• Age Ain't Nothing But... Consent?
The Moment When There Should NOT Be An Exception To The Rule
30 Dec 2015 | elease ariana samms
The late Aaliyah sang openly yet subliminally about her alleged relationship with the much older, R&B singer, R. Kelly in her album, Age Ain't Nothing But A Number; thus, ushering in the misused and abused catchphrase with the same name, "age ain't nothing but a number," for all the consenting adults to excuse their actions with their much younger "significant" others. Brushing the laws set in place for statutory rape under the rug, the catchphrase became an explanation, a reason, an exception to the fact that a minor could have a consenting relationship with an adult without penalty. However, the truth of the matter still remains (even if so, under the rug), that a law is a law. And if the age of consent, by law is eighteen years old or what have you, then all said parties involved must understand the risks they are taking should their relationship be exposed.
So, why does this matter? What brought on this entry? Well, the answer to one particular interview question from Khloe Kardashian's cover story this past summer for COMPLEX magazine spurred this post. It is in that cover story, where Khloe addresses the criticism over her younger 17-year-old sister, Kylie Kardashian's relationship with Tyga, a 25-year-old rapper. Having been asked how she felt about all the criticism towards their, for all intents and purposes, seemingly inappropriate relationship according to societal views (and you guessed it, written LAWS), Khloe follows the question with an unsurprising explanation:
"I think at 16 I was probably f**king someone that was in their 20s, for sure. I wouldn’t say I was even dating, probably just sleeping with them. But again Kylie is not a normal 17-year-old. You’re not gonna say, “Hey, so what are you doing this weekend?” and have her say, “Having a slumber party at my girlfriend’s,” or “Going to prom.” That’s not what Kylie does. Kylie is taking business meetings and bought her first house or she’s going on a private plane with Karl Lagerfeld to take a meeting. That’s not even what people do in their 30s. It’s a rare circumstance, so let’s treat this as a special case."
(Kardashian, COMPLEX Magazine, 2015)
Pleading, at the end, for us to treat this as a special case, was just the cherry on top of the cake of pure stupidity. It seems, as of late, that stupidity, ignorance, bigotry, you name it, is running rampant at an all-time high. About every corner is something or someone burdened by idiocy. At this moment, it is nearly inescapable. However, it is in these moments of human fault, in which a handful of masses, like, I suppose myself, rise to the occasion to drop our two cents in the coin jar ― in hopes that we are able to educate, bring awareness, highlight those very faults, ignite justice, combat ignorance, and bigotry, or the like. Though our efforts tend usually to be in vain, we proceed on anyways knowing that we've at least touched one person, even if that one person is simply our own self.
It is on that note, that I begin, my READ of Khloe Kardashian's idiotic response. By read, I mean, the colloquial approach of attacking one's credibility. And even though this entry, is a bit dated as Kylie Kardashian is officially of age to be with and date whoever she’d like, the READ that follows still applies as this issue is an ongoing one that is not bound by the sheer and overwhelming openness of time.
First and foremost, Khole, homegirl, miss "I appropriate black culture without truly understanding the issues inherent with actually being BLACK," miss "it's gross my mom is dating a younger guy, but totally okay my younger sister is dating a GROWN man," I will NOT, I repeat, I WILL NOT treat this as a special case. I will NOT condone statutory rape ― just as you've done by saying that your sister isn't an ordinary teen, thus, mustn't be treated as such. So, because she isn't an ordinary teen, she surpasses law? Because Tyga is a famous rapper, a family friend, and not that much older than Kylie, it's just okay that he, too, is above the law? He, too, can overlook the fact that he should/could be a possible registered sex offender should someone report this relationship? It is okay that a GROWN man is attracted to a minor? Is it REALLY okay that age is nothing but a number? It is okay because at that age you were bumping and grinding with twenty-year-olds? Is it REALLY okay... with you? Or are you just trying to be pseudo-progressive while attempting to breakdown laws you find archaic that no longer define this generation of millennials who also happen to have no concept of true morals? Or is this just your light, bright, aka white supremacy talking ― because, from the looks of it, you sound a little less than smart. You sound like you are okay with statutory rape. You sound like you are okay with minors jumping on "Ginuwine" ponies’ just as long as they fit into the mold of being a special case.
