In a Sane World, How Might the LHS Two/Sexual Assault Exam Case Have Played Out?

First, let me say I’m deeply gratified by the quality and sincerity of the discussion going on in the comments section of my Friday post on this subject, “Why were the 14-and-15-year-old girls…”. I’ve also exchanged emails with several of you – some of them angry. But in all cases, they’ve wrestled intelligently and honestly with probably the most sensitive subject in our society. I’m very proud that LL can serve as a hub for this type of debate. The typical slash and trash TV and newspaper forums pale in comparison. Thanks.

One of the very best comments came from Kemp Brinson, whose Polk law blog I neglect entirely too much. In fact, Kemp’s comment is so good, and raises so many legitimate points, that I won’t get to them all in detail. So go read it for yourself.

But here’s the most important, I would say, and probably the most obvious:

My personal opinion is that these sorts of things are extremely fact-specific, and it’s tough to [say] how this particular situation should play out without talking to everyone involved, hearing all sides of the story, etc…

Yup. Every fraught issue surrounding this case flows directly out of one’s interpretation of its fact record. And it shows how important it is that words, like “making out”, or “grown men”, or “kids,” or “monster,” or “sex” have real world meaning. In my first post, I made the mistake of taking someone else’s words and applying my own meaning to them without checking if the writer had assigned those words any meaning of his own. I know better than that. In fact, I write quite a bit about the danger of abstraction. I stand by the conclusion I reached — although the headline was unnecessary hyperbole — but I reached it too easily. I made it seem simple. It’s not. And, again, I know better. Almost nothing is simple. Sorry.

So what is my interpretation of the fact record here? Based on all information available to me, including the police report and some non-official information that has floated in via email, here’s what I think: We have two sets of sexually mature – not emotionally mature – teenagers engaging happily and mutually in sexual activity not involving intercourse in a truck late at night. They were interrupted by a sheriff’s deputy doing his job. Somehow, this led to two high school seniors facing second degree felonies and 14-and 15-year girls undergoing parentally-sanctioned sexual assault exams in Lakeland Regional Medical Center in the middle of the night. These exams, presumably, included vaginal swabs, even though no one expected to find anything on the vaginal swabs. I remain unclear about who pushed whom to give the girls the exams. But the sheriff’s office has emphasized that these cases generally depend on the wishes of the victims’ parents – at least one of whom was “irate” in this instance. On the other hand, I’m not at all sure that it’s true that parental consent is actually required, and I don’t know how the act of getting consent occurred. In any event, it seems to me that these girls received unnecessary, and essentially punitive, rape exams. I think they were being punished for their sexual play, even if the people who made the exams happen would never acknowledge them as punishment, even to themselves.

If the fact record changes, I may revise my interpretation. Maybe the authorities and parents had good reason – undocumented anywhere – to believe that forcible vaginal rape occurred, and fluid evidence needed to be collected, and the girls, free from proximity of the boys, told an entirely different story. Maybe the girls insisted on the exams. Anything is possible. But there’s no indication of any of that at all.

For now, I think this case reflects a society too often devoid of reason in dealing with teen sex – and sex generally. I suspect — but I don’t know — that prosecutors will eventually reduce and/or drop the charges, and the boys will be able to go on with their lives, with a gratuitous scar that will likely linger with them in one way or another until they die. I think it’s actually worse for the girls. If I were one of those girls, and that sexual assault exam went down the way I think it did, I’d probably be looking for somebody to blame other than myself. Mom and dad would be close and convenient. I fear this type of thing would stain a parental relationship for a long time. Life doesn’t end at 16. What exact protection is being provided that outweighs those consequences?

Kemp also asked, reasonably:

Billy, if you were to write the law, how young does the girl have to be and how old does the boy have to be for consent not to be a defense? Or do you envision a different paradigm entirely?

Here’s where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. (Sorry, can’t help it, even when I’m being serious…) And, as Kemp says, I think I envision a different paradigm. Here’s how Philosopher King Billy imagines a better regulatory structure and culture for dealing with teen sex.

1) Ideally, I would remove 9th grade from high school and then decriminalize consensual sex between kids in high school. As I’ve said to a couple of people, this was really a crime of administration. Three or four months ago, these boys weren’t legally adults. Today they are. Nothing magically changed in that time. The same thing – in reverse – goes for at least the 15-year-old girl. The consequences of small aging increments should not be so radical. Calendar age is a stupid, counterproductive legal measure in a natural world that doesn’t much care about our calendar. Sexual maturity – whatever that even is – comes at different ages and times. There are plenty of sexually mature girls who are freshmen. There are plenty of freshmen who are not sexually mature.

