Jami Lee Knox:
Perhaps poor judgment,
but where's the crime?

My column today is going to be controversial, I just know it.  Oddly, most controversy will come from the distaff side of the gender pool, and I haven't figured out exactly why.

Ms. Knox (42) is the Farmington Hills, Michigan, woman who recently received a minimum three-year prison sentence (!) for having sexual encounters with a 15-year-old boy.   My natural reaction, and the natural reaction of virtually every man I know, is:

"When I was 15, having sex with an attractive young woman—e.g. 'I'm hot for teacher'—would have been the World Series and the Super Bowl rolled into one.  Nirvana by the dashboard light!  It's unimaginable anybody would put a lovely creature helping to thus realize a teenage boy's deep desire IN JAIL!"

  In more natural cultures, mature women often initiate
  post-pubescent boys into the joys of sex, the better to
  please the boys' eventual mates and to be fruitful.  In
  Comstock-Laws-inflicted America and thru decades of
  Puritanical repression, such healthy initiation into sex is
  not only not encouraged, it's a prison offense!

What conceivable argument exists for the barbaric practice of criminalizing women who have consensual sex with teenage boys?  These are practically young men, well beyond the age of consent.  Here's all I can come up with:

Woman-teenage-boy sex is an act of aggression. 

  Clearly not.  Voluntary consent of both parties is obvious.

It's a violation of trust.

   If the woman is the boy's teacher, therapist, or other
   professional, sure, it can be a violation of professional
   ethics.  But poor judgment doesn't come close to felony
   crime; if you break my trust, I don't lock you up for it.

It harms the boy.

  No boy I ever knew.  But it's his choice, isn't it?  Like illegal
  drug use, the greatest harm done to the user is the state
  slams you around or hurts the ones you love for doing
  something it wants control of. 

It's patently offensive.

  A value-judgment.  Who died and appointed your religious
  phantasms of evil to be mine?  Don't we have an
  amendment on that somewhere?

In the case of Jami Lee Knox, it doesn't appear she was in love.  (In the celebrated case of Mary Kay Letourneau, who was viciously violated by the state, spending years in jail often in solitary for her noncrime, she was and is in love with Vili Fualaau.  They married in May 2005 when he became 21.)

   "How dare you, woman, have any deep, tender feelings
    unapproved by the Grand Inquisitor?!"

As I say, some close women friends of mine, ordinarily quite libertarian, want to pin Scarlet Letters on Jami Lee and Mary Kay and throw them into the dungeons.  What I regard as savage punishment for at most a peccadillo—three years for having voluntary, consensual, presumably enjoyable sex for chrissakes???!!!—they see as a slap on the wrist.

Are they imagining rape here?  How does one perform a consensual rape, especially as a woman?

Are some women hostile toward the Jami Lee/Mary Kay syndrome from a bizarre feminism that views a boy's wanting a woman "that way" as perverted and demeaning toward women?  Therefore, if a woman should enable a boy to get that sex, she's betraying some holy code of sisterhood?

I can see why the women in Jami Lee's neighborhood might not invite her back to the bridge club, but I have no idea what elicits such venom to make women want to stone her to death.  It is bred of no logic with which I am familiar. 

Regardless of our emotions, examined or not, laws felonizing sex between women and boys above the age of consent clearly and self-evidently violate the Sacred Nonaggression Principle. 

Accordingly, our moral libertarian society hereby declares such laws null and void.  Free Jami Lee!

Note: I encourage people to write to Tami Lee with support and love.  To find out her circumstances, please contact Oakland County Circuit Court.  The sentence was for three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct and three counts of using a computer to commit a crime.  The judge is Rae Lee Chabot and the assistant prosecuting attorney is Robert Giles.  Story in the Oakland Press.


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