• Fri, Nov 11 2011

10-Year-Old Girl Gives Birth In Mexico, Again

Pregnant belly with handsA 10-year-old girl from Puebla, Mexico gave birth to a baby boy after a 31-week pregnancy fraught with complications.  The little girl was admitted to the Women’s Hospital on October 22nd after enduring “life-threatening” complications and seizures. Now officials are looking into if the 10-year-old was raped and by whom.

The baby boy was born premature obviously and weighed a mere 3.3 pounds after a successful c-section. He currently resides in the intensive care unit where he is being treated for pneumonia. The 10-year-old mother was permitted to return home after the birth but visits everyday to breastfeed — yes, she’s capable.[tagbox tag="child bride"]

The Puebla state Attorney General’s Office is investigating who the father might be and furthermore, if the young girl was sexually assaulted. The age of consent is shockingly 12 years old in the state but it has been under review according to NY Daily News. Women who seek out abortions in Puebla face fines and a prison sentence unless they can prove that they were raped — and we all know how that goes.  A 10-year-old who must “prove” that she is raped to access said procedure needs to openly name her accuser which if he is her father or stepfather could result in even more threats to her safety, get to the police which is pretty tricky if you’re a 10 year old , and all while the clock is ticking.

About a year ago, there was the case of 11-year-old Amalia, also in Mexico, who was denied an abortion by the local Justice Department during the fourth month of her pregnancy. She delivered her child two weeks prematurely.

She told authorities that she was raped repeatedly by her stepfather when she was 10 years old, but women are not permitted abortions after three weeks of conception. The UN was apt in their ruling that denying women access to abortion was denying them a basic human right.

(photo: Shutterstock)
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  • Jen

    Wow. They need to investigate *if* she was raped? She’s ten, I think her age is the answer. I guess they need to make sure she doesn’t have a history of lying, wasn’t wearing provocative clothing and isn’t too ugly or too pretty (since we all know ugly girls can’t be raped and pretty girls are asking for it). I don’t think we need to look any further than cases like these to prove that anti-choice activists have a complete lack of compassion for women (and girls) that borders on the absurd.

  • JW

    (I think you mean three months.)

    Still, I agree with Jen. A ten year old can’t consent. Case closed.

  • B girl

    Additionally, having children at such a young age endangers the mother. Simply put she is too small to have have a child and not developed enough. Just because you menstruate does NOT mean the body is ready to have the child and nurse the child. Clearly, a ten year old needs an abortion or at least the choice, if her own life is endangered!

  • Kerry

    Sad story…but abortion is not the answer…killing her baby would only further traumatize her..

    • Jen

      Thank you for proving my point about that complete lack of perspective and compassion.

      And it’s not a BABY.

    • Stacy

      Killing her baby? How obsurd. She was probably raped and having a baby would be a constant reminder of her traumatic episode. Place yourself in her shoes before you comment your personal views. You would have opted for an abortion as well. You cannot judge or say what she should do because given the circumstances I’m sure you would do differently.

    • LoveyDovey

      How would YOU know it would traumatize her? Do you know her personally? It’s not your call to make, in this or any situation, so don’t presume to know better than the woman dealing with the issue at hand. No one’s forcing you to abort a pregnancy, however countless women are being forced to carry ones they don’t want.

    • Miles

      You don’t know her. I don’t know her. It may further traumatize her, it may not, but you can’t make that call. There is an equal shot that being forced to give birth at an age that equates to an American fourth grader was more traumatizing than an abortion would have been.

    • Jen

      Also, the story clearly states that the 11 year old who gave birth last year was DENIED her request for an abortion, so her choice and her feelings were ignored and her body violated AGAIN by so-called pro-lifers.

    • AJ

      Oh okay, so when your uncle molests your fourth grader, let me know if you still think giving birth to her rapist’s kid when she’s TEN YEARS OLD is still more “traumatizing” than saving her little body and mind.

      And yes, she was raped. No ten year old can give consent to sex, no matter how grown-up they pretend to be, thus, it’s not her “baby” but a painful, daily reminder of a nightmare from her shattered childhood.

