TV Tropes Org

Forums

search forum titles
google site search
Total posts: [43]
1
2

Pressure/coercion in sex and the misguided focus on age and semantics.:

 1 fanty, Fri, 9th Dec '11 12:45:41 PM from ANGRYTOWN
Woefully Ineloquent
I can imagine an adult person being pressured into sex by someone who holds more power than them just as easily as I can imagine a teenager being pressured into sex by an adult. I never quite understood the fixation on age, because it's not about age, it's about "Does person X hold too much power over person Y for the sex to be really consensual?".

It just seems unbelievably cruel to me that once you go over the age of consent, you're all on your own from there on. From there on, it's all always your own fault. Which is one of the reasons why the idea of "age of consent" really frustrates me. The issue has nothing to do with age and everything to do with power, so why is it that everyone is so keen to abandon adults on this issue just like that?

I think some of what I'm talking about may or may not be covered by rape laws in some countries. The problem there is in that whenever someone isn't exactly "being attacked" by someone, too many people start arguing with you when you classify it as rape. And so discussions end up heading off in the direction of trying to classify what is and what is not rape, and the question about whether the adult, that was pressured or somehow coerced into sex, was wronged or not, falls by the wayside. (Something can be wrong and deserving of punishment even if it's isn't quite rape (at least is some people's view). Or, in other words "it was sexual"+"it was wrong"+"it needs to be punished" does not necessarily mean that we need to spend out time arguing about whether we should call it rape.)

In my country, the age of consent is very low. If you're old enough to be horny, then, chances are, you already are over the age of consent. So what I'm talking about, around where I live, applies not only to adults, but also to a great deal of teenagers. Looking at other people having debates about the age of consent in their own countries made me come to the conclusion that such laws create more problems than they solve, and the fact that they ignore the fact that anyone who's over the age of consent can be wronged in an exactly identical way, without anybody much caring about it, just makes me hate them even more.

Problem is, I can't come up with a law that would protect adults and those who are in their mid-and-older teens the same way those who are under the age of consent are protected, without any kind of ridiculous victimless cases being spawned the way it happens in countries with a higher age of consent. Something tells me it all should be judged on case by case basis instead of being dealt with sledgehammer-style blanket laws which send some people to jail for nothing while others get away absolutely scot-free, but I have absolutely no idea how that could be done.

I'm not sure if I explained myself well or if I'm making any sense at all but... Discuss?

edited 9th Dec '11 12:49:11 PM by fanty

Individual liberation is an illusion.
 2 Drunk Girlfriend, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:06:10 PM from Castle Geekhaven
In most, if not all, states in the US, using your authority to manipulate people into sex (eg; teacher going "fuck me or I flunk you") is illegal.
"I don't know how I do it. I'm like the Mr. Bean of sex." -Drunkscriblerian
 3 fanty, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:09:20 PM from ANGRYTOWN
Woefully Ineloquent
^Something tells me that most cases would be much more ambiguous than that.
Individual liberation is an illusion.
 4 Drunk Girlfriend, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:10:20 PM from Castle Geekhaven
Yeah, that's why rape laws are so ridiculously vague over here.
"I don't know how I do it. I'm like the Mr. Bean of sex." -Drunkscriblerian
 5 De Marquis, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:30:12 PM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
Perhaps if you could provide an example? I'm having trouble imagining how an adult could get coerced into an unwanted marriage, at least in the industrialzed West.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
 6 USAF713, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:30:43 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
Savage once came up with an intriguing and workable way to fix it.

Basically—if I remember it correctly—it involved splitting it off from the age of majority, so you would have a separate age (he said 15, but I'd prefer 16) where someone can freely have sex, but still be considered "underage" and thus have a rather specific rule-set involving sexual harassment attached to them so they have the ability to rid themselves of annoyances more easily.

Evaluating it all on a case-by-case basis would likely be too expensive. However, having a rather loose age of consent at a reasonable point (and yes, it is arbitrary, but it's about the only practical way of doing it) plus a lot of judicial discretion could effectively help solve the problem. Ultimately it will take a lot of societal standard shifting to really fix it, but...

Edit: As for adults, I have a wider definition of "sexual coercion" than most it seems; for example, I would say that if you were sober and somebody else was drunk and you convinced them in this drunk state to do something with you sexually that they would never do sober themselves, you are ethically and morally wrong.

Now, the question becomes, can we make such situations illegal?

That's... a much more difficult prospect...

edited 9th Dec '11 1:33:52 PM by USAF713

I am now known as Flyboy.
 7 Excelion, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:55:28 PM from The Fatherland
Age of consent is a tricky one. I'd like it to be the same as the age of majority but the fact is most people are at least interested in sex long before that and it'd be kind of odd to punish minors for having sex, which is almost normal at this point. And the punishment isn't exactly like being charged for drinking alcohol as a minor.

