Q. Could you tell us more about your book.
A. Yes, Tom. I submitted it in one of Australia's premier book competitions, where it was short listed - meaning it was one of the top three finalists. Normally this means certain publication, but no publisher wanted to touch it. It was a money decision. They simply were not sure that there were enough people interested in exhibitionism to make the book a viable project.
Q. So it is not a commercial project...
A. I didn't say that. They just didn't see it that way. Publishers tend to err on the side of caution. A lot of good books get lost that way.
Q. But still, the publishers have a point, don't they. The market for a book on exhibitionism is a very small one, don't you think?
A. I'm not sure about that. Just look at the web. There are hundreds of websites catering to exhibitionists.
Q. I've read your book and I found it both provocative and entertaining, but something bothered me... you sort of whitewashed the whole affair. What I mean is you over-simplified the whole thing.
A. You could say that, Tom. Or you could say that the lawmakers and the public in general have over-complicated it.
Q. You see…you are doing it now…
A. Bottom line, Tom, is that a flash does not really bother people all that much, if at all. Where the problem lies is that people think that exhibitionists may go on to more serious crime - like sexual assault. That is what worries people, and not the flash itself.
Q. Well, that is a legitimate concern, isn't it?
A. Studies have shown that it is not.
Q. But still, the public are not aware of such studies and therefore their concerns are legitimate, wouldn't you say?
A. The concerns are not legitimate, because they are not correct. Such ignorance - and I'm sorry if I sound harsh - on the part of the public leads to a victimization of the flasher: he is condemned for what he MIGHT do, and not for what he does do.
Q. That's a bit rich, isn't it? Suddenly the flasher becomes the victim.
A. You're right, Tom; the flasher is being discriminated against.
Q. Come on…be serious!
A. Let me ask you a question, for a change, Tom. What is one of the first things that a court will do when sentencing an exhibitionist?
Q. Tell me...
A. They will send him for treatment.
A. …because they believe that exhibitionism is a psychological disorder. Technically, however, a man cannot be held responsible for an act that is the result of a mental disorder. Yet the courts want it both ways. They believe it is a disorder, yet they will still try a man as if it is not a disorder.
Q. You are twisting things...
A. They are the facts.
Q. Sorry, I'm getting confused here. You are turning everything upside down.
A. Look, Tom. The simple truth is that exhibitionists do not hurt people. There have been studies on that. And most people know that. The law should have no jurisdiction in matters where people are not hurt.
Q. See, that's what I mean. You are oversimplifying things.
A. Am I? I really do not think anyone would be traumatized by the sight of a naked male these days.
Q. But they find it offensive.
A. They do not. It is already happening in Germany, the Netherlands and other North European countries. Full nudity is allowed, even in the cities, and they appear to be coping adequately. Crime rates have not soared, or even increased! Barcelona is another place where you can walk down the main street fully naked.
Q. Let's talk about treatment for exhibitionists...
A. Exhibitionism is not a disorder. How can you treat something that is not a disorder?
Q. Well, psychologists and psychiatrists might disagree with you on that one.
A. Look, I've heard all those theories too - that exhibitionism is a paraphilia, or is deviant, or perverse or something. They're just terms to explain something the medical profession doesn't understand.
Q. Come on, now! Surely you are not saying that exhibitionism is perfectly normal behavior?
A. Of course not. There is no such thing as normal. "Normal" is a concept invented by psychiatrists in an attempt to categorize people's behavior. But no one actually is normal; everyone is a deviant - if we use the psychiatric model.
Q. So are you saying that exhibitionists are just like everyone else?
A. No…no one is just like everyone else.
Q. You're evading the question…
A. I'm sorry if I sound harsh, but anytime the public finds something distasteful or offensive, they call it sick, or wrong, or a disorder and so on. Homosexuality was once thought to be distasteful and offensive and even a crime. Psychiatrists probably called that a disorder too and now it is trendy. This whole morality thing is rather whimsical. I'm sorry.
Q. Are you saying there is no basis for the psychiatric evaluation that exhibitionism is a paraphilia?
A. Psychiatrists use drugs to cure people. The use of drugs is based on the theory that there is a chemical imbalance in the brain. Such an imbalance has never yet been proven to exist and in fact there are no tests available for assessing the chemical status of a living person's brain.
Q. So…do treatments work?
A. They are a waste of the taxpayers money.
Q. Why do you say that?
A. Most people treated by psychologists and psychiatrists are sent there against their will. Exhibitionists as a whole do not want to be "cured" and only agree to treatment because that is preferable to going to jail. Psychologists and psychiatrists have an impossible task - treating someone who does not want to be treated.
Q. So you are saying that treatment for exhibitionists does not work?
A. Yes. I am saying that. There is case history after case history where patients have been hit with every conceivable treatment, almost to the point of chemical castration, and yet they are not cured. Even those that are pronounced cured, end up in the courts a few months later for the same offence.
Q. So what is the prognosis?
A. Exhibitionism is a moral issue and it is difficult to say anything definitive about it because morality is in constant state of flux. What is acceptable today may not be acceptable tomorrow. And vice versa.
Q. Well, that does not help us much...
A. We don't need any help in that area, Tom. People change, morals change...it's always been like that, and people for the most part adapt as they go along. That is not the problem. The problem, Tom, is that the law has stepped in and legislated, or attempted to legislate, morality. And that never works. The law is fixed, it has to be. And morality is in a flux. The two do not mix.
Article Source: http://www.abcarticledirectory.com
Andrew Toth is the author of the award winning book, The Exhibitionist.
While exhibitionism is the most prevalent sex offence in the Western world today,
Strangely enough, there are no books on the subject!
So that makes this a must-read book!
Because you, or someone you know, will be flashed,
If they haven't already!
Read it HERE
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