Back in the 1990s, I remember seeing various television talk shows showing adolescent-adult couples that were either expecting a baby or were already the parents of a baby. I will not say that these couples did not have their fair share of problems, but the criminal justice system’s intervention never helped their situations for the better in the event that an arrest ensued as a result of their age difference. I remember this one edition of The Sally Jesse Raphael Show back in 1992 when a 24-year-old gentleman named Jason Robards Jr. and his 14-year-old wife Chastity Robards, if I remember their names correctly, appeared on the guest panel. Mr. Robards’s father was there on the guest panel as well. Chastity had already given birth to her and her husband’s child, and the District Attorney in their Kentucky community was pursuing a statutory rape case against Mr. Robards. The young man’s father was screaming at the audience from the top of his lungs inasmuch as there were some people in the audience who were completely unsympathetic with the situation. Dr. Judy Kuriansky and this one Christian fundamentalist whose name I do not recall did not help the situation at all when they began sniping at Mr. Robards and treating Chastity as though she didn’t want to be in the marriage. Luckily, there were people in the audience who were able to see that the Loretta-Lynn-style couple wanted the government and the authorities to get off their backs and let them be.
A few years later, I saw an edition of The Jenny Jones Show in which a 25-year-old man named Matthew appeared on the guest panel alongside his pregnant 14-year-old fiancée named Heather and her mother whose name was Glenda. The audience on this television talk show was even more hostile than the one on the above-described television talk show. Finally, one young man got up in the audience and said that Heather would not have been better off if the father of her unborn baby was some self-serving 15-year-old boy whose only interest was to “score” with her. He claimed that she was much better off with Matthew. Matthew smiled back at him in appreciation of his comment. What stood out so obviously about Heather in the form of her comments to the audience was that she had no interest in boys her own age. She would not specify why she did not do so, but it was no mystery that probably many boys in her school had gotten girls pregnant and had bailed on them and had even gone as far as “slut-shaming” them. By hooking up with someone 11 years older than her, I would not doubt that she felt that she was ahead of the game in that respect. Her mother, Glenda, wholeheartedly consented to the relationship, and she was even preparing to execute the necessary paperwork so that Matthew and her daughter, Heather, could legally get married before the baby was born.
Neither of the two scenarios above impressed upon me as anything exploitative or detrimental. Both of these couples wanted to carry on their lives together without needless interference from the law or their communities. However, unfortunately, there exist people in our nation who have never known couples like these ones, and such people can easily be brainwashed into believing the worst of such scenarios. In any event, a decision to eliminate underage marriage should not be given to elected state officials but rather should be the will of the people as a whole. If Virginia State House Delegate Jennifer McClellan, Virginia State Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel, and others like them really cared about how their constituents felt about underage marriage and the issues encompassing it, they would have introduced their bills to curtail underage marriage in the form of propositions or measures that state residents could have voted upon on the November ballots. However, they just sneaked their agenda under the radar of many individuals who may be adversely affected by these new marriage laws in their state.
Ms. McClellan and her legion of femi-nazi amazons seem to be more on a Puritanical crusade to toughen the age-of-consent laws in our nation, which are already harsh enough as they are, rather than combat forced child marriage and human trafficking. The main concern that I have about the way these age-of-consent laws get enforced in our nation is that the authorities and prosecutors usually make these cases about themselves rather than about the alleged victims whom they claim they are supposed to be protecting, so to speak. A good example in this respect was a situation that took place so many years ago in Connecticut in which a 15-year-old girl’s 28-year-old boyfriend was arrested for having sexual relations with the young girl. After the 15-year-old girl refused to testify against her 28-year-old boyfriend at his criminal trial, the judge ordered her to be locked up in a juvenile detention facility for contempt of court. Her father even concurred with the judge’s decision, which bewilders me to this very day. Ultimately a group of demonstrators marched outside the judge’s office in protest of his actions, and the judge eventually ordered for the release of the 15-year-old girl; and the prosecution and the police were left with no other choice but to drop the criminal charges against the 28-year-old suspect.
