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All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
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Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

Created: 09/10/17

Replies: 9

Posted Sep. 10, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1358

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Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

Until 2006, the state of Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage, as long as the underage bride or groom had parental or judicial consent. On occasion this produced child brides far younger than Wavy would have been. The law now sets the minimum age at 15, a year younger than the age of consent. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape? What if Kellen's wish had come true and he and Wavy had married when she turned 14? 


Posted Sep. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Carol Rainer

Join Date: 09/03/15

Posts: 40

RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

Just that it becomes legal at that age. A girl or a woman, being fifteen years old, is still just 15, and, I think, too young to fully understand the whole sexual thing.


Posted Oct. 01, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 310

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

The legality of marriage would have prevented Kellen from going to prison and being wrongfully labeled as a pervert/ child molester. Are most 15 year olds really ready to get married? No! While I know that the people I dated at 15 were totally NOT the people I would have wanted to build a life with, I also had the prospect of thinking about what university I wanted to go to, backed by a safe and strong family so that Icould relax, be a teenager who enjoyed good grades and know that between my grades and my family's income, I could go probably go to school wherever I wanted. This was the exact opposite for Wavy; Kellen was both safety and guidance for Wavy. They needed each other; they provided some sanity for each other. It moved past a father-figure to sex, but that was the only expression of love that Wavy had ever seen.


Posted Oct. 02, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jenniferj

Join Date: 09/30/17

Posts: 20

RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

Marriage involves a long term commitment and offers legal protection and benefits. In this case, it would have protected Wavy from an abusive situation. I do think it could be abused for statutory rape, however, so I would hope that when a state allows a minor to marry with parental consent that there are certain standards, such as mandatory counseling and an interview by a social worker, prior to issuing a marriage license. I find it odd that the law would consider someone ready to be married before they feel they are responsible enough to vote or drink alcohol.


Posted Oct. 02, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ScribblingScribe

Join Date: 02/29/16

Posts: 60

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

The law would have protected Kellen and Wavy if they'd waited, but they didn't. Even in the book, Kellen had parental consent. If they had waited until they'd gotten married, he would not have gone to jail or been labeled a sex offender. They would have had a much better life and chance. As far as marriage mitigating what we consider statutory rape, I don't see that it can. If a child is a minor, then he or she is unable to take responsibility for that act and a marriage license does little to change that. That is my personal opinion. However, given the situation for Wavy and Kellen, I think it would have protected her. As in all life, context matters. Things are never black and white. There are variables that change situations. Their situation was unique and I was glad they had an avenue to get Wavy out and protect her, at least from her parents and that situation. As damaged as she was, I am not sure whether being sexual with Kellen was good or bad for her. But I do know he was better able than anyone else in the story to take care of her.


Posted Oct. 15, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
JulieAB

Join Date: 07/16/13

Posts: 44

RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

I don't believe 15 is old enough for marriage, even after reading this book. How do you stop illegal selling of children by parents to pedophiles? Parents like Liam who don't care what happens to their children.


Posted Oct. 15, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mal

Join Date: 09/09/13

Posts: 155

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

15 is entirely too young. Mentally, physically and emotionally a 15 year old is immature to enter such a committment. Marriage at this age is no better than pandering a child.


Posted Oct. 19, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
pennyp

Join Date: 03/22/12

Posts: 278

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

15 for 99.9 % of people is way too young. I was married @ 18 the first time and that was too young. In times past, there were fewer opportunities for women and that may have worked better then.in today's world while children are exposed to more, have higher expectations and appear to be more mature, I personally think they are far lass independent emotionally than kids even 20 years ago were.


Posted Oct. 24, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1358

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

There have been a number of interesting articles on the pervasive nature of under-age marriage in the USA. Ironically, while many so called third world countries have categorically banned the practice in recent years, apparently in all states in the US it is possible to legally get married younger than 18 in special circumstances such as with parental consent and/or the girl is pregnant.

According to the Washington Post this July:
"More than 200,000 children were married in the US over the past 15 years... Three 10-year-old girls and an 11-year-old boy were among the youngest to wed... The true figure is likely to be much higher because 10 states provided no or incomplete statistics."
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/200000-children-married-us-15-years-child-marriage-child-brides-new-jersey-chris-christie-a7830266.html

Just yesterday, the BBC reported on the topic in a five minute video:
"Angel was 13 when her mother forced her to marry and start a family. 'I felt like a slave,' she says of her childhood. While countries like Zimbabwe, Malawi and El Salvador have recently banned child marriage, it remains legal in the US - and half of states have no set minimum age below which you cannot get married."
http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us-canada-41727495/why-does-the-us-have-so-many-child-brides


Posted Oct. 26, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
amberb

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 83

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RE: Until 2006, Kansas had no law requiring a minimum age for marriage. It now sets the minimum age at 15. How does marriage change your view of what would otherwise be statutory rape?

In this country, a person is considered a legal "adult" at age 18. Marriage is an adult decision, and I think that 18 should be the minimum age of marriage, no exceptions.


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