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Teenage sex?
August 21, 2003 9:46 AM   Subscribe

Sex between teenagers is illegal in Wisconsin. "Sex between kids is not legal," said Assistant District Attorney Lori Kornblum, who is prosecuting the case. According to the law, "Whoever has sexual contact or sexual intercourse with a person who has not attained the age of 16 is guilty of a Class C felony." There is no mention of consent. The boy's attorney will argue that children's privacy rights include the right to make "important decisions."
posted by Durwood (92 comments total)

 
Nothing to keep a teenager from doing something like telling them they shouldn't do it.
posted by gottabefunky at 9:54 AM on August 21, 2003


this is lame... way lame.
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 9:59 AM on August 21, 2003


That's insane. Although its weird that they were so rude to the mom of the girl, who caught them. Not to mention that what they got the girl on was "violating her probation".

I wonder if they are going to make these to register as sex offenders for life?

It does seem like these two kids have serious problems though, and it seems like they are just trying to force them to 'get help'
posted by delmoi at 10:03 AM on August 21, 2003


Here's a part I especially don't get, maybe a lawyer can spell it out for me:

According to the law, "Whoever has sexual contact or sexual intercourse with a person who has not attained the age of 16 is guilty of a Class C felony." There is no mention of consent.

And:

The girl pleaded guilty to fourth degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor, but is charged with violating her probation; a warrant has been issued for her arrest.

but according to this summary of sexual assault laws from UW-Madison:

Fourth degree sexual assault is defined as sexual contact,without consent, with a person age 16 or over. A person who commits fourth degree sexual assault can be fined up to $10,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 9 months in the county jail. Fourth degree sexual assault is a misdemeanor.

It looks like fourth degree sexual assault only applies to cases where the victim is sixteen and over. How can you plead to a crime that it was legally impossible for you to commit?
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 10:07 AM on August 21, 2003


Guess me and the wife won't be driving through Wisconsin any time soon.
posted by Ty Webb at 10:08 AM on August 21, 2003


Note to self: Change party affiliation to libertarian.
posted by woil at 10:16 AM on August 21, 2003


This is just the tip of the iceberg. America has been waging a war against its own children for decades.
posted by Eloquence at 10:16 AM on August 21, 2003


Reads to me like the prosecution is using the sex as a weapon to get at other issues in these kids' lives.
posted by mischief at 10:17 AM on August 21, 2003


Kids, remember:

You've got to fight
For your right
To par-tay.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:20 AM on August 21, 2003


It does seem like these two kids have serious problems though, and it seems like they are just trying to force them to 'get help'

Is that reading between the lines? It seems to me that if I was having sex and my mother walked in and told me to stop I'd be pretty damn confrontational too (though probably after I'd put my pants on). What kind of father goes to the police because his kid won't obey rules?

With regards to the consent thing, isnt that irrelevent for children 'below the age of consent'? That is, they're not qualified to give it. I raise this as a legal point, but clearly with regard to implementing this law all concerned have acted like idiots in criminalising these two.
posted by biffa at 10:36 AM on August 21, 2003


Eloquence: I thought A Clockwork Orange was just a movie.

I feel sick.
posted by antimony at 10:36 AM on August 21, 2003


"Whoever has sexual contact or sexual intercourse with a person who has not attained the age of 16 is guilty of a Class C felony."

Next prosecution: the kid who's found jerking off. Can you say Felonious Masturbation?
posted by alms at 10:42 AM on August 21, 2003


Not sure what kind of kids these were before their arrests and incarcerations but I can guess this isn't going to set them straight on the path of solid citizenship. And just think about the embarrassment when they have to explain to potential employers or college admissions officers about their "criminal" records. That'll teach'em Wisconsin!
posted by photoslob at 10:44 AM on August 21, 2003


Is that reading between the lines?

From the article:
"Kornblum said that while many instances of consensual sex among minors get handled informally, she felt compelled to bring charges in this case.

'The reason I charged this case was because of their attitude,' Kornblum says. 'I believe they had to be brought before an authority.'

Not to punish the children, she said, but to help them through various court-ordered services."

And just think about the embarrassment when they have to explain to potential employers or college admissions officers about their "criminal" records. That'll teach'em Wisconsin!

Criminal records of minors are confidential.
posted by mr_roboto at 10:47 AM on August 21, 2003


Felonious Masturbation?

Can you say awesome name I'm going to suggest for my friend's metal band?
posted by insomnyuk at 10:49 AM on August 21, 2003


What is wrong with you people? Kids this age have no business having sex, period.

But don't fret. They are under sixteen and most likely their records will be sealed eventually. Being in the system will assure them of getting what evidently are much needed services-and the article says as much.

