The Instigator
Fluer
Pro (for)
Losing
5 Points
The Contender
Marauder
Con (against)
Winning
10 Points

Should the age of consent be lowered?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Marauder
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/6/2012 Category: Health
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 6,422 times Debate No: 20252
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (3)

 

Fluer

Pro

First round is acceptance only and definitions only.

Mechanism
Age of consent (16) should be lowered to 14.

Definitions
Age of consent: the age at which a person's consent to have sex is recognised as valid in the eyes of the law. ( http://www.idebate.org... )
Marauder

Con

some more definitions.....

SEX: when a male and female....get together.... normally in a bedroom...., though it could be done in other places like and elevator, a car, on a pool table, a shower.....lets just say a bedroom.....they normally take off there closes..... then they get closer to each other then...................Bazinga

I'm not really going to spell out what sex is I think we both know, I just thought the thought of having its definition put up was funny.

Anyway.....SEX. now that I have your attiention...

I accapt this debate. since thats all this first round is for.
Debate Round No. 1
Fluer

Pro

I thank my opponent for accepting this debate and waiting patiently for my reply.

I will bring up two points in this round: status and education.

Status
Underage sex is becoming a social status because it is a forbidden fruit that 14 and 15 year olds know they can get. I say that by making the age of consent 14 rather than 16 takes away this "status". Even if 14 and 15 year olds want to still use it to increase their social status due to peer pressure or anything else if they get into trouble they can be helped easier because it's legal. There will still be younger teens wanting to have sex but by lowering the age to something which is still acceptable they see they have less time to wait and are less likely to get "restless" by restrictions placed on them therefore it becomes less of an issue for them. It will not stop 100% the young teens but for most 14 is a suitable compromise. The majority of the time it is those who are 14 or 15 that start participating in underage sex and we see that it can bring them benefits having it made legal. If they want to do it they are likely going to find a way therefore it is better to make it easier for them to talk about their problems and get help if they need it and take away some of the social status it brings to act as a deterrent for some.

Education
When the age of consent is lowered schools will be able to give their pupils better sexual education when they really need it. At the age of 13 or 14 or even 15 we all get a little confused. Hormones ruling your thoughts and feelings we don't always know what to do with. This is also a time where most teens are very suceptable to peer pressure but are usually to scared to go and get proper information so rumours become a problem. I'm pretty sure that there are people out there who at one point in their youth thought a blow job had something to do with a hairdryer. When schools can give out trustworthy information on sex, pregnancy and STD's/STI's vulnerable teens are less likely to fall prey to foul rumours and even if they get pressured into having sex they know what to expect and they know who to go to for help. They get correct information at the time they need it most.

So for these reasons and more to follow the motion should be proposed.
Thank you
I look forward to my opponents reply.
Marauder

Con


Rebuttal #1: My opponents first argument is basically the billiards argument. Quick making it illegal and they will stop doing it, like kids did when playing pool was no longer illegal for those underage.


This kind of logic only works though in special cases like it was with billiard tables. The only reason kids were clamoring to play billiards when they were legally too young was purely to rebel against such a absurd law. This is not the case with sex.


Those underage driven to have sex (and those of age) have it together cause of lust, hormones, and even to say their ‘not a virgin’ anymore. Wanting to not be a virgin is not going to be a social status that would change from making 14 year old sex legal. It would if it just came from wanting to rebel or maybe even if it was mostly about rebellion but neither of those are the case. Its mostly about our animal hormone enraged desires and the status of saying we have ‘become a man’ from this.


The fact is laws do deter people from doing things in most all cases. If they did not the whole principal of even having laws would be pointless. Do a few people steal just so they can have the thrill of being a law-breaker? Sure but that does not mean no longer making it illegal to steal would deter stealing. Thievery would go up. Knowing something is ‘the law’ is sometimes all the moral judgment some people have so it is all that stops them from doing it.


