’, who received a 12 month suspended sentence for ‘offences’ involving young boys.
Reviews of Desmond Stewart, The Vampire of Mons; John F Trimble, Paedophilia; Dr. George P Rossman, Paederasty: Sexual experience between Men and Boys. Reviewed by John Bradshaw (p), David Grove, Humphrey Barton (p) respectively., p. 6.
Grove bio, p. 6. Born in 1904, spent most of childhood in China, then studied history at Wadham College, Oxford. Lived in various parts of the world, including being Assistant Deputy Officer (Deputy Magistrate) in Nigeria. Enlisted in Welsh Guards, then into teaching career in 1939. Now retired.
‘Looking Around’, p. 7.
Review of Visconti Death in Venice.
‘Visconti had long toyed with the idea of bringing Mann’s masterpiece to the screen, but when reality supplanted the dream, eh was almost defeated by the casting of Tadzio, a part demanding a boy of rare beauty and exceptional charm.
His searches for this ‘perfect’ boy took the director all over Europe. But the gods appeared to favour him, finally rewarding his efforts in Scandinavia. Bjorn Andresen, his beautiful Swedish prodigy, seemed tailor-made for the casting, and with characteristic flair the delighted Visconti proclaimed him “the most beautiful boy in the world.”’
‘Dr Humphrey Barton gave a highly successful paper on paedophilia at the Manchester Gaysoc/British Sociological Association’s conference in early September.
The conference was well attended by other notables including Glenys Parry and Ken Plummer.
Nice one Humphrey!’ (p. 7)
Author Yul Duersted has been withheld permission to publicise Pie in any of his future works. (p. 7)
PIE formally established two years ago in October by three members of Scottish Minorities Group under chairmanship of Michael Hanson. (p. 7) [This was a mistake – it was three, not two, years previously]
‘Exit Jenkins, Enter Rees’, p. 7
Asking if Merlyn Rees likely to be sympathetic. Not sure.
Vol. 1 No. 4 (1977)
Picture of Jodie Foster in Taxi Driver on front.
Editor: Warren Middleton
Research Director: Dr. Humphrey Barton (p)
Regular Contributors: Keith R. Hose, John Bradshaw (p) , Dr. Frits Bernard. Dr. Edward Brongersam, Tom O’Carroll, David C Grove, Dr. Humphrey Barton, Warren Middleton
Regular Correspondents; Steve Barker (p), USA, Graeme Lovejoy (p), New Zealand, Bernard Beaufort (p), France, Richard Docker (p), Australia, J E Rekustad, NAFF – Norway
Address given as 1, Elgin Avenue, London W9.
Printed by the Wellington Bureau, 23, Craven Street, Charing Cross WC2.
Special thanks with news item ‘fighting for justice’ on p. 10 of this issue – thanks Miss Nettie Pollard and the Executive Committee of the NCCL; Mr Mike Rowland, Mr John Gallagher and the EC of the Labour Campaign for Gay Rights; Jo Richardson, Labour MP for Barking; Mr Michael Burbidge of Icebreakers; Mr Antony Grey, ex Director of the Albany Trust; the staff of the People’s News Service; Mr Johannes Werres, editor GAY NEWS GERMANY/BOY LOVE NEWS; Mr Michael Mason, news editor GAY NEWS; Dr. Arabella Melville and Colin Johnson, editors of LIBERTINE; the PEACE NEWS collective; Mr Andy Leighton and staff of IT; and last but by no means least, to Mr Keith Hose, Mr Tom O’Carroll and the remainder of PIE’s EC. (all p. 2)
Dr Frits Bernard, ‘The Phenomenon of Paedophilia’, pp. 2-3
‘Out into the Open: Keith Hose explodes some myths’, pp. 4, 11
‘Paedophile was not a word in my dictionary when I recognised myself as homosexual. I expected people to accept the relationships that I’d had with 11 year old boys at school when I was 16; but they didn’t.
It wasn’t always a disapproving reaction; often it was viewed as something best not talked about. And because I wanted to accept my homosexuality, and because I was also attracted to adults, I conned myself into thinking that because sex with children under 13 was difficult, then I shouldn’t seek out such relationships, and should take relationships as they came. But that was unrealistic. It is very rare that relationships just happen. You either go out and look for them, or you put yourself in a position for them to happen.