It’s true in at least one of these two incidents – and maybe both – that the kids knew each other from school. And I suspect that most senior-sophomore or senior-freshman relationships develop though multi-age classes or athletics or lunch. High schools regularly mixed kids of all four class levels in my day. I suspect they still do, although I know there has been some effort to wall off the freshmen. But unless you physically remove freshmen from the campus, I think the kids will find a way. They always have. When you throw all these hormonal kids together in a bowl and tell them they can work out and play the trumpet together, I think it’s silly to think the interaction is going to stop at that level.

However, I don’t think we’re ever going to see ninth graders back in middle school, which would present its own problems. So let’s not deal in fantasy. I would extend the decriminalization of consensual sex between kids to high school freshmen. Calendar age wouldn’t matter. I’m making the age of consent enrollment in high school – rather than a number – and postponing adulthood, for legal sexual purposes, to graduation or 19, whichever comes first. (And I could probably be talked out of 19.) Think of it as “status of consent.”

I think this would have zero impact on the actual amount of sex between 18-year-olds and 14-year-olds. The kids who are sexually mature at 14 are the same kids whose bodies and bearings are likely to catch a senior’s eye. The kids who aren’t sexually mature won’t. This seems like common sense to me, but I’m open to more empirical questioning of this assumption.

This has the practical advantage of making it clear to parents that they have no legal hammer to swing against the 18-year-old baseball player caught mutually masturbating with their daughter. If you’re a parent, and you want to make sure your son or daughter isn’t doing that, it’s going to be on you. There will be no raging to the cops. I suspect that knowledge would motivate many parents to exert more active control over their kids’ dating patterns.

Ford Pickup Truck2) Which brings me to maybe the key element of what happened in this case. As I see it, the problem isn’t the hanky-touchy; it’s the truck.

And I can see now, after I’ve thought about this more, why many people reacted differently that I did. These girls, unquestionably, put themselves at the mercy of these boys. I think the fact record shows that the girls didn’t want or need any mercy, and there’s no indication the boys wouldn’t have given it. But that doesn’t change the power relationship inherent in what happened in that truck. Those two boys could have done whatever they wanted to those two girls in that moment. They controlled the girls’ freedom, their means of escape, and they certainly could have physically – and perhaps mentally – overpowered them. And I fully agree that’s a big problem.

So let’s attack the power dynamic, not the sex, which is a product of an attraction you and I can’t do anything about. Why not treat making out in a car like something between DUI and careless driving? Intimate parked loitering – a second degree misdemeanor, punishable on a second offense by a year’s suspension of the driver’s license for everyone in the car.

This would, hopefully, have the effect of steering kids into more direct back and forth from the sites of their dates and encourage them to spend more time at each other’s homes, where the isolation may not be so acute.

In this case, it would mean the boys don’t get off scot free, but don’t face prison either. And who knows, had this legal culture been in place, maybe these kids are hanging out at one of the girls’ houses, where they would be far less helpless.

I don’t think it’s realistic for parents to just declare, “I will never let my 14-year-old date an 18-year-old.” This question of “let” is a tough one. It’s awfully hard for one human being to achieve control over another’s behavior. If parenthood has taught me anything, it’s that. I’ve become pretty humble about how much of my will I can impose on my children. Again, kids in thrall with one another will find a way, and it may be more dangerous than other alternatives. I think it’s wiser to insist the boy come over to visit, or go directly to and from a movie or a school function, something that has a built-in time period. This anti-intimate loitering law could help that buttress that sort of pattern for senior-freshman type relationships.

3) A number of people have asked about – or insinuated – how I would treat my own 17-year-old daughter in a similar situation. I’m going to pass on that one. I brought her abstractly into to a political discussion concerning abortion a while back, and I regret it.

But I will say this, which she has read and signed off on.

I intend to never, ever judge her virtue by her sexual behavior. This was true when she was 15, too. I care about her kindness, her curiosity, her willingness to engage in family and community responsibilities. And I care about her pride in herself. I don’t own her body or her sexual compulsions or experiences. That is not part of my jurisdiction. I hope, as a parent, to provide a home environment that helps her make the decisions that are right for her and cause her the most happiness and fewest regrets. What that means in concrete reality is between me and her and her mother. The same goes for our boys, but as this incident shows, the question of decision tends to fall on girls. That’s not fair, but then, life’s not fair.

Sex is the most powerful force in the universe. It overwhelmed Tiger Woods, probably the most monomaniacally impervious person on the planet. The full institutional might of the Catholic Church can’t pray or excommunicate it into submission; but sex may force the church into submission. David could whip Goliath, but Bathsheba laid him low. The cliches go on and on. How many of our friends’ marriages have succumbed to the irresistible peculiarities of sex?