      All the people who think that fourth grade girls should be forced to give birth to their rapist’s or molester’s kid, should all go live on an island all together somewhere. It’s the perfect solution; you all can force your daughters to give births they don’t want, and the rest of us won’t have to hear about it. Deal?

    • Holly Hayes

      How about you let her decide what would be more traumatic to her instead of forcing your ideas ABOUT HER OWN BODY on her?

  • DebMoore

    My daughter is a 10 year old 4th grader. This story made me cry.

  • Ray Harris

    FYI, the minimum age of marriage was 12 for most of Christianity – following both Jewish and Roman law. This means that Mary was likely 12 when she gave birth to Jesus. The minimum age of marriage was 12 under Catholic canon law until as late as 1918, when it was changed to 14, where it remains today. The Mexican law therefore conforms to what had been the convention for nearly 2,000 years of Christian history. The age of consent and minimum age of marriage was only modified in America in the 20th century (following reform in Europe in the late 19th century). So I don’t know why you say the age of consent is ‘shockingly’ only 12 in Mexico. Most cultures over most of history regarded puberty as a clear sign of sexual maturity. This means that waiting until the late teenage years is actually a deviation from the norm, so no need to be ‘shocked’. This is not to suggest that girls should be having sex young, but to point out that the objection to it is modern. A famous case in point is the mother of Henry VII, the Lady Margaret Beaufort, who became pregnant with him at age 12. And remember Romeo and Juliet – Juliet was to be married on her 14th birthday and her mother tells her that many of her peers have already been married off. Interesting how what was once normative has become repulsive.

    • Jen

      Not sure what your point is. At this point in history women were also considered personal property to be traded by their father or brother to the highest bidder. Rape was considered impossible within marriage. Slavery was the “norm” as was hanging nine year olds for stealing bread. Bathing wasn’t a normal thing nor was literacy or medical treatment.

      Much of what was done in the last two thousand years or so is considered repulsive and wrong by those of us who are educated enough to consider such things.

    • chris

      ray harris, you are a cunt. who gives a shit about history and religion in this case, the fact is that times have changed and women should not be treated the same as they were in ‘history’. your comment has no relevance and im sure that many people are ‘shocked’ by such a young age of consent. prick.

    • WTF

      Spoken like a true pedofile trying to justify his way of life. You are sick.

    • Ali

      I just turned 15 years old. I move a lot, I have lived in Florida, New Hampshire, Mississippi and now Massachussetts. All of which have different ways of life. My best friend is from south America. IT’S NOT OKAY. I have seen 5th graders pregnant, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and my 34 year old sister. It’s not okay. The little girl in the story may not have been raped, some girls “fall in love” at such a young age and believe that they are consenting, unfortunately they’re not. But history may prove that people were doing it at 12, but, the younger you do it the more susceptible to cancer you are, tearing, death to yourself, miscarriage, so on, so maybe it’s allowed, but it’s dangerous. Plus, what kind of fun are you going to have with a ten year old? They don’t know what half the words in your vocabulary are. And she wasn’t married, and Christians believe to be married before sex—so I guess she wasn’t Christian. AND I don’t personally believe in abortion unless you’re raped, but 10 years old? You can’t even get your GED that young. That is all I have to say.

    • Holly Hayes

      Don’t you think the fact that most twelve year olds can’t carry a pregnancy to term (at least not without suffering severe injury to themselves), and that half of them haven’t even experienced a menstrual cycle yet, to MAYBE be an indication that girls that age should not be having sex?

  • KB

    @Jen – totally agree with ALL your comments.

  • CW

    Wow, Jen, do ALL of your posts feature you using offensive language and displaying religious intolerance? Doesn’t this site require its featured bloggers to adhere to a civility policy?

    • Jen

      I’m sorry, CW, but I’d like you to show me even ONE instance where I used offensive language or showed religious intolerance in this comment thread. And when you stop calling people you disagree with sluts, I might start showing more tolerance for you, you hateful bigot.

