July 30, 2019

Alan Dershowitz asks a tricky question about 16 year olds.


The thread at Twitter continues. Dershowitz goes on to say:
I challenge my readers to distinguish the cases, as a matter of constitutional law. I did not suggest that it is moral to have sex with a 16 year old, but rather that the issue presents a constitutional conundrum worthy of discussion. 2/
And:
I also pointed out that, statutory rape laws are applied quite selectively and often against young teenagers. That’s why I also say there are Romeo and Juliet exceptions. Lets debate not name call. End/
He's taunted by tweeters who say things like:
OK, perv.
And:
Could this be because you raped a 16 year old?
But I'm going to take his question about abortion seriously. And here are my questions: When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not? If statutory rape is a serious crime — as Dershowitz's taunters apparently believe — shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police? Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?

184 comments:

Automatic_Wing said...

Sixteen year olds, and even younger, are also presumed competent to make the decision to have their sex changed. But not competent to make the decision to have sex. It's all very interesting.

FullMoon said...

Well, this is indeed a sticky wicket.

He has Trumped the public on this subject.

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

"Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?"

That is possibly the number one reason for abortions for minors.

Seeing Red said...

16? That’s old, we are heading down into the 11-12 age.

Also a tricky topic with high and middle school teachers boffing students.

Hello Bill and Monica revisited. People in power and all that, too.

henry said...

Yes. Yes. and Yes. Mandatory reporting of "father" including DNA test of fetal tissue should be mandatory for all abortion providers to underage girls.

My understanding is some states have (or used to have) some brackets around the definition of age of consent (is it 18, or 16 as long as not in authority over the girl).

To be fair, should probably require the same for women to catch any statutory rape from that end.

Or publicly call for the laws to be changed and face the electoral consequences.

Kay said...

Your question begs the question: if two underage people have consensual sex with each other, is it considered statutory rape? I honestly don’t know the answer, but up until now I would have assumed no.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

he is correct. 16 year old girls can and do put themselves out there for sexual conquest. They do. Nothing new under the sun. and no - most 16 year olds probably do not. But some do.

Laslo Spatula said...

Do they factor in the extenuating circumstances of 'Coquettish' and 'Beguiling'?

I am Laslo.

Cassandra said...

In a less politicized context, they (abortion providers) would be mandated reporters.

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

Yes it is.

Kevin said...

This is the way every online discussion goes, especially on social media. No matter what you propose, if it isn't toeing the current day's leftist purity line, you get bombarded with "racist," "sexist," "well you're just a white male, you don't count anymore," "mansplaining," etc.

No one, nooo onnne, takes any argument seriously anymore, it's just a torrent of catchphrases to hound you out of the space.

W. Justin Adams said...

"When woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?"

No, that is often not the case because many state criminal codes define statutory rape in terms of the age range between the minor and the defendant. So the minor can consent to sex with a person < x years older but not with a person > x years older.

Biff said...

Obviously, the tricky part of the question is that he used an archaic pronoun like "she" to denote someone getting an abortion.

(Sorry for the snark. I couldn't resist. I do appreciate the serious questions that Dershowitz, Althouse, and others are raising.)

rhhardin said...

Age of consent violation outrage comes from the belief that the child is always completely innocent so the other is always completely evil. That's enough push to leak into constitutional interpretation.

A pregnant girl isn't automatically taken as completely innocent; indeed she's seeking an abortion, proving she isn't. There's not a push into constitutional interpretation except on the women's health side.

tim in vermont said...

Nothing makes a liberal madder than honest discussion of issues. I personally don’t believe that a young girl has the mental capacity, and science backs me up on this, to make either decision, at least regarding an older man whose brain is supposedly fully developed (happens for most at 27: Science!) who can easily take advantage of a young girl and she is pretty defenseless.

tim in vermont said...

Dersh is going full Sherman McCoy!

rhhardin said...

It used to be that children were just stupid adults.

Earnest Prole said...

Your hypothetical suffers from the fact that sixteen is the age of consent in nearly two-thirds of American states; in the remainder it's either seventeen or eighteen.

F said...

Earnest Prole: Well then, let's drop the age trigger to 15. The question still remains relevant.

gspencer said...

"shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police?"

There you go again. When you use the word "shouldn't," you're implying that there's some sort of standard against which certain behavior is to be measured or contrasted. What, you some sort of Morality Police? Personal responsibility is so conservative, so fuddy-duddy.

You'd almost think that at one time or another we actually had standards which controlled behavior, not the Democrat motto of "If it feels good, then do it."

Com'n, lets relive those wonderful years of yesteryears, the 60s, the 70s.

Earnest Prole said...

Well then, let's drop the age trigger to 15. The question still remains relevant.

Okay, I'll bite. If two fifteen-year-olds have consensual sex, is the girl the rapist or the victim?

steve uhr said...

The underage girl does have the right to hav sex with anyone. Not everyone has the right to have sex with her though. Seems reasonable

jimbino said...

A 16-yr-old has the absolute 5th and 14th Amendment right to have sex and to choose the sex partner, whether teenager or adult. For that reason, an adult has every right to have sex with a 16-yr-old. The Constitution does not specify an age when life, liberty and property rights are vested. That it does specify an age to assume the Presidency, etc., is further evidence.

tim maguire said...

rhhardin said...Age of consent violation outrage comes from the belief that the child is always completely innocent

It's not the belief that the child is always innocent, it is the belief that the child does not understand the gravity of the decision, and therefore cannot give informed consent.

Birches said...

He's right you know.

rhhardin said...

It might be a turkey baster thing. Girl comes across discarded condom.

Ann Althouse said...

"No, that is often not the case because many state criminal codes define statutory rape in terms of the age range between the minor and the defendant. So the minor can consent to sex with a person < x years older but not with a person > x years older."

That's the "Romeo and Juliet" situation that Dershowitz refers to. I used the term "age of consent" to try to include the idea that a 16 year old might not be below the age of consent if the age of the other person is within a certain range.

By the way, in the Shakespeare play, Juliet is 13. We're not told how old Romeo is, but the estimate is at least 18.

Lyssa said...

I don’t think this is a particularly tricky question. It all comes down to why there is a constitutional right to abortion. I don’t personally agree that there is one, but to the extent there is, it supposedly rests on an amorphous idea of privacy. It’s hard to argue that sex doesn’t fit into that as well, but it’s hard to argue that most things don’t, which is why it’s an amorphous (and bad) standard. But I think we all know that the real reason is that many of us just plain think abortion is really important and necessary sometimes (particularly for teens). While I disagree, I get that - obviously, having a baby is life-changing. There’s no comparable argument that teen sex, on its own, is such an important thing to the individual’s life.

rhhardin said...

It's not the belief that the child is always innocent, it is the belief that the child does not understand the gravity of the decision, and therefore cannot give informed consent.

That's not the source of outrage, though. That's the cover story. The source of outrage is the (supposed) innocence of the child.

Fernandinande said...

You must be this tall to fuck.

Ann Althouse said...

By the way, the age of consent is 16 in a lot of the states.