And hey, actions have consequences. Hopefully in this case one of the consequences wasn't a teen pregnancy.
posted by konolia at 10:52 AM on August 21, 2003


"Kids this age have no business having sex, period."

Right. 'Cause sex is dirty and nasty.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:54 AM on August 21, 2003


So, uh, as a former cheesehead for my misbegotten youth, what exactly is the statute of limitations on prosecuting this particular crime?

You know, just out of curiousity...
posted by stet at 10:55 AM on August 21, 2003


I'll add this to the list of crimes I wish I had committed.
posted by jonmc at 10:57 AM on August 21, 2003


How about the actual statute? Nothing there about consent. Notice the "Failure to act" notation; no, I don't think the mother called to cops to avoid her own prosecution, but it's an interesting side note.
posted by MrMoonPie at 10:59 AM on August 21, 2003


Kids this age have no business having sex, period.

Does this include self-abuse?

Hopefully in this case one of the consequences wasn't a teen pregnancy.

Given that Bush & Co. are pushing abstinence-only "education", rigging the science to make it look like these programs are successful and pressuring groups which do not toe the party line, don't expect teenagers to know what to do when they get busy.
posted by Eloquence at 11:00 AM on August 21, 2003


'The reason I charged this case was because of their attitude,' Kornblum says. 'I believe they had to be brought before an authority.'

That says very little about the kids but perhaps something about Kornblum.
posted by biffa at 11:06 AM on August 21, 2003


Konolia-to me personally 14 would be a bit young for my son or daughter to be sexually active, but there's no way it's acceptible for that to be a felony or misdemeanor. Sending a kid to juvie or levying a fine on them serves no good purpose.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:12 AM on August 21, 2003


eric and donna are like, so busted.
posted by quonsar at 11:14 AM on August 21, 2003


eric and donna are like, so busted

hehehehehe

quonsar, can you write that in the crazy text lingo kids use today?
posted by a3matrix at 11:24 AM on August 21, 2003


Kids this age have no business having sex, period."

Right. 'Cause sex is dirty and nasty.


and don't forget that it makes the Baby Jesus cry, too.

Strange how following strict abstinence (dirty thoughts are verboten, too), singing sacred hymns and writing fan mail to Mr. Ashcroft doesn't seem to be enough for those misguided young souls

on the other hand, the line of separation between sins and crimes seems to be getting increasingly unclear these days
posted by matteo at 11:26 AM on August 21, 2003


>can you write that in the crazy text lingo kids use today?
erc & dna r lyk s bstd lol kthxbi.
posted by brownpau at 11:28 AM on August 21, 2003


The girl - who was not given deferred prosecution because all parties involved agreed she needed services

Um, if she needed services, then aren't there ways to get them? I know that minors can be subject to civil orders in Britain and/or placed into the care of the local authority. Putting her up in front of the judge on a seldom-enforced (and stupid) law seems like an admission of failure on the part of the authorities.
posted by riviera at 11:29 AM on August 21, 2003


Right. 'Cause sex is dirty and nasty.

That's ridiculous. Sex is NOT dirty, but neither is it appropriate at that age.

If a kid is not old enough for a driver's license, or to drink a beer, or to get married, or to get a tattoo, he or she certainly isn't old enough to make the decision about sex. Yes, I think premarital sex is a sin, but I also think that adults have the right to make the choice one way or the other. Kids that age have brains that are still developing (there is research on that) and they aren't capable of the same judgement that an adult with an adult brain would have. There are tons of things I did as a teenager that I would have considered idiotic as an adult.
And why on earth do we have separate courts for juvies and adults? Because we recognise that young teens are still mushbrains.
posted by konolia at 11:34 AM on August 21, 2003


Kids that age have brains that are still developing (there is research on that)

Whoa, buddy, that's some serious scientific underpinning for your moral values you got there.
posted by Eloquence at 11:40 AM on August 21, 2003


" Sex is NOT dirty, but neither is it appropriate at that age. "

At what age is it appropriate, 18? What incredible change happens on the 365th night of the 17th year? It's an arbitrary line (as witnessed by the fact that hopping over a state line can change 'legal' to 'illegal').
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:45 AM on August 21, 2003


OK consenual sex between 14 years old is worthy of prosecution, but somehow this got beneath the wire:

"Court records reveal that both come from troubled backgrounds and struggle with the same issues, such as...parental abandonment."

sounds me like Wisconsin should be spending their money to help teenagers in better ways than prosecuting them for sex-I agree with Riviera, if SERVICES is what the girl needs, there should be ways other than arrest and prosecution to get them to her - and to go further, these services should have been extended prior to arrest, say, for example, when these kids were suffering from parental abadonment
posted by miss-lapin at 11:45 AM on August 21, 2003 [1 favorite]


If a kid is not old enough for a driver's license, or to drink a beer, or to get married, or to get a tattoo, he or she certainly isn't old enough to make the decision about sex.