Let's see how this is handled in the fatherland:

The age of consent in Germany is 14, as long as a person over the age of 21 does not exploit a 14–15 year-old person's lack of capacity for sexual self-determination. In this rare and special case, a conviction on an individual over the age of 21 requires a complaint from the younger individual; being over 21 and engaging in sexual relations with a minor of that age does not constitute an offense in and of itself. Otherwise the age of consent is 14, although provisions protecting minors against coercion apply until the age of 18.

So basically, you can claim coercion until you're 18, but the age of consent is 14. I find this to be decent enough, especially since, in my opinion, you should have some degree of protection in everything until you've reached the age of majority. It should be equal to business and legal contracts and there simply has to be a line at which you are responsible for your actions. You can't cry "but I was being manipulated!" forever, after all.
 8 De Marquis, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:56:07 PM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
Um... isn't that considered date rape? That's already illegal.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
 9 fanty, Fri, 9th Dec '11 1:58:16 PM from ANGRYTOWN
Woefully Ineloquent
You can't cry "but I was being manipulated!" forever, after all.
But what if they were manipulated? Not being able to complain just because you are too old to complain just seems plain wrong to me.
Individual liberation is an illusion.
 10 USAF713, Fri, 9th Dec '11 2:00:46 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
I think that it's less "you're too old to complain, " and more that "you're old enough to know better."

I'd still prefer we didn't just discount it off-hand, though.

And, I disagree that minors ("minor" being "people under 16, " to me) should be allowed to have sex. We really shouldn't be aggressively penalizing about it, but the emotional and psychological problems associated with young people having sex are not simply created by society, and it really isn't good to let people have sex so young if society is geared towards long lives and adulthood starting in your late teens/early twenties. I mean, if we were a medieval society where you really are an adult past about ten, then maybe, but we're not and we shouldn't be.
I am now known as Flyboy.
 11 Excelion, Fri, 9th Dec '11 2:10:30 PM from The Fatherland
[up][up]You're responsible for your own actions. As long as someone isn't deliberately withholding information or actively threatening you, you can't complain when they get you to do something you don't like in retrospect. Smarten up, you're an intelligent being and not a puppet being played along by Batmans strings.

The age of majority doesn't exist because people say "at this point, you're responsible for your own actions". No, the age of majority exists because we decided that anything below that shouldn't be 100% responsible for their own actions because they haven't gathered enough life experience to make independent actions and have self-determination. Technically you're responsible for what you do even when you're 10 years old. Society is essentially being nice and protective towards the young ones, that's all.

edited 9th Dec '11 2:11:14 PM by Excelion

 12 Milos Stefanovic, Fri, 9th Dec '11 2:51:05 PM from White City, Ruritania
Decemberist
AOC laws in Serbia:

The age of consent in Serbia is 14, regardless of sexual orientation and/or gender. This is regulated by Chapter 18 (Sexual Offences) of the Penal Code of the Republic of Serbia and especially Article 180 (prohibiting sexual intercourse with a child). Article 112 defines a child as a person under 14 years of age. Article 181 prohibits sexual intercourse with a juvenile (defined in Article 112 as a person under 18) if the juvenile is entrusted for learning, tutoring, guardianship or care. Article 190 furthermore forbids cohabitation with a minor (person under 18) unless a marriage is conducted.

Perfectly fine, in my opinion.

Anyway, I don't fully understand the OP's point. There are rape laws designed to protect adults, and reaching the age of consent is a point when you should really be mature enough to know everything about sex and what it entails.

The issue of "sexual manipulation" is a pretty tough case, though, and I'm leaning towards implementing case-by-case judgements for it, though still with fairly strict guidelines so it doesn't rely too much on the subjectivity of the judges.

edited 9th Dec '11 2:51:52 PM by MilosStefanovic

The sin of silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
Perhaps if you could provide an example? I'm having trouble imagining how an adult could get coerced into an unwanted marriage, at least in the industrialzed West.
The post was about sex, not marriage. And in some cases a teenager could coerce an adult. We've seen cases of boys who aren't even teenagers yet raping grown women. I wouldn't be surprised if there were considerably more people under the age of consent who use things like blackmail, emotional manipulation, etc... things they'd be more likely to get away with... to try to get adults to have sex with them.

