Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012, at 11:41 AM ET
Stop Calling KC a Pedophile
"Of course, while these relationships may be consensual in spirit, they are against the law depending on the somewhat arbitrary determination of what constitutes the “age of consent” in each state. Still, I know many gay men who have been on the younger end of this kind of situation; many only look back on it with fondness, gratitude, or sometimes even condescension at the silly old people they used to get rides and alcohol. Of course, power imbalances are real, and others come out damaged. Experiences differ.
Again, I’m not necessarily defending these kinds of relationships—they are clearly fraught and have the potential for terrible outcomes. But our weird cultural investment in teenage “innocence” has led many to ignore the specifics of the C case and unjustly paint the man as a pedophile. The ethical landscape is much muddier than the coverage of and reaction to C would lead you to believe."