What Is The Age Of Consent?

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Worldwide and even nationwide, age of consent law varies. So why is it so difficult to legally define the age of consent? And what should it be?

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Legal Age Of Consent By State
“The legal age of consent in the United States varies from state to state, with different ages applicable based on a variety of factors including the genders of the actors, type of sexual act, relationship between the actors, and more. The age of consent is between 16 and 18 in all states.”

Statutory Rape: A Guide to State Laws and Reporting Requirements
http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/08/sr/statelaws/summary.shtml (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)
“In 27 states that do not have a single age of consent, statutes specify the age below which an individual cannot legally engage in sexual intercourse regardless of the age of the defendant.”

Age of Consent Laws
http://chnm.gmu.edu/cyh/teaching-modules/230 (Center for History and New Media)
“An age of consent statute first appeared in secular law in 1275 in England as part of the rape law. The statute, Westminster 1, made it a misdemeanor to “ravish” a “maiden within age,” whether with or without her consent. The phrase “within age” was interpreted by jurist Sir Edward Coke as meaning the age of marriage, which at the time was 12 years of age.”

Adolescent Sexual Behavior and the Law
http://www.crimevictimsinstitute.org/documents/Adolescent_Behavior_3.1.11.pdf (Crimes Victims Institute)
“Given the changing mores in this country and the increasing acceptance by teenagers of early sexual intimacies, more and more young people are finding themselves facing sexual assault charges, whether or not either partner feels victimized. States have responded to these cases in a variety of ways. This report presents an overview of the efforts to handle such cases and calls attention to suggested ways to address the dilemmas caused by the laws as they are written.”

Watch More:
Can The Government Regulate Your Sex Life?

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Photo by Enrique López-Tamayo Biosca
Santuario de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Barranca del Pichón) Tepic,Estado de Nayarit,México
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