Tom O'Carroll

Where prejudice legally trumps truth

Many heretics here will be familiar with AliceLovers Magazine, a colourful occasional publication aimed mainly at GLs and produced to a high standard of attractive graphic design. Today’s blog, written by me, is due to appear in the next issue of ALM and was originally intended for first publication there. Unfortunately, the new issue, originally scheduled for 8 August, has been delayed by Covid-19, I am told, so I have decided to go ahead here with my own article while its somewhat time-sensitive content is still fresh. It is a big one, so I’ll run it here as a two-parter. Thus …

Where prejudice legally trumps truth Read More »

Discovering a ‘crime’ that is all in the mind

I am not sure what Plato would have made of the “platonic rape” concept introduced by guest blogger Cyril Belgrad today, but it is undoubtedly one that makes a disturbingly valid topic for thought and discussion in the sexually angst-ridden culture of our times. Belgrad is a professional with a distinguished reputation in his field. PLATONIC RAPE I’ve been lucky to have several long-term young friends in my life. The first, Jody, is now in his late twenties and calls me on the phone about once a week. Steve, who is earlier in his twenties, has thanked me for giving him …

Discovering a ‘crime’ that is all in the mind Read More »

A flogger’s yearning to ‘inflict pleasure’

Today’s guest blogger, Stephen James, is well known here as a regular commentator whose succinct contributions often provide a sensible counterpoint (or antidote!) to some of the always welcome but often wild “thinking outside the box” we tend to see in the heretical comments here. He has also written for the NAMBLA Bulletin and for the Newgon web magazine Uncommon Sense. His logical approach is consistent with his work as a published author of formal philosophy. He is well qualified for this, as he read philosophy and modern languages at Oxford and holds a Ph.D. in philosophy. Stephen guest-blogged here a …

A flogger’s yearning to ‘inflict pleasure’ Read More »

Gilt is stripped from Saint Peter’s halo

Peter Tatchell has long been a hero of mine and doubtless millions of others around the globe, for the outstanding bravery, energy and lifelong dedication he has contributed to the international advancement of gay rights, lowering the age of consent, and much else. He has been dubbed a secular saint: Netflix has just brought out a documentary that celebrates his lifelong activism. Unfortunately, what Heretic TOC must reveal today is a weaker and darker side of “Saint Peter”, one which sadly he shares with the original Christian saint – a tendency to deny, disown and disavow his past, thrice and many …

Gilt is stripped from Saint Peter’s halo Read More »

Children’s sexuality? No latency. Period.

Sooner or later, of course, the adults intervened, called the police or the park attendants, and asked what in the world we were up to. Most of us were arrested at least once and got used to carrying thick wallets full of documents identifying us as members of a research team. Despite the fact that we were in no way conducting a participant observation study, and were merely attempting to understand children’s sexual thinking, it was very difficult to communicate this distinction to authorities. The experiences were painful, and so we began to train children in handling tape recorders. This worked …

Children’s sexuality? No latency. Period. Read More »

Everyone’s invited to reconsider childhood

  “Everyone’s Invited”: Sounds nice, doesn’t it? So welcoming, so inclusive. And to my pleasant surprise the Instagram campaign with this name, which went viral last month with its testimonies by (mainly) teenage girls to sexual harassment they have suffered at the hands – and occasionally penises – of their classmates, is not at all the shrill, vengeful, hyperbolic litany of righteous fury that might have been expected to follow the #MeToo hate-fest. Setting the tone, the campaign’s Homepage says: Moving forward, we know that our responsibility lies in improving and healing the wounds we have uncovered. We do not condone …

Everyone’s invited to reconsider childhood Read More »

As sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal

  As a bit of a night owl, these days, I usually close out my day nearly an hour after midnight. The late-night review of the morning newspapers on BBC News 24 is part of the routine, giving the pleasing illusion of knowing in advance what lesser mortals will only discover over breakfast the next day; then there is a solid session of dry academic reading to send me to sleep. Fortified in this way with the sense that I have been virtuously busy, I feel no compunction to be an early riser; seldom do I get up before nine. But …

As sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal Read More »

The cruel martyrdom of Steven Freeman

Remember David Blunkett? He was one in a succession of UK home secretaries hell-bent on being tougher on crime than their predecessor a couple of decades ago and more. Among his crowd-pleasing reforms was a “crackdown on paedophiles” in his Sexual Offences Act, 2003; but his most draconian measure was the sentence of “imprisonment for public protection” (IPP), introduced in the Criminal Justice Act of the same year. The idea was to keep in prison any offender considered too dangerous to be released when their original sentence had expired – a bit like civil commitment in the US. Being kept behind …

The cruel martyrdom of Steven Freeman Read More »

Should a child ever get married?

  Heretic TOC is delighted to welcome a new guest blogger today. This is “Prue”, who recently completed a Master’s degree in critical theory, achieving a Distinction (first-class honours, in effect) with a dissertation on intergenerational sexuality. Prue, who goes by they/them pronouns, is not a MAP but is opposed to MAP demonisation. They plan further research on MAP / youth sexuality issues and aim for an academic career that will engage with related concerns, including pornographic literacies, asexuality, post-feminism (in contrast to victimological feminism), and contemporary fascism.   CHILD MARRIAGE: OFTEN IT WAS FOR LOVE, ACTUALLY Should you go down …

Should a child ever get married? Read More »

Lovely letter to a laird of lad-love

Changes in how Anglo-American culture has understood intergenerational sex can be seen with startling clarity in the life of British writer Norman Douglas (1868-1952), who was both a beloved and popular author, a friend of luminaries like Graham Greene, Aldous Huxley, and D.H. Lawrence, as well as an unrepentant and uncloseted pederast. – From the publicity for a new biography of Douglas.   Hang on, we might think, that can’t be right, can it? How could this writer guy have been openly attracted to kids – and very sexually active with pre-teens, as it happens – while also being a commercially …

Lovely letter to a laird of lad-love Read More »

Scroll to Top