And yet you hear people talk about sex addiction as if it’s unique condition. The entire species has sex addiction. Sex is the means God, if you believe in God, gave us to perpetuate our existence. He could have chosen head-butting, or asexual amoebic bulging, but He didn’t. He chose sex, so we damn sure better be addicted to it. And, of course, the Darwinians among you will already believe that sex has evolved into something so thrilling and pleasurable because life wants as many shots as it can get to replenish itself. Life wants you to do it.

I fully acknowledge and respect the awesomeness of that power. Most adults, including you and I, don’t stand a chance against its full force. You think our kids do? In this case, they were so driven to touch intimately that they did it within feet of each other in the same confined space. And they would not be the first or the last teens so driven.

So let me tell you something, Dad. The pre-date conversation you have with your 15-year-old daughter and her 18-year-old suitor about chaste behavior out there in the black night is the most meaningless conversation you will ever have with humans.

They’re probably not even lying to you. It’s like sending them to the beach and making them promise not to drown if they get caught in a riptide. The fact that this is a promise that a sexually mature boy or girl can’t make doesn’t make them monsters or sluts.

And yet, that’s exactly the type of thinking our pornographic news and popular entertainment culture encourages — because we seem to want it to. It’s not just that there’s a massive gap between Tim Tebow and predatory monsters, between whores and virginal princesses, it’s that few of those abstractions even exist. And yet, our culture sets them up as markers and then allows our lawmakers to apply them in a way that bears little resemblance to the world 98.7 percent of humans inhabit.

And here’s where I fault Grady Judd and won’t apologize for my — admittedly hyperbolic –headline: “Grady Judd makes it a crime for a senior to date a sophomore.”

You can tell the sheriff’s office hates this case, which is actually comforting to me. If it were proud of it, we all know Grady would have stood up – like he does about once a week – in a big press conference talking about how he’s protecting the children, etc. Instead, someone picked it up in a big pile of jail reports. And Grady is emphasizing the parental role in pursuing this prosecution – not his agency’s. A less charitable person than me might say he’s throwing the girls’ parents under the bus. I think he knows this is crazy.

I like and respect the sheriff. He’s very smart and perceptive. I think he runs a tight agency. And he’s an extraordinary politician. Grady could probably go toe-to-toe with Jesus Christ in a Polk County election. But I wish he would use some of that credibility and perception and megaphone to help reshape the way we think about teen sex law and other laws that make no sense – see marijuana prohibition. He’s never shy about advocating for changes to law or parental behavior that the mob seems to like. Remember the big anti-Myspace campaign?

Think how much more it would mean if someone with Grady Judd’s lawman credibility called for a re-examination of how we approach teen sex prosecution. If his agency has no problem with the widespread use of parental waivers against prosecution in individual cases like the one that just happened, and it doesn’t, wouldn’t it make more sense to call for bringing the law more in line with actual behavior?

I can dream, I guess.

Finally, if you’re a regular reader, you know that everything in my life eventually comes back to the Drive-By Truckers. So I want to recommend their song called “Zip City.” It’s about a 17-year-old boy, a 15-year-old girl, an angry father, and a truck.

It starts: “Your daddy was mad as hell; he was mad at me and you…” It ends with the line: “I get 10 miles to the gallon; I ain’t got no good intentions.”

It is, for my money, the best work of art I know about being 17 (or 18) and 15 in America when all other abstraction and illusion and artifice is stripped away.

What’s really telling is that people love “Zip City”. The band has to play it almost every night for an encore, and they usually let the crowd sing the final verse. The people who hear it instantly recognize its authenticity. It’s universal.

So my new paradigm in dealing with all of this would start with honesty and a recognition that when it comes to sex our intentions are virtually irrelevant.

Creative Commons License photo illustration credit: Mike Chen aka MetalMan

42 thoughts on “In a Sane World, How Might the LHS Two/Sexual Assault Exam Case Have Played Out?

  1. Billy, I agree with most everything you say in your article, however there are a couple of deviations for me. Back when I was in high school (71-74), the 9th grade actually WAS part of the junior high school (grades 7-8-9). You stated that you would allow consensual sex between the participants. I was 14 years old when I entered the 10th grade in high school (freshman) and 16 (senior) when I graduated. No different than either one of these two girls.

    The 1st reference, as shown below, can see WHY the two individuals were charged with a 2nd degree felony.

