Yesterday Roissy made a post about the show Californication, at first praising its portrayal of an unrepentant divorced manwhore named Frank Moody who is the master of cocky/funny game, then complaining that said character is also a white-knighting chump who defends all of the women who treat him badly. One such woman happens to be a 17-year-old who seduces Frank, then steals his manuscript and passes it off as her own, while threatening him with the specter of statutory rape if he tries to expose her fraud. Roissy then veered off on a tangent complaining about statutory rape laws and how inconvenient it is to have to think twice about having sex with an attractive young woman if there’s the possibility she’s underage. After all, there are well-developed 13-year-olds out there! Many of the commenters on the thread vehemently agreed – how dare these evil feminist laws exist that prevent men from taking what has historically been available to them!
The thing is, historically older men were able to have sex with attractive 15-year-olds because they married those 15-year-olds. Which meant that in addition to getting the sex, these men were also taking on the responsibility of housing, clothing, and feeding these 15-year-olds – FOR LIFE. And also taking care of any children their union might produce, which, in the time before birth control pills, patches, and implants, was highly likely (and one of the primary societal reasons for marriage to exist in the first place; a society of bastards won’t remain a society for long). Even if a man were having sex with a 15-year-old on the downlow, if she got pregnant, he would be under enormous societal pressure to marry her so as to avoid the bastardy of her child.
Men today can still have sex with the 15-year-old of their dreams, legally, by marrying her. At that age in the United States, parental consent is required, but surely an older man who has the skills to woo a busty and willing 15-year-old must have the ability to charm her parents as well, no? But if all the 15-year-old and man want is sex, then why shouldn’t the law shield her from a man who will not marry her? Who may pressure her to abort their child if she does conceive? Who could leave her emotionally devastated when he tires of her and moves on to the next tasty 15-year-old? Because the age of first marriage in the U.S. has risen so high, why shouldn’t there be laws shielding young women from early sexual experiences that will greatly impact their ability to marry later on? How can it possibly make sense that a functional, stable society with a high age of first marriage also has a low age of consent? If men want the age of consent to drop, then the age of first marriage has to drop with it. No matter how sexually mature of a body a 15-year-old may have, her mental and emotional states are not nearly as developed as those of an older woman. And even older women have great difficulty handling the emotional aftermath of sexual relationships that end. If men will not be the guardians of a woman’s mind, heart, and body, then the state will step in and try to do the job.
Additionally, the reasoning behind these complaints smacks of Adam-and-Eve to me. The men who gripe that they can’t go out and bang the voluptuous teenybopper of their choice without fear of criminal repercussion are the same ones who believe that women are fickle and irrational and are in great need of a man’s authority, guidance, and protection from herself in their lives…except when it comes to women’s sexual impulses, apparently. Especially if they are impulsing in his direction. Then it’s all the woman’s choice and “hey, she wanted it, so why is it my fault?” – just like Adam in the Garden of Eden when God confronts him about eating the fruit: “the woman gave it to me, and I ate it.” Interestingly, God does not say, “Well, Adam, you’re right. You just did what Eve wanted you to do. You’re off the hook, bro.” Instead, God metes out a punishment with the ultimate domino effect – cursing all men to work to live – while specifically condemning him for listening to Eve. The argument against the high age of statutory rape laws is as old as time, and about as effective.
There’s always a price to pay for sex, and female sexuality in particular has always been pretty pricey. In the past, it was protected by social pressure and personal restraint through religious convictions. Now that both of those have largely fallen by the wayside, the law has stepped in to mandate self-restraint. Kind of ironic that women are more “available” than ever, but in order to achieve that, the most desirable women are less attainable than ever.