Slippery slope?

My granddaughter is five. She still sleeps with her favourite purple blanket and believes that she’s going to grow up to be a unicorn, but in some countries her parents might already be looking for a husband for her. Every day, more than 25000 girls under the age of 18 are married worldwide. One in 9 girls in developing countries are married before the age of 15; many by age 8 or 9.

We, in North America, think we’re enlightened. It will never happen here, we tell ourselves. Really? A few decades ago, did any of us expect to see same sex marriage legalized? In 1974, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) removed homosexuality from its catalogue of illnesses. Instead, it became a sexual orientation. Today, there are those who want to see pedophilia treated in the same manner. Until recently, it has been widely viewed as a psychological disorder triggered by early childhood trauma, but no more. Now, many experts see it as a biologically rooted condition that does not change; a sexual orientation. In fact, in the fall of 2013, the latest edition of the APA’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders referred to pedophilia as a sexual orientation for the first time. After inquiries from news organizations, the APA issued a “correction” stating “sexual orientation” is not a term “used in the diagnostic criteria for pedophilic disorder,” but do you see where this is going?

“It should be clear to anyone with any grey matter that pedophilia is just another oppressed sexual orientation or interest, and age doesn’t somehow magically make consensual sex between two people into something evil,” writes one user of a website for self-identified individuals who are sexually attracted to children. So can a 5 year old give consent? What about an 8 or 9 year old? If a man she trusted asked my granddaughter if she wanted to “play” with him, what might she say? Would that be consent? I know this sounds horrifying or perhaps even ridiculous to most, but is it any more abhorrent or ridiculous than the concept of same sex marriage would have been to our grandparents?

Sadly, it isn’t only pedophiles themselves who think that sex with children is okay. A National Council for Civil Liberties (UK) report, written for the Criminal Law Revision Committee in 1976, included the following:

“Childhood sexual experiences, willingly engaged in, with an adult result in no identifiable damage. The Criminal Law Commission should be prepared to accept the evidence from follow-up research on child ‘victims’ which show there is little subsequent effect after a child has been ‘molested’. The real need is a change in the attitude which assumes that all cases of pedophilia result in lasting damage.”

With ideas like that floating around, is it really so outlandish to think that we might someday see marriage between children and adults become legal in the western world? Not in my lifetime, I hope, and not in my granddaughter’s!

Personally, I think that polygamy, which is actually already practiced in our country, will likely come first, but that’s a different topic.

What do you think? Once again, I invite all opinions as long as they are presented in a non confrontational manner. You can even tell me that you think I’m crazy, as long as you do it politely!

Girls Not Brides

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10 thoughts on “Slippery slope?

  1. I want to be as respectful as possible, but one sentence in particular gave me pause: “I know this sounds horrifying or perhaps even ridiculous to most, but is it any more abhorrent or ridiculous than the concept of same sex marriage would have been to our grandparents?” It must be noted that, in my grandparents’ day, interracial marriage was also illegal in the state where they lived. The mixing of races in marriage was thought abhorrent and ridiculous to many, but I don’t think anyone would be likely to say that interracial marriage is likely to lead to child marriage. At least in the US, adults and children are legally treated quite differently, and the age of consent has been increasing, not decreasing, throughout our history. In fact, child marriage and sexual activity was more condoned in our past, though people may not like to think so. For example, in 1895, the age of consent in Delaware was 7. In several other states it was 10. Now it is at least 16 in all states, and 18 in most. While people may be becoming more accepting of what consenting adults choose to do with one another in their romantic lives, I think there are no legal or cultural signs that large numbers of people–or political/cultural leaders–condone sexual contact with children, or marriage to children. Of course there will always be a few people who do sadly exploit children, or apologize for others who do, but I think this has absolutely nothing to do with LGBT people or their right to marry.

  2. One thing I know. There is nothing new under the sun. When it comes to sex, there are so many variations of ways to do that. Only one way is approved by God. 1 man married to 1 woman. That kind of sex is celebrated by God, who created it. Fornication, adultery, homosexuality, pedophilia, beastiality, etc, are all against God’s order and are sin. The fact that the world is slowly legitimizing these other forms of sex should not be surprising. Other societies have normalized these to their determent. They no longer exist. Nothing new under the sun. Sadly:(

  3. I think your fears are well-founded, especially as American culture changes demographically and becomes less Christian-based in its perspective and more Muslim, more Hindu, more New Age, polytheistic and pantheistic. Moral standards are rapidly changing to reflect this change. Once pedophilia, homosexuality, bestiality, and polygamous relationships were condoned in the West. That changed with Christian morals being introduced into the pagan environment. But now with increased secularization as well as large numbers of people immigrating from countries that continue to condone and practice child marriage, pedophilia, and bestiality, there no longer remains the same moral underpinning, no shared consensus of what is moral or immoral. Legally, the landscape has changed because of the votes of just 5 people who overrode the opinion of 4 of their colleagues. Morality is as fragile as that. “Love” didn’t win. An alternate worldview did.

  4. I have seen (and disagree with) the comment that as society has changed, so too has ‘the’ church. Slavery was considered biblical, interracial marriage was condemned, the woman not wearing head covering was considered immoral. These now-abandoned positions once started as passionately held convictions. Commentators state that the church will eventually embrace homosexuality as acceptable, given enough time, and they hold up as an example the many so-called Christian churches which have made that move already.
    Nowhere does the bible call freeing slaves a sin. Wearing head coverings is a symbolic gesture which no longer has cultural significance. A person’s race is only mentioned in connection with marriage if that person is a follower of a heathen cult.
    I do not see how homosexual marriage or any other sexual sin can be equated with freeing slaves, covering one’s head or marrying a fellow-Christian. They are not sin. The bible does not say they are sinful. And no, Jesus does not comment specifically on those issues, either.
    Thanks, Elaine. Gotta get my own blog one of these days…

  5. I had to scroll down and check last posts after reading about some controversial post in the latest one. *Sigh* I have no words.. the world has gone crazy and humanity is at stake. I hope you don’t mind me sharing this post on my FB page. Thanks

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