  • Ray Harris

    Chris,

    Clearly you misunderstand the point of my post. Of course the 10 year-old in Mexico was raped. Clearly it was wrong, evil. Nor do I think it is right that 12 year-olds should marry. But there is an historical reason the age of consent in Mexico is 12. It is still 13 in Spain (and Japan and Sth Korea) and 14 in Italy. Let’s not deny that ever since humanity came out of Africa the onset of puberty was taken as the sign a girl was ready to start having children. Why would God, or Mother Nature, put girls through puberty at this age if He or She did not think they were biologically ready? The question of their psychological preparedness only developed when the discipline of psychology developed in the late 19th century (when the term pedophile was first used). The rise in the age of consent coincided with the development of the first wave of feminism (the Suffragette movement). It is a wholly secular development to which the churches reluctantly conformed. Interestingly the US was late in changing its laws. The country singer Loretta Lynn was legally married in a church just before her 14th birthday. She remained happily married until her husband died. I don’t recall her saying she ever regretted the marriage. Why should we regret it if she doesn’t?

    I find it fascinating that some people get so worked up about this issue. What is the right age? How do we decide? The world average is 16. Why is that the correct age? Why not 15 like Germany or 18 like California?

    As for your profanity – water off a duck’s back. Tells us a lot about you. And why use female genitals as a form of abuse? LOL.

  • Ray Harris

    I should add that many Indian tribes in Sth America believe that a girl is ready in late childhood. Some Amazonian tribes believe that semen causes the onset of puberty. This is not an excuse, but it may help explain the context.

    • Jen

      Again, Ray, you don’t seem to have a point. We are talking about children being raped and forced to carry a child to term. What a bunch of backward people believe is ok doesn’t really make much difference and citing example after example of young females being taken advantage of the world over simply reinforces the point that we still have a long way to go when it comes to protecting children the world over.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    Yes, you are right. Consent was never an issue. Most marriages were arranged and the girl had no choice. The age of consent started to rise when women demanded equal rights.

    But what is the right age? !2 as in Mexico, 13 as in Spain, 14 as in Italy, 15 as in Germany, 16 as in England, or 17 or 18 as in some US States? Who is right?

    Ever heard of the Flynn effect? (you can Google it). This tells us people are getting smarter and that children reach average adult IQ at younger ages (standard IQ tests are adjusted). There is a formula one can use to figure out one’s mental age. The age of consent was upgraded to 16 in England in 1886. Using the Flynn effect we might easily calculate, very conservatively, that the 16 year-old of 1886 had the equivalent mental age of today’s 12 year-old, and conversely that today’s 12 year-old has the equivalent mental age the late 19th Century 16 year-old.

    If consent is about the cognitive capacity to understand the consequences, then most 12 year-olds have the requisite cognitive capacity.

    Oddly, just as the Flynn effect was making kids smarter, society started to extend childhood. If you read Dr Robert Epstein (Teens .02) you will see an argument against the extension of childhood.

    This is a very emotive issue. Unfortunately the objective evidence runs contrary to people’s ‘modern’ emotions about childhood.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    What kind of backward people? Our ancestors. Most people over most of history.

    I agree that consent is essential. And in this case the girl was clearly raped. I was reacting more to the comment that Mexico’s age of consent was ‘shockingly’ only 12.

    My position is that those who have the capacity to consent should have the right to consent.

    So, using the evidence from developmental psychology, at what age does someone develop the ability to consent?

    • Jen

      Ray, I’m sensing (hoping) that you don’t have any children of your own and that you don’t spend much time around children. If you did I don’t think you’d find it *shocking* that we all find 12 to be an impossibly young age of consent. Also, IQ has NOTHING to do with emotional maturity, so I’m not sure what your point is with the Flynn effect. I wouldn’t trust an off the chart six year old to consent to anything, but his or her IQ might tell us that mentally he or she is nearly an adult. Heck, I know a 24 year old who has an IQ off the charts and who the courts have deemed incompetent because she is too emotionally unstable to make decisions for herself and her parents needed a means of protecting her.