I can see your logic, but with the possible exception of beer drinking, those are not basic biological imperatives your mentioning.

Sex, with something, is. As somebody once said: We are all born with genitalia and and an irrestible urge to use them.

Obviously, indiscriminate, careless or malicious use of them can do damage to individuals and society as whole. Which is why, we need more open, honest info about sex. Not schoolyard whispers, not veils of silence, not titilation and innuendo but honest (and yes, age appropriate) info. And yes, individual moral and religious beliefs can play an important role in this, but that should come from within the household. The facts should come from recognized scientific sources.
posted by jonmc at 11:46 AM on August 21, 2003


If a kid is not old enough for a driver's license, or to drink a beer, or to get married, or to get a tattoo, he or she certainly isn't old enough to make the decision about sex.....

Because we recognise that young teens are still mushbrains.


Whoa ! Ease it back there mom.

There are tons of things I did as a teenager that I would have considered idiotic as an adult

Is this the "do as I say, not as I do" mentality kicking in? I did tons of stupid stuff as a teenager. But, hey!! I WAS A TEENAGER, and some of that stuff is/was what being a teenager is all about. I drank beer, rode my motorcycle totally illegal, had sex, partied, went to Dead shows, all in the name of fun and having a good time.

And you know what? If I had it to do all over again, I WOULD DO IT THE SAME WAY!! Hell, your past is what makes you who you are today. So, unless you really dislike yourself today, why regret what you did way back in the day.

That being said, I tend to agree that sex at 14 is a bit early, but not unheard of.

Man, if only I could go back, just for the weekend. So much fun.....
posted by a3matrix at 11:52 AM on August 21, 2003


a) Sex is a dirty, dirty thing, and it's far better that kids spend a little time in a hostile and alienating prison than, say, experiment in a with their bodies with consenting people of the same age.

b) Letting parents go to the police whenever children "refuse to follow rules" is a brilliant idea - everyone should do this.

</sarcasm>
posted by spazzm at 11:53 AM on August 21, 2003


That's just sad... this country is looking more and more like Afghanistan in the Taleban days. Bit of a slap in the face to the soldiers who died there.
posted by clevershark at 11:54 AM on August 21, 2003


There's no strict 'mature enough to have sex' line
(if there were, lots of people in their 40's still haven't crossed it)

But 14 is a long, long way from 18

It's not just 4 years, it's 4 years of massive psychological, physical, emotional, social and sexual growth.

That being said, I don't agree these kids should be prosecuted.
They should be loved and taken care of!
posted by cinderful at 11:56 AM on August 21, 2003


Court records reveal that both come from troubled backgrounds and struggle with the same issues, such as attention deficit disorder and parental abandonment.

Um... doesn't it seem like if anyone should be held accountable for anything, it should be the parents for their lack of parenting? Why should the courts and government be brought in to handle something that I, personally think is a parent's responsibility to deal with?
posted by bk at 11:56 AM on August 21, 2003


Damn! I'm never having sex again.
posted by drezdn at 11:57 AM on August 21, 2003


Also:
If the children are to young to take responsibility for their own choices (which seems to be the rationale behind the whole sex-ban thing), shouldn't their guardians/custodians (their parents in this case) be the ones prosecuted?
posted by spazzm at 11:58 AM on August 21, 2003


mr_crash_davis: At what age is it appropriate?

17. No, just 17.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:05 PM on August 21, 2003


Stan: But Chef, how old should you be before you're ready for sex?

Chef: Well children, the correct age to start having sex is.... seventeen

Kyle's Mom: Seventeen and in love, right?

Chef: No, just seventeen.

Kyle's Dad: But what if you're not ready at seventeen?

Chef: At seventeen, you're ready.


On preview - goddamn it...
posted by SweetJesus at 12:08 PM on August 21, 2003


Just another law that the police will be unable and unwilling to enforce, the DA's will use as a weapon, and that decreases just a little for all of us the respect we might yet retain for the law.

At the same time, 14 year olds having sex is not entirely a great idea. 14 year olds are stupid. 14 year olds get pregnant. 16 ain't much better. 17 is about the same. Some people, 30 is about the same.

I'd prefer a law that allows kids between the ages of 14 and 17 to get birth control free and without parental consent. Infinitely smarter, infinitely more effective.
posted by UncleFes at 12:23 PM on August 21, 2003


If a kid is not old enough for a driver's license, or to drink a beer, or to get married, or to get a tattoo, he or she certainly isn't old enough to make the decision about sex.