Rebuttal #2: If I understand Pros case about education it’s basically ‘we need to teach 14 year olds about safe sex and reproduction and wise decisions concerning sex, so we must make it legal for 14 year olds to have sex’ . You know, so can have hands on experience so they can know better learn about what were teaching them.


My opponent didn’t say that last part of course, but unless Pro did then her second point makes no sense. Presenting the need to give a higher education only logically demands increasing the education in school. That’s all there is too that, and unless your asking for ‘practical labs’ to be included in the school lesson (I really hope your not) then lowering the age of consent would not contribute to this or be needed.


The fact is, we already have courses like ‘family life’ for our 7th and 8th graders as is where they learn about STD’s and safe sex and things like that with the age of consent were its at.


Request Clarification:


You stated that there going to do it anyway….“…therefore it is better to make it easier for them to talk about their problems and get help if they need it”


Please elaborate on ‘what’ got easier about ‘what’ problems exactly after reducing the age of consent to 14 years of age.


Under ‘Education you spoke of rumors….. “This is also a time where most teens are very suceptable to peer pressure but are usually to scared to go and get proper information so rumours become a problem.” Further making vague reference to the rumors later “…. teens are less likely to fall prey to foul rumours”


Please elaborate on what your are speaking of when you say ‘rumors’ and if you could after that explain how they go away after lowering the age consent so that 14 year olds can have sex.


New Argument #1: When it comes down to it when does the age of consent come into play? When considering legal matters like when a smooth silver tongued college age young man takes advantage of your underage daughter. Even though she let him and was willing, she’s 14 and he can still be charged with rape because consent is something she cannot legally give.


As Pro said 14 year olds and 15 year olds are just learning to deal with all there new hormones and it can be confusing. And to bring up a factor Pro did not mention there brains are not yet fully developed either. http://www.edinformatics.com... The area of the brain involved in judgment is not yet finished developing until the early 20’s of our life.


14 year olds are not considered legally capable of making the decision for themselves to go to the hospital or not. Having gone through EMS training myself, I know that there are a few cases were a patient does not need to give consent for me to take them to the hospital, and they all involve something hindering the mind. Whether its there injury, there drunk, or there just too young to decide that for themselves.


If we cannot bring ourselves to be capable of recognizing that a 14 year olds mental ability to choose to not go to the hospital how can start treating them like they can make decisions to have sex for themselves? Fact is you should be charged with rape when you have sex with a ‘willing’ participant that was on drugs you snuck in there drink at dinner, and you should be charged with it when it was a girl too young to be able to make a reasoned decision on sex.


New Argument #2: A recent study has shown that if a person finishes high school, works, and waits until after there 21 to get married before having there first child, it stated that


“young adults who followed all three norms had a 2 percent chance of winding up in poverty and a 74 percent chance of winding up in the middle class (defined as earning roughly $50,000 or more). By contrast, young adults who violated all three norms had a 76 percent chance of winding up in poverty and a 7 percent chance of winding up in the middle class.” http://www.brookings.edu...


To put it shortly, allowing 14 years a chance to conceive early and before marriage before graduating gives them a VERY high chance of living in poverty as they grow up.


Conclusion: considering my #1 & #2 cases together, if we should change the age of consent in anyway it should be raised not lowered. It’s a scientific fact that the brain is not yet fully developed in its ability to make judgments until early 20’s and studies show it will reduce your chances of living in poverty if among other things you stay a virgin until you are over 21 and married.


Debate Round No. 2
Fluer

Pro

Defence
"we need to teach 14 year olds about safe sex and reproduction and wise decisions concerning sex, so we must make it legal for 14 year olds to have sex"
No, I wouldn't say this is accurate. My point is rather that we see that 14 year olds have the capability to have sex and under the right guidance they have the have the capability to make judgements for themselves.