I used to get very depressed about my relationships with the boys at school. I felt there was something missing, and it was this gap which drove me to identify myself as a paedophile. This was just before PAL (Paedophile Action for Liberation) and PIE (Paedophile Information Exchange – purely a newsletter at first) started up about two years ago.
A lot of gay people don’t want to talk about paedophilia because they feel that paedophiles deserve severe social oppression. Some of them are frightened that the image of homosexuality is being openly associated with paedophiles. This is silly because people outside the gay movement will be able to see that there are a certain proportion of gays who identify themselves, to different degrees, as paedophiles, and a certain proportion who don’t.
If paedophilia remains hidden, then the myth that all homosexuals are attracted to younger people will continue. But this tries to compartmentalise paedophiles as a less worthy section of the gay community and ignores the positive aspects of paedophilia, and the existence in most pre-pubertal children, of a sexuality which various pieces of research have proven. (p. 4)
[Then various statistics]
PIE quoted these findings in its evidence in its evidence to the Home Office Criminal Law Revision Committee (5) and gave other reasons why we ask for wide changes in the law.
We tried to show the harm and suffering caused, not by the paedophilic relationship as is popularly imagined, but by the use of the criminal law which sends the adult to prison, and which can mean the severing of a long standing mutual relationship. The child and the parents can suffer just as much as the paedophile.
The child who successively seeks out adults as sex partners – or other children as sex partners for that matter – can be taken away from his/her parents, whether they approve of the relationship or not, and be put into care.
PIE argued from the point of view that if a child gets pleasure from a sexual relationship and seeks one out, then he/she should be allowed to engage in such relationships, and should not be regarded as being in ‘moral danger’. The danger and harm as evidenced by the research findings comes, not from a mutual relationship with an older person, but from the deeply rooted feelings fo society that sexuality does harm because it’s ‘wrong’.
We suggested abolition of the age of consent from the criminal law because we believe it is ridiculous for the law to say that below 16 or below 21 people are incapable of giving consent. They are certainly capable of giving consent, but whether this can be communicated to other people is another matter. Therefore, we suggested that the criterion should be ‘communication of consent’, and since we are talking about simple verbal terms of whether someone liks something or wants something, we suggested that below the age of 4 a child could not communicate, although this may not be true in every case.
Law from having relationship with children under 4, and in the case of children over 3 and under 10, a similar civil injunction could also be made if there was a complaint made by those close to the child (parent or guardian, doctor, social worker and so o) where it was proved by the administrators of the Children’s Acts that there was doubt as to whether consent could be communicated.
For children between 10 and 18, we said there should be no legal restrictions in cases which did not involve proven physical/psychological harm. Ten is the legal age of responsibility, and if a child is deemed responsible for its criminal acts, then it should also be responsible for its own sex life.
The Criminal Law Revision Committee will not be publishing its report for a couple of years, but already there are encouraging signs that attitudes are beginning to change. The National Council for Civil Liberties asked in its evidence for the age of consent to be lowered….. (p. 4)
Charles Gerriovenski, ‘A Paederastic Experience’, pp. 5-6
Talking about his relationship with an 11/12 year old boy for about a year, and how it lost him his job.
‘….The boy – I will call him Peter – had an exceptional singing voice. I was his teacher, and we worked and lived together for three years before sex reared its by no means ugly head.
He made the initial move, though I think he would not have done so had he thought it might have been rejected; let’s say it happened mutually. One evening when he came to say ‘good night’, he seemed unable to communicate verbally, but simply clutched my hand and wept. Wen I asked what was wrong his sobs redoubled. I held his head in my hands and stroked his back, just as a parent would comfort a child who’d hurt himself. I lent him my handkerchief and he went off to bed without saying anything significant.
[…Mentions that he was married…]
Peter had strong musical leanings, and, during that year – his singing matured wonderfully (we did some splendid recordings together), although his other schoolwork showed neither improvement nor deterioration. I waqs a little disappointed that he did not appear to develop socially. But I suppose most of his efforts in this direction were devoed to our relationship.