But....but....what if the age of consent for all of those things is different? Where I grew up, it would have been 16, 18*, 17, and 18, respectively. Which averages out to 17.25. Which, amazingly enough, is just a little older than my actual age when I first had sex!

But you know what? You're absolutely right: I had no business doing it. All that sex (and there was a lot of it, because apparently I was operating under the delusion that I enjoyed it mightily and that it was okay because I was on the pill!) completely screwed up my sense of right and wrong. It led me down the primrose path of dalliance, straight to a top-ranked college and grad school, a satisfying career, interesting hobbies, world travel, and a circle of loving friends and family.

So now, after many years of painful soul-searching, I've come to the sad conclusion that had I not had sex so early, things would not turned out quite so sordidly for me after all. Yes, what really would have helped would to have been prosecuted in a court of law for bonking my boyfriend in the basement.

*ah, the glories of quaffing a delicious 3.2 Meister Brau (aka Mister Beer) after a hard week of AP English and History! Anyone else remember?
posted by scody at 12:34 PM on August 21, 2003


Anyone want to make a bet on whether these kids had a progressive, open sex education programme at school, like those which seem to work pretty well in continental Europe?

No, me neither.
posted by riviera at 12:38 PM on August 21, 2003


Well, when a culture is created which has watered down sex to the least common denominator, don't go crying to me. Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore.
posted by konolia at 12:47 PM on August 21, 2003


If being felated's a felony, consider me a superhighway cosmo-hero in this cops and robbers game.
posted by StrangerInAStrainedLand at 12:50 PM on August 21, 2003


"Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore."

That's not true. They can always look forward to the next time they have sex.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 12:51 PM on August 21, 2003


There can only be one first time for anything. I would think one would want that one time to be a bit more special than in the back seat of a car or in mom's bed with one ear straining to hear if anyone comes home early.
posted by konolia at 12:59 PM on August 21, 2003


"Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore."

Think of it this way...waiting all day to eat breakfast doesn't make it better per se, just quicker and messier.
posted by StrangerInAStrainedLand at 1:01 PM on August 21, 2003


Well, when a culture is created which has watered down sex to the least common denominator, don't go crying to me. Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore.

So when is ok? When you're married? When you pass the legal age of consent? That would be 16 here in Rhode Island, but 14 down in South Carolina.

The kids should just move.

There can only be one first time for anything. I would think one would want that one time to be a bit more special than in the back seat of a car or in mom's bed with one ear straining to hear if anyone comes home early.

First times usually suck, anyway. You might as well get practice in.
posted by SweetJesus at 1:04 PM on August 21, 2003


There can only be one first time for anything. I would think one would want that one time to be a bit more special than in the back seat of a car or in mom's bed with one ear straining to hear if anyone comes home early.

I'm getting misty eyed and tumescent all at once.

Memmmmmmorieeeees...
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:04 PM on August 21, 2003


There are tons of things I did as a teenager that I would have considered idiotic as an adult.
konolia, but do you think you should've been charged with a felony for your juvenile idiocy?
posted by substrate at 1:10 PM on August 21, 2003


There can only be one first time for anything.

I was well past 14, and my first time sucked, kinda. I almost got my ass pounded and was a pariah at my college.

So age don't factor in much.
posted by jonmc at 1:10 PM on August 21, 2003


The problem in this country is that we treat teenage sexuality and teen pregnancy as a problem.

Rather, we should let teens boink and if they get pregnant and don't want to rase their children, we should take them off their hands and rase them into a grand army of the republic!
posted by delmoi at 1:14 PM on August 21, 2003


There can only be one first time for anything.

(Note -- probably NSFW. This is the piece that got Larry Flint sued and which ended up being heard by the Supreme Court)
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:15 PM on August 21, 2003


I was well past 14, and my first time sucked, kinda. I almost got my ass pounded and was a pariah at my college.

huh? How exactly did this happen?
posted by delmoi at 1:16 PM on August 21, 2003


"How exactly did this happen?"

I told him not to nail the mascot, but nooooo.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 1:22 PM on August 21, 2003


Well, when a culture is created which has watered down sex to the least common denominator, don't go crying to me. Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore.

Tee-hee. That's so cute! "Don't come crying to me." Okay, mom of our culture, we won't!

I look forward to sex every day, and that despite having had intercourse, oooh, let's guess about 1500 times.