      Without attempting to insinuate anything about your personal motives for continually making the case that very young adolescents should legally be able to consent to sex with adults, I will point out that the constant insistence that these kids should be able to consent to sex does leave you open to doubts and questions. A lot of your phrasing does have a creepy vibe. You seem to yearn for the time in history when young women were regularly married off to old men and I think you could probably understand why that would raise a metric ton of red flags on a website where most of the readers are parents.

  • Lauren

    I think some of you may be confusing Jen’s posts with those of chris. Jen has responded with well-formed and articulate statements, never once using profanity or referring to the female genitalia in a derogatory way. And while Ray Harris also seems to be intelligent and have a pretty thorough recall of the history of the sexualization of children, it seems like he may be sitting around studying these facts so he can either a.) justify his thoughts/actions to himself, or b.) have a really well thought out response to tell the judge when he is inevitably arrested and booked on various criminal charges of kiddie porn and pedophiliac activity. I pray that you don’t live in my neighborhood. Good job outing yourself, though.

  • Ray Harris

    Lauren,

    Very cheap shot and sadly typical of the emotive arguments that surround this subject. I absolutely refute your allegation and remind you that it is vilification and slander. Way to go.

  • Ray Harris

    Lauren,

    Btw, I happen to think that some 18, 19, 20 year-olds do not have the capacity to consent and that the law does not protect anyone over what is an arbitrary line. Think about that.

    • Jen

      Actually, you are incorrect about that Ray. If someone is found mentally incapable of consent they can still be statutory raped, even if they are 65 years old.

  • Lauren

    Ray Harris,
    You are right, it is pure speculation on my part. But if you don’t want people calling you a pedophile then you should stop sounding like one.

    • Ali

      Priceless. :)

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    I live in Australia. The law is somewhat different. Interestingly there has been a debate over sexual rights for the intellectually disabled. My ex partner worked in this area. But of course, anyone who has sex without consent should be charged with rape. It’s a no brainer.

    I was reacting to this article’s ‘shock’ that the age of consent was 12 in Mexico. I was pointing out that it used to be 12 in most Christian countries until very recently. In other words, it used to be the norm.

  • Ray Harris

    Lauren,

    So, because I understand a bit of history and how the age of consent laws have developed, and because I’ve studied anthropology and know what other cultures believe, I sound like a pedophile?

    During the witch trials of Europe one of the signs you were a witch was to question the authorities. IOW, if you didn’t believe in witches you were a witch. Same thing here.

    I dare to question people’s understanding of the issue and so I ‘sound’ like a pedophile. I bet you don’t even understand what pedophilia actually is or that most child sexual abuse is committed by non-pedophiles (iow, just everyday folks).

    • Jen

      See, Ray, this is the reason that people on here are assuming that YOU are a pedophile. Normal folks don’t generally tend to attempt to make the distinction between those who sometimes have sex with a child and those who are primarily or solely interested in children because we really don’t think ANYONE who rapes a child (and it’s rape no matter what, because they are CHILDREN) deserves the benefit of the doubt.

      I’m honestly becoming more and more convinced that you yourself are interested in having sex with young children, though perhaps not primarily or solely (thus your continued insistence that you are not a pedophile). Semantics are a powerful tool, but whether you agree or not those who have sex with kids really don’t deserve a nuanced understanding of their psychosis.

    • Jen

      Ray, I think the reason you sound like someone who wants to have sex with children is your tone deaf approach to this article and your continued insistence that children should be allowed to consent to sex with adults because of historical precedent. My point before in bringing up other historically acceptable, but now totally unacceptable mores was not to make some sort of overarching feminist point about consent; but simply to point out that as humans in the developed world have come to a greater understanding of the world around them and have begun to use their intellect to make determinations of right and wrong, we have changed our views on a lot of issues and no matter what historical/anthropological context you throw at it, we are NEVER going to tell you that 12 (or even 14) is an ok age for a CHILD to consent to sex with an adult. By constantly trying to prove that it is and by taking issue with a technically incorrect use of the term pedophile you are making yourself seem more and more guilty of desires which modern thinkers have determined to be harmful to children and indicative of a deep seated problem in you.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    Forgot to add that to be deemed intellectually disabled you must have an IQ below a certain level (70 I think, but don’t quote me on that). I had in mind people above that level, but with a lower than average IQ. Chronological age is a poor measure. Better to use their developmental age, which can be calculated (ie, someone of age 10 – because its a round number – who has an IQ of 130, for example, may have a developmental age of 13, another person at age 10 with an IQ of 80 may have a developmental age of 8).

