Maybe someone can help me with this. Are we going too far when young men of a certain age, maybe 18 or 19, have a 17 year old girlfriend and they are charged with a felony sex crime? At the risk of bringing down the wrath of all those parents out there who think they should be, I say yes we are. I know….I’m going to hell.
I have read too many stories of these young men who send “photos of themselves” to their girlfriend they are already having sex with and mom and/or dad finding it, then having the boyfriend arrested. Up until this time, the boyfriend was probably welcomed into the home as part of the family. Even if he wasn’t, there isn’t this huge age difference in the two. Most people would consider this a normal age gap in a relationship. The poor kid now has to register as a sex offender and live that way for the rest of his life.
These circumstances are nothing like the Mary Kay Letourneau fiasco or maybe the guy who searches for a young girl on the internet and lures her away. We are talking about a normal relationship between a girl and a boy. They just have more technology available at their fingertips than we used to. What are the lawmakers thinking when they press charges? How do they hang a sex offender tag on a boy with his girlfriend? I don’t get it.
A few years ago, there was a case about an 18 year old boy whose girlfriend was 17. They had been junior high sweethearts so they had been together for about 3 years. He had been considered part of her family and she of his. Well, her dad found out they were actually having sex and had him charged with statutory rape. This was a boy who had NO CRIMINAL RECORD AND WAS ON THE HONOR ROLL AT SCHOOL. He already had a scholarship to go to college. He was going to make something of himself. He was sentenced to 10 YEARS IN PRISON. He isn’t the first and probably won’t be the last.
I think it’s sad that boys like this are branded like that when there is no huge age gap and they were known to be girlfriend and boyfriend. What happened to common sense in law? What damage is done that is not reversible? That boy I told you about? He missed out on a promising life just because the law has no allowances for cases like his. How sad is that?