    The “rape” kit would be part of the forensic examination. From the 2nd reference, as shown below, sounds to me like a “rape” kit MAY NOT be mandatory by law. That would be my interpretation, anyways (I am not a lawyer). I personally, would suggest having the examination done, AFTER thoroughly explaining what the process involves. And of course I would NEVER do this without both HER and/or her parental permission. Of course, parental permission supersedes, if they want the examination performed (which I really don’t think is right, if the girl says that there was no penetration and it was consensual – it is HER body being violated).

    I think that you cannot classify these into a generic group and prosecute them as such. Each and every case has to be examined individually, on it’s own merits and as you stated, the MOST important issues of this case are the exchange of words and the true feelings, between the girls and the boys; not in how it was expressed to the police.

    You have to consider that these two girls had to have been very scared, having police detectives in their faces, their parents staring at them and then thinking, what do I really NEED to say to these people. Do I say what REALLY happened or do I say what I THINK they want to hear. It is a very scary situation.

    I know from experience because I have been one of those officers in that room. Most times it IS real, and I feel so very sorry for them, and help them all that I could. Yes, sometimes the girls/women do say what they think you want to hear. Then after having a detective working this case for 4-6 months, they find out the real truth (having wasted many man-hours and lots of your dollars), the girl/woman ends up going to jail for filing a false report because she was mad and wanted to get back at him at the time.

    You ALWAYS have to give more weight to the statement given by the girl/woman, but you cannot and should not disregard the statement of the man. Unfortunately I have seen officers that have done that. It is a two-sided story.

    Parental waivers WOULD be a wonderful idea!

    Regards,
    Rev Anthony Myers
    —————————-
    Florida State Statutes

    794.011 Sexual battery.– :

    (5) A person who commits sexual battery upon a person 12 years of age or older, without that person’s consent, and in the process thereof does not use physical force and violence likely to cause serious personal injury commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115.

    794.052 Sexual battery; notification of victim’s rights and services.–

    (1) A law enforcement officer who investigates an alleged sexual battery shall:

    (a) Assist the victim in obtaining medical treatment, if medical treatment is necessary as a result of the alleged incident, a forensic examination, and advocacy and crisis-intervention services from a certified rape crisis center.

    (b) Advise the victim that he or she may contact a certified rape crisis center from which the victim may receive services.

  2. Billy, I agree with most everything you say in your article, however there are a couple of deviations for me. Back when I was in high school (71-74), the 9th grade actually WAS part of the junior high school (grades 7-8-9). You stated that you would allow consensual sex between the participants. I was 14 years old when I entered the 10th grade in high school (freshman) and 16 (senior) when I graduated. No different than either one of these two girls.

    The 1st reference, as shown below, can see WHY the two individuals were charged with a 2nd degree felony.

    The “rape” kit would be part of the forensic examination. From the 2nd reference, as shown below, sounds to me like a “rape” kit MAY NOT be mandatory by law. That would be my interpretation, anyways (I am not a lawyer). I personally, would suggest having the examination done, AFTER thoroughly explaining what the process involves. And of course I would NEVER do this without both HER and/or her parental permission. Of course, parental permission supersedes, if they want the examination performed (which I really don’t think is right, if the girl says that there was no penetration and it was consensual – it is HER body being violated).

    I think that you cannot classify these into a generic group and prosecute them as such. Each and every case has to be examined individually, on it’s own merits and as you stated, the MOST important issues of this case are the exchange of words and the true feelings, between the girls and the boys; not in how it was expressed to the police.

    You have to consider that these two girls had to have been very scared, having police detectives in their faces, their parents staring at them and then thinking, what do I really NEED to say to these people. Do I say what REALLY happened or do I say what I THINK they want to hear. It is a very scary situation.

    I know from experience because I have been one of those officers in that room. Most times it IS real, and I feel so very sorry for them, and help them all that I could. Yes, sometimes the girls/women do say what they think you want to hear. Then after having a detective working this case for 4-6 months, they find out the real truth (having wasted many man-hours and lots of your dollars), the girl/woman ends up going to jail for filing a false report because she was mad and wanted to get back at him at the time.

    You ALWAYS have to give more weight to the statement given by the girl/woman, but you cannot and should not disregard the statement of the man. Unfortunately I have seen officers that have done that. It is a two-sided story.

    Parental waivers WOULD be a wonderful idea!

    Regards,
    Rev Anthony Myers
    —————————-
    Florida State Statutes

    794.011 Sexual battery.– :

    (5) A person who commits sexual battery upon a person 12 years of age or older, without that person’s consent, and in the process thereof does not use physical force and violence likely to cause serious personal injury commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115.

    794.052 Sexual battery; notification of victim’s rights and services.–

    (1) A law enforcement officer who investigates an alleged sexual battery shall:

    (a) Assist the victim in obtaining medical treatment, if medical treatment is necessary as a result of the alleged incident, a forensic examination, and advocacy and crisis-intervention services from a certified rape crisis center.