    And as you know, a court that can decide that someone is incompetent can decide if someone is competent.

    • Jen

      Again, Ray, IQ and emotional age are not related. Being able to reason like a 15 year old at age 10 is not the same thing as being 15, no matter how intelligent you are. 10 year olds simply process information differently and have significantly less life experience. As a result they are still young children emotionally no matter what mental age an IQ test might say they are.

      And IQ is NOT the only measure used by courts to decide competency. As I said before I know someone who is in her mid-20s and has been deemed incompetent despite having an IQ somewhere in the extremely gifted range (about 131-145) because of emotional instability. I’m 100% certain that you would have a large amount of trouble finding ANY court system not run by NAMBLA that would tell you a ten year old is competent to consent.

  • Dee

    Thank goodness this didn’t happen in America. There would be other little girls emulating it, and trying to have babies at 9!

    • Jen

      I really don’t think that’s true. I’m pretty sure normal, non-emotionally disturbed children don’t strive to emulate horrible things that happen to others.

    • Holly Hayes

      First of all, this kind of thing happens in the U.S. all the time. Go read the Wikipedia page for youngest mothers; something like this happened in America within the last five years.

      Secondly, is that REALLY your priority upon reading this story? How the hell Americans manage to read a story about a ten year old girl being raped and manage to make it about them and their country astounds me every. single. time.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    A high IQ is connected to a high EQ (emotional intelligence) and to a high level of Kohlberg’s moral reasoning. The exception is high functioning autism. Thus a gifted 14 year-old can have a mental and emotional age of 18. for example.

    I have a background in developmental psych and an interest in gifted kids (being one myself). It is a common misconception that intellectually gifted kids have a normal emotional intelligence.

    And yes, of course exceptions must be made for any sort of cognitive impairment.

    Btw, for me this is not about the Mexican 10 year-old, but the shock that the mexican age of consent is 12. It is clear to me that the girl was raped and someone needs to go to jail.

    • Jen

      Actually, Ray, nearly all the research has found little to no link between IQ and EQ as many researches posit that EQ is a learned skill and not an actual intelligence. In addition, I would argue that you as a self professed gifted kid show a STUNNING lack of EQ since it seems you troll random parenting sites looking for articles about children being raped so you can complain about those of us who find 12 year olds too young to willingly consent to sex. So, clearly I am in the camp of those who believe that just because you have a high IQ does not make you emotionally competent to make decisions. Heck, my husband is brilliant on the IQ scale, but he’s a social/emotional mess and significantly more immature than I am. So are many of his friends who happen to also have high IQs. In fact many kids with higher than average IQs tend to have MORE trouble socially adapting and dealing with others in appropriate ways.

      There’s another point in all this you are also missing. Why is it that colleges all over the world prohibit their professors from sleeping with students? The average university student is at least 17, which in most places is old enough to consent and yet professors can and do lose their jobs when they sleep with college students. It’s because they have significant power and authority over those students and when that much of a power imbalance exists it is nearly impossible to ascertain how much of a role that power imbalance played in the student’s decision. For a twelve year old ALL adults are authority figures and as such there can never be true consent even if that twelve year old is emotionally, physically and cognitively an adult (which I guarantee you they are not).

      I would seriously suggest you work on figuring out what compels you to take a story about child rape and push an agenda of allowing young children to legally consent to sex with adults (regardless of your feelings on this particular case, that’s what you did). I would also point out once more that YOU lack emotional intelligence (otherwise you would never have approached this topic in such a way that you have nearly everyone in this comments section thinking you are a pedophile) and perhaps need to revisit some of that developmental psych training.

