The Polanski case: It’s the consent, stupid
posted at 10:00 am on September 30, 2009 by Meryl Yourish
It’s really not difficult. The Polanski case comes down to one thing: Consent.
A 13-year-old girl cannot consent to having sex with a 44-year-old man. In fact, a 13-year-old girl is not old enough to consent to having sex with a 30-year-old, a 20-year-old, a 14-year-old, or even another 13-year-old. It doesn’t matter that Polanski plied the girl with alcohol and drugs. It doesn’t matter that he claims he didn’t know how old she was.
It’s the fact that a 13-year-old child cannot consent to having sex, for the obvious reason that the child is thirteen years old.
It’s reprehensible that Whoopi Goldberg said “not necessarily” to the question “Would I want my 14-year-old daughter having sex with somebody?” The answer should be a plain, simple: No. Absolutely not.
When Anne Applebaum says that the child asked permission to be photographed in the jacuzzi, she implies that that was asking permission for whatever happened next. What happened next was rape. It frankly wouldn’t matter if the child’s mother had been right there and given explicit permission for Polanski to have sex with her daughter—the fact that the child cannot consent still applies.
There is no defense of this case whatsoever. There is no, “Yes, he did a bad thing, BUT” leading into a long-winded treatise on how the poor man has suffered all these years by not being able to come back to America, and is forced to live a life of luxury in Europe.
My heart bleeds.
It’s the consent. A thirteen-year-old child cannot consent to sex. Period.