Talk:Age of consent

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We want to be careful about imputing motivations for old laws[edit]

An editor added this paragraph to the end of the "History and social attitudes" section (before the "Modern laws" subsection):

The purpose of these laws was to preserve female virginity and protect the ownership rights of the father (whose daughter could become unmarriageable if deflowered) and to prevent premarital sex -'fornication'. The concept of child exploitation/child abuse as understood contemporary would develop much later.[1][2]
  1. ^ http://inter-disciplinary.net/ati/els/els1/dcruze%20paper.pdf
  2. ^ The Emergence of a New Taboo: The Desexualization of Youth in Western Societies Since 1800. by Martin Killias. European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research Vol.8 (2000). ISSN 0928-1371.

The preceding paragraph says:

  • In the 16th century, a small number of Italian and German states set the minimum age for sexual intercourse for girls, setting it at 12 years.
  • Towards the end of the 18th century, other European countries also began to enact similar laws. *The first French Constitution of 1791 established the minimum age at 11 years.
  • Portugal, Spain, Denmark and the Swiss cantons, initially set the minimum age at 10–12 years. [N.B. no dates given]

and I assume these are the "these laws" referred to. (If the paragraph is intended to cover all the laws described in the entire section, going back to antiquity, that's an extremely broad area and I'd be skeptical of any one-sentence summary of the motivations for all of that.)

But the first ref (D'Cruz) doesn't support the assertion, at all. D'Cruz, though versed in the subject generally, does not write well so it's not always clear what she's saying, but she doesn't say anything close to that (her paper is mostly about adolescent girls in Britain 1850-1940 anyway). Killias I can't access.

This got me wondering "Why was the French Republic motivated to especially protect paternal property rights and prevent fornication, while the Old Regime wasn't?" since the Republic wasn't reactionary on most matters, I think; I know little of the details of this period, but it's a reasonable question, and similar questions arise for the other instance. Figuring out why people made a law is hard, particularly when it was 500 years ago, and I'm leery of presenting a single one-sentence cause to the reader and saying "that's it". So I'm skeptical that Killias (or anyone) can do that, and doubly so since I know the other ref presented (D'Cruz) didn't, so I removed the paragraph for now on that basis.

The editor did add other useful material elsewhere for which I thank her, and D'Cruz offers some good material (mostly in her refs) and it might be useful to offer the reader some suggestions on what was going in people's heads when they made these laws, but it's probably complicated and we want to be cautious here. Herostratus (talk) 06:09, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

How come changes have come due to HIV/aids virus? Wasn't syphilis (and others) bad enough to "deserve as punishment for loose morals;" likewise AIDS? Too bad of a sexually transmitted disease?Gnostics (talk) 17:21, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

"Age"[edit]

JMJimmy: The source in this edit does not, so far as I can see, discuss "the age at which a person is considered to be legally competent to consent to sexual acts" or, more specifically, "how birth dates in leap years are handled, or even the method by which birth date is calculated" in relation to age of consent. I have been referred to page 41 in the source. The page numbered 41 is the cover page for a new chapter and does not seem to mention sexual acts in any context. The 41st page of the document (page # 27) also does not seem to discuss the topic of this article in general or the text it is cited for in relation to age of consent.

Similarly, the next edit[1] refers to a source that does not seem to discuss age of consent.

Am I missing something? - SummerPhD (talk) 23:03, 7 August 2014 (UTC)

The sources are backwards in your comment (not in the article) - that was my fault, I didn't notice both fws and screwed up the edit descriptions. Sorry about that.
Assertion: Ages can be different based on the calendar used, PKK article states (p41) "If a mature man sodomizes a minor, the active party will be executed while the passive party who was consenting will receive up to seventy four lashes" and in section 3 defines minor vs mature in terms of the lunar calendar and discusses when the Gregorian calendar and discretion can be applied in other laws.
Assertion: birth dates in leap years. I didn't source this rather linked to the article which discusses it in appropriate detail. Uses the example of English common law which treats feb 29 as March 1st vs New Zealand which treats feb 29 as feb 28 in non-leap years. That simple difference can change both the age of consent and majority between countries. It's particularly important when combined with alternate calendars that use different leap days.
Assertion: method by which birth date is calculated - this is difficult to source, however, countries do codify how to calculate years. These laws differ in minor ways in most of the world, however, in some like Korea they start from age 1 (vs age 0). The source I did use, ilpa, illustrates the difficulties encountered in figuring out ages between countries which goes to the entirety of the assertions. Duarte, 16, from Angola case shows how an official assessed/calculated the boys age to be over 18. As a result he was put in a situation where he was raped/forced to perform oral sex by an adult. Upon a standards based re-assessment he was determined to be a minor (16). This wasn't so much a discussion of the specific age but of a consequence with regards to the method used in calculating age. JMJimmy (talk) 06:20, 8 August 2014 (UTC)

Section "Impossibility defenses"[edit]

Section "Impossibility defenses" reads:

Impossibility defenses

In 2009, federal agents in Puerto Rico arrested Carlos Simon-Timmerman on suspicion of possessing underage pornography, after an airport search showed that he had a DVD titled "Little Lupe the Innocent".[49] At trial, a pediatrician testified that Lupe Fuentes must be underage because of her appearance; lawyers for the defense contacted Lupe through her website and subpoenaed her to testify. Her passport showed that she was 19 years old when the movie was made, clearing Timmerman of the charges.

This doesn't make much sense. It is only indirectly connected to the subject of this article; and it is more about defense in criminal law in general. I'm removing it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A02:2F0A:508F:FFFF:0:0:50C:9034 (talk) 07:53, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Bolivia[edit]

The age of consent in Bolivia is now 14. Ages_of_consent_in_South_America#Bolivia


The world map from this article must be modified.

Also this map: File:Ages_of_consent_in_South_America.svg at Ages of consent in South America must be modified too.86.121.66.57 (talk) 06:20, 23 February 2015 (UTC)