Friday, October 06, 2006

Mark Foley, possibly as legal as a beagle

You've Got Mail!
A facinating radio exchange last night brought new info to me . With the age of consent right there at sixteen in the district of columbia, and with a sixteen-yr.-old page, depending on the precise locus of Mark's PC, and the page's PC, when he sent his IMs, he may have just been engaging in some friendly online chat sex with a young adult male. "Contributing to the delinquency" would also apparently not apply to the messages.
There have been some attempts to criminalize the behaviour, but they've apparently run afoul of that pesky First Amendment to our Constitution.
Now that we've gotten that out of the way, is Foley just as patently gross as it gets?
Of course, I now can start observing some universal truths, and making some wild comparisons. . .
D.C. Code Section 22.3001, "Sexual Abuse - Definitions" - (3) "Child" means a person who has not yet attained the age of 16 years. (2001)


Anonymous Mister Parker said...

Well, let's say he was a company man making unwanted sexual advances on 18 year old secretaries ... it may not be a felony, but it's still a firing offense and the bosses who let it go on despite three years of complaints need to look for a new job as well.

Foley was a boss type, the pages were employees, not to mention teenagers, and the only thing anybody in charge seemed to care about was winning an election -- time to clean House.

Friday, October 06, 2006 10:58:00 am  
Blogger bigglesby said...

Why, you seem to have gleaned where I was going here.

How did ol' Mark Foley go on the impeachment vote in the House, me wonders?

Now, he wasn't a twenty-one-yr.-old intern, that young 16-yr.-old page, but he was in essentially the same legal position as ol' Monica Lewinsky-- he was old enough to consent to sexual activity. And he was the victim of a much more powerful man who was his superior and "employer."

I never understood the 1998-1999 concerns with infidelity, but I was mildly troubled by the sexuall harrassment [a term of art into which the Clinton-Lewinsky relationship fell, as does Mister Foley's hitting on pages]. And I was significantly troubled by the powerful preying on the youthful, an oft-discussed theme. And I was extraordinarily troubled by the lying under oath, multiple times, and the public lies [predicated on lawyer-like distinctions] and slash-and-burn conduct.

This is all interesting stuff, of course -- I don't think there's any question that the conduct, even if legal, was wrong. And by "wrong" I mean "wrong," not "something we should publicly denounce and privately tolerate." And the inability and unwillingness of leadership to deal with it at all is the kind of indictment that should land them all on their cans. I hope that the voters do kick the bums out.

Of course, now we can move on to the age of consent, and what it all means.

These poor "children" who must be protected, but can, at the age of twelve, knowingly and meaningfully appreciate and decide to abort a pregnancy. But who can't enter into a binding contract until they're eighteen.

Friday, October 06, 2006 11:50:00 am  

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