I'm not purporting to know the exact facts and I wouldn't trust Wikipedia, but Wikipedia says:

"The most common age of consent is 16,[23] which is a common age of consent in most other Western countries.
States where the age of consent is 16 (30): Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio,[a] Oklahoma, Pennsylvania,[b] Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia.[23]
States where the age of consent is 17 (8): Colorado, Illinois, Louisiana, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, Texas,[c] and Wyoming.[23]
States where the age of consent is 18 (12): Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Kentucky, North Dakota, Oregon, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin."

rhhardin said...

The belief in the innocence of children would suffer a blow if children were born as strong as adults.

pacwest said...

"But I'm going to take his question about abortion seriously."

Not allowed. Cognitive dissonance is to be dismissed immediately. Next.

Martin said...

Yes, it would certainly seem that if someone aborts a fetus carried by a girl/woman under the age of consent, it is prima facie evidence that statutory rape occurred and should be reported. And, how do you justify reporting to law enforcement but not to the under-age girl's parents or legal guardians?

My guess is that people call Dershowitz nasty names because they don't want to deal with the fact that their emotional preferences are wildly inconsistent and illogical.

Ann Althouse said...

And, to elaborate on the idea of "age of consent," again, only copying from Wikipedia and not giving actual legal advice:

"In most states there is not a single age in which a person may consent, but rather consent varies depending upon the minimum age of the younger party, the minimum age of the older party, or the differences in age. Some states have a single age of consent.[30] Thirty U.S. states have age gap laws which make sexual activity legal if the ages of both participants are close to one another,[10] and these laws are often referred to as "Romeo and Juliet laws".[5] Other states have measures which reduce penalties if the two parties are close in age, and others provide an affirmative defense if the two parties are close in age.[10] Even though state laws regarding the general age of consent and age gap laws differ, it is common for people in the United States to assume that sexual activity with someone under 18 is statutory rape"

Ralph L said...

Henry VII's mother was 13 when he was born. She had 3 husbands but never had another child, so I guess she was a little too young for childbirth.

Fernandinande said...

That's the cover story.

Most people don't seem to get incessed, so to misspeak, over stupid people having sex, and the few who do are usually called racists.

Ann Althouse said...

More from Wikipedia:

"In 2011 Smith and Kercher wrote "Because of the large number of potential statutory rape cases, it is said that many jurisdictions will "pick and choose" which cases they want to investigate and prosecute."[ In some states it is common to only prosecute the male in events where both parties in a heterosexual relationship are below the age of consent. Smith and Kercher wrote that there had been "large inconsistencies" among the decisions of prosecution and sentencing of these cases, and there had been accusations that minority males who have sex with minority women resulting in pregnancy or who have sex with white women have faced the brunt of enforcement."

rhhardin said...

It would be fairest if the age of consent governing were taken from the state on the driver's license.

I thought there were some age 14 states. Maybe that's for marriage.

I favor age 26 myself. It would keep young guys from making bad decisions.

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

Why should young punks get the freshest? They should have to earn it.

doctrev said...

Does the left hate Dershowitz enough to keep the hypocrisy about abortion and consent in the public eye? I say yes. This is partly out of their arrogance, and partly out of their stupidity. One might think President Trump had arranged all this purposefully.

doctrev said...

Char Char Binks said...
Why should young punks get the freshest? They should have to earn it.

7/30/19, 10:59 AM

... ew!

Birches said...

You have no idea how many hoops I need to jump through for medical information on my daughter because the PTB want to make sure that I never find out if she's having sex. I guess it's fine she has to make her own doctor appointments and what not but it's also dumb.

Ann Althouse said...

"Your hypothetical suffers from the fact that sixteen is the age of consent in nearly two-thirds of American states; in the remainder it's either seventeen or eighteen."

Which "hypothetical" are you talking about? If you're talking about my set of questions in the post, I say "age of consent" not any specific age.

SDaly said...

Wait, I thought abortion was about healthcare, not sex!

Curious George said...

"When woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?"

Yes, but not necessarily statutory rape-rape.

William said...

It's not that difficult to be attracted to a pretty teen ager, but most decent men are capable to stifling the impulse while out in polite society. That's why it's important to have your own tropical island, free of any state jurisdiction, to put men in a relaxed state of mind and allow them to explore the boundaries of their sexuality....I don't know if Dershowitz is guilty or innocent. I'm hoping innocent, but just by setting foot on that island he gives some credence to the charges....If you're defending a madame don't do your pre-trial interviews in the brothel.

madAsHell said...

They told me their good intentions could never be misguided........and yet here we are!!

Seeing Red said...

Okay, I'll bite. If two fifteen-year-olds have consensual sex, is the girl the rapist or the victim?

That’s easy.

It depends on the partner. F/F? F/T?

What if the other is feeling like a chandelier that day?

Or a porpoise?

cubanbob said...

AD has a point. To young to consent but old enough to abort makes no sense.

Yancey Ward said...

Now do smoking and drinking.

n.n said...

Transhuman vs trans-social. #NoJudgment #NoLabels #HateLovesAbortion #Progress

gilbar said...

When woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?

In Iowa, back around 1990; they passed a law that made a sliding scale,
I believe it was 13 and 5
so,
if the Younger partner was 13, the older partner had to under 18; or it was a crime
if the Younger partner was 14, the older partner had to under 19
if the Younger partner was 15, the older partner had to under 20
and if the Younger partner was 16 (which was the age of consent in iowa), OPEN SEASON

I'm not sure if this is still the law, as it was pretty academic to me then; and completely so now

Seeing Red said...

Blue states getting into red state areas. Won’t be able to look down on red states if they keep lowering the age, will they?

Blue states keep going down, down, down.

Sex okay. Marriage not ok.

Laslo Spatula said...

Statutory rape laws are a fig leaf for women's fear that if men could legally have sex with sixteen-year-old girls then any woman over the age of nineteen would be a lonely old maid.

I am Laslo.

Mike Sylwester said...

In my blog about the movie Dirty Dancing, I recently published an article titled Did Johnny Castle commit statutory rape?

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

"... ew!"

Whatever, but from a practical standpoint, most persons, parents, society in general, and the law, get this wrong. Who is worse father material, teenage Romeo, with no job, no job skills, and no money, or a man with a job, maybe a degree of some kind, and/or money?

Achilles said...

The most interesting part of this discussion is that this country has several generations of people encompassing a complete ideological wing of the voting public that cannot participate in a discussion with critical thinking involved.

Dershowitz makes an obvious point.

Not a single leftist has honestly challenged it.

Our public education system is to blame and is doing this on purpose.

n.n said...

Hello Bill and Monica revisited.

Superior exploitation was a feminist cause du jour in the last part of the 20th century. Then there was social progress and and the conception of politically congruent constructs.

Fernandinande said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gilbar said...

Laslo Spatula said...
Do they factor in the extenuating circumstances of 'Coquettish' and 'Beguiling'?
I am Laslo


Guessed about 23?
KNOXVILLE COURTHOUSE BLUES

Fernandinande said...