    (b) Advise the victim that he or she may contact a certified rape crisis center from which the victim may receive services.

  3. Billy,

    I like most of what you say, except for the thought which starts off with, “Why not treat making out in a car like something between DUI and careless driving?” That is arbitrary and presupposes guilt, like calling every man a potential rapist because men have a penis.

    I don’t agree with the 9th grade out of high school, either, but I don’t see the harm except socially retarding the kids.

    Otherwise, it’s a pretty well thought piece.

  4. Billy,

    I like most of what you say, except for the thought which starts off with, “Why not treat making out in a car like something between DUI and careless driving?” That is arbitrary and presupposes guilt, like calling every man a potential rapist because men have a penis.

    I don’t agree with the 9th grade out of high school, either, but I don’t see the harm except socially retarding the kids.

    Otherwise, it’s a pretty well thought piece.

  5. Now that more facts have come out, I think the police acted well.

    Finding underage teenagers in various states of undress and touching each other is much different than just making out.

    Because of that, the parent’s willingness to prosecute seems more reasonable. I just wish they had noticed that their girls were going out with 18-year-olds before this.

    There’s not a whole lot of parental restraint involved if you’re cool with letting your 14 or 15 year-old stay out till 11:30.

    While the whole “rage and injustice” tirades that flew around here were fun, our assumptions are often disproved by more information.

    I’m willing to trust that somebody out there knows more about it than I do, and that jumping to conclusions doesn’t do much good.

  6. Now that more facts have come out, I think the police acted well.

    Finding underage teenagers in various states of undress and touching each other is much different than just making out.

    Because of that, the parent’s willingness to prosecute seems more reasonable. I just wish they had noticed that their girls were going out with 18-year-olds before this.

    There’s not a whole lot of parental restraint involved if you’re cool with letting your 14 or 15 year-old stay out till 11:30.

    While the whole “rage and injustice” tirades that flew around here were fun, our assumptions are often disproved by more information.

    I’m willing to trust that somebody out there knows more about it than I do, and that jumping to conclusions doesn’t do much good.

  7. Like I said all along, they weren’t as innocent as some on here have been trying to make them. Whatever needs to be done & laws that need to be enforced to protect underage girls from men. Hopefully this example will save alot of these girls from being taken advantage of & unwanted pregnancies that taxpayers would have to pay for.

  8. Like I said all along, they weren’t as innocent as some on here have been trying to make them. Whatever needs to be done & laws that need to be enforced to protect underage girls from men. Hopefully this example will save alot of these girls from being taken advantage of & unwanted pregnancies that taxpayers would have to pay for.

  9. Nice update in the Ledger today. From the article:

    “The 14-year-old was nude in the backseat and putting on her bra. The 15-year-old was in the front seat pulling up her panties and jeans.”

    I’m so glad we all rushed to the defense of these people. Don’t we look smart.

  10. Nice update in the Ledger today. From the article:

    “The 14-year-old was nude in the backseat and putting on her bra. The 15-year-old was in the front seat pulling up her panties and jeans.”

    I’m so glad we all rushed to the defense of these people. Don’t we look smart.

  11. You mean they may’ve been having sex (EEK!) in High School (EEEEK!) with each other (EEEEEEEEK!). This has never happened before in the history of… wait… yeah, this happens all the time. This is why it’s absurd to prosecute something like this, it’s biology 101.

  12. You mean they may’ve been having sex (EEK!) in High School (EEEEK!) with each other (EEEEEEEEK!). This has never happened before in the history of… wait… yeah, this happens all the time. This is why it’s absurd to prosecute something like this, it’s biology 101.

  13. Yes, I agree Josh! It’s a total disgrace to our youth for grown adult “men” to defend such molestation. We are suppose to protect & defend our young. In the long run that helps society. Less teen pregnancies, abortions, STD, suicides & mental counseling when their hearts get broke because they gave their virginity away to a guy that said they loved them! I think parents that allow this should be charged as well, for neglect. Look where the 60’s & 70’s immoral mentality got us. How long do you think it would have been before they finished what they started with the panties & bras being off? Of course I’m not surprised by most of these “MEN” on here defending a child sex crime. There’s always a bust going on here in Polk County for child porn, the last one had pix of a six month old!!!