On the sexual front, we expressed our desires fully, and it was a wonderful experience to climax in an atmosphere of love and relaxation, instead of what is most children’s introduction to sex – guilt-ridden, frantic ‘wanks’ behind the pavilion, eyes constantly skinned for unwanted onlookers. In my locked bedroom, we were able to put the fear of interruption on one side and make love to each other slowly and tenderly as becomes love’s first bloom.
His first few orgasms were enjoyed quietly, but they soon became as voluptuous as any adults. From our third meeting, we both ‘came’ on every occasion, except once, when we lay in each other’s arms for half an hour or so. (Though naked, we did not feel a need for orgasm, yet were as spiritually refreshed afterwards as at other times).
Once he had become an active partner, he showed his true colours as a lover, displaying a combination of consideration and passion which was natural and unforced. We both preferred giving to taking, yet were not afraid to accept what was given wholeheartedly and really enjoy one another.
Physically, Peter was similar to many other boys I have known – small and sturdy with deep chest and powerful limbs. His round, intelligent face expressed both humour and passion. More unusual, perhaps, was an exceptionally fine and shapely pair of buttocks. Full fleshed without being coarse, they jutted proudly behind him
As a sexual partner, I found him immoderately attractive. His hairless skin was suntanned and silky, his flesh both firm and yielding, his kisses rousing. But despite these advantages, I never looked upon him as ‘object’, and I always encouraged his emerging individuality as a person in his own right….. [end p. 5]
What sexual techniques were used?
First and foremost, we were always gentle with each other. In fact, he would usually refer to our activities in a phrase he himself coined: “being gentle together”.
Basically, we kissed, cuddled, nuzzled, hugged, stroked, embraced and fondled while standing, lying, sitting or straddling. At some point in the proceedings we’d shed our clothes, and when our kisses and caresses had roused us, we’d take turns to masturbate one another. On these occasions we would usually lubricate each other with cold cream.
After a few weeks, we experimented with other forms of love play such as inter-femoral thrusting and genital kissing. All in all, our practices were remarkably similar to those of adult heterosexuals, except for penetration. This I never attempted as the disproportion of size would seem to be inescapably painful for him.
On one particularly memorable occasion, Peter was unusually lusty and, as soon as we were undressed, he fetched the pot of cold cream, came over to my bed and ‘oiled me up’. Returning the compliment I concluded by gently sliding back his foreskin. He immediately climbed over me, insinuated his knees between mine, encircled me tightly in his arms and, using one of my well lubricated groins as his love channel, proceeded to bring himself to a climax entirely under his own steam. Needless to say, I did not lie idly by. I kissed his head and hair while fondling his ears and neck. But my main contribution was to hold him by his buttocks, one in each hand, to help him to an even rhythm. Indeed, it seemed that my role was increasingly to play the woman for him, and this encounter was the nearest we ever came to peno—vaginal intercourse.
Eventually, in the long summer holidays while separated from me for two months, he told them [his parents] all about it. My career was at an end. I was prosecuted, fined and barred from the classroom, and was lucky not to find myself imprisoned. I was only saved from this by the most wonderful support from a number of colleagues, old boys and parents to whom I told the facts, and who, realising the essentially non-violent and mutual nature of our liaison, rallied round and wrote letters the court, or gave evidence in person.
I feel no resentment towards Peter for my ruined career and his part in it. I went into the affair with my eyes open, but without realising that a boy of integrity – and I could not give myself to any lesser person – would be likely to want to consult his parents. What, after all, could be more natural? In Greek times, the parents of such a boy would’ve been proud he had formed such a fruitful relationship. It’s not his fault that current mores condemn it and our laws declare it illegal. Our legislation on the subject is inflexible, indiscriminatory and illiberal, and is based on a most cowardly principle: if something exists that can easily be abused, it should be banned altogether.
‘Protest and Reply’, p. 7 (reproduced here)
Reviews of Morris Fraser, The Death of Narcissus, p. 8.
And of film Bugsy Malone.
