An outcry has occurred over the arrest of an 18 year old woman Kaitlyn Hunt for having a “consensual”, same-sex relationship with another student. People have been outraged at this arrest because they were in a same-sex relationship. Many have claimed this was an attack on the LGBT community, as though she was arrested for being homosexual. This is not the case, she was not arrested under some kind of anti-homosexual law, she was arrested for “sexual battery on a person 12-16 years old.”
The two began a relationship when the older woman was 17 “and the girl she was dating was about three years younger. According to an account posted to Facebook by Kaitlyn’s mother“. Which means during that time the relationship crossed into the realm of illegality. This illegality is what caused her to be arrested at the request of the parents. This arrest would still have taken place if it was a heterosexual relationship. According to the article the charges were placed by the younger girl’s parents when the older woman turned 18.
This would not be happening if the same situation occurred with other relationships:
Older male, younger female: The male would be prosecuted with very little criticism.
Older female, younger male: There would be arguments that it’s not the same thing as the other way around making a double-standard, but she would be prosecuted all the same.
2 male homosexual relationship: I think there wouldn’t be much outrage., it would be seen as a clear-cut case of taking advantage of a younger person. (Whether this is true or not is another matter.)
The question that should be asked here, what can be criticized is the age of consent. Is the age of consent law fair? Is it a true reflection of our values in society? The problem here is the age of consent law, not homosexual rights, because the age of consent equally applies to heterosexual people. I believe there should be some alterations to the age of consent law, that is what should be discussed here, not perceived discrimination based on sexual orientation.
What is happening here is the zealotry of those involved in identity politics. They are too wrapped up in their identity to see the conditions that are going on around them as they affect other people too. This law also applies to heterosexual couples. This why we as Marxists reject identity politics and achieve revolution as a whole for all of humanity rather than creating groups based on one issue.
There are real acts of discrimination carried out against LGBT people, however this is not one of them.