Clarification
If a 14 or 15 year old gets pregnant or an STD (problem) then they can go to a hospital or a clinic or even a family member with less fear because what they have done is legal which means they feel less need to hide their problems.
Rumours could be anything that someone heard from someone else's older brother who told them that sex always involves chocolate sauce or whatever. Something that is made up that they may be inclined to believe without access to a reliable source of information which in this case I am saying is a school classroom. And just for the record no I am not suggesting this "hands on approach" you seem to think I am. I think the problems might be coming from the fact that in Britain (where I live) we do not have these "family life" courses you mentioned until we are about 15 (on average). What I was suggesting was that 14 or 15 year olds are having sex usually without being fully aware of the consequences and where to seek confidential medical advice if necessary. By lowering the age of consent we are accepting that they have sex and accepting that we need to get relevant information to them.

Rebuttal
"man takes advantage of your underage daughter." Any older man can still take advantage of someone who is 16 or 17. The difference here is that anyone aged 16 or over can appeal to authorities or guardians of help (physical or psychological) easily because having sex is legal. Anyone can be taken advantage of no matter what age.
"The area of the brain involved in judgment is not yet finished developing until the early 20�€™s of our life." Yet we still let 16 - 20 year olds have sex.
"14 year olds are not considered legally capable of making the decision for themselves to go to the hospital or not." All the more reason that they should be able to go an adult for advice with less fears than they would have at the moment because sex at the moment is illegal for them.
"Fact is you should be charged with rape when you have sex with a "willing" participant that was on drugs you snuck in there drink at dinner" When someone has been drugged not many juries or judges will see these people as "willing participants" no matter what age they are and drugging someone is still seen as a crime even if sex isn't involved so I don't see how this example applies.
"you should be charged with it when it was a girl too young to be able to make a reasoned decision on sex." By proposing this motion I am proposing that 14 year olds can make a reasoned decision about sex especially if we give them more relevant information (consequences of sex and the pro's of waiting).
"if a person finishes high school, works, and waits until after there 21 to get married before having there first child" This is a really nice idea but this is not actually what happens. Even if the benefits are better (and I agree that they are) only a minority stay virgins. "Three-quarters of a million teens between 15 and 19 become pregnant each year...Out of all teen pregnancies, 82% are unintended. Teen pregnancy accounts for 20% of all unplanned pregnancies annually." [1]
"allowing 14 years a chance to conceive early and before marriage before graduating gives them a VERY high chance of living in poverty as they grow up." Teenage pregnancy is a problem but we see that it is better to legalise sex since they are having sex anyway if it means that they get better access to medical treatment or other services for support then we see that it is better overall.

Conclusion
Yes young teens will have sex but if we can give them better access to information and lessen their fears about going to guardians or authorities for any medical or legal help then we should lower the age of consent.

[1] http://womensissues.about.com...
Marauder

Con

I will do my best to respond to your rebuttals in order this final round. The stuff thats in bold is a snippet of what my opponent has said cut short for space sake. But I am responding to the full sement of the quote Pro gave in reponse to each quote she gave from me. So if any of the following comes off as confusing just search where the quote is up there highlight it, read it, then read my response. There in order and most of them are first few words of the case Pro makes so this should not be hard.

Any older man can still take advantage…” Irrelevant. The point to my argument was not ‘reducing the age would let men take advantage of younger girls’ my argument was this would free that man from charges of rape had he gotten ‘consent’ from the 14 year old. Right now they can be charged for rape for having sex with your year old daughter, and you want to remove the ability to do that. At 14 young girls are easily ‘manipulated’ even without the drugs. I already proved it’s a scientific fact the brains ability to make judgment is not fully developed for girls or boys of that age. http://www.edinformatics.com...

“yet we still let…” and like I concluded in the last round, the age of consent should be raised. So this point is a FAIL.

“All the more reason that they…” with this rebuttal you make the fallacy of just saying something with out explaining the connection between ‘absence of choice in going to the hospital’ and ‘we should let 14 years olds have sex’

“…I don’t see how this example applies” It applies because it’s not considered ‘consent’ when true consent is impaired by drugs, I brought this up to show it makes my case that it should not be considered ‘consent’ either when true consent has been impaired by age which I proved it is impaired and you failed to refute. http://www.edinformatics.com...