Bugsy Malone and his Moll have a beauty so magical and bewitching that it makes one think of Oberon and Titania. But they are also a Hansel and Gretel pair, human and typically ‘good’.
The director, with a huge cast of children, most of them pre-pubertal age, has produced a serious satire on the behaviour of adults using the 1920’s Chicago hoodlum scene as his medium. Social satire and irony are everywhere. There’s even a moral message at the end: gangsters throw away your guns, and by inference, super powers your atom bombs.
But children, and adults too, can enjoy the spectacle for fun. Paedophiles should not miss it. The camera, as if unwittingly, brings out the freshness, directness and eagerness that belongs to childhood, and childhood alone. (anonymous reviewer)
Profile of Keith Hose, p. 8. Also of Frits Bernard.
Hose was 25 at the time.
‘Your Guide to Under Age Sex’, p. 9
Mentioning three men receiving prison sentences for ‘unlawful sexual intercourse’ and ‘indecent assault’ upon a 14 year old girl – David Roberts (22), Derek Taylor (26) and Geoffrey Simonds (28).
‘Fury Mounts’, p. 9, about groups calling for ‘stiffer penalties’ against those convicted of sex with minors.
Mentions convictions of David Goff (29) and Keith Caldwell (31), sentenced to 4 years for seizing a 12-year old girl, dragging her to an embankment, raping her and leaving her tied to the railings.
And campaign by Bournemouth housewife, Mrs Christine Jolliffe.
‘Fight for Justice’, p. 10
‘Jo Richardson MP, the National Council for Civil Liberties and the Labour Campaign for Gay Rights are among the several individuals and organisations that have protested to the Lord Chancellor, on PIE’s behalf, over a judge’s comments at a recent Old Bailey trial.
They are demanding that the judge be disciplined, and are supporting the Exchange in its claim that the remarks may well have been a “serious breach of legal ethics.”
When sentencing Andre Stephen Thorne (21) to 3 years for theft and the attempted blackmail of a PIE applicant, the judge, Mr Justice King-Hamilton, said that PIE had “access to potential dynamite,” and added: “On the face of it, some sort of an offence is being committed by the person or persons running this organisation (THE SUN, Feb. 4th).. I wonder if the membership forms are collected from members of the public for the purposes of blackmail (SOUTH LONDON PRESS)?
PIE’s reaction was fast and furious. Secretary, Tom O’Carroll drafted an immediate letter to THE GUARDIAN; and on March the 17th, Deputy Leader, Warren Middleton despatched a press release announcing that the group would lodge the “strongest possible protest” with the Lord Chancellor and the Home Secretary.
Soon after, PIE’s Chairperson, Keith Hose, contacted the NCCL, finally requesting Jo Richardson (Labour, Barking) to table a question in the Commons. She declined, but has since filed an official complaint with Elwyn Jones.
The first of the protests, from the NCCL (29/3/’77), described the comments as “extremely unfortunate” and accused the judge of “misusing his position to make comments which were unwarranted and without any apparent foundation.”
Prompted by the reply which, said a Council official, was “totally unsatisfactory,” the NCCL then approached Lord Beaumont of Whitley asking him to raise the matter in the Lords. But he, too, declined.
Now, the Council is seeking the advice of Lord Hailsham, himself a former Lord Chancellor, and will act in accordance with his reply.
Meantime, PIE’s own protest will be lodged in July at an, as yet, unspecified date.
‘Surrey Witch-Hunt’, p. 10
About a special squad to combat sex offences in Surrey, Chief Constable Mr Peter Mathews [sic].
‘Probe at Youth Centre’, p. 11
A high level probe is underway into allegations of staff misconduct at Britain’s top centre for problem children.
The inquiry was ordered by the Health Department after two MP’s – Sir Bernard Braine (Tory, South East Essex) and Mr Peter Bottomley (Con. West Wolwich [sic] ) – had received complaints by staff at the maximum security St. Charles Youth Treatment Centre, Essex, and from the parents of a teenaged girl who claimed she was put on the pill at 15 and allowed to sleep there with her boyfriend.
The centre, which was opened six years ago in Brentwood, is staffed by a highly experienced team of teachers, youth workers and social therapists. It caters for children in the age group 10 to 18 who’ve been placed there by the courts, or by councils which have them in care.