  14. Yes, I agree Josh! It’s a total disgrace to our youth for grown adult “men” to defend such molestation. We are suppose to protect & defend our young. In the long run that helps society. Less teen pregnancies, abortions, STD, suicides & mental counseling when their hearts get broke because they gave their virginity away to a guy that said they loved them! I think parents that allow this should be charged as well, for neglect. Look where the 60’s & 70’s immoral mentality got us. How long do you think it would have been before they finished what they started with the panties & bras being off? Of course I’m not surprised by most of these “MEN” on here defending a child sex crime. There’s always a bust going on here in Polk County for child porn, the last one had pix of a six month old!!!

  15. You’re really so pathetic to make light of sex crimes on kids! That’s why there are laws made by God & man, to protect innocent girls from predators that target the young & vulnerable. Just because there’s been crimes of murder, slavery, drugs & domestic violence in history doesn’t excuse us from trying to alleviate the problem to some degree. That’s called common sense-101!!!

  16. You’re really so pathetic to make light of sex crimes on kids! That’s why there are laws made by God & man, to protect innocent girls from predators that target the young & vulnerable. Just because there’s been crimes of murder, slavery, drugs & domestic violence in history doesn’t excuse us from trying to alleviate the problem to some degree. That’s called common sense-101!!!

  17. Donkeyrock, just because it may happen often doesn’t make it right.

    What a fine moral example you are.

  18. Donkeyrock, just because it may happen often doesn’t make it right.

    What a fine moral example you are.

  19. The Facts are the Facts! The reason that the charges were DROPPED was because there were too many conflicting reports. The parents knew the couples were dating and the father of the girl with Arce told Channel 8 that there were 7 other kids that night , all hanging out together not just the 2 couples. He also said that his daughter was not naked.. The boys are “teenagers” and not grown men. The State Attorney, Jerry Hill said it best and I quote “These are good boys that have never been in any kind of trouble before”. Whatever contact there was was striclty “consensual”. You keep referring to MEN, if they are MEN, why don’t you ask them to go buy you a BEER? Well you can’t because they are not old enough to drink yet. A lot of people are casting stones and judging the 2 teenagers and the scriptures say “Let he without sin cast the first stones”. Many people do things that are wrong and or not morally correct according to the scriptures and or laws of this great land. Does that mean that they are not crimes or sins just because you don’t get caught? Get over it!! The State Attorney made his decision and that is that.

  20. The Facts are the Facts! The reason that the charges were DROPPED was because there were too many conflicting reports. The parents knew the couples were dating and the father of the girl with Arce told Channel 8 that there were 7 other kids that night , all hanging out together not just the 2 couples. He also said that his daughter was not naked.. The boys are “teenagers” and not grown men. The State Attorney, Jerry Hill said it best and I quote “These are good boys that have never been in any kind of trouble before”. Whatever contact there was was striclty “consensual”. You keep referring to MEN, if they are MEN, why don’t you ask them to go buy you a BEER? Well you can’t because they are not old enough to drink yet. A lot of people are casting stones and judging the 2 teenagers and the scriptures say “Let he without sin cast the first stones”. Many people do things that are wrong and or not morally correct according to the scriptures and or laws of this great land. Does that mean that they are not crimes or sins just because you don’t get caught? Get over it!! The State Attorney made his decision and that is that.

  21. Sounds like you need to get over being a spineless coward. Just because the State Attorney made a decision doesn’t make it right. You should practice what your trying to preach! You’re attacking and judging because your angry, where’s your mercy and self-control? The arresting deputy made his report on what he found in the truck. Daddy didn’t know if his girl was naked, he wasn’t there. And where were the other 7, they didn’t all fit in the truck? Besides thats beside the point, who cares how many were making out, they got caught! The law says you’re 18 not whether you can buy a beer. They pushed the age because of too many drunk drivers at 18. I would rather error on the side of safety for my daughter’s physical well-being and her reputation. Looks like she doesn’t have a daddy that cares about any of that or he wouldn’t be letting her go off with a man on a date! Only drunks defend their right to drink & drive, only sexual predators defend the right to prey on under age kids!

  22. Sounds like you need to get over being a spineless coward. Just because the State Attorney made a decision doesn’t make it right. You should practice what your trying to preach! You’re attacking and judging because your angry, where’s your mercy and self-control? The arresting deputy made his report on what he found in the truck. Daddy didn’t know if his girl was naked, he wasn’t there. And where were the other 7, they didn’t all fit in the truck? Besides thats beside the point, who cares how many were making out, they got caught! The law says you’re 18 not whether you can buy a beer. They pushed the age because of too many drunk drivers at 18. I would rather error on the side of safety for my daughter’s physical well-being and her reputation. Looks like she doesn’t have a daddy that cares about any of that or he wouldn’t be letting her go off with a man on a date! Only drunks defend their right to drink & drive, only sexual predators defend the right to prey on under age kids!