I agree, too often these cases overestimate the power of adults and underestimate the power of teenagers. The same subject was brought up a few times in this thread too.
"I even like the idea of a nice man who sees me when I'm sleeping and knows when I'm awake. And that man is Barack Obama." - Bill Maher
I guess I can quote The Other Wiki:
In jurisprudence, duress or coercion refers to a situation whereby a person performs an act as a result of violence, threat or other pressure against the person. Black's Law Dictionary (6th ed.) defines duress as "any unlawful threat or coercion used... to induce another to act [or not act] in a manner [they] otherwise would not [or would]". Duress is pressure exerted upon a person to coerce that person to perform an act that he or she ordinarily would not perform. The notion of duress must be distinguished both from undue influence in the civil law and from necessity.

Duress has two aspects. One is that it negates the person's consent to an act, such as sexual activity or the entering into a contract; or, secondly, as a possible legal defense or justification to an otherwise unlawful act.[1] As a defense, a defendant is arguing that he or she should not be held liable because, even though the act broke the law, it was only performed because of extreme unlawful pressure.[2] In criminal law, a duress defense is similar to a plea of guilty, admitting partial culpability, so that if the defense is not accepted then the criminal act is admitted.

Duress or coercion can also be raised in an allegation of rape or sexual assault to negate a defense of consent on the part of the person making the allegation.
Note how it is explicit to the point of being redundant.

 15 Milos Stefanovic, Fri, 9th Dec '11 3:14:35 PM from White City, Ruritania
Decemberist
We've seen cases of boys who aren't even teenagers yet raping grown women.

Where, outside of hentai porn?
The sin of silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
 16 Drunk Girlfriend, Fri, 9th Dec '11 3:17:18 PM from Castle Geekhaven
Maybe not that young, but it's not unheard of for teens to rape older people.
"I don't know how I do it. I'm like the Mr. Bean of sex." -Drunkscriblerian
[up][up] I think I recall reading about a case of 12-year-old boys ganging up on a grown woman to rape her, though I can't find it now.

edited 9th Dec '11 3:17:42 PM by HiddenFacedMatt

"I even like the idea of a nice man who sees me when I'm sleeping and knows when I'm awake. And that man is Barack Obama." - Bill Maher
 18 Milos Stefanovic, Fri, 9th Dec '11 3:22:26 PM from White City, Ruritania
Decemberist
[up][up]That's one of the reasons why the age of consent should be by the time a teenager reaches sexual maturity, which is around 14 years old. It's not like they're going to start with wild sex life immediately, anyway. They have parents to protect them, after all.
The sin of silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
 19 USAF713, Fri, 9th Dec '11 3:43:41 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
I think I recall reading about a case of 12-year-old boys ganging up on a grown woman to rape her, though I can't find it now.

The fuck?
I am now known as Flyboy.
 20 Milos Stefanovic, Fri, 9th Dec '11 3:49:43 PM from White City, Ruritania
Decemberist
I should probably be surprised. But I've seen so much on this site that nothing is able to shock me anymore.

edited 9th Dec '11 3:49:56 PM by MilosStefanovic

The sin of silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
Why would it be a surprise? They've likely hit puberty by the age of 12, so they would have sexual pleasure to gain from rape, and odds are those immoral enough to actually commit it wouldn't be above targeting older women to take advantage of these preconceptions about age and power.
"I even like the idea of a nice man who sees me when I'm sleeping and knows when I'm awake. And that man is Barack Obama." - Bill Maher
 22 Milos Stefanovic, Fri, 9th Dec '11 4:04:58 PM from White City, Ruritania
Decemberist
It is technically possible, but still... wow. Do those kids have any parents and what the fuck were they doing during those twelve years? I am kinda sceptical about the truthfulness of it without seeing the source, but still, even if it's true, no matter how horrible, it happens once in a blue moon - not often enough to make a separate law for it. Minors who commit serious crimes like rape or cold-blooded murder should be judged by adult standards, in my opinion, but that's not the subject of this thread.

edited 9th Dec '11 4:05:42 PM by MilosStefanovic

The sin of silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.
 23 Excelion, Fri, 9th Dec '11 4:06:41 PM from The Fatherland
not often enough to make a separate law for it.

This line of thinking is completely wrong.
It is technically possible, but still... wow. Do those kids have any parents and what the fuck were they doing during those twelve years?
That may as well be asked of the parents of rapists of any age.
"I even like the idea of a nice man who sees me when I'm sleeping and knows when I'm awake. And that man is Barack Obama." - Bill Maher
 25 USAF713, Fri, 9th Dec '11 4:10:06 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
We really shouldn't live in a world where there are 12 year olds I can morally justify executing.
I am now known as Flyboy.
Total posts: 43
1
2


TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy