Dangerous Ideas?

Colleen Flaherty
Inside Higher Ed

Excerpt: Old Dominion University put a professor who studies pedophilia on administrative leave this week, saying that their recent public comments about their research became a safety issue and otherwise interfered with instruction. Walker, an assistant professor of sociology and criminal justice, was recently interviewed by the Prostasia Foundation about their book, A Long Dark Shadow: Minor-Attracted People and Their Pursuit of Dignity. The foundation describes itself as a “child protection organization combining an evidence-based approach to child sexual abuse prevention with its commitment to human rights and sex positivity.” Walker was asked a series of questions about their research on “non-offenders,” or adults who are sexually attracted to minors but do not act on those attractions.

The interview, posted to YouTube last week, quickly proved controversial on campus and off. Several petitions call on Old Dominion to “release” or otherwise act against Walker, suggesting that they are a pedophilia apologist and that their comments make the campus less safe.