Genetic engineering of smaller brains might help people reach physical maturity more quickly.

Perhaps a quicker psychological maturity, too, since the final level of maturity will be much lower, just enough brains to operate an elevator.

"What's the lesson this afternoon?" he asked.

"We had Elementary Sex for the first forty minutes," she answered.
"But now it's switched over to Elementary Class Consciousness."

n.n said...

Sex okay. Marriage not ok.

Sex is instant gratification. Marriage is a durable inconvenience. Why risk the latter, when the former can be legally, ethically guaranteed to be "burden"-free.

W. Justin Adams said...

"That's the "Romeo and Juliet" situation that Dershowitz refers to. I used the term "age of consent" to try to include the idea that a 16 year old might not be below the age of consent if the age of the other person is within a certain range."

I understand now. I was confused because you referred to "the age of consent," which implies a single age of consent for minors. In states where the ability to consent is relative to the age of the minor and the defendant, there a many and shifting ages of consent and the following question doesn't make sense:

"If statutory rape is a serious crime — as Dershowitz's taunters apparently believe — shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police?

In a state where, say, a 13 year-old can consent to sex with a 14 year-old but not a 17 year-old, the abortion provider cannot assume statutory rape from the fact that a 13 year-old is pregnant.

n.n said...

Dershowitz is losing his Pro-Choice, selective, opportunistic, politically congruent quasi-religion. A positive development.

Comanche Voter said...

I think that back in the 60's there were some Southern states where the age of consent was as low as 12 years. For some reason, Georgia comes to mind.

But in an era when grade school children are taught to put condoms on cucumbers--and kindergarten boys are thrown out of schools as "sexual predators" if they kiss a kindergarten girl on the check--you're going to have sexually active children. And if two twelve year olds are going at it like horny minks, you're going to have some pregnant 12 year old girls. And if the state's statutory rape laws have some component of 'it ain't rape if the ages are close", statutory rape may not have occurred.

But there's another wicket here. The state says that a female under the age of consent generally can't consent to have sex. (That ignores biology and hormones, but that's what the law says). But she may have the capacity(generally speaking) consent to an abortion and to the death of another human being. And she will retain that capacity once she's past the age of consent until she is no longer fertile.

Laslo Spatula said...

I was once suspicious of the age of a girl, so I asked to see her ID. The problem was, I couldn't tell if the ID was really hers or not because her face was smushed into the pillow.

I am Laslo.

Robert Cook said...

The age 18 is not a real marker of the transition from childhood (or adolescence) to adulthood. It is merely a legal fiction for purposes of implementing laws to protect "children" (however determined) from dangers against which they are presumed unequipped to protect themselves. Look at the back-and-forth in the law from ages 18 to 21 for the legal age to drink alcohol. How sensible is it that a person of 18 can join (or be dragooned) into the military or can vote, or marry and bear children, but not be old enough to drink?

Though we can agree children should be protected from dangers that adults are presumed capable of defending against, it is foolish to think that whatever age we demarcate as the dividing line between adult and "not adult" is anything but mostly arbitrary.

bagoh20 said...

The first time I had sex I was 16 and the girl was 15, and we got pregnant. We were in love, but we also knew we could not care for a child, and our families were both relatively poor. Her parents were very strict, and she feared that as well. We both wanted an abortion, and it was very early in the pregnancy - only a few weeks. It cost $180 and we needed to go 35 miles from home to get it done. We had no money, no car, and nobody we could tell. We sold personal items including a ring I gave her earlier, and somehow scrapped the money together. We skipped school, I stole my dad's car without a drivers licence, and we drove to Pittsburgh to have it done. I waited for her outside, and afterward, we were both sad and ashamed, but OK. We drove back, parked the car, and waited to pretend we were coming home from middle school. Nobody ever found out, except a couple close friends that she told, who kept the secret. We continued to be a couple through high school, but eventually went our own ways. She eventually married well and had a couple wonderful children. When her kids were toddlers, her husband was killed on a motorcycle in their driveway in front of the whole family. She inherited land that eventually delivered a fortune in fracking income, and she is one of the richest people in the county today. We still occasionally talk, and she never really got over that day in 1974 when two kids made a big decision all alone. She wishes somehow we could have avoided it, but we both agree it was the best we could do at the time. Nobody's permission was required. Not mine, not our parents.

Darrell said...

I'm glad Dershowitz moved away from his "Old enough to bleed, old enough to butcher" argument.

Ann Althouse said...

"In a state where, say, a 13 year-old can consent to sex with a 14 year-old but not a 17 year-old, the abortion provider cannot assume statutory rape from the fact that a 13 year-old is pregnant."

Good point. But there could still be a requirement to report to the police. If the abortion provider did nothing more than ask the 13 year-old how old the father is, she might out of fear or confusion or loyalty give a fake age. It's at least a possible crime. Let the police investigate. As someone noted above, the fetal tissue can be tested, so any lie about who the father is would be detected.

Ann Althouse said...

@bagoh20

What a story!

With that as part of your mind, I wonder what you think about the legal issue.

SDaly said...

3 quick points.

(1) Dershowitz's entire premise is incorrect, there is no federal constitutional right for a 16 year old to get an abortion "without state or parental interference". Most states have parental consent laws, with a judicial bypass features, meaning that either a parent or judge must be informed and approve of the procedure.

(2) If you read the actual editorial by Dershowitz, he wrote: Based on the demographic criteria, the age of consent should be lowered. It certainly should not be as high as 17 or 16Reasonable people can disagree over whether it should be as low as 14.

(3) As I noted in the first post on last-nights café, Dershowitz, a zealous advocate for his clients, wrote this editorial shortly after becoming friends with Jeffrey Epstein in 1996.

I'm Full of Soup said...

OT somewhat but Richard Painter is nuts.

Seeing Red said...

Who was it here who made the brilliant observation “ available for sex and taxes?”

Rick said...

waited to pretend we were coming home from middle school.

I was 13 when I started high school, is this a misprint from high school?

mockturtle said...

Most young teen-age girls are merely trying out their sexual wiles with older men. While, at fifteen, I may have flirted with an attractive male teacher, had he actually touched me, it would have felt creepy. My first two husbands were about my own age but at 28 I married the love of my life who was sixteen years my senior.

doctrev said...

Char Char Binks said...

Whatever, but from a practical standpoint, most persons, parents, society in general, and the law, get this wrong. Who is worse father material, teenage Romeo, with no job, no job skills, and no money, or a man with a job, maybe a degree of some kind, and/or money?

7/30/19, 11:13 AM

In Roman society, it makes sense for a young woman to marry a veteran instead of a newbie who might not come back. In modern society, where women already outlive men by a considerable margin? Where personal interest and romance has never been more important in marriage considerations?

Young teenage women admittedly should wait until they have the slightest idea what they are doing, preferably with a lot of advice from adults, and definitely shouldn't get married to teenage boys. But being practical means being aware of what young women think. Most would be disgusted by the idea of marrying a man 15 or 20 years older, no matter how much money he had, and it would take a particularly heartless parent to tie her to that anyways. Assuming she wouldn't emancipate herself first, which is hardly implausible.

