The Scottish police have been chastised for a report that uses the term “Minor-Attracted People” instead of using pedophiles, raising concerns that it would normalize child abuse.
In the year-end report by Chief Constable Iain Livingstone on child abuse and exploitation, he stated, “The project’s main agenda is to develop understanding and approach to avoid the victimization of children by engaging Minor-Attracted People (MAPs) and providing them with the necessary support, treatment and guidance to help prevent criminal activities.”
The police defended its action by claiming that the wording used in the annual report was modeled after European Union’s terminology.
A spokesperson for the department stated that the word “MAPs” is not one they use to characterize child abusers and that its use in the report has to be understood in context, Scottish Daily Express reported.
A police spokesman said: “Police Scotland does not use the term Minor-Attracted Person. The reference in the Chief Constable’s Assessment of Policing Performance 2021/22 was in the context of Police Scotland’s engagement with the Horizon Project EU consortium to tackle Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation.
“The term was used in the commissioning documents for the consortium and is more commonly used on the continent. In September, Police Scotland representatives successfully lobbied for the MAP term not to be used by the consortium.”
The local outlet added that the people were outraged because they believed the move was an attempt to normalize sex crimes against minors by rebranding pedophilia as a harmless sexual preference.
Scottish Daily reported:
The term MAP is contentious because child abusers are trying to escape the stigma attached to paedophilia and maintain they should be regarded as a niche group alongside the LGBT community.
Kenny McAskill, the Alba Party MP for East Lothian and former SNP Justice Secretary, said any use of euphemisms in relation to child sex abusers was “baloney”.
He said: “Spouting these euphemisms simply masks the reality and their danger.
“I very much welcome the common sense approach from Police Scotland, though even in commissioning documents these euphemisms should be avoided as they mask the reality and hide the horror. The term in whatever context is baloney.”
‘Most Scots will find this deeply disturbing and wrong’
Maggie Mellon, an independent social work consultant, said the term MAP risked “the danger of normalising and therefore perhaps decriminalising a serious offence”.
She added: “There should be diagnostic and treatment options for those who present a risk to children but the police are not a therapeutic service – they should be devoting their resources to closing down porn sites that feature children and abuse of women and upping their detection and conviction rates for those promoting child abuse.”
A Scottish Conservative spokesman said: “Most Scots will find any attempt to soften the language around paedophilia in official guidance to be deeply disturbing and wrong.
“Offences relating to paedophilia are among the most appalling and unforgivable crimes anyone can commit and it’s essential that Police Scotland guidance reflects this.”
The MAPs propaganda drive has been compared to the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) campaign in the 1970s and 80s which piggy-backed on the gay liberation movement to push for pro-child abuse policies, such as lowering the age of consent to just four.