A staff spokesman blamed the trouble on a minority of colleagues. He accused one of them of “having an affair with a girl” and said it was a “common practise for some staff to look through a peep-hole into her room while they made love.” The man had since deserted his wife and was now living with the girl.
Among other claims under investigation are (a) that boys and girls were allowed to sleep together; (b) a report of a 17 year old boy who was savagely beaten by a teacher; (c) a lesbian relationship between a staff member and a pupil; and (d) that girls were allowed to bring back ‘pick-ups’ after a night out on the town.
The centre’s Deputy Director, Mr Alan Dunton, said he was not in a position to discuss the allegations. “I am proud of our work in dealing with some of the most disturbed children in the country.”
‘NCCL Conference’, p. 11 – reproduced here.
p. 11 – but about contributor Mr ‘Charles Gerriovenski’ – a pseudonym. He ‘was a much respected member of staff at a boys’ boarding school until an affair with one of his pupils forced his dismissal.
Since then, he has been self-employed, but hopes, one day, to return to the career he loves.
A PIE members, Mr Gerrivoenski is married with three children.
Please note: The activities described in Mr Gerriovenski’s article are illegal and cannot be endorsed by UP.
Back page (p. 12) – ads for The Leveller, Peace News, Libertine magazine (editors Colin Johnson, Dr. Arabella Melville), Forum, ‘it’, and ‘Boy’ magazine (published COQ International A/S, Norre Farimagsgade 65-67, DK-1007 Copenhagen K), and NCCL (186 Kings Cross road, London WC1X 9DE)
‘Stop Press – Stop Press’, p. 12
AGM took place at Islington HQ of London Friend on May 28th.
Resignations from EC: Hose (as Chairperson) and Peter Righton (as Community Liaison Officer).
Full national EC election results: ex teacher/journalist Mr Tom O’Carroll, new Chairperson
Former lecturer/assistant JP Mr David C Grove new Secretary
Ex-teacher Mr Charles S. Napier, Treasurer (returned)
Social Worker Mr Jonathan Simon, new Organiser Local Groups
Private Businessman Mr Warren Middleton (p), Magazine Editor (returned)
Teacher Mr David Brownough (p), new Newsletter Editor
University lecturer/sociologist Dr. Humphrey Barton* (p), new Research Director (*subject to confirmation)
Then the following is a summary of the contents of PIE publication Childhood Rights:
Vol. 1 No. 1
PIE c/o/ Release, 1 Elgin Avenue, London W9.
Editor: David Grove for Paedophile Information Exchange.
Four pages. Short sections on ‘Revaluation’, ‘Though for the Day’, ‘The United Nations Scene’, ‘The Christian West’, ‘The Victorian Inheritance’, ‘Process Thought’, ‘Neither Wrong nor Holy’, ‘What would Gulliver Think?’, ‘New from the Front’ (to do with corporal punishment), ‘Europe’, (more on corporal punishment), ‘Intimidation and Mystification produce Alienation’ (on people being born ‘multisexual’), ‘The Facts about Corporal Punishment in Schools’
Vol. 1 No. 2
‘The Forbidden Speech’
‘Introduction’, p. 1. On Brongersma affair from 1977. Told that he will be ‘unwelcome’ at the Conference at Swansea.
‘On Loving Relationships Human and Humane’, pp. 1-4, by Brongersma.
And letter from Brongersma, p. 4.
Vol. 1 No. 3
Letters of support from Brongersma, Frits Bernard, Michael Ingram, p. 1.
Ingram: ‘I wish you well in your project to produce a paper on childhood rights, and hope you will keep me on your mailing list.
I hope that in sexual matters you would develop the following theme, one which concerns me greatly. The law defines as ‘corruption’ any act of a sexual nature with persons under the age of consent. The law, as well as society, has yet to face the fact that ‘corruption’ any act of a sexual nature with destruction of, or the damage of, not ‘indulgence in’; and many children are corrupted in the sense in which I have defined it, not only by their teachers and parents who take a negative attitude towards sexual functions, but also by those who get hysterical if a child is found out in some sexual play, those who use police and doctors to dramatise sexual experiences that have taken place, and those who make sexual sins the only sins worth mentioning.