Big Mike said...

When woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not? If statutory rape is a serious crime — as Dershowitz's taunters apparently believe — shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police? Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?

@Althouse, I am glad that you clarified your position regarding "Romeo and Juliette" situations with your comments at 10:50 and 10:55. However, as others have noted, if the girl had sex with an adult but insists that the father was a person within the age boundaries for consensual sex -- a person she is not required to name, by the way, what is anyone to do? Should we force the juvenile female to disclose the father (or, list of potential fathers)? Or does the abortion provider only notify the police if the young woman voluntarily provides the father's name? It seems to me that we shouldn't coerce the female to provide her partner's (partners') name(s), however the DNA of the fetus should be preserved, so that if a name is provided (then or later) and it becomes a police matter there is proof of innocence for innocent male parties. Because women lie, and that fact doesn't begin with adulthood.

Actually, I am opposed to underage abortion without notifying the parents. An area where I perceive that Althouse and I disagree is whether abortion is about as easy as pulling a tooth or whether it is surgery that carries risks with it -- I know that women have died or become infertile as a consequence of a legal abortion in a well-managed clinic, so I am not just talking about Kermit Gosnell and similar butchers. I think parents should have a right to weigh in on the procedure and the location where it is provided. I can't imagine the pain for parents who are told that their daughter died from complications of an abortion of which they were not notified and now the authorities want to know where to send the body. Actually, I have a good imagination, and I can imagine it.

Narr said...

"Look at Sarey, so purty and bright," said Grampa, "eleven next month--almost a woman!"

Anyone looking for coherence and consistency in our laws about sexual activity is wasting her time--it's not possible, because human sexuality is far more powerful than mere morals, law codes, and ideologies.

I think abortion is a tragic thing, but I think the notion of fetus-policing by the Panoptic State is far worse.

Good for Dersh.

Narr
His critics mostly prove his point

mockturtle said...

Many years ago a close friend heard on their answering machine a young female voice thanking the husband for paying for her abortion. It is probable that married men make up a large proportion of these teen abortion situations. Abortion: The last refuge of a scoundrel.

Big Mike said...

I started working on the above comment before bagoh20's comment was posted. His experience doesn't change my opinion in the last paragraph.

BarrySanders20 said...

"Many years ago a close friend heard on their answering machine a young female voice thanking the husband for paying for her abortion."

New thank you card marketing opportunity for Hallmark.

Quaestor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wendybar said...

He's not wrong. Since giving abortions to minors without Parental permission is okay, who's to say pedophiles aren't forcing teens they take advantage of to abort babies. Don't ask, don't tell Teenage edition.

Quaestor said...

The whole "age of consent" bailiwick presents a host of knotty problems.

traditionalguy said...

Think twice before arguing legal matters with The Dersh. A tie is as close to a win you will get.

bagoh20 said...

"With that as part of your mind, I wonder what you think about the legal issue."

The legality is very tough. I'm glad our parents never found out, and didn't get involved, but it is hard to accept that my daughter might do the same. Both interests are very important, but the necessity and consequent morality of either person's rights really depends on the kind of people involved and the nature of their maturity, amenability, and compassion. As in all things abortion, you just have to pick a line, and I would say the girl gets priority over the parent after 15 years old.

I don't think consensual sex between similar aged people (say within 2 years) should ever be illegal, unless one is mentally incapable of making such a decision. Even beyond 2 years difference it should not be automatically a crime, but be adjudicated case by case to determine how consensual it actually was. I don't consider a young person being seduced by an older person to be the same thing as forcible rape. Maybe rape, but not rapey rape.

n.n said...

I think the notion of fetus-policing by the Panoptic State

"Fetus" policing is reserved for abortionists and technicians. I wonder if a doctor would use that technical term of art to refer to a mother and father's baby.

The issue is normalization that reconciles two... three human lives, mother, father, and baby. At least from the fifth week with the presumptive development... origin of consciousness. Women and men have indulged in liberal license that has left us on a progressive slope with the establishment of the Pro-Choice quasi-religion, not limited to elective abortion.

bagoh20 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bagoh20 said...

"I was 13 when I started high school, is this a misprint from high school?

We had junior high 7-8th grade, middle school 9-10th, and high school 11-12th.

I was in 10 grade, she was in 9th, both middle school in our system which had over 1000 students per grade level.

Rick said...

Thanks for the clarification. In my experience MS was 6-8th grade so seeing that was a jolt.

Although some kids that age were having sex, especially in 8th grade it became a general curiosity.

SDaly said...

Then there is this from his article:

it is doubtful whether such sanctions should apply to children above the age of puberty, since voluntary sex is so common in their age group.

Question: If a 10 year old can get an abortion, does that mean the age of consent should be 10? Perhaps the two actions are not really comparable, and Dershowitz is blowing smoke to cover evil.

Ralph L said...

Most places would swap Jr High and Middle school names.

Alexandria VA went to 3-3-2-2-2 for a while for integration purposes, while the student population dropped in half in a decade.

Ambrose said...

The underlying issue, in my opinion, is that we have allowed ourselves to be governed by judges rather than legislators. A judge must assert that the court's ruling represents an inviolable constitutional right, while a legislator can be practical. A legislator can say: "The age of consent is 16, but we still think it is good policy to allow 16 years olds to have access to abortion - and we are not going to discourage them by requiring reporting, or parental consent. Are we being inconsistent - yes, but that is, in our legislative view, the better policy. If the people don't approve, they can vote us out and the new legislators can change the law to what they think is better."

Gunner said...

I would rather have one Dershowitz on my side rather than a hundred backstabbing, misrepresenting my job, pieces of fake Republican garbage like Painter.

tds said...

for the record, Romeo and Juliet were not forbidden to fool around because of their age, but because of the feud running between their families. If families were friendly they could probably marry and have 5 kids before reaching 20.

Quaestor said...

We're not told how old Romeo is, but the estimate is at least 18.

Romeo as the son and heir of Lord Montegue is almost certainly already betrothed to a suitable girl of good family who is also politically allied with the Montague clan, and has been since infancy. Thus by wedding Juliet, Romeo has committed a breach of contract if not statutory rape. Juliet would likewise be the subject of a betrothal established since her infancy.

It was standard practice to seal the betrothal contract with a kind of wedding ceremony with adult proxies standing in for the minor children, which gave the Church grounds to annul a marriage like that of Romeno and Juliet as bigamous. Romeo would be fined by the diocese and commanded to do a suitable penance. Romeo would also be obliged to compensate Lord Capulet for the loss of his daughter's virginity, typically twice her dowery or more if Capulet had no other heir. Juliet herself, now ruined as a bride, would be consigned to a nun's life, and her child would be a bastard in need of foster parents. Leonardo da Vinci was likely the product of a "Romeo and Juliet" situation.

Kevin said...

Or how about this?