I don't remember our first time as anything more than our first time. It was awkward, it was messy, it was painful, it just wasn't all that good. But I can guarantee that our 1501th time will be a mighty fine time, indeed. Oooh, yah. :-)

I'm kind of curious about this "lowest common denominator" thing. I just don't grok that at all. Haven't the foggiest idea what you mean by it.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:23 PM on August 21, 2003


(er, as part of a total honesty policy, I should 'fess that while I look forward to sex every day, I don't necessarily have sex every day. Though likely only because I don't make an effort of it.)
posted by five fresh fish at 1:26 PM on August 21, 2003


(okay, so that's a lame excuse.)
posted by five fresh fish at 1:29 PM on August 21, 2003


Well, when a culture is created which has watered down sex to the least common denominator, don't go crying to me

I don't really get what you mean as "least common denominator", but it's pretty hard to legislate a teenager curiosity about (and hormonally-pumped-up desire for) sex. Me, I'd rather have my kids make out (or even make love, using contraception) with their boyfriend/girlfriend than seeing them do drugs with their friends, or joining a gang. but that's just old liberal European me.

(btw, you remember the crazy, totally sweet way you had shines for people and fell in love when you were a teenager? cool huh? what's wrong with that, with the desire of being close to the person you're crazy about? again, I'd stress the importance of safe sex and respect for one another, but really, it's not the end of the world)

Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore.
I do, I do care. I'm looking forward to the day where intolerant people will have the decency not to turn their personal religious belief into law ruining other people's lives, not to mention I'm _so_ looking forward to the day when sensible sex education will be taught in school -- i.e., you'd better wait a little bit, but here's how it works if you can't really wait to have sex, and by all means do it safely, and respect your partner just like you must require respect for yourself.


I would think one would want that one time to be a bit more special than in the back seat of a car or in mom's bed with one ear straining to hear if anyone comes home early.


Then go away for the weekend every once in a while, leaving the kids at home. If they have condoms, it'll all be OK, believe me
posted by matteo at 1:30 PM on August 21, 2003


delmoi-

short version. a female friend proclaimed she wanted me. Being an almost 19-year old virgin in the parent-free enviornment of a dorm, I took her up on it. Her boyfriend was less than pleased.

He had a lot of friends. I acquired a bad reputation.
posted by jonmc at 1:31 PM on August 21, 2003


"'The reason I charged this case was because of their attitude,' Kornblum says. 'I believe they had to be brought before an authority.'"

you can't legislate good parenting. from my own experience, i'd say there's probably something a bit amiss about ms kornblum jumping to the police as opposed to jumping to discussion with her child about life choices.

"What is wrong with you people? Kids this age have no business having sex, period."

i'm not sure i disagree with this statement, i simply don't feel it's proper legislation to say that two consenting kids should be prosecuted and sent to jail - or have anything on their record that needs to be sealed. it seems rather over-reactionary to something that is a normal drive of life... now now, don't get your knickers in a twist. let's just say i was thinking about sex then too. in addition, i happen to have originated from a state where it's legal for kids of 14 years of age to be married - er, with consent, but still... and i would say that i'm one of the few people that i have ever known who 'waited' and fat lot good it did me... but this children, is another story. suffice to say, i'd wager the median average of people i know lost their big v at around 14... in the privacy and security of the woods.
posted by eatdonuts at 1:39 PM on August 21, 2003


I almost got my ass pounded and was a pariah at my college.

never do the fat retarded girl. never.
posted by quonsar at 1:41 PM on August 21, 2003


I have always said that children should not be allowed to go to church or otherwise participate in religion until after they are eighteen, because nothing is of bigger importance than their souls, and they should not be allowed to make decisions about their souls until after they are old enough to drink beer, have sex, drive cars and get tats.
posted by bargle at 1:42 PM on August 21, 2003


Well, when a culture is created which has watered down sex to the least common denominator, don't go crying to me. Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore.

I agree, it's totally American culture that's to blame. Especially MTV! It's not like sexually consummated teenage romance has been celebrated in world literature or anything.
posted by blissbat at 1:50 PM on August 21, 2003


i thought under-age sex was illegal, period - whether one or person or both is under age. is that not the case normally in the usa? i thought it was the case in the uk. here in chile, it's legal with parental consent (unless it's incest, i guess ;o), but i understand that's because the legal system has different roots to the uk/usa. on the other hand, i must admit i never heard of anyone being prosecuted for it in the uk when i was "growing up".

if it is ok, what happens if the age of consent is 18, say, and two 17 year olds are having sex just as one of them turns 18? are you allowed to finish the job?

(i hasten to add that i'm not arguing that this makes sense, just expressing my surprise that everyone here is, well, surprised.)
posted by andrew cooke at 1:56 PM on August 21, 2003


There can only be one first time for anything.