Regardless of how harsh our state jurisdictions make their age-of-consent laws, youngsters are going to look for inventive ways to get around them if they don’t feel that they are fair. I was once reviewing the comments to an online article regarding the subject of the age-of-consent laws in our nation, and I found that this one 18-year-old girl named Bethany had posted a description of a situation from five years earlier in which her friend, Caroline, had hooked up with a 26-year-old man shortly before Caroline had turned 13 years old. This was Caroline’s first serious relationship, and this young man was the one to whom she had lost her virginity. Caroline kept her relationship a secret from others that she didn’t want to know about it. When she was 15 years old, she became pregnant with her boyfriend’s baby. By then, her boyfriend was 28 years old. She obviously did not wish to get an abortion, and she wanted to keep the baby. Therefore, she arranged with a male friend of hers named Robert, who was the same age as her, to pose as the baby’s father so that her boyfriend would not be charged with statutory rape. In other words, Caroline’s boyfriend used Robert as a bulletproof vest against a possible statutory rape trial. By the time that Bethany had posted this story in the form of a posted comment on this above-described website, Caroline was 18 years old and her boyfriend was 31 years old; and Caroline and her boyfriend were still together and expecting their second child. Bethany stressed in her post that adolescents will find such creative ways to circumvent the age-of-consent laws inasmuch as they don’t see these laws acting in their best interests. The irony of this story that Bethany posted was that it was in response to an online article that actually supported tough age-of-consent laws and higher ages of consent here in our nation.
I am not one to encourage people to break the law. However, I don’t believe that Caroline would have gone to great lengths to protect her older boyfriend from a needless statutory rape arrest and trial if she had actually been a victim of sexual abuse as some people may believe. She eventually had a baby in the picture. I’m not saying that teen pregnancy is a good thing. However, she wanted the father of her baby to be in their baby’s life, and she did what she felt was right. I imagine that this older boyfriend will feel indebted to Robert for the rest of his life for saving him from a lifetime of humiliation and scrutiny by the criminal justice system.
I think that the crux of this big picture here is that the heart does what it wants rather than what society wants it to do. Yes, I do agree that each and every one of us is responsible for our actions. However, the biggest mistake that American society makes is assuming that if an adolescent girl hooks up with a boy the same age as her, their relationship is going to turn into a storybook romance in a Harlequin novel; whereas if an adolescent girl falls in love with an adult man even as young as his early twenties, a heinous and reprehensible crime is just waiting to happen no matter how sincere both the adolescent girl and the young man are about their feelings for each other. The Duggars of 19 Kids And Counting tried to promote this bogus doctrine of theirs in the form of all their boastful, gushy stories about how Michelle Duggar fell madly in love at the age of 14 with Jim Bob Duggar when he was just 15 years old and how their early “age-appropriate” romance that later turned into a marriage and a family was the moral backbone of our nation and possibly of the entire world. Michelle Duggar boasted about how she and her husband, Jim Bob Duggar, timed their marriage and childbearing years so perfectly. They bragged about being the picture perfect family for wholesome American values and traditions. Their oldest kids followed in their footsteps and got married before 23 years of age and started producing offspring. However, the cat finally came flying directly out of the bag back in 2015, and the world discovered that this couple wasn’t such an icon of wholesome perfection after learning that their oldest son, Joshua Duggar, was anything but the proverbial goodie-two-shoes that he and his parents had misrepresented him to be. That is, along came the big bombshell that dropped right on them and on everyone who thought that they were the icons of the prima-donna pop culture that Janis Ian sang about in her 1975 song titled “At Seventeen” in which she described how beauty queens married into everything they needed and then retired young.
Joshua Duggar got exposed to the whole world in 2015 for having sexually victimized a 5-year-old girl, among other things, back when he was still in high school. Of course, he followed in his father’s footsteps by getting married and starting a family while he was barely out of high school. However, it didn’t make him any saint. The hypocrisy and injustice of it all was that before the scandal hit the press and the media, he and his parents were always so ready to accuse anyone of moral depravity who did not meet up to their expectations of wholesome perfection, so to speak. At one point in time, Michelle Duggar was even falsely accusing strangers of being child predators, when all along she knew that her son was culpable of various such transgressions himself. The fact of reality is that nobody is any better than anyone else just because they’ve gotten luckier breaks in life along the lines of relationships and marriage. The American public’s propensity to believe so is a delusion that continues to damage our society to high heaven. Whenever some self-proclaimed expert or anyone in the medical and scientific profession attempts to promote this elitist way of thinking, I always feel inclined to dig deep into that individual’s background to find out whatever I can about him or her; and usually what I find out is not very pleasant.
The fact of the matter is that same-age relationships between adolescent girls and adolescent boys can and do end in disaster, whereas there have existed adolescent girls as young as 14 and 13 and even 12 years old who have become involved with significantly older men and have later married them and have lived happily ever after with them. Whenever I hear about a 14-year-old girl dating a 22-year-old man or even a young girl between 13 and 15 years old marrying a man in his thirties, I don’t encourage these relationships. However, I don’t discourage them either. I just recognize that they do exist and that people shouldn’t necessarily form adverse judgments about them before they have all the facts. I would advise such couples to keep a low profile until the younger party in the couple is of age. I would also endorse any efforts that such a couple makes to defend themselves against lunatic vigilantes.