If a 16 year old woman has the constitutional right to have an abortion without state or parental interference, how could she not have the constitutional responsibility to register for the draft?

If she's of age to kill her own child, she can pull the trigger to kill someone else's.

Men, not having the right to kill an unborn child, must reach 18 before being mature enough to be so required.

Anonymous said...

Now THAT is the old Laslo.

Rabel said...

1. "When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?"

2. "But there could still be a requirement to report to the police. If the abortion provider did nothing more than ask the 13 year-old how old the father is, she might out of fear or confusion or loyalty give a fake age. It's at least a possible crime. Let the police investigate."

If it is the case that the pregnancy of a female under the age of consent is always the result of statutory rape, then in a situation in which the male involved is also under the age of consent the the pregnant female is also always a criminal rapist, isn't she?

Do you want the police involved?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said... When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not? If statutory rape is a serious crime — as Dershowitz's taunters apparently believe — shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police? Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?

That seems like an odd distraction from Derhowitz's point. As others have mentioned it does not always indicate a crime (as in the case where two underage people have sex with one another), but quite apart from that there are several apparent reasons, related to incentives, that the abortion provider may not wish to report and/or that we as a society may not want to make it mandatory for those providers to report.
Does the hospital report every case of overdose, or even any case where they detect a person has used an illegal substance, to the police? If they don't should we conclude "people don't take heroin use seriously" or would it be much more likely that we understand setting such a rule would create a strong incentive against people (who know they've used illegal drugs) from seeking medical attention?

rhhardin said...

Evgeny Kissin Romeo and Juliet
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPBA0yLsENI&t=368

walter said...

Big Mike said...whether abortion is about as easy as pulling a tooth or whether it is surgery that carries risks with it
--
Well..getting oral surgery likely requires parental sign off....
But if sexual basis gives minors special considerations, maybe they can independently initiate Trans procedures too.

h said...

These are tricky questions only to those who believe there needs to be some kind of internally consistent defensible logic concerning the topic of abortion. The overwhelming majority believes that girls and women of any age should be free to choose to have an abortion, and anything that might tip that choice in an anti-abortion direction (parental notification, police reporting, requiring payment, etc.) must be opposed. So the Dershowitz "inconsistency" is resolved by noting that a 15 year old girl is mature and wise enough to choose abortion, but is not mature and wise enough to consent to sex where there is an age/power imbalance. And the Althouse "connundrum" is answered by pointing to the rule that anything which might dissuade a pregnant 15 year old from choosing abortion (such as reporting of a statutory rape) must be discouraged/avoided.

SeanF said...

Ann Althouse: If the abortion provider did nothing more than ask the 13 year-old how old the father is, she might out of fear or confusion or loyalty give a fake age. It's at least a possible crime. Let the police investigate. As someone noted above, the fetal tissue can be tested, so any lie about who the father is would be detected.

Any woman, of any age, may have been raped and - out of fear, confusion, or embarassment - not admit that to the abortionist. Thus any time any woman of any age goes for an abortion, "it's at least a possible crime."

Otto said...

Yup this confirms that Dershowitz had sex with under aged girls. Hope he kept Kosher.

Michael McNeil said...

I don't think consensual sex between similar aged people (say within 2 years) should ever be illegal, unless one is mentally incapable of making such a decision.

One of my (2) ex-wives told me that she'd had a sexual relationship at age 7 — with an also 7-year-old male playmate. “Yeah,” she said, ”we got into it for a while.” She said that she asked her friend how he made his cock big like that. ”Thinking about Popsy and Mopsy!” was his reply, naming two neighbor dogs (whose names I don't remember; I've substituted placeholders here) who they'd see sometimes getting it on. Then her family moved and she forgot about sex for the next decade or so.

So… illegal or not? Who goes to jail, or to juvenile hall?

SDaly said...

The overwhelming majority believes that girls and women of any age should be free to choose to have an abortion, and anything that might tip that choice in an anti-abortion direction (parental notification, police reporting, requiring payment, etc.) must be opposed.

The overwhelming majority??? 37 states have some form of parental notification laws, and mandatory reporting laws by healthcare providers for suspected sexual abuse are near universal.

Roughcoat said...

Jeez, the comments in this thread ... Sex, pregnancy and abortion at age 15; three marriages by age 28 . . . My life has been uneventful and boring in comparison.

Ann Althouse said...

It’s the standard practice at the health clinic I use to pry into sexual relationships and attempt to smoke out sexual abuse. It’s obvious to me that there is an effort to save women who may be protecting a predator.

Ann Althouse said...

“I don't think consensual sex between similar aged people (say within 2 years) should ever be illegal, unless one is mentally incapable of making such a decision.”

So all the 13-year-old boys in the neighborhood can go after the non disabled 11-year-old girls?

bbear said...

Dear fellow ghostly-white seniors: Sometimes preggers inner-city teens elect to keep their babies. For some it's a status symbol. Shock, horror...

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

"But being practical means being aware of what young women think"

Actually, practicality more often involves ignoring what young people "think".

Oso Negro said...

@doctrev
Young teenage women admittedly should wait until they have the slightest idea what they are doing, preferably with a lot of advice from adults

That’s a fanny slapped! Adults! Adults will KNOW what to do!!! Where exactly are these adults? The 20-something teachers who want to fuck the boys themselves? The pederasts of the clergy? Divorced suburban Moms? Adults are way over-rated. How about we leave the young people alone to figure it out for themselves.

David53 said...

When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?

No, not always.

An emancipated minor may have sex with her spouse. If she has sex outside their marriage it's statutory rape. That is until she reaches the age of consent, then it's just adultery.

reader said...

When I was 16 I went out with a 24 year old. My mom knew and she was fine with it. It was obvious that he was hoping to have sex but we didn’t. We didn’t go out again because I didn’t like him. If we had had sex I don’t think it should’ve been classified as rape because I was in complete control of the decision.

All that being said, if I had a 16 year old daughter I wouldn’t let her go out with a 24 year old (ok, so I’m a hypocrite). I also talked to my son about statutory rape when he turned 18.

bagoh20 said...

"So… illegal or not? Who goes to jail, or to juvenile hall?"

Well clearly, Popsey and Mopsey.

bagoh20 said...

"So all the 13-year-old boys in the neighborhood can go after the non disabled 11-year-old girls?"

Or the cops can start breaking down doors and arresting 13 year-olds and their 11 year-old fellow assumed rapists. Maybe even get some 11 year old girls to pose as bait, and some 13 year-old boys too. But why limit to just those ages? There might be lots of horny rapey 4 year-olds out there too. If a crime is possible we need to do something to prevent it - for the children!

jimbino said...

I'd like both Althouse and Dershowitz stick to the Law and explain how it can be that the Natural and Constitutional rights of all children to sex are infringed by so many laws of the land.

alanc709 said...

When I lived in San Antonio, my next door neighbors were a cute 23 yo latina, her very cute 11 yo daughter and (fortunately) the 2 month old grandson.

johns said...

