The administration at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia have decided to place Dr. Allyn Walker on administrative leave following his controversial statements defending individuals who are sexually attracted to minors. He argued that they all should not be called pedophiles, but instead "minor-attracted persons" or "MAPs."

"A lot of people when they hear the term 'pedophile,' they automatically assume that it means a sex offender, and that isn't true," Walker, who identifies as "non-binary," said during an interview promoting his book, "A Long Dark Shadow: Minor-Attracted People and Their Pursuit of Dignity," the New York Post reported then. The Virginia sociology and criminal justice professor argued that using the term pedophile causes "misconceptions" about people who are attracted to minors.

Walker also argued that attraction does not concern morality or immorality because "no one can control who they're attracted to at all." Instead, he said that it's the "behaviors in responding to that attraction" that should be judged as right or wrong. He then went on to defend "non-offending MAPs," saying that they are people who are attracted to children but do not act upon it, "people who have an attraction they didn't ask for."

Following Walker's controversial statements, ODU released a statement on Tuesday, announcing that they have placed the profesor under administrative leave "effective immediately," Faithwire reported.

"Reactions to Dr. Walker's research and book have led to concerns for their safety and that of the campus," the statement from ODU read. "Furthermore, the controversy over Dr. Walker's research has disrupted the campus and community environment and is interfering with the institution's mission of teaching and learning."

ODU President Brian Hemphill also underscored "in the strongest terms possible that child sexual abuse is morally wrong and has no place in our society." The university head added, "This is a challenging time for our university, but I am confident that we will come together and move forward."

In fact, even ODU's very own Transgender Student Advisory Board, which is committed to upholding a "a trans-affirming campus community that embraces the gender diversity of its members," released a statement condemning the Virginia "non-binary" professor's "misappropriation of queer experiences" in his novel, which they said lumps pedophilia with other sexual "identities."

According to WTKR-TV, the group said that they "vehemently [reject] the use" of the term "minor-attracted persons" which "within society-at-large are regarded as pedophiles." They also argued that the term pedophiles must be used because it "has been defined in the Oxford Dictionary to denote specifically 'a person who is sexually attracted to children.'"

The group concluded, "Walker's misappropriation of exclusively queer experiences in their book has reignited the ignorant assumption of LGBTQIA+ individuals as sexual deviants and unfounded association with pedophilia."

While Walker insisted on describing child sexual abuse as "morally wrong and [an] inexcusable crime," he had already caused significant damage to the ODU community. Some students have commented on how "gross" his comments on normalizing pedophilia are and how it "reflects poorly on the school" to have a "professor that would think that."