And with anal it's usually the last time too.
Well, everyone else took a shot.
posted by yerfatma at 2:29 PM on August 21, 2003


woman found her 14-year-old daughter nude in the woman's bed with a 14-year-old boy, the teens didn't strike her as being overly concerned.

Reads to me like the prosecution is using the sex as a weapon to get at other issues in these kids' lives.
The teens even "challenged" the woman to call police. So she did.

What would have society thought if she had said, go for it?

Age 14 is young. Romeo and Juliet, common this is today, not Little House on the Prairie, people marring and having kids in their early teens. Our life expectancy has grown since then too. They proved their young age when they showed no concern to authority or even some embarrassment. Common most of adults would have moved to a different bed, for etiquette reasons alone.
posted by thomcatspike at 2:32 PM on August 21, 2003


They should be loved and taken care of!{sounds like a Sharon Osborne quote}

Better question to the mom, why is your daughter feeling the need to have sex?
posted by thomcatspike at 2:41 PM on August 21, 2003


Seems like the country is sliding more towards Brave New World dystopia with each passing day. But that's just me proclaiming doomsday.
posted by Lord Chancellor at 3:05 PM on August 21, 2003


Better question to the mom, why is your daughter feeling the need to have sex?

ummmm... it's called p-u-b-e-r-t-y. might as well ask her why she started having her period.
posted by poopy at 4:17 PM on August 21, 2003


First times usually suck, anyway. You might as well get practice in.
So masturbation didn't help you either?


I don't remember our first time as anything more than our first time. It was awkward, it was messy, it was painful, it just wasn't all that good.


I was well past 14, and my first time sucked, kinda.
How can sex be bad the first time? Your not ready for it :P
Your old enough to read, no excuses.

Like to point out the common sense to sex. No age is right, your knowledge will tell when to do it. Why do I say no excuses above. This is not math or english, subjects that a lot of teens may not be interested in or use in their future lives. Don't understand why the problem is lack of education, parents or school. You want it, learn it. Think,
most things you do, where you are actually are the performer. You'll take the time first being knowledgeable about it. Unless, mommy, daddy & teacher are going to hold your hand, please read a book. Why? How else will you fully understand your partner's organs too, especially an opposite sex.

Prime example, scody's confession, her life showed her to be a responsible teen too, it's not age but mentality, knowledge she had and used it. Do you know which parts on a guy are the same on a girl, even though they are in a different location?
posted by thomcatspike at 4:37 PM on August 21, 2003


There's only one way to wipe this scourge called sex off the planet, while simultaneously curbing obesity. I propose God's Copulatory Waist Edict:

Thou shalt not have sex unless your years equal your waist size.

The true sinners will suffer anorexia if they give into this filthy lust before their 32nd year! At that ripe age, they shall face the Lord's hard exponential curve, which he gave to Adam after he turned Thirty. Gyms shall be ripe with those thirtysomethings struck with temptation! For the pleasure of the flesh is the greatest act of gluttony! And The Lord judges all. You will place your faith in Da Lord (that last term's for all you urban Christians out there).

O.G. abstinence, you dig?
posted by ed at 4:54 PM on August 21, 2003


Oh, I wouldn't say the first time was bad! But compared to the times we've had since, it was, well, substandard.

Kind of like the first time I rode a bike. What a thrill! But it was wobbly and uncertain, and I skinned my knee. I got better only through practice, culminating in a marathon race in which I exceeded my self-expectations and won gold.

okay, that last bit is a lie. I never did race my bike. But I have had marathon sex!
posted by five fresh fish at 4:55 PM on August 21, 2003


The 'age of consent' is there for a reason. You're not meant to be having sex with someone under that age, whether you're also under that age or not. If it was just there to stem paedophilia, the law would be something like 'the age of consent is the smaller of 18 or your age minus 5 years'.

However, a fixed age of consent is a joke. What if someone aged 18 and 1 day had sex with someone aged 17 years and 364 days? It's a felony! Surely there has to be a better solution to all this.
posted by wackybrit at 5:44 PM on August 21, 2003


if it is ok, what happens if the age of consent is 18, say, and two 17 year olds are having sex just as one of them turns 18? are you allowed to finish the job?

This situation (and the situation wackbrit brought up) happens quite often (unless your dating someone who shares your birthday and birthyear). So a lot of states, (such as Texas?) make an exemption if the age between the couple is less than, say, three years.

I thought the general format for these type of laws was: You can't have sexual relations with someone younger than X, unless the difference in age is less than Y. I'm surprised Wisconsin doesn't make this exception.
posted by bobo123 at 7:01 PM on August 21, 2003


I just realized that I've never seen konolia and 111 in the same place at the same time. Curious.