"if a 16 year old has the constitutional right to have an abortion without state or parental interference, how could she not have the constitutional right to engage in consensual sex? "

Seems like a little sleight of hand there by Dersh. The 16-year-old is not prosecuted for having sex, rather the over 18 male she had sex with is prosecuted. He is really trying to ask why the man cannot have sex with a 16-year-old. My understanding is that society does not consider the 16YO mature enough to consent, so it is punishable for a man to engage her. Regarding abortion, that is a balancing decision; society would like to require parental consent to an abortion, but the fear is that the pregnant young women would be afraid of their parents. I am in favor of parental approval, but some special arrangements might be necessary for extreme cases.

rcocean said...

Anyone under the age of consent doesn't have the ability to give consent to have sex. But once getting pregnant, they can have abortions. Because they lacked the capacity to agree to have sex.

You can't drive if you're under 15. But if some do and get in accidents. Does that mean we should lower the driving age? Of course not.

Marcus Bressler said...

In regards to overdoses, in Florida at least AFAIK, there are no "criminal" charges possible for possession. This is to keep people from dying out of fear that the person making the call would subject the user or themselves to criminal charges.

THEOLDMAN

BUMBLE BEE said...

Hey, Aretha Franklin had her first child at 13. It worked out OK for her.

rcocean said...

Dersh of course is just telling his friends - The judge philosopher kings - that they should lower the age of consent. Because why not? They made abortion and Gay marriage "Constitutional Rights" when its all just made up crap.

So why not say there a constitutional right for 14 y/o's to have sex?

azbadger said...

"When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?"

No, because of the Romeo and Juliet laws. Most states statutory rape laws contain an exception if the supposed rapist is within 2-4 years of age of the "victim."

Apologies if this has already been stated.

ken in tx said...

I think part of the reason for the proposal to lower the voting age to 16, is to get the age of concent lowered to even less.

rcocean said...

Junior High is just a holding pen. There's not kids anymore, but they're too young to really learn anything serious or play team sports.

Its keeps them off the streets - and of the house - though.

Marcus Bressler said...

I was involved in at least two situations of "statutory rape" in my youth. I was 18 and my girlfriend was a very grown-up (and previously sexually active) 13 year old. When one of her girlfriends announced that our having sex constituted statutory rape, she replied that "you can't rape the willing.". After our relationship ran its course, she got pregnant out of wedlock with some guy she was living with and gave the baby away. Later on, our friendship resumed and we remained close friends until her early death in her late 50s.

The other: I married my first wife a month into her being 16, with the ceremony being at Bethesda-by-the-Sea in Palm Beach in July. We had been having sex since the previous fall.
The marriage last only three years. She was very immature and a bad mother. I can joke about the first, but saddened about the latter. Our wonderful daughter was just here minutes ago, visiting. She's 40 now.

THEOLDMAN

policraticus said...

When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?

If both parties are below the age of consent, I'm not sure you can have a statutory rape. I guess a zealous prosecutor could bring charges against both parties, and probably prefer child pornography charges too. But that is some kind of twisted thinking about human sexuality. I assume there could be sexual assault or actual "rape-rape," since evil behavior is not restricted to those over the age of consent.

If statutory rape is a serious crime — as Dershowitz's taunters apparently believe — shouldn't the abortion providers always report the crime to the police?

I think so, yes. If there is evidence that a child is being abused, I think any health care professional is obliged to at least contact CPS, if not law enforcement. I mean if she came into a clinic with a couple of nice shiners and some lame explanations about walking into a door jamb twice in a week, wouldn't they be compelled by law to contact some social service?

Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?

I'm not sure it is necessarily covering up a crime, since an underage woman can become pregnant in a non-criminal and non-abusive manner. But I do think it would be negligence on the part of the abortion clinic to not investigate the circumstances of the pregnancy to determine if there was an underlying crime. That is why they should contact CPS or the police.

rcocean said...

Also,, 16-17 old's are ignorant, easily led, don't work, and don't pay taxes. IOW, they're typical Democrat voters.

Which is why they want to lower the voting age.

Kevin said...

I still think everyone is burying the lede and the scathing, blanket non-sequitur reaction his comments got is the real story, and the real threat.

rcocean said...

People often bring up the Middle ages or even the 19th century when talking about the age of consent. They forget that ALL pre-marital sex was frowned on, and these young girls were brides. I assume that in most states, there's an absolute age of consent, and then another "if you're above this age, and have sex with someone 2 years older its OK" exception.

Most of the sex in my HS, was between sophomore/Junior girls and senior/Junior guys. By their Senior year, most of the girls had already moved on to the Junior College or over 18 guys.

rcocean said...

"I still think everyone is burying the lede and the scathing, blanket non-sequitur reaction his comments got is the real story, and the real threat."

The real threat is some Federal judges will take the law into their own hands and start striking down "age of consent" laws. OR even "age of voting laws". Because why not? Everyone worships them. They can remold society at will.

h said...

SDaly notes "37 states have some form of parental notification laws," to argue that choice for young girls is not a generally agreed on principle. But in fact are those laws ever enforced?

On the example of Aretha Franklin: Can we agree to remember and admire her artistic genius and not draw her sad personal experiences into a debate about abortion law?

RobinGoodfellow said...

When a woman under the age of consent seeks an abortion, it is always the case that she is the victim of statutory rape, is it not?

What if the boy was younger? Is it still statutory rape?

Anyway, it begs the question. If an underage girl is pregnant, she had sex. I think his question is valid.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

I still think everyone is burying the lede and the scathing, blanket non-sequitur reaction his comments got is the real story, and the real threat.

That is the most interesting thing to me, that he's raising a discussion question that 'educated' 'aware' 'thoughtful' adults should be able to discuss dispassionately, but we are fresh out of those kinds of people on Twitter. Or those who think of themselves that way are laughably self-deluded.

Rabel said...

You come on like a dream, peaches and cream
Lips like strawberry wine
You’re sixteen, you’re beautiful and you’re mine.

or

She was only sixteen, only sixteen
But I loved her so
But she was too young to fall in love
And I was too young to know.

DanTheMan said...

>>When I was 16 I went out with a 24 year old.

When my wife was 16 she went out with a 27 year old.
Me.

Sebastian said...

"Providing an abortion to an underage woman and doing nothing about the sexual abuse is covering up a crime, isn't it?"

If it is always a form of "abuse" to have sex with a 16-year-old.

Anyway, the Althousian "feminist" argument for abortion, that it gives women a marvelous opportunity to reflect on the morality of their actions, also applies to sex itself. Therefore, any girl has the constitutional right to have sex as soon as she is capable of such moral rumination.

So, constitutionalizing sex is just as easy as constitutionalizing abortion. In fact, it's been done already, with regard to gay sex. Surely substantive due process also covers a fundamental liberty to explore the meaning of the universe through copulation as soon as possible?

And don't give me that old saw, like, there's nothing in the Constitution. As Althouse has explained, we're so past that.

RobinGoodfellow said...


Blogger SDaly said...
3 quick points.

