‘Creepy’: ‘Sound of Freedom’ critic tied to group rebranding pedophiles

By Peter LaBarbera

(Photo by Japheth Mast on Unsplash)
(Photo by Japheth Mast on Unsplash)

WARNING: Highly sensitive subject matter

Among the left-leaning critics attacking the surprise hit film “Sound of Freedom,” about a man who quits his Department of Homeland Security job hunting pedophiles to rescue sex-trafficked children in Colombia, is a man who represented a group that is leading efforts to recast pedophiles as “Minor Attracted Persons,” or MAPs.

“Sound of Freedom,” starring “Passion of the Christ” star Jim Caviezel playing child-rescuer Tim Ballard, is the surprise Hollywood smash hit of the summer, grossing $85 million since its July 4 release, Forbes reported Sunday. The film has been pilloried and ridiculed by various leftist publications – ranging from Rolling Stone (“‘Sound Of Freedom’ Is a Superhero Movie for Dads With Brainworms”) to Jezebel (“‘Sound of Freedom’ Is an Anti-Child Trafficking Fantasy Fit for QAnon”).

Despite hopes that a movie about saving innocent children from sex-traffickers might unite a bitterly divided nation, left-wing activists are dwelling on its alleged links to extreme-right “Q-anon” conspiracies rather than joining conservatives and people of faith in celebrating its focus on solving the crisis of the horrific exploitation of children.

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Jim Caviezel movie attacks child sex trafficking, so media attack movie!

Now Twitchy and leftism expert Andy Ngo reveal the latest man of the left to smear "Sound of Freedom," Noah Berlatsky, is the former spokesman for the foundation Prostasia, a leading group driving the left's escalating campaign to recast pedophiles as victims of "stigma" and "Minor Attracted Persons," or "MAPs."

Berlasky, author of "Wonder Woman: Bondage and Feminism in the Marston/Peter Comics, 1941-1948," wrote an opinion piece Saturday for Bloomberg headlined, "QAnon and ‘Sound of Freedom’ Both Rely on Tired Hollywood Tropes." And as Ngo tweeted Sunday, "leftist activist Noah Berlatsky @berlat [was] the spokesperson for M.A.P. (minor-attracted person) advocacy group, Prostasia. In 2017, he tweeted that pedophiles are a stigmatized group who get designated as deviants for hateful purposes."

In his Twitter thread, Ngo put out another tweet revealing that Berlasky "also wrote this essay about the autonomy of child sex workers. He said that most child trafficking victims are not coerced." That tweet links to an archived screenshot of a May 2021 article on the Prostasia Foundation website titled, "Child trafficking narratives are misleading," with the byline "Noah Berlatsky."

The essay, "Child trafficking narratives are misleading," remains on Prostasia Foundation's website but at press time Berlatsky's byline had been replaced by "Staff Contributor." In the piece, Berlasky argues that most children in "sex work" (prostitution) were not kidnapped but enter into it to survive. He says the best way to protect child "sex workers" is to decriminalize all prostitution – even involving children – so that the paying customer ("john"), when he encounters an underage prostitute, could report her (or him) to the police.

Citing leftist sex-worker activist Tara Burns of an Alaskan group CUSP (Community United for Safety and Protection), Berlasky writes (emphasis added): "So what could law enforcement and service providers do to help underage people trading sex? Burns argues first of all that the most important thing that could be done for people who are actually being coerced is to decriminalize the sex industry. That way, she says, 'everybody around them can report to law enforcement.' The people most likely to notice that underage people are being coerced into sex are other sex workers or clients. But if sex workers or clients go to the police, they are likely to be arrested themselves and can face very serious charges."

'Sound of Freedom': 'QAnon dog whistle'?

Berlasky's review of "Sound of Freedom" focuses heavily on QAnon, and even makes a connection to fascism. It concludes with these two loaded paragraphs (link is author's):

"Scholar Robert Paxton argues that fascism is marked, among other things, by "cults of unity, energy, and purity" and that it pursues goals of "internal cleansing." The far right is motivated by myths of corrupted innocence and corruption avenged. You can see that in QAnon. But you can also see it in Hollywood's own trafficking narratives.

So, is Sound of Freedom a QAnon dog whistle, or is it just another thriller? The answer is that – whatever the filmmaker's intentions – it functions as both. These narratives do little to help victims. But they can create coalitions of feeling, disgust and righteous rage that connect conservative conspiracy theorists with the mainstream. That's why Trump's screening it. And that's why its popularity is ominous.

Sympathy for pedophiles?

Ngo's tweet is linked to an actual 2017 tweet by Berlatsky that reads: "Pedophiles are essentially a stigmatized group. Certain people get designated as deviants, people hate them."

The unearthed tweet aptly summarizes the approach of "MAP" defenders who stress that the softer term de-stigmatizes people who acknowledge they are sexually attracted to children but have not acted out on their paraphilic desires (yet). But critics charge that watering down terms applied to adults who are prone to the sickening desire to have sexual contact with children – and portraying these adults as victims of discrimination and societal "hate" – is a dangerous first step toward normalizing pedophilia by creating sympathy for them.

