Most people will agree: Sexual predators who target children are bad. However, some GOP legislators and religious leaders are OK with adults having sex with children—as long as they are legally married. A recent flurry of legislation to review the minimum marriage age is pitting the rights of predators against the rights of children, and the predators have a surprisingly amount of support.
The age of consent to marry in most states is 18. However, in several states, if a parent and/or a judge agree to waive that requirement, children as young as 13 can be married, and in 27 states, there is no minimum age to marry. Who wants to marry a child? Well, someone who wants to have sex with a child. And for many GOP legislators who are reviewing their states’ laws on the matter, making it legal makes it OK.