(1) Dershowitz's entire premise is incorrect, there is no federal constitutional right for a 16 year old to get an abortion "without state or parental interference". Most states have parental consent laws, with a judicial bypass features, meaning that either a parent or judge must be informed and approve of the procedure.


I would argue since Roe v Wade a constitutional right to abortion does exist.

And, every state that requires parental notification allows a bypass by a judge and/or a doctor.

Therefore, I’d say that a 16 year old American girl in the 21st century does, in fact, have a right to an abortion.

Narr said...

Friends of ours, retired public school teachers, lived for many years in a very poor rural county, and once shocked me in a discussion of student sex with the statement that if asked by a student they might well help her get an abortion w/o her parents' knowledge.

I know only one or two women who for sure have had abortions; I am content that they and their families and medical professionals could deal with their situations. I don't think either one felt uplifted by the experience.

Speaking of medical professionals, here's a tale. As you know I had some fairly routine in-and-out surgeries in late June. I'm coming along fine, normal swelling, very little pain, when last Wednesday evening I notice that I'm leaking. Aw fuck shit.

It's mostly fluid, a little blood. Yep, from recently accessed place where the sun don't shine. Drive to nearest minor med clinic after calling ahead. They dither while I fill out forms and then send me to the hospital where the cutting was done. Six miles away, pick up wife after work, out to hospital emergency room . . . they sent us home about 130am Thursday. They kept asking me about pain. I kept telling them I wasn't really hurting that much.

They sent me home with RXs for an antibiotic and pain meds. When I looked at the papers the next day, they said I was admitted complaining of pain. My wife and I are looking very confused when it dawns on me-- if I'm admitted for pain, it's a subjective complaint, that is, nothing to do with any surgeries there. Just a guy who needs some pills. I had leftover pain pills from the surgery and didn't even fill the new one, which they insisted I take.

Narr
Bonus--I'm now in the Panopticon as a seeker of narcotics



Wince said...

Remeber when 19 was a risky age?

Say it again...

The Cuervo gold
The fine Colombian
Make tonight a wonderful thing

SDaly said...

moving the goalposts much, h?

You said that "The overwhelming majority believes that ... anything that might tip that choice in an anti-abortion direction (parental notification, police reporting, requiring payment, etc.) must be opposed." Not only is there no evidence that such laws "must be opposed," but they actually quite common and popular.

So you are moving from "must be opposed" to what, exactly?

In parental notification states, a minor seeking an abortion must present formal documentary evidence of parental consent or a judge's approval. I assume it is enforced without evidence to the contrary. The number of parents who don't consent, and whose daughters thereafter bear the child, is unknown to me (and most likely you). Also, my spouse is a pediatrician, and you better believe that her office staff report suspected cases of sexual assault when young girls come in pregnant. They would lose their medical licenses, and be subject to private lawsuits, if they didn't.

SDaly said...

RobinGoodfellow -

What part of the right to abortion by a 16-yr old "without parental or state inference" did you miss? That was Dershowitz's statement.

You think that requiring parental consent or a judge's approval is not parental or state interference?

RobinGoodfellow said...

Blogger alanc709 said...
When I lived in San Antonio, my next door neighbors were a cute 23 yo latina, her very cute 11 yo daughter and (fortunately) the 2 month old grandson.


Um ... your phrasing suggests that you might be related to the daughter and/or the grandson.

madAsHell said...

is to get the age of concent lowered to even less.

...and Epstein's island is normalized!!

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

The founding principle of Pro-Choice is a right to privacy, not elective abortion, selective-child, planned parenthood, pedophilia, rape-rape... rape, etc. However, under this ethical principle, there is an established right to avoid responsibility, consequences, etc., if you can get away with it. That is the basis for this quasi-religion's consistency.

Dersh of course is just telling his friends - The judge philosopher kings - that they should lower the age of consent. Because why not?

He's losing his Pro-Choice quasi-religion and provoking a schism in the Chamber.

They made abortion and Gay marriage "Constitutional Rights" when its all just made up crap.

Right of privacy, which is inferred to imply women's sacrificial rites or wicked solution. The transgender couplets were normalized with a politically congruent ("=") construct, a basic tenet of the Pro-Choice quasi-religion.

n.n said...

...and Epstein's island is normalized!!

Not yet, but they have made progress to force inclusion.

Earnest Prole said...

Remeber when 19 was a risky age?

She don't remember the Queen of Soul.

Ken B said...

Good question. And of course, if there are no Romeo and Juliet exceptions then there is a good chance she committed statutory rape too.
Hardliners think both are rapists, for something they each wanted to do, and would brand them for life with the sex crime registry.

Rick said...

The founding principle of Pro-Choice is a right to privacy,


Althouse: "It’s the standard practice at the health clinic I use to pry into sexual relationships"

I think we all know the "founding principle" was the best branding the majority could come up with but it was irrelevant to the decision.

Ken B said...

Steve Uhr is wrong again. She does not have 5he right to have sex with anyone. Think it through, and consider the possibility she is the elder. You can do it Steve!

h said...

SDaly: I'm not intentionally moving the goalposts, and I don't have any data or personal expertise to back up my opinion which was this: Most people (a vast majority?) believe that 14 year old girls should have the same right to choose as a 25 year old woman, and that the right to choose in both cases should not be encumbered by regulations and requirements that would tip the balance of the decision away from abortion. It is unclear from your description of your pediatrician wife's experiences whether she reports all pregnant underage girls to authorities, or only those cases where she suspects the pregnancy occurred as a result of a sexual assault. If it is the latter, doesn't a doctor have the same duty to report suspected sexual assaults of adult women, or is the duty different for women under the age of 18?

rcocean said...

"I would argue since Roe v Wade a constitutional right to abortion does exist."

Find me where "abortion" is mentioned in the Constitution. Explain why it took 180 years for the SCOTUS to discover this "Right".

Its all bullshit.

Rabel said...

Gallup poll on abortion from 2011:

"Seven in 10 Americans favor requiring parental consent for minors."

MacMacConnell said...

8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15 etc get abortions, in most states abortionist are required to report to authorities, they don't it's bad for business. In Kansas when a lawyer tried to investigate, Gov Kathleen Sebelius had HHS delete the information stating that it was a routine purge. The abortion lobby was her largest campaign contributors.

Gahrie said...

Regarding abortion, that is a balancing decision; society would like to require parental consent to an abortion, but the fear is that the pregnant young women would be afraid of their parents.

You say that like it is a bad thing. If a "young woman" (I prefer to use the term young girl) gets into an auto accident before she gets her driver's liscence, does she have a "right" to get the car fixed without telling her parents?

If she gets arrested, does she have the right to go to jail without telling her parents?

DanTheMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DanTheMan said...

>>Find me where "abortion" is mentioned in the Constitution.

Here's where it is: 1 First St NE, Washington, DC 20543



DanTheMan said...

>>Regarding abortion, that is a balancing decision; society would like to require parental consent to an abortion, but the fear is that the pregnant young women would be afraid of their parents.

Which is why we have a judicial bypass for teens who want to buy cigarettes, or beer.