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In a piece titled, "BUSTED! Bloomberg writer TRASHING 'Sound of Freedom' as a QAnon film connected to pedo group," Twitchy writer Sam P. writes: "What IS IT with these Leftist rags trying to tie 'Sound of Freedom' to Q? Guys, gals, whatever you call yourselves, CHILD SEX TRAFFICKING is sadly very real and an issue that should never be partisan. If you find yourself defending child sex trafficking to own the cons [conservatives], you're a horrible person."

Then, she writes, after showing Ngo's tweet about Berlatsky, "And quite possibly connected to pedophilia ... like the writer of that piece up there. Noah Berlatsky."

Trump to host screening of stunning new film ‘Sound of Freedom’

The Twitchy writer states, "It is really strange that anyone would object to a film like 'Sound of Freedom'....Unless of course, those who object have ... well ... creepy connections to pedophile groups and have attempted to make pedophiles sound like the real victims here."

She also reports Berlatsky made his Twitter account private after his associations were made known: "Note, Berlatsky is also locked down so even if you're not blocked [on Twitter], unless you were already following him, you can't see his tweets. Wonder if he's trying to clean house."

Pedophilia: A 'sexual preference'?

Noah Berlatsky (LinkedIn photo)

With the explosion of pro-transgender youth programs, including more than a thousand schools nationwide that maintain an official policy of not informing parents that their student-child is "gender transitioning," critics of LGBT extremism are warning about the erosion of parental rights as a threat to children's innocence, health and safety.

Now comes along what many regard as the "final frontier" of left-driven sexual exploration and "tolerance": the potential mainstreaming of pedophilia. After all, say critics, if a child can choose an opposite-sex "gender" as an identity and begin the process of making physical and hormone-induced changes toward that goal – without his or her parents' knowledge and input – how long will it be before "progressives" assert that a child has the "right" to pursue sexual relationships with whomever he or she chooses, including adults?

The notorious North American Man/Boy Love Association, or NAMBLA, a pro-pederasty group, has long championed children's sexual autonomy. NAMBLA marched in early "gay pride" parades before being expelled by homosexual activists who understood that being linked to pedophiles would hurt the cause of "gay liberation."

The first group in recent years to advocate for "MAPs," as opposed to pedophiles, is called "B4U-ACT." Included in its stated missions is "to educate the public regarding issues faced by individuals (adults and adolescents) who are sexually attracted to children."

Prostasia Foundation, the group for which Berlasky was spokesman, is allied with B4U-ACT's approach: both groups claim to have the purpose of curtailing actual child sexual abuse, while separating out the sexual "attraction" of adults toward children as a mere "sexual preference," seemingly inborn and unchangeable. (An academic paper linked to the Prostasia site states: "There is no evidence that pedophilia can be changed; interventions are intended to reduce sexual response to children or to increase self-management skills.")

A Jan. 9 article on Prostasia's blog, "Taboo Fantasies; Real Harm Reduction," encourages people with taboo sexual desires to fantasize about "even our most stigmatized feelings of attraction," which, in the case of "MAPs" (pedophiles), would be adults having sexual fantasies involving children. The writer, Eira Duval, states: "In a fictional space we are free to explore and express even our most stigmatized feelings of attraction, romance, and arousal. All without the anxiety that we might be putting ourselves or anyone else in harm’s way. Like a rollercoaster, it provides all the thrill associated with danger, knowing all the while there’s no real risk."

But creating sympathy for "MAPs" and approving of pedophiles to fantasize about their perverse desires surely is far from the minds of everyday Americans, who, based on the popularity of "Sound of Freedom," are more concerned with the practical need to protect children from sex predators:  Writes "Dave the Wes" in commenting on the Twitchy article exposing Berlatsky's affiliations: "Anyone, especially journalists, who slanders this movie should have a search warrant issued for computer files and home because they are definitely pedos themselves."

Saving children motivates Caviezel

Though cynical leftist ideologues like Berlastky claim "Sound of Freedom"-type "narratives do little to help victims," that is precisely what SOF star Caviezel is hoping to do with the movie. In a special message to theater-goers shown after the film's ending, he states: "'Sound of Freedom' is one of those films that can legitimately change this world, so we want to ignite a fire in audiences and open their eyes to the dark reality of millions of children that need our help. Let's make this film an historic event and the start of the end of child trafficking... ."

"Pre-order your tickets today and you can send the message that 'God's children are no longer for sale,'" he says, echoing the main theme of the Angel Studios production.

Below is the July 13 interview by Joy Thayer of Spero Pictures with Caviezel and former Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, President Trump's national security adviser who was reportedly railroaded out of his position by then-FBI Director James Comey and FBI agents:

IMPORTANT NOTE: To their horror, America's ruling elites failed to knock out Donald Trump during his four years as president via the fabricated Trump-Russia collusion scandal – conceived and funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign, as the Durham report proves – or through two circus-like impeachment trials. Later came "January 6," a demonstration-turned-riot by Trump supporters who passionately believed, with good reason, that the recent election – and therefore their country – had just been stolen from them. Members of Congress now want to constitutionally bar Trump from again seeking public office for having instigated "an armed insurrection" (no protester was armed) against America.

Then in March, Trump was indicted in New York on 34 counts of falsifying business records, and in June, still more indictments were filed against Trump – 37 federal criminal charges related to his handling of classified documents. Honest legal experts not in league with the Biden administration openly classify these indictments as somewhere between frivolous and idiotic, not to mention grotesquely politically motivated.

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