While I welcome your project, and authorise you to publish this little note, I do so only on condition that I am not in any way made to support or condone sexual acts between adults and children.
From the Rev. Michael Ingram, O.P., Child Counsellor. (p. 1)
And letter from A.J. Ayer supporting their anti-corporal punishment campaign (p. 1).
And from Baroness Wootton of Abinger, and Jo Richardson, MP (all p. 1)
J.Z. Eglinton, ‘Boy-Love: Fantasies, Realities, Legalities’, pp. 1-2
Other bits and pieces.
And here is a summary of the material in the PIE publication Paedophilia: Some Questions and Answers (London: PIE, 1978)
[All questions given as they appear in the document; answers are my summaries of what is printed]
1. What is paedophilia?
2. What do you mean by “children”?
[between birth and puberty]
3. Are paedophiles exclusively attracted to children?
4. What age-group attracts paedophiles?
5. Are all paedophiles male? Are they all homosexual?
[No to both]
6. Are they ever married? What about paedophile feelings within the family?
7. Would most paedophiles like to be “normal”?
[some would, others think it is harmless and integral to their personality]
8. Have they chosen to be paedophile?
[No more than anyone else has chosen sexual feelings]
9. Is paedophilia an illness?
[Matter of opinion. Points out that medical profession used to view homosexuality as an illness]
10. Is it possible to change paedophiles?
[All psychiatrists can do is make them happier]
11. Surely paedophiles must be immature people?
[Asks what maturity is?]
12. Why aren’t they attracted to partners of their own age?
[Some are; otherwise no-one really knows. Why does question matter?]
13. What attracts paedophiles to children, and especially to children of certain ages?
[same factors as for other sexual/emotional preferences]
14. Is it true that paedophiles assault children?
[Almost never. Attacks legal term ‘indecent assault’]
15. Surely paedophiles force children into sex?
[Says ‘Again, almost never’. Points out that children are interested in sex from an early age, citing Kinsey, and Lauretta Bender and Abraham Blau, the Reaction of Children to Sexual Relations with Adults (1973), on how the child often initiates things]
16. Bu the adult most often be the seducer, obviously?
[Disputes that ‘seduction’ implies ‘sin, corruption or other anti-sexual concepts’]
17. Surely many children are not capable of sexual activity before puberty?
[Points out that puberty is about reproduction, not the age when sexual pleasure begins]
18. What do paedophiles do sexually to children?
[Depends upon sex and age of participants. ‘Fondling, kissing and mutual masturbation are the most usual activities’]
19. Why do we hear so little about women paedophiles?
[Prosecutions are rare, ‘probably because women can express their sexual feelings towards children in a far less obvious way than men. Mothers can be extremely sensual with their children, for instance, without attracting untoward attention, as indeed can women in such professions as social work, child nursing and teaching.’]
20. Won’t paedophile experience harm children physically?
[Suggests there are few hard facts to show this. Cites Wolfenden report on Homosexuality to show that it is rare for physical injury to result from buggery. For girls, hymen may rupture, but real damage extremely uncommon.]
21. What about the risk of a young girl becoming pregnant?
[Only possible after menstruation begins]
22. But shouldn’t we protect children from VD?
[Same for adults]
23. What about the psychological effect on the child?
[Says that if agreeable, no ill effect at all. Citers Bender/Blau as showing that many pre-pubescent children who had sexual contacts with adults seemed to benefit from it]
24. Do paedophile contacts predispose children to become paedophile or homosexual?
[No – though that view is widely held]
25. Surely children are innocent?
[Innocent as meaning chastity is an invention of puritans]
26. Do children really know what they’re doing?
[Often know more than they are given credit for]
27. But are children capable of “consenting” to sexual activity?
(a) Can children take a moral decision at an early age?
[Says that sexual activity is morally neutral]
(b) Surely children can’t always tell adults what they want?
[Even babies can express their wishes]
(c) How can a young child deter an adult?