  23. Josh,

    It will happen. Regardless of the circumstances that may’ve occurred that night, this behavior *will* continue because it’s sexuality and biology — not an aberration, but an intrinsic part of being human.

    Centuries of religious railing hasn’t changed this behavior, millennia of moralizing hasn’t curbed our base biology to reproduce, and ruining the lives of individuals to salve your “moral” conscience is… well, unconscionable to me.

  24. Josh,

    It will happen. Regardless of the circumstances that may’ve occurred that night, this behavior *will* continue because it’s sexuality and biology — not an aberration, but an intrinsic part of being human.

    Centuries of religious railing hasn’t changed this behavior, millennia of moralizing hasn’t curbed our base biology to reproduce, and ruining the lives of individuals to salve your “moral” conscience is… well, unconscionable to me.

  25. Donkeyrock,

    I’m not in denial that it will happen. I oppose, however, the attitude that we ought to do nothing when it does happen. If I had a daughter, I know that I would want to protect her from this.

    Furthermore, I think that you’re exaggerating to suggest that anyone’s life would be ruined through any of this. And if so, it would be ruined because they broke the law.

    Perhaps a questionable law, or one that you disagree with, but regardless, the LAW. Whoever is found guilty of breaking it deserves what they get.

  26. Donkeyrock,

    I’m not in denial that it will happen. I oppose, however, the attitude that we ought to do nothing when it does happen. If I had a daughter, I know that I would want to protect her from this.

    Furthermore, I think that you’re exaggerating to suggest that anyone’s life would be ruined through any of this. And if so, it would be ruined because they broke the law.

    Perhaps a questionable law, or one that you disagree with, but regardless, the LAW. Whoever is found guilty of breaking it deserves what they get.

  27. Josh,

    As Dickens wrote, “the law is an ass.” Laws are not absolute, nor are they always right. Laws change over time, and hopefully more enlightened points of view that don’t jail High School Seniors for dating Freshmen will come to pass. And, as Billy pointed out, having these girls go through a rape kit procedure when they said it was consensual. If those boys had gone to jail for this, their lives would’ve been ruined. For all I know they may be ruined by being put on the ridiculous sex offender registry, which punishes people long after serving their jail sentences. And those girls probably won’t soon forget the trauma of being socially mortified by this incident; their friends know who’s going out with whom, so it would be no secret.

    As to protecting the girls, the parents either knew about the relationships and approved, or they didn’t, which would mean the girls were hiding it from them, so they knew their parents would disapprove. The parents were probably protecting those girls as best they could, and while we want our cops to keep a watchful eye on things, the lengths they are forced to go to do their job is ridiculous. I point the finger at the politicians writing laws to make themselves look good and those people who vote the faux-obsequious, glad-handing trolls into office. Nanny politics and law enforcement only hurts us all in the long run.

  28. Josh,

    As Dickens wrote, “the law is an ass.” Laws are not absolute, nor are they always right. Laws change over time, and hopefully more enlightened points of view that don’t jail High School Seniors for dating Freshmen will come to pass. And, as Billy pointed out, having these girls go through a rape kit procedure when they said it was consensual. If those boys had gone to jail for this, their lives would’ve been ruined. For all I know they may be ruined by being put on the ridiculous sex offender registry, which punishes people long after serving their jail sentences. And those girls probably won’t soon forget the trauma of being socially mortified by this incident; their friends know who’s going out with whom, so it would be no secret.

    As to protecting the girls, the parents either knew about the relationships and approved, or they didn’t, which would mean the girls were hiding it from them, so they knew their parents would disapprove. The parents were probably protecting those girls as best they could, and while we want our cops to keep a watchful eye on things, the lengths they are forced to go to do their job is ridiculous. I point the finger at the politicians writing laws to make themselves look good and those people who vote the faux-obsequious, glad-handing trolls into office. Nanny politics and law enforcement only hurts us all in the long run.

  29. Donkeyrock,

    I’m encouraged to hear that you’re a progressive. While I know we may not like many of the laws that we have now, I stand firmly behind upholding them.

    Again you sugar-coat things: the Seniors would not have been jailed for dating Freshmen, but for being found nude in a pickup truck and in suspicion of having sexual relations with minors, which, regrettably for them (and your position) is still a crime.

    I’ve worked in a police office before. I wasn’t involved with the police work, but I did get a chance to observe the officers, and understand the police better for it.

    The girls may have said that it was consensual, but as a good policeman, you can’t take that for granted.

    The girls may have said that they didn’t have sex, but the circumstances that they were found in indicated that they could’ve had sex, which is why the rape kit was brought in, I suspect. That may not have been popular, but it was an effort to uphold the law, as it stands.

