Kentucky lawmaker sparks outrage for suggesting child sex dolls could decrease attacks on children

Kentucky lawmaker sparks outrage for suggesting child sex dolls could decrease attacks on children

A Kentucky state senator has been criticized after she speculated over whether child sex dolls could be used by paedophiles to reduce child sexual abuse.

Democrat state senator Karen Berg suggested at a senate judiciary committee on 29 February that dolls for “MAPs” (minor-attracted persons) could give them a “release”.

“There are what they call MAPs — minor-attracted persons — and the limited amount of research that’s done on these dolls suggests that they actually, for people who are attracted to minors, that these dolls actually decrease their proclivity to go out and attack children,” Ms Berg said.

“That it actually gives them a release that makes them less likely to go outside of their home,” she added.

Following criticism, Ms Berg released a statement on 1 March to clarify her remarks.

“As a mom and a physician, I am, of course, deeply concerned with the harm of paedophilia, and I regret if my question in committee didn’t convey that,” she posted on X, formerly Twitter.

“I voted in favour of House Bill 207 to outlaw child-sex dolls, a stance that aligns with my commitment to safeguarding the well-being of our youth and holding perpetrators accountable,” she added.

Ms Berg’s comments were made during the committee’s discussion of House Bill 207 which sought a legal definition of "child sex doll," and other items, in order to make it illegal to possess, traffic or import a child sex doll.

During the committee hearing, Ms Berg said that she was unfamiliar with child sex dolls and had done a Google search the previous night, which showed her that research on child sex dolls for MAPs could decrease the chances of child sex abuse. She added that the research did not support the same conclusions for adult-attracted people.

Ms Berg voted in favour of the bill to make child sex dolls illegal in Kentucky.

On 2nd March, the Kentucky Republican Party criticized Ms Berg on X, and questioned why Governor Andy Beshear had “not yet condemned remarks by a Democrat suggesting child sex dolls have a place in our society?”

“Are those views parts of his Team Kentucky? He ought to take a strong stance against such rhetoric to safeguard Kentucky’s children,” the GOP account wrote.

Governor Beshear addressed Ms Berg’s comments on 5 March.

“I disagree with her comments. I think this is a good law,” he said. “It’s a necessary law for a lot of reasons, and it’ll ultimately make our kids safer.”

The governor said that he will sign the bill into law when it reaches his desk.

The Independent has contacted state senator Karen Berg for comment.