  • Dolihner Tom

    Please let our father god to solve this and say your forgiveness to him and let it go.May our be the first priority so the world could be good to you.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    Where on earth did I say it was okay for adults to have sex with kids? Nowhere. I agree completely that a power balance exists between say a 17 year old college student and a professor and agree that it ought to be prevented.

    I’m thinking about peer groups and laws that punish teens.

    All I believe I was saying was that 12 was once the norm, which explains why Mexico has an age of consent of 12 – its just been late in changing the laws. Heck, it took some US states until the 60′s and 70′s to change their laws. A fact anyone can check. Anyway. Last post on the subject.

    • Jen

      Ray, the point is if the age of consent is low 12 year olds CAN legally have sex with adults. If your point is indeed that an 18 year old shouldn’t be punished for having sex with his/her (though let’s admit it’s almost always a he when prosecution occurs) 16 year old girlfriend I totally agree, this is a clear misuse of the statutory laws and many times when these prosecutions occur they tend to be guided by other motives (racism, classism or pressure from wealthy parents being the three big ones I can think of).

      As I said before, Ray, I genuinely don’t believe you to be a pedophile or attracted to children in any way, I could be wrong but there you go. I think you are a history dork (not a slur, I pride myself on being a history dork) who perhaps didn’t quite understand how the facts you found fascinating might not play so well in the context you were sharing them. I would suggest that next time you wish to share interesting historical facts you try and think about how those facts fit into the context of what you are commenting on and at least attempt to make it clear that you are simply trying to share an interesting perspective and not advocating for something that makes many parents–self included–lie awake in fear at night.

      I wish you all the best and I thank you for continuing to remain respectful and thoughtful throughout the conversation. Please don’t take anything I said as more than a simple suggestion to help you avoid such pitfalls in the future, I do think you have interesting things to share and it would probably help if you could convince people you were worth listening to instead of calling the authorities on.

  • Ray Harris

    Jen,

    I forgot to recommend you read, ‘Teen 2.0′ by Dr Robert Epstein, who argues that we have extended childhood and caused considerable harm in doing so.

  • a different Jen

    I feel compelled to post here in defense of Ray Harris and on behalf of rational thought. Before you start pulling out your pitchforks, my feminist cred is pretty stellar: I am a former domestic violence/sexual assault advocate turned domestic violence/sexual assault attorney. I’ve devoted my entire career to abused women and children.

    I am shocked by the level of intolerance and ignorance you demonstrate here. This, my friends, is the reason that young women nowadays say “but I’m not a *feminist* or anything…” as though feminist is a dirty word. Ray simply brought up the historical fact that Mexico’s age of consent is likely so low because of its Catholic heritage. He didn’t seem to me to be defending it in any way – or even calling for tolerance of it in the name of multiculturalism. He actually stated that he is not saying that girls should be having sex so young, but rather just that the objection to it is modern. That is plain historical fact, folks.

    The response? He must be a pedophile! To which he responded, surprisingly calmly, by pointing out that the vast majority of those who sexually abuse children are not pedophiles (this is true, FYI – look it up). What did this interesting (but apparently scary for your small minds) factoid garner? More screams of “He’s a pedophile! He must be, if he seeks to understand those who abuse!” In fact, “normal folks” sure do make this distinction – at least, those of us who understand the cycle of violence. Your arguments seem to be rooted in “bad seed” theory – a narrow-minded theory which rejects any possible *societal* responsibility for abuse and violence and seeks to thrust it entirely on the abuser. Never mind that there’s about an 90% chance that they were once the victim…and that in 20 years, you’ll be screaming for the head of this very victim when he continues the cycle of violence. Because you see, abuse is all about “bad seeds.” The rest of us share no responsibility for it at all.

    Tell ya what. Rather than attacking people who challenge your worldview on a blog, go work with battered women and abused children. If you do it long enough, I guaran-goddamn-tee you that you will personally witness the cycle of violence. It’s disturbing, let me tell you, when you worked with little Timmy and his mommy at a domestic violence shelter, and 20 years later, you run into little Timmy’s battered wife at the same shelter – especially when you hear that Timmy’s mom is now making excuses for his acting exactly like his father. Makes you wonder – is this really all Timmy’s fault? Was he born evil? Should we have just put him down when he came into the shelter, in the name of protecting his future wife and children? Or was there something we as a society should have done to help Timmy – and his future wife and kids?