Well, homegirl, let me give you the honest truth, it is NOT okay. Until the legal consenting age by law in the state of California is lowered to the tender age of seventeen, Tyga is, for all intents and purposes, a statutory rapist in my biased, unwavering, and unforgiving eyes. No, I am not a judge (but trust me, if I was, I’d spare no mercy). No, I am not the jury (but again, if I was within one, I'd be the one person to go against the grain). No, I did not drag his grown self to court and try him for messing around with a teenage girl. No, I am not sparing anyone's feelings. No, I do care about anyone else's opinions because this rant is MINE and mine alone, thus, I'll revel in it. You can agree to disagree with me, but if there is one thing I am NOT down for it is rape: any form of it. Another thing I cannot vibe with is citizens who live above the law because they have the monetary means or power to do so. And the argument that Kylie is unlike ordinary teens is complete and total BS. There are many teens that live similar lives that are NOT out rolling in the sheets with 25-year-old men. There are many teens that happen to live extraordinary lives quite ordinarily avoiding sexual relations with adults. There are many teens who do NOT seek sex with individuals that they could potentially get arrested should someone catch wind of their inappropriate relationship (consenting or not). The LAW doesn't care if Kylie is consenting to have her toy chest cleaned out on a regular basis. The LAW doesn't care if Kylie is down with the age swirl. The LAW doesn't care. All the LAW sees is Tyga's old behind letting Kylie play with his magic stick. All the LAW sees is a potential sexual predator playing hide, seek, and eat with a minor. That is all. Nothing more. Nothing less. There are no exceptions (unless given you are indeed rich with some sort of monetary influence, or more than likely, light, bright, and/or white and with power ― hence, why I am sure this relationship has gone on as long as it has).
Unlike so many other unfortunate souls who happen not to have the money your younger sister or Tyga have, those very same souls end up on sex offender registries. Some serve time. Others, at the hands of overprotective parents, friends, or the like, lose their lives. As for the minors, they too suffer from mental torment at various degrees. Given, this is NOT the case for everyone; it is the case for some. This is not something that is a special case. Rape is never a special case. Rape is rape and to condone any form of it, is to condone all individuals to take advantage of those who actually do NOT consent, those who are too young to realize that the consent they are giving to the adults much older than they are isn't based on a healthy and normal relationship. Yes, there are cases in which this can be argued, but for now, we are not speaking of such cases. We are speaking of Khloe's idiocy on the topic of consent and her outlandish request for us to agree with her and to handle her sister's relationship with an older man as a special case.
At the time, Kylie was very much a minor, while Tyga was very much an adult. Their relationship was inappropriate ― whether you are willing to admit that or not is your prerogative. Just understand that this issue is an issue even though the Kardashians so desperately want it not to be. Just because you are NOT living an ordinary life doesn’t mean that you can live above basic laws. Period. So, Khloe, retire that argument, find a seat, have it, and collect your thoughts and keep them to yourself. If you should find yourself with nothing wise or smart to say, then spare us all and say nothing at all as silence is not only golden but it speaks volumes.
(Side note: Khloe I was rooting for you, but my mom said it best, as you began to become a bit more self-absorbed with your culturally appropriated looks, you began to lose brain cells).
That concludes my READ (*in my Kid Fury and Crissle voice*). Normally, I would not have typed something as colloquially charged nor would I have addressed something so deeply connected to reality stars, however, this was the exception, or rather, this was a special case. Once any form of rape is involved, I tend to have some strong, biased opinions, and such was the case with Khloe’s response. I could not agree to disagree with her statement. I could only disagree because subliminally, whether she realized it or not, she consented to the allowance of statutory rape. And that is something I cannot condone. Rich, broke, ordinary, extraordinary, white, black, or anything else for that matter, I do not and will not be okay with the allowance of rape under any circumstance, special case or not.
:: Post Rationalizing(s)
“To every rule there is an exception—and an idiot ready to demonstrate it. Don't be the one!”
― Vera Nazarian ―