Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Why No Outcry about Statutory Rape?

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Why No Outcry about Statutory Rape?

Article excerpt

GOP lawmakers seeking to reform the public welfare system have learned much about the problem in the time that their party has controlled Congress. Unfortunately, this knowledge hasn't enlightened their thinking about out-of-wedlock pregnancies, particularly among young girls.

The Republican reforms are built on the premise that the same teen-age boys behind gang violence and other antisocial behavior are also responsible for most out-of-wedlock births among such girls. The GOP knows by now that the fathers are just as likely to be older men. Moreover, some studies have found that a majority of the teen mothers had previously been raped or molested.

Where is the party's outrage over this abuse, which amounts to statutory rape? There is no better description of the harm that some men do to the bodies of many girls under age 17. The thundering silence on this issue is in sharp contrast to vociferous support for denying family planning services to poor teens, even in cases of rape. …

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