    And Jen, you’re plain wrong about statutory rape laws protecting anyone over the age of consent. Most states do have laws protecting “vulnerable adults” but they are certainly tougher to avail oneself of than statutory rape laws – given that by the very nature of the charge, the victim has to be put through what can be an extraordinarily intrusive and re-victimizing process to “prove” that he/she was incompetent *at the time of the assault* – as opposed to simply producing a birth certificate. And seriously? Most 18 year olds are not in a position of much more power in relation to a 50 year old than a 17 year old. This is a point well taken.

    All to say, I don’t know Ray Harris from Adam. I don’t know if he’s a pedophile and/or sexually abuses children. But for the purposes of this discussion, it doesn’t matter. Let’s get the discussion onto a topic that matters: ending the cycle of violence. What can we do to make sure that what happened to this little girl never happens again? What can we as a society do for this child, and others like her, to ensure that she does not perpetuate this vicious cycle, either directly or indirectly?

    • Jen

      So, it seems you kind of didn’t read/missed the point of 99% of what I said. I actually NEVER accused Ray of being a pedophile, though I also disagree with both you and him that simply because someone has sex with adults and children they deserve for us to make the distinction and NOT call them a pedophile.

      What I did do was point out that by coming to a parenting blog and immediately complaining about the fact that in a post about a child being raped the author is *shocked* by the age of consent being so very young he was at best being incredibly tone deaf and at worst coming across as someone who wishes to legally be allowed to sleep with children. After all this post wasn’t “can you believe the age of consent is so low in some places” it was “they raped this ten year old and then violated her again by forcing her to carry a baby to term almost killing her in the process”.

      As for the law protecting adults who are over the age of consent, generally if you are going to be able to avail yourself of those laws it’s because you have a longstanding and established history of mental retardation or severe emotional disturbance. There’s no need for those who are the victims of rape in these cases to prove they didn’t consent, the court has already deemed them incapable of doing so. Proving sexual contact occurred is what tends to become more difficult since they are already considered incompetent.

      As for the rest of your post: what the heck are you talking about? I never made a single statement about what causes pedophilia and while I agree that it is part of a larger cycle of continuing violence (hello, Catholic Church) that doesn’t mean I agree that those who commit the act deserve clemency. I believe we should work to protect children AND help those who have been victimized so they can stop the cycle of violence (mental health is a vastly neglected field in the US), but once that cycle has been continued no amount of sympathy for what they went through themselves as children is capable of making what they did ok in any way (though I am a big believer in the idea that ALL punishments should at least attempt to rehabilitate instead of simply revenge). However, if you agree with Ray’s assessment that most people who abuse children are “just everyday folks” I think we have a problem, since clearly anyone who abuses a child is far from “everyday” or normal and AGAIN trying to force parents who are outraged by the rape of a ten year old to admit this distinction is incredibly insensitive or disturbing depending on the motivation.

      You seem to be attributing motives to Ray that he himself never once mentioned. And while I neither disagree with most of what you’ve said I also don’t believe that an article about a ten year old who was raped and forced to continue a pregnancy she wished to terminate is the appropriate forum for such a discussion. When Ray’s initial post (which you should read as a stand alone post if you actually wish to *understand* the context of what happened here) appeared there was absolutely nothing in the comments section but a discussion of rape and the violation of this poor little girl a second time by being forced to carry a pregnancy to term. Ray successfully sidetracked a conversation about the cycle of violence by making a completely tone deaf, historical argument that had NOTHING to do with the actual conversation going on in the comments section and only minimally with the actual article.

  • Julia

    this makes me sick to my stomach. how is a 10 year old going to prove rape?

  • Jan

    I highly doubt the low age of consent is due to Catholicism. In Ireland, consent is 16.

  • Holly Hayes

    Women aren’t allowed to get abortions after three of weeks’ conception? THREE WEEKS? More women in developed nations who have access to pregnancy test don’t even know they’re pregnant after three weeks!