Also, I love bargle, even if he or she is or is not under or over the age of consent in either or both of our local municipalities.
posted by majcher at 7:05 PM on August 21, 2003


Why is it that if I am against fourteen-year-olds copulating, that obviously I am totally anti-sex? It seems to me that the average metafiltlerian would have better reasoning skills than that.

Coincidentally, today I picked up a magazine that linked teenage depression with teenage sex-apparently researchers have found a correlation statistically. It is believed that it may be because teens are less adept at handling relationship issues.

It seems that all of you have this romanticised view of teenagerdom, with all the happy couples being, well, happy. What about Sue who gives it up to Tom who then promply dumps her for Phylicia? Oh, THAT's wonderful for a teen girl's self-esteem. Or what about the older teen who coerces a younger one? Easily done.

Just because we have appetites doesn't mean we can't or shouldn't control them appropriately. Or do we think so little of ourselves that we can be led around by our nether parts? How weak and wimpy is that?

Maybe you all shouldn't answer that. I am disappointed at the human race enough already as it is..
posted by konolia at 8:42 PM on August 21, 2003


Oh, c'mon, it's not like the rest of us think our fourten year-olds should be humpin' like bunnies.

But we're a bit more sensible about it than you seem to be: "What is wrong with you people? Kids this age have no business having sex, period." I dunno about the rest of the regular MeFi gang, but I was jerkin' the gherkin twice daily as a teen. Sure, it was all by myself, but it was sex nonetheless. Seems your view would be that there was something wrong with me.

And then you go on to say silly things like "Obviously no one seems to care about looking forward to things anymore." Doh. As if one can no longer look forward to something one has done before. Hell, a couple minutes of having had sex, I'm looking forward to more of it.

Twenty percent of Americans have sex before age 15, and half of them before age 17. Yet most Americans seem to go on to live reasonably happy, healthy, productive lives. Shocking but true.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:29 PM on August 21, 2003


Why is it that if I am against fourteen-year-olds copulating, that obviously I am totally anti-sex?

For those of us that do not share your religous views, you seem pretty damn anti-sex. You said in this very thread that you consider pre-marital sex to be a sin. You said that adults should be able to make that choice, but you are still basically saying that according to your viewpoint they belong in the evil fiery place.

It seems that all of you have this romanticised view of teenagerdom,

I mostly hated my teenage years.

But the subject of this thread is an example of people viewing children more like property or stupid livestock than young human beings. There is a huge difference in protecting children from predators and even their own sometimes questionable reasoning and preventing them from expressing their natural desires and instincts and allowing them to grow into adults naturally rather than directing them through an obstacle course.

And the worst thing of all is that a lot of the problems encountered by teens when sex comes into the picture is the fault of the adults in their lives. These kids can make better decisions about when to do what and whether or not it is what they really want at that point in time, IF they have the information.

But people do not teach their kids about sex like they should and they do not want the schools teaching it either. So rather than informed teens making their own decisions, we have teens basing their inforation on what other teens say, the pornography they will almost certainly encounter, people gyrating together in MTV videos or other useless sources. And then we compound everything by wanting to punish them for it.

A lot of them will learn about birth control, STDs and the intense physical and/or emotional baggage that can come with sex after the fact, since nobody will talk to them about it beforehand.

But hey, let's treat them like mushrooms and then punish them, lower their self esteem by telling them they are dirty for having the feelings and desires they have and we'll be well on our way to making more confused adults out of confused teens.
posted by bargle at 10:14 PM on August 21, 2003


i simply don't feel it's proper legislation to say that two consenting kids should be prosecuted and sent to jail - or have anything on their record that needs to be sealed. it seems rather over-reactionary to something that is a normal drive of life

Bingo. Criminally charging these kids when there is an agreement by all parties that they need social services help (and I'm still not sure that I think that having sex with a same age peer should be a part of such a determination) runs counter to the purpose of both the social services and juvenile justice systems. You help kids who need help, you don't throw them into the criminal system, even the kiddy criminal system.

These kids need lawyers. Or better lawyers.
posted by Dreama at 10:33 PM on August 21, 2003


Coincidentally, today I picked up a magazine that linked teenage depression with teenage sex-apparently researchers have found a correlation statistically. It is believed that it may be because teens are less adept at handling relationship issues.

Hey, I read that magazine too! It also said that once you're 18, you're cured. Or was it vaccinated?

It seems that all of you have this romanticized view of teenagerdom, with all the happy couples being, well, happy.

Proposing abstinence seems so rational in comparison: no one gets a boner till they are married!!!

What about Sue who gives it up to Tom who then promptly dumps her for physician? Oh, THAT's wonderful for a teen girl's self-esteem.

Here is a time-tested and much simpler method: call her fat.

