re: California Law on Sexual Consent Pleases Many but Leaves Some Doubters
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: barry levine
Date: Tue, Sep 30, 2014 at 9:14 AM
Subject: re: California Law on Sexual Consent Pleases Many but Leaves Some Doubters
To the Editor:
What happens between consenting adults requires consent. It seems so clear; who could object? But the plain words misrepresent the complicated reality. What is consent? Who can consent? We posit that minors can't consent, so we have "statutory rape" laws. But we have also the "Romeo and Juliet" exceptions to those laws. One can't give meaningful consent under the influence of alcohol.But how about the influence of pot? Or the influence of the prescription drugs so many college kids take for years at a time for ADHD? Or the influence of the hormones in which they're awash? Worse yet, we have established in law that what is rape in the dorm is rape within a marriage. If my partner and I have wine with dinner, is whatever happens afterward non-consensual? Is it rape?
"For every complex problem" Mencken warned us "there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong". We should not enact it as law until it is right.
Barry Haskell Levine