The Fear, it is Mongered. Gay Marriage and the Slippery Slope to the Pedophilia that has Been Legal in Heterosexual Marriage for Hundreds of Years.
The latest in Christian right fearmongering about Teh Gays comes from the American Family Association, breathlessly reporting that pedophilia has now been recognized as a sexual orientation by the American Psychology Association, and this is a consequence of gay marriage. Slippery slope and all that. The fact that pedophilia was not recognized as a sexual orientation and Charisma News has admitted as such, does not seem to stop the fearmongering. In fact, if you read the retraction from Charisma News, they say “This is good news, but many observers have been predicting for years that pedophilia would be reclassified as a sexual orientation. And some still believe the mental health profession is on a slippery slope heading in that direction.”
I love retractions of the form “we were wrong in this instance, but we are still totes right that this is going to happen.” Charisma news also states that the AFA wasn’t fearmongering, but I would probably only believe that if AFA had been one of the groups calling for clarification from the American Psychology Association and had issued such a retraction themselves. Or better yet, asking for clarification before reporting.
More seriously and with less slippery slope and Teh Gay Fearmongering, let us consider for a moment the current state of the legality of pedophilia in the US following the legalization of gay marriage. In all 50 states of the US, minimum age for marriage is younger than 18 with parental consent (though to be fair, in a few states, one must have a court order as well as parental consent). In all 50 states of the US, this situation predates marriage equality. In some states there is no minimum provided there is parental consent. This means pedophilia is only illegal without marriage that parents approve of. And by marriage, we mean (until just recently) the god-fearing one man (or actually boy) one woman (or actually girl) sort of marriage.
Even beyond the legal age aspect, if the christian fearmongers cared about pedophilia rather than demonizing homosexuality, they would not encourage a permanent infantilization of women coupled with a willful discouragement of education, both sexual and otherwise, in order to remove the ability of women to have the power and education they are entitled to and need in order to make sexual and marital choices as adults.
Featured is John Collier’s The Child Bride, via wikimedia commons