Their parents have no right to make the "no smoking" decision for their daughters.




SDaly said...

h -

How can you still maintain that “most people” don’t want to distinguish between 25 year olds and teenagers when the laws of most jurisdictions treat the two in fundamentally different ways? That’s not an opinion, that is fact.

On reporting requirements, if an underage girl is pregnant, and information comes to the physicians’s attention that the “father” is guilty of statutory rape, that must be reported. That rule doesn’t apply to 25 year olds.

DanTheMan said...

>>Remember when 19 was a risky age?

She was just 17,
And you know what I mean.

bagoh20 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
h said...

SDaly: What I think is, that people don't mind have laws on the books that treat teenagers differently, and they don't want to get into a tiff with pro-lifers on the subject, as long as those laws don't actually prevent any teenagers from having abortions on demand. I did a quick web search to find news reports of law suits by teens who were prohibited by their parents, or retrospective articles by adult women who were forced to continue an unwanted pregnancy in their teens, and I couldn't find anything. I know this is hardly probative, but it is consistent with my opinion that the existence of these laws don't place any practical limitation on abortion on demand for young girls.

bagoh20 said...

"If she gets arrested, does she have the right to go to jail without telling her parents?"

It's a good question for the debate, but having a child is much more affecting than getting arrested. It will literally change every day of a woman's life, altering her opportunities, and burdens the whole way. Besides, getting pregnant is not a crime, so there are serious mismatches with the analogy.

Pregnancy and abortion actually seem to have no close analogies legally, morally, or logistically, which is what makes this so difficult to sort out via normal arguments. The decision affects others pretty profoundly, but outside of the unborn, the vast majority of the effects is experienced by the mother. Those facts are what make a decision or undue influence by someone else so uncomfortable, or they should have that effect. I would not want to make that decision for anyone, I would offer advice, but to go so far that I would be responsible for the decision is not something I want. Late in the pregnancy I have no problem with forcing it. The mother had a chance to make the decision one that only seriously affect her, but she passed that up, and at some point we have another human entity involved who deserves consideration.

PB said...

What if two 15 year olds have consensual sex? 14?

rcocean said...

"Here's where it is: 1 First St NE, Washington, DC 20543"

That's the difference between the right and the left. The right-wing says; "I'd rather lose than go against the Supreme Court" And the Left-wing say; "I'd rather do anything then lose. Maybe if we capture the Supreme Court we can make the Right-wing say black is white and up is down".

Its worked so far.

Known Unknown said...

Bagoh's story sounds like Brick by Ben Folds Five.

Robert Cook said...

"Find me where "abortion" is mentioned in the Constitution."

Where is abortion prohibited in the Constitution?

The Constitution is not a list of statutes. It describes how our government shall be organized, and the power residing in each branch of government. The Bill of Rights describes the rights guaranteed to us and limits the authority of the state. It is up to us to establish the laws that will pertain in our society

walter said...

I'm not sure the impactfulness of the decision argues in favor of a kid making it solo. Parents make all sorts of life impacting decisions regarding kids..if they're on the job.

Gahrie said...

The Bill of Rights describes the rights guaranteed to us and limits the authority of the state.

Neither the word "privacy" nor "abortion" appear in the Constitution or Amendments but that is supposedly where the Right to an abortion lies...it is included in a "right" to privacy protected by the Constitution.

I would have more respect if the pro-abortion crowd tried to use the 3rd Amendment justify the "right" to an abortion. (Forcing a woman to remain pregnant is the same thing as forcing a family to house soldiers, thus by extension forbidden)

It is up to us to establish the laws that will pertain in our society

Right up until the courts imposes their will on us.

DanTheMan said...

>>Where is abortion prohibited in the Constitution?

I think the 10th Amendment answers your question. It gives the states the right to prohibit it if they want.

Until the Supremes come along, and five of them hold the Constitution up to that special light they have, so they can look at the emanations and penumbras.


SDaly said...

H -

So now you’ve moved from stating that majority of American believe we must oppose laws that might tip a teenager away from the decision to abort, to some number of people are against laws that completely preclude a teenager from getting an abortion. That is probably true, but it is a far cry from your initial assertion.

And the limited parameters of you news search would not reveal whether, 10, or 50, or 75% teenage girls didn’t go through with an abortion because they were talked out of it by their parents, thereby “tipping” the decision against abortion. You also must acknowledge that mandatory reporting laws exist and are enforced (not 100%). Your third assertion, that a majority of people think teenagers should not have to pay for their abortions is also wrong, given that Medicaod does not generally cover abortions.

Francisco D said...

The Constitution is not a list of statutes. It describes how our government shall be organized, and the power residing in each branch of government. The Bill of Rights describes the rights guaranteed to us and limits the authority of the state. It is up to us to establish the laws that will pertain in our society

Correct.

The issue with Roe v. Wade is that abortion was deemed to be a constitutional right. I prefer that each state determines the laws affecting abortion inasmuch as it does not seem to be a constitutional right to me.

That said, I would vote to allow abortion in my state, with limits.

DanTheMan said...

>>That said, I would vote to allow abortion in my state, with limits.

And I would vote against it.
But 3 Supremes decided the 10th Amendment means the opposite of what it says.

Ray - SoCal said...

Underage Sexting is a related sticky wicket.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

>>Where is abortion prohibited in the Constitution?

Amendment 2 - Right to Bear Arms... legs, and head.

Amendment 5 - Trial and Punishment, Compensation for Takings

Amendment 6 - Right to Speedy Trial, Confrontation of Witnesses

Amendment 8 - Cruel and Unusual Punishment
nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Perhaps Amendment 13 - Slavery Abolished. The right to life is a human rights issue.

Oh, wait, Amendment 14 - Citizenship Rights, assuming "persons" is a designation of life deemed worthy of life, excluded one of two parties to the constitution. And for some reason listed sex for the first time as a qualifying attribute, thus launching the feminist progression, including women's suffrage and women's sacrificial rites a.k.a. selective-child a.k.a. planned parenthood a.k.a. planned child a.k.a. wicked solution.

n.n said...

(Forcing a woman to remain pregnant is the same thing as forcing a family to house soldiers, thus by extension forbidden)

That's why there is generally, legally, and morally an exception for rape... rape-rape, where there is a compelling interest to reconcile individual rights. Otherwise, there is no right recognized, other than natural law, or granted to abort a person, a man, a woman, a boy, a girl, a baby, a fetus, a colorful clump of cells that you have invited into your home... womb.

gadfly said...

Now, now! In his latest interview, Dersh denies that he even knows the young ladies who claim he raped them. But missing from that sworn denial is even a single reference to Jeffrey Epstein - and the softball interviewer didn't care.

Gabriel said...

The age of consent in California is 18.

Here are things under-18 Californians may not do:

Have sex with anyone you are not married to regardless of age
Use a tanning bed (not even with parental consent)
Buy cigarettes, e-cigarettes or drink alcohol
Get a tatoo (even with parental consent), or get a piercing without parental consent

Here are things under-18 Californians may do:

Get an abortion without parents even being notified