  30. Donkeyrock,

    I’m encouraged to hear that you’re a progressive. While I know we may not like many of the laws that we have now, I stand firmly behind upholding them.

    Again you sugar-coat things: the Seniors would not have been jailed for dating Freshmen, but for being found nude in a pickup truck and in suspicion of having sexual relations with minors, which, regrettably for them (and your position) is still a crime.

    I’ve worked in a police office before. I wasn’t involved with the police work, but I did get a chance to observe the officers, and understand the police better for it.

    The girls may have said that it was consensual, but as a good policeman, you can’t take that for granted.

    The girls may have said that they didn’t have sex, but the circumstances that they were found in indicated that they could’ve had sex, which is why the rape kit was brought in, I suspect. That may not have been popular, but it was an effort to uphold the law, as it stands.

  31. Josh,

    I’m pretty sure you made Billy laugh when you called me a progressive. I heard it.

    I sugar-coated nothing; I rephrased the situation to show the affected parties in a new and realistic light, therefore highlighting the ridiculousness of their situation. Your description (based on the law), barren of context, is meant to cast the teens in a stark light, allowing the reader to approve the harshest of punishments. Rather despicable, in my opinion.

    It seems most of your justification for the outlandish, robotic actions of our civil servants revolves around the law. Once again, the law is an ass, and when such horrifying extremes meet the phrase, “just doing my job,” we should all understand that the law has run afoul of integrity, liberty, and common sense.

  32. Josh,

    I’m pretty sure you made Billy laugh when you called me a progressive. I heard it.

    I sugar-coated nothing; I rephrased the situation to show the affected parties in a new and realistic light, therefore highlighting the ridiculousness of their situation. Your description (based on the law), barren of context, is meant to cast the teens in a stark light, allowing the reader to approve the harshest of punishments. Rather despicable, in my opinion.

    It seems most of your justification for the outlandish, robotic actions of our civil servants revolves around the law. Once again, the law is an ass, and when such horrifying extremes meet the phrase, “just doing my job,” we should all understand that the law has run afoul of integrity, liberty, and common sense.

  33. Donkeyrock,

    If I were to apportion blame (according to you) it would lie entirely with the teenagers, and not at all with the police.

    If you were to apportion blame (according to me) it would lie entirely with the police, and not at all with the teenagers.

    But the problem with your position is that it reverses cause and effect. To you, what caused this is a police force that is actively looking to get people in trouble. And a police force that DOES do that would be to blame.

    But I believe that trouble is caused by people who first break the law, and the police enforce it. That’s how this works. Not the other way around.

    I question your ability to be horrified at the behavior of the police while you are not horrified at all by the behavior of these teenagers.

  34. Donkeyrock,

    If I were to apportion blame (according to you) it would lie entirely with the teenagers, and not at all with the police.

    If you were to apportion blame (according to me) it would lie entirely with the police, and not at all with the teenagers.

    But the problem with your position is that it reverses cause and effect. To you, what caused this is a police force that is actively looking to get people in trouble. And a police force that DOES do that would be to blame.

    But I believe that trouble is caused by people who first break the law, and the police enforce it. That’s how this works. Not the other way around.

    I question your ability to be horrified at the behavior of the police while you are not horrified at all by the behavior of these teenagers.

  35. Josh,

    I’ve clearly stated that I blame politicians and those who vote them in, along with the police for robotically following orders. I do understand that the police don’t have much leeway in how they do their job, and our overly litigious society is partly to blame for the situation in which our police and politicians find themselves.

    Actually, trouble is caused by people who do harm. That can be someone who robs a convenience store, or someone who passes a law that harms people doing consensual actions, and even by someone who doesn’t understand the ramifications of their actions.

    On my ability to be horrified, I wasn’t horrified at all. Teens having sex doesn’t worry me. Expanding police power worries me. Idiotic laws worry me. A fearful, authority seeking and compliant populace worries me a lot.

  36. Josh,

    I’ve clearly stated that I blame politicians and those who vote them in, along with the police for robotically following orders. I do understand that the police don’t have much leeway in how they do their job, and our overly litigious society is partly to blame for the situation in which our police and politicians find themselves.

    Actually, trouble is caused by people who do harm. That can be someone who robs a convenience store, or someone who passes a law that harms people doing consensual actions, and even by someone who doesn’t understand the ramifications of their actions.

    On my ability to be horrified, I wasn’t horrified at all. Teens having sex doesn’t worry me. Expanding police power worries me. Idiotic laws worry me. A fearful, authority seeking and compliant populace worries me a lot.

Comments are closed.