A Virginia university professor who claimed it was not immoral for adults to be sexually attracted to children has resigned following criticisms.
The Old Dominion University (ODU) announced Wednesday Allyn Walker, 34, will be stepping down from his position as an assistant professor of sociology and criminal justice beginning in May of 2022. Until then, Walker will be on leave, according to the university.
“We have concluded this outcome is the best way to move forward,” President of ODU Brian O. Hemphill said. “We hope today’s action helps bring closure for our Monarch family. As we move forward, I encourage all members of the Monarch family to continue our efforts toward healing and civil discourse.”
Walker said his scholarship “aims to prevent child sexual abuse” and that his research was “mischaracterized by some in the media and online, partly on the basis of my trans identity.”
— Old Dominion University (@ODU) November 16, 2021
Walker’s book, “A Long, Dark Shadow: Minor-Attracted People and Their Pursuit of Dignity,” challenged “widespread assumptions that persons who are preferentially attracted to minors – often referred to as ‘pedophiles’ – are necessarily also predators or sex offenders.” (RELATED: Ex-Teacher Who Allegedly Asked Students To Touch Themselves In Front Of Class Charged With Over A Dozen Sex Crimes)
The book looks at the “lives of non-offending minor-attracted persons,” which is a term used to describe the group because it is less stigmatizing than a word like “pedophile,” Walker said in an interview with Prostasia Foundation, a non-profit that focuses on child protection along with an “evidence-based approach” to child sex abuse prevention, according to the site.
Walker said in a statement that “child sexual abuse is morally wrong and inexcusable crime.”