The Age Of Consent
Laws are founded on the acknowledgement of an objective moral law which, as the natural law, written in the human heart, is the obligatory point of reference for civil law itself.
Dr. Ian R.K. Paisley
Sir, The enforcement of the Parliament Act to lower the age of homosexual consent appears completely to disregard the advice of the gathered, seasoned wisdom that is deemed by many people to be the strength of the reformed House of Lords.
Surely, with the protection of the young and vulnerable at stake, a further time of reflection would have been preferable to political bullying?
The Times – Letters to the Editor 6th December (J Chaffey)
Just why does Tony Blair want the lower age of consent to be law? The House of Lords has refused it on three occasions. If such can be over-ridden by Parliament what is the point of the House of Lords? And now that it has been forced through with the Parliament Act why is it 16 throughout the country excepting Northern Ireland which is 17.
Peter Tatchell says (The Times –Letters to the Editor 6th December):
Sir, Now the issue of equality in the age of consent has been finally settled, perhaps it is time to consider whether 16 is the appropriate age at which consent should become lawful.
Whether we approve or not the average age of first sexual experience is now 14, according to the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles 1994. With consent at 16, more than half the teenage population is criminalised. This is not protection; it is persecution.
Another letter states:
However, the simple answer is to accord gays the rights due to them in a civilised society. The equally infuriating suffragettes shut up when their rights were granted; gays would do the same.
Naturally sound and fury will continue in this small island, but I doubt whether the skies will fall in when we eventually follow suit [lowering age also to 15].
-- D. Hunter
In an article of The Catholic Herald 8th December 2000 it is reported that:
‘A Catholic woman claims she was ostracised after challenging Tony Blair on the new legislation lowering the age of consent during a visit to her local church. Parish priest, Father Brian Murphy had invited the Prime Minister to All Saints at Surrey Hill, County Durham. Mr Blair…avoided answering Pat Cartwright’s questions about the ‘gay vote’…
Mrs Cartwright claimed that when she then addressed his [TB] agent, John Burton, Mr Burton turned away and called her ‘a bigot’.
The Prime minister has on the one hand pushed and pushed to get the age of consent lowered while seemingly in the other hand he holds that marriage is the way. Why is it so urgent? More votes for the next election? It certainly can not in anyway be about upholding the Biblical Faith and foundations of this country. In the light of the increasing number of paedophile priests being exposed in the Roman Catholic Church perhaps it may be a new moralistic piece of Catholic Social Doctrine.
Surely the writer of the first quote is then correctly concerned.
Peter Tatchell’s phrases are as contradictory as usual. How can it be ‘finally settled’ if it is ‘time to consider’. He goes on to quote other countries and that lowering the age to 14 would remove legal obstacles and give the right of young people to make their own choice about when they are ready for sex. He further states that ‘providing the partners consent and there is no more than three years difference in their ages… this would protect them from exploitation by older people’.
So, such people would have the maturity for sex but not that required against exploitation. This in its own way disregards ‘the rights’ of the 14 year old to have sex say with a 20 year old if that is his preference. It is a nonsense and a dangerous mess.
Are more young people having sex and at an earlier age than previous generations? If so, why? Legal ‘obstacles’ are in place to protect the whole of society. Other countries may not have a history of upholding Biblical principles but our nation does. Without the Biblical moral guidelines, surely anything goes, for who is to say it is wrong. When man makes out there is no sin he sees God as irrelevant. Man who makes out that sin is not is but a liar and would make God out to be a liar. He deceives but himself.
D. Hunter in his quote misses this point. Lobbying from minority groups never stops, it is their rights above everyone else’s. (There is a reason for them being a minority.) When they have achieved their rights no one can have his rights as this is called intolerance – this of course, works only one way. The Muslim religion is a prime example too.
It is disappointing that D. Hunter suffers from the inevitability factor – Sodom and Gomorrah didn’t think the skies would fall in but it rained sulphur and they were no more! In God’s eyes not to decide for or against is a decision against.
The Bible says, man will exchange truth for a lie, and this is what is happening. People are under a strong delusion by their choosing. By all things we will be judged and held accountable. Knowing man’s rebellion so well, God has left us in no doubt as to what is right and wrong within His Creation. It is one thing to make a mistake and repent. It is another to live a life of planned disobedience against that clearly ordained for all to follow.
The Catholic woman in The Catholic Herald’s article has a good point but it is misplaced. She sees it only in terms of it being ‘a very anti-Catholic witness’ instead of seeing that the act of homosexuality is simply wrong at all ages, in all places and at all times - so declares the living Lord.
‘Christianity is part of the laws of England’ – Sir Matthew Hale
‘The Word is the Verb and the Verb is God’ – Victor Hugo
The laws that are being introduced are iniquitous laws which are not in conformity with the divine plan of living. Laws are founded on the acknowledgement of an objective moral law which, as the natural law, written in the human heart, is the obligatory point of reference for civil law itself.