What happened in Steubenville, for example, was very obviously wrong. Football team, passed out victim, pictures posted online. Several crimes occurred. And sadly, many of the crimes are not unique circumstances. 'Feminist' bloggers were quick to share their outrage.
More recently, there is another rape case in the news, one of a very different sort. From DailyKos article:
Florida teen Kaitlyn Hunt, 18, is seeing her young life turned upside down and her future jeopardized simply because she fell in love. Unfortunately for her, she fell in love with a younger girl who has vindictive bigots for parents.
Perpetrator: 18 year old white female
Victim: 14 year old [white?] female
Incident: Sex in high school bathroom. Sex was consensual, if a 14 year old could consent to sex with an 18 year old.
Hunt opted to refuse a plea deal, which means she'll be in court and potentially face the maximum penalty for the crime.
Consent laws in the west are rather strange. So strange in the United States, that 'feminist' forums think they could change.
Adding to the strangeness of this situation, DailyKos went as far as creating a petition to present to the Florida prosecutor asking to drop the charges.
Then DailyKos came to realize the real ages of the girls involved:
The public scrutiny of this case has brought to light problems with the initial reporting, and with the original story coming from the Hunt family. Previously, Hunt's parents said that the younger girl was 15, and Hunt 17 when the relationship began. The release of the arrest warrant made clear, as subsequent news stories report, that the younger girl was 14 and Hunt was indeed 18 when the relationship began.
These corrections, and the initial dishonesty of Hunt's parents, make this story much more problematic, and our original petition moot.
So, move the birthdates out a little bit and a progressive news site goes from all out calling the situation a love story interrupted by the victim's parents ("vindictive bigots") to calling the situation "problematic".
Many would still read the facts of the situation as presenting a good challenge to existing law. Laws based on age do have a tendency to make cruel and short sighted assessments of complex situations.
However there remain a few interesting questions that have come to light.
Should this case be treated differently than a case considering an 18 year old male and 14 year old female?
Would we be reading about this if the suspect was not a gorgeous 18 year old white woman?
This presents a unique opportunity to have a discussion.
Will people talk about this and potentially disagree, or will they simply wait until the next news cycle presents a blindingly obvious bogeyman?