The English Common Law provides that if the parents give legal consent, a girl can marry as young as 12 years old and a boy can marry as young as 14 years old. Therefore, in consideration of everything I have stated here in my article, I say that this should be the law in every state of our nation. I have no problem with safeguards like implementing judicial approval for minors below a certain age to get married. However, I don’t believe that eliminating underage marriage altogether or restricting it to emancipated minors is going to make our nation into a better society. It won’t. In a nutshell, I strongly feel that underage marriage should be kept legal in this respect here in our country. If two individuals are so profoundly in love with each other to such a degree that they cannot wait to act on their feelings and both individuals just so happen to be on the opposite sides of the legal age line, then they should have some kind of pathway in the law that allows them to make their intimate relationship completely legal before the younger partner in that relationship reaches the statutory age of consent.
The main problem with American society is that it has molded its customs, social conventions and even laws around all the prom kings and male prima donnas of the world and leaves nothing for the less fortunate male individuals who might just happen to be late in the game, figuratively speaking. I’m not denying that toxic and destructive relationships between adolescent girls and adult men do exist. They do, and I agree that there should be safeguards in place to prevent them. However, I simply cannot buy into the Puritanical Establishment’s biased perspective that all adolescent-adult relationships are always sexually exploitative and wrong and that all adolescent boys can do no wrong to girls in the middle-school and high-school-age range. That school of thought just doesn’t sit very well with me, and it likely doesn’t sit well with many people who support keeping teenage marriage legal everywhere in our nation. What I have found throughout my life is that many adult men who fall in love with adolescent girls and later marry them do so not because they are abusers and wish to take advantage of a “power imbalance,” so to speak. Many of these men perhaps may have been wrongfully cheated out of their earlier youth in one way or another, and these adolescent girls give them a second chance to experience the beauty of a first-love-style relationship that they missed out on as adolescent boys. Men who have never had an adolescent girlfriend when they were teenagers themselves may continue to have that one curiosity of what it would be like to romance a girl that age. When men have voids of this nature in their life, nostalgia has a way of creeping up on them when they least expect it.
Also, whenever I have read posts throughout the Internet regarding men’s issues through the years, I have noticed that more and more men seem to be going later into life without ever having had a sexual experience with anyone or even as so much a relationship. Some of these men appear to hold out until what they view to be the love of their life comes along. Also, I believe that perhaps this fact could explain what causes these men to gravitate away from women their own age in terms that they feel unable to relate to them along the lines of experience. In other words, they may have the attraction to women their own age, but they don’t have the incentive to hook up with them. It’s not necessarily because there is anything wrong with these men but rather because there may have been circumstances beyond their control that transpired earlier in their lives that obstructed them from ever finding true love in their younger years. Then they hook up with teenage girls to share that first-love experience that they missed out on earlier in life. However, all the prom kings and all the male prima donnas who married their same-aged sweethearts right out of high school just don’t want to stand by and see anyone else other than themselves be happy. Therefore, they treat these “forbidden” couples like social outcasts in the form of Draconian age-of-consent laws and Puritanical social conventions. Now these big shots are taking one last stab at these late bloomers as previously described by supporting these ludicrous bills to eliminate underage marriage, because they know that such an institution is the last safe haven in which “forbidden” couples can make their relationships legal. These big shots have a strange alliance with all the femi-nazis seeking a ban on underage marriage throughout our nation in this regard. In any event, it’s an oppressive caste system, and nobody in the mental-health profession or the criminal justice system is willing to admit so. Ana Kasparian of The Young Turks got to experience first love at the age of 13 with her juvenile delinquent boyfriend. So, why is she going to care about whether the elimination of underage marriage is going to have an adverse impact on anyone who doesn’t fit her mold of wholesome perfection?
Now, I am not mindless to the fact that the American culture is not as open-minded about allowing adolescent girls to have suitors outside their own age circles as perhaps other cultures may be for whatever reason or another. However, just because a man over 20 years of age expresses an extra-Platonic interest in an adolescent girl doesn’t mean that he is going to go out and snatch some toddler from a playground and take her off somewhere to commit unspeakable acts upon her. The Puritanical Establishment appears to mislead the public into believing in such a misconception, when such nonsense of theirs could not be any further from reality. It’s called pedophile hysteria, and it has become a major problem in our society. The whole irony of it is that a real pedophile normally has no interest in adolescent girls in the middle-school and high- school-age range. At least according to the DSM-5, they don’t. Stop letting the mainstream press and the media poison your judgment. They don’t care about the truth. They’re just in the business to sell news, both real and imagined. Do your own research instead.
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