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In case you miss it, a little bit ago a teacher at Miramonte high school was arrested for having sex with an underage girl. Maybe their relationship was harmful to the girl, but maybe it wasn’t. I don’t believe that simply being younger than some arbitrary number of years makes you unable to make healthy sexual decisions in your life. And that somehow, the day after the minor stops being a minor they are able to have healthy sexual relationships.
If someone were turning 18 tomorrow, the laws say that is wrong to have sex with them today, but tomorrow it would be ok. That makes no sense. It does make sense to judge sexual relationships on the power relations of those involved, on the physiological health and development of those involved, on the mental state of those involved, etc.
The sex laws in this country are completely insane. Just a few days ago there was a story about a couple who got their children taken away from them because they took bathtub photos of their kids. They then took those photos to wal-mart to get them developed, and the wal-mart workers called the police.
Did you know there are around 19,000 minors on sex offender registries in the united states? You know, a 17 year old has sex with a 16 year old and is found guilty of child molestation or something similar to that. Some of these “sex offenders” are as young as 11 years old!
If you don’t see a problem with the way sex laws, especially child sex laws in the united states you really should listen to the awesome Judith Levine speaking at the 2009 anarchist bookfair in san Francisco.

In her talk she points out some of the worst and most insane examples of sex law abuses. Recently she helped a couple who were arrested for child pornography because they had photos of naked Ken dolls, and it was actually their kid who took the photos.
This is why I don’t trust the state to do good. Even when combating the rape and abuse of children, the state ends up messing everything up. For every Jaycee Dugard, how many innocent lives are ruined due to the unjust sex laws that exist here? as The Economist points out, it's just getting worse and worse, and other countries are following our lead.
Now the idiots over in Poland have passed a law mandatory chemical castration for pedophiles. As PZ Myers puts it

That's a frightening prospect, not just because it's a punishment that can and will be abused — who judged Alan Turing but the state? — and the attitudes behind it are even worse.
Prime Minister Donald Tusk said late last year he wanted obligatory castration for pedophiles, whom he branded 'degenerates'. Tusk said he did not believe "one can use the term 'human' for such individuals, such creatures."
Not human? Wow. Forget castration, let's just have summary executions.

There are some other good comments on his blog about this new law.

Pedophiles are not "wretched people who abuse the helpless". That would be (convicted) child molesters. By failing to make the distinction, we risk making a self-fulfilling prophecy--if someone hears often enough that they are a monster guaranteed to molest children, and sees the frothing-at-the-mouth-insane negative reception that pedophiles get in society, how likely do you think they are to speak up and get therapy if they need it?
You might think I'm just quibbling with semantics, but this is important. A pedophile is not a child molester by default any more than a heterosexual man is a raper of women by default. Only when someone from either of these categories crosses over into committing crime do they deserve the label.

What happens if they turn out to be innocent of any crime? There are enough miscarriages of justice already with people locked up who shouldn't be, how much worse would chemical castration of the innocent be.

I don't support mandatory castration of convicted child molesters, who are the target being attacked under the blanket term of 'paedophile', because we would then be further punishing the 50% for whom therapy/rehabilitation would actually work. Now if there were an accurate means of determining who needed that to keep from re-offending, I might support that...

First of all, different countries and cultures have entirely different attitudes to the age of consent. Furthermore, the age of consent usually changes through time in a given culture anyway. It wasn't so long ago that an unmarried 16 year old girl was considered unusual in western societies, and even then it was typically to much older men. Fact is, there are some 12 year olds who act and behave far older than their actual age, and 18 year olds who act far younger. To me, any relationship where the "child" in question is post-pubescent depends on the circumstances. I am not saying it is all fine, but I would hesitate before saying there was actual abuse.

Actually, just go read his post and the comments yourself, because a lot of the readers there are smart.
I can only hope that one day, the religious nut-jobs will have less influence on governments of the united states and Poland and these insane laws will go away. That and the state will go away. Actually, I can do more than just hope. I can take action and make it happen.

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