I used to make fun of Singapore for throwing a guy in jail for receiving a consensual blowjob (note that while the article says the woman was 16, that’s the age of consent in Singapore). Now Georgia has upped the ante on that bastion of enlightenment and freedom:
[Link] HUNSTEIN, Presiding Justice, concurring.
Wilson was convicted of aggravated child molestation based upon an act of oral sodomy performed on him by victim T.C., which was documented on videotape and seems to show that the victim’s participation in the act was voluntary. Wilson was 17 years old at the time of the act; the victim was 15 years old. Pursuant to the version of the aggravated child molestation statute then in effect, Wilson was sentenced to ten years imprisonment without possibility of parole.
Jessica covered the gender angle very well. Although most sodomy laws are gender-neutral – though at Lindsay’s party, Zuzu (or was it Scott?) talked about an old California ruling that a female-victim-only sodomy law was acceptable since men always wanted sex while women feared pregnancy – their application is anything but.
I suppose it all goes back to the sex crime view of rape. Treating socially unapproved consensual sex as aggravated child molestation is one side of the coin; treating real child molestation as mere socially unapproved consensual sex is the other. Hence, as commenter BEG notes, the Georgia court convicted even after concluding it was consensual, while a California court convicted and handed down only a six year sentence in a case of aggravated sexual assault after seeing a very brutal rape on videotape.
The civil liberties issues that are considered most important in the US are domestic spying and the civil rights/civil liberties fusion issues that are abortion and gay rights. But there are other important issues, too: the death penalty, obscenity laws, age of consent laws that fail to get that 14-year-olds have consensual sex all the time, the War on Drugs.