An author who wants to drastically liberalize child sex laws was published on Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders ‘s Senate website Wednesday.
The article itself, written by Judith Levine, is quite mundane. Titled “Two Ways to Fix Income Inequality,” it calls for using government assistance or an increased minimum wage to improve the lot of America’s poor.
But Levine is best-known for the book she wrote 13 years ago, titled Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex. Available in its entirety online, the book takes a host of positions on sexual matters that are at best well outside the American mainstream.
Levine describes society’s fear of pedophiles as overblown in the book, and argues child pornography is rarely produced, usually not very pornographic, and not worthy of heavy police pursuit. She also suggests lowering the age of consent and complained American society is too quick to condemn relationships between young teenagers and adults.
‘Teens often seek out sex with older people, and they do so for understandable reasons,” Levine wrote in the book. “An older person makes them feel sexy and grown up, protected and special; often the sex is better than it would be with a peer who has as little skill as they do. For some teens, a romance with an older person can feel more like salvation than victimization.”
Levine provocatively asks in the book why a child as young as 11 can be tried as an adult for murder, but children of the same age cannot exercise any agency in sexual matters.
Last year, Levine condemned the prosecution of seven football players in New Jersey for sexually assaulting younger players, arguing the harm to young minority men from prosecution for sexual assault outweighed any harm they had inflicted.
“For kids who are 15 to 17 years old, it will be life crushing,” she wrote, referring to a felony conviction for sexual assault. “Yes, more life-crushing even than being punched, kicked, groped, or subject to an unwanted finger inching into your anus.”
Sanders himself published an essay in 1972 in which he said women fantasize about being gang-raped, although he has recently defended the writing as a failed attempt at satire. (RELATED: Bernie Sanders’ 1972 Essay On Sex: ‘A Woman… Fantasizes About Being Raped By 3 Men Simultaneously’)
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