[Just as with rape or use of drugs or physical force. Too many hang-ups make it harder for children to speak up without feeling embarrassed. But children refuse things very easily]
(d) What if the adult persists, and gets the child to agree to something it doesn’t really want?
[Then adult should be liable to legal action and social condemnation]
28. Isn’t there the danger of a paedophile being a child-murderer?
[No, no reason to associate it with hatred or sadism]
29. Surely the best advice is “never talk to strangers”?
[Children rarely attacked by strangers]
30. Are paedophile relationships illegal?
[Yes, where sexual acts involved]
31. But surely these laws are necessary to protect children?
[Laws have caused greater harm and led to children being humiliated, separated, ostracised, feeling guilt. Same with some parents. Care orders have been brought against children who have sought out sexual relationships]
32. What is the effect of the law on the paedophiles themselves?
[Humiliated, ostracised, harassed, imprisoned and put in solitary. Often commit suicide]
33. What is the worst defect of the present law?
[Makes loving and caring relationships, and those involving force or coercion, seem the same]
34. Should the age of consent be abolished altogether?
[‘Yes. Consent is important, age is not.’]
35. Wouldn’t lowering or abolishing the age of consent lead to an increase in child prostitution?
[Tighter sanctions against child prostitution may be needed. But it happens because society prevents people from being together]
36. What of the dangers of child pornography?
[Nothing wrong with child erotica as long as child happy to take part.]
37. Can’t children learn about sex among themselves?
[They do, but adults can help a more thoughtful approach]
38. Shouldn’t parents have some control over their children’s sex lives?
[Parents already have much power, but loving ones will allow their children to experiment]
39. Can a paedophile relationship last?
[Points out that after adolescence, rejection is not necessary – unpossessive friendship remains]
40. Teachers, clergymen, scoutmasters and youth workers are thought to be particularly prone to child-love. Are they, and should paedophiles be excluded from youth work?
[Naturally paedophiles are drawn to areas working with children – stopping them would deprive these fields]
41. Does paedophilia lead to the breakdown of family life?
[Family will survive as long as it deserves to. Paedophile relationship can help those in unhappy families]
42. What are paedophiles doing to help each other?
[PIE. ‘Founded in 1974 it is seeking to dispel the myths connected with paedophilia, and trying to show that most paedophiles desire gentle, loving and mutually pleasurable relationships. The group believes that attitudes towards young people should change so that the existence of their sexuality and other feelings are recognised and accepted. Its aim is to make public scientific, sociological and similar information about paedophilia to show how the lives of children and paedophiles are distorted by society’s prohibitive values. PIE also tries to provide a means whereby paedophiles can communicate with one another and so help reduce the feleing of guilty isolation which is often a feature of their lives’]
43. How can I help?
[Understand paeds are ordinary, decent, sensible people. Allow them to express themselves openly, without fear. Realise children should have some degree of control over their own lives. Look back at one’s own childhood and ask if ever drawn to an adult. Acknowledge that as an adult may have suppressed unconventional sexual feelings. Think of sex in all its forms as pleasant and likeable]
Appendix 1: The Law
Details on Laws, first in England/Wales, then Scotland/NI. Definitions of Gross Indecency, Indecent Assault, Unlawful Sexual Intercourse and Buggery.
Incidence of paedophile offences. Numbers of convictions, from Home office research Unit Bulletin No. 3, Spring 1976 and Criminal Statistic for England and Wales, 1973.
Asks ‘Has Paedophile activity always been outlawed in Britain?’
Age of consent for females went up in late 19th century, from 12 to 13, then 13 to 16. Then 1885 Criminal Law Amendment Act created offence of “gross indecency between males”.
Is it outlawed in all cultures?
Points out that Kiwai of New Guinea think young males should be sodomised during puberty rites to “make them strong”.
Also cites how Napoleonic Code loosened previous connections between laws and morals. In Holland all kinds of sexual relations with children were legal until 1886, when age of consent raised to 16. Sim in France until counter revolutionary activity by Church. But since 1960s Western European countries have been lowering their ages of consent.
Address given as PIE, P.O. Box 318, London SE3 8QD
[EDIT: I am now also able to include a full scan of Paedophilia: Some Questions and Answers, which is given below]