Or what about the older teen who coerces a younger one? Easily done.

Which is why we should ban older teens, not just sex! Think drugs, dangerous machines, tall places, organized religion ...

I am disappointed at the human race enough already as it is.

Gotta be if you're not looking forward to sex after the first time. Have you tried visiting a doctor? In many cases these things turn out to be simple physiological issues.
posted by magullo at 6:56 AM on August 22, 2003


#1 -I never said one word regarding autoeroticism.

#2- Don't set me up as a paragon of virtue. I didn't become a Christian until I was almost 22. Draw your own conclusions. Didn't marry till I was almost 25, so I have practiced what I preach.

#3- Why do you insist that abstaining from sex as a teen is the same as teaching them that normal desires are wrong? I never taught my teens that. And no, they aren't having sex. None of them have time even if they wanted to sneak around and do it. Between their afterschool extracurriculars and their homework, there's no spare time. And just so you know, I am HOME when they get home from school.

As I have stated on this site more than once, I have open and frank communication with my kids on the topic of sex, so they aren't ignorant either.


Just out of curiosity, how many of y'all actually have teenagers-or younger children?
posted by konolia at 7:18 AM on August 22, 2003


#1 -I never said one word regarding autoeroticism.

[...]

I never taught my teens that. And no, they aren't having sex. None of them have time even if they wanted to sneak around and do it. Between their afterschool extracurricular and their homework, there's no spare time.


The question is, konolia, would they tell you if they did? Sounds like most probably not.

(Just one little hint: the first plo chop I ever received was at an athletic facility while at high school, during after school activities)

But I'm curious here - what exactly is the message that you pass on to them? Is masturbation ok? If not, do you also think that they refrain from masturbating?
posted by magullo at 7:34 AM on August 22, 2003


I don't think anyone has said anything about auto-eroticism. Though I really like that Beemer Z4.

"Don't set me up as a paragon of virtue. I didn't become a Christian until I was almost 22."

Strangely enough, I wouldn't associate "paragon of virtue" with "Christian" under any circumstances...
posted by five fresh fish at 9:34 AM on August 22, 2003


I have open and frank communication with my kids on the topic of sex, so they aren't ignorant either.

cool. how do they like the "I've just read in a magazine that your little brains are still developing, therefore you're not reliable and you must do at all times as mommy says" bit?
I'm curious.

also, since you're so sure they're not having sex (are you really positive) what about drugs? do you collect samples for analysis? does a parent have the right to?
I'm not being snarky I'm just curious about your particular brand of Christian parental oversight that's all

btw, did you see this movie? what about this?
you should check out this one as well, if it ever gets a distribution deal in the US, it is very graphic but worth it

ps konolia I don't have kids, maybe I will later on in life. in the meantime I'm a devoted Winnicott and Bettelheim reader
posted by matteo at 10:17 AM on August 22, 2003


To answer your questions:

I homeschooled my kids for four years then put them back in public school when the oldest was a freshman in high school. Because of that, I have what I consider to be a very good relationship with them (because of the extra time I was able to spend with them.) It helps that I am not bashful when it comes to talking about sex-and they have come to me with some real doozies when it comes to questions. I have to admit that what they tell me in regard to some of their classmates can be "interesting."

As to drugs, again thanks to my misspent youth, I know how to talk to them and what to watch for. But honestly they have never given me a reason to have concerns in that area-or for that matter, concerns regarding sex. I am really blessed with some neat younguns.
posted by konolia at 11:00 AM on August 22, 2003


they have come to me with some real doozies when it comes to questions...

like what? you've got me curious.
posted by jpoulos at 11:20 AM on August 22, 2003


"Like to point out the common sense to sex. No age is right, your knowledge will tell when to do it. "

I was very conservative when I was younger. My best friend had sex for the first time when she was sixteen. I was against it. I told her that I didn't think anyone under 18 could make that kind of decision. She went ahead and had unsafe sex for a year with her idiot boyfriend. When she finally became pregnant, I was the one who drove her to the clinic and took care of her after her first abortion ( she had a second one in college). Incidentally idiot boyfriend broke up with her two weeks after the abortion to date a 13 year old.

Her younger sister asked me at fourteen to take her to Planned Parenthood so that she could go on the pill. I thought fourteen was way too young, but considering my friend, I gave her the ride. Clearly the younger sister was more mature and ready to have sex because she took responsibility for her own actions.

Interestingly, both are now happily married.
posted by miss-lapin at 12:21 PM on August 22, 2003 [1 favorite]


Interestingly, both are now happily married.

No, they're not. Their lives were ruined. Pay attention!
posted by scody at 12:48 PM on August 22, 2003


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