“By proposing this motion I…” Yes that is your belief but you have not backed it by sources like I have related to that proposal or made a connection with how providing that sex education requires the age of consent to legally drop. Maybe in Britain you do not have ‘family life classes’ for 14 year olds but since you can see here in America we do and the age of consent is not lowered to have them then the age of consent should not have to be lowered over there either. Just start teaching the 14 year olds what they need to know and don’t fool around with the age of consent laws. They are not connected to the education problem and changing them with the start of introducing family life classes amounts to be an empty symbolic gesture at best.

“This is a nice idea but its not really what happens…” You clearly did not read the argument at all or register that I attached a source to it from a study taken by the Brookings Institution . If you did you clearly failed to rebut why my source was incorrect or why yours was. My argument was not that this is what happens so your rebuttal is a FAIL. My case was that when this happens it is shown to improve your chances of not being in poverty. This gives us reason raise the age of consent if we should do anything to it at all.

You also have failed to refute my point that the law really does discourage actions from being taken toward your ‘there doing it anyway…’ argument so it should be considered that the point stands. Legalizing it will increase underage sex not decrease it. It does not have to stop 100% of 14 year olds to still be a law that’s having its positive effect in place.

Final Concluding statements:

Everything my opponent has asked that we need to start doing to fix the problem of underage sex are things that do not need the age of consent to be dropped. She has left completely unaddressed the problem of change in the justice system to when children are taken advantage of and my key point about their ability to make judgments’ being impaired.

Pro has largely ignored most of what I have said or sourced, I have not only shown that lowering the age is a bad idea but that it’s a good idea to RAISE the age of consent to 21. And even if you do not agree with that proposal I think it should be clear from this debate that Pro gave no case that refutes this motion in the reverse direction of the resolution.

Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by JakeBoatman96 5 years ago
JakeBoatman96
I don't believe that the age of consent should be lowered, I just think it should be demolished! I mean really? What's the point of having it lowered that low? Might as well just remove it!
Posted by Marauder 5 years ago
Marauder
okay, thank you. I get a little worried when brand new members have just a day left to post there argument. 80% of the time in my past debates that useally means there not going to post at all or even come back on the website. We call them "crash&Burns" hear on DDO.

I understand having time constraints, a few of mine have had me push getting my argument in on time to where I only had 2 hours left to post it. But please, please, please dont Crash and Burn on me, its hard for me to describe the frustration that causes.
Posted by Fluer 5 years ago
Fluer
Apologies but some of us have exams I will post when I have time thank you.
Posted by Marauder 5 years ago
Marauder
It will only be a good debate if you actually post a round.
Posted by Fluer 5 years ago
Fluer
Also a good debate
Posted by DanT 5 years ago
DanT
By
Posted by DanT 5 years ago
DanT
I think it should be replaced with a statute unrelated to age.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 5 years ago
RoyLatham
FluerMarauderTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con's compelling argument was that consent laws deter older men from taking advantage of young women. Pro didn't have a good response. Note "there," "their" > "they're" Debate would have been improved by citing research and statistics.
Vote Placed by imabench 5 years ago
imabench
FluerMarauderTied
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Total points awarded:15 
Reasons for voting decision: Con showed that lowering the age of consent is clearly not the best way to teach younger kids about sex, and the con also showed how teens who have sex at an earlier age have a greater chance of ending up in poverty, giving him a hell of a reason to keep the age of consent high that the pro could not overcome. There was also the taking advantage argument the pro could not overcome either. grammar to pro but sources to con
Vote Placed by larztheloser 5 years ago
larztheloser
FluerMarauderTied
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Total points awarded:42 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro had BOP. Pro showed 14 y/olds having sex under status quo and showed benefits of lowering age-consent to education. Con mostly argued that 14 y/olds shouldn't be having sex, which was irrelevant because pro had already convinced me that they are. Con's counter-argument to education was entirely grounded in classroom education and missed the nuance of pro's point, which I felt was more grounded in social education. Con had better, albeit irrelevant, sources. Pro met their BOP. 3:2 aff win.