Age of Consent – No

Should the age of sexual consent become standardized across all US states? Absolutely. It would be great to have some uniformity in legal standards. That will only happen if each state decides to set their standards at the same level other states apply.

The federal government does not have the authority to apply something like this nationwide, nor should it. We already have federal regulations for way too many things that should not be managed on the federal level.

The media mostly does not help when discussing something like this. They will tell us that there was a federally imposed speed limit of 55 for several years. There was nothing of the sort. The federal government has no authority to set speed limits anywhere except on federal government property. What they actually did was impose blackmail on the states.

Directed by Elizabeth Dole, the then Secretary of Transportation (and, incidentally, someone who claims to be a Republican and an opponent of big government), the states were informed they would have to impose a speed limit of 55 or they would lose federal dollars for transportation.

Some states, notably Montana and Nevada, seriously considered giving up federal funds and keeping their own counsel about speed limits. The lure of money was too strong and they caved in.

The age of consent is not something that directly concerns the federal government and there is no good reason for it to inset itself and try to impose some kind of nationwide standard. It would require an amendment to the Constitution for it to have the authority, and that is not going to happen.

Where would we set that age, anyway? Would it be 18 or 16? Or maybe it should be 14? The arguments begin and they will continue. There is no possibility of getting enough people to agree on any specific age to pass an amendment.

The Constitution clearly states that any powers not given to the federal government are reserved for the states, or the people. That is how it is and that is how it should be. There is one sound reason why we should have such a national standard, and that is the requirements imposed on those who have been found guilty of what is termed a sex crime.

Because the age of consent varies from one state to another, so does the definition of statutory rape. That means a young man from one state can be branded as a sex offender and have to register as such with local authorities everywhere he goes for committing an act that is not even a crime in another state.