Alan Dershowitz, Ex-Epstein Atty, Said ‘Statutory Rape Is An Outdated Concept'
Connie Bruck, in “Alan Dershowitz, Devil’s Advocate,” first renewed attention to Dershowitz’s op-ed in which he made a case for lowering the age of consent to 15:
“Dershowitz has not shied away from provocative ideas about sex and the law. In a 1997 op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, he argued against statutory-rape laws, writing, ‘There must be criminal sanctions against sex with very young children, but it is doubtful whether such sanctions should apply to teenagers above the age of puberty, since voluntary sex is so common in their age group.’ He suggested that fifteen was a reasonable age of consent, no matter how old the partner was.”
Former George W. Bush chief White House ethics lawyer Richard Painter was one of many to take note of it.
“Why is @AlanDersh trying to lower the age of consent in this op-ed? 15? Really?” he asked. Painter then quoted Dershowitz, tweeting, “‘Reasonable people can disagree about whether [the age of consent] should be as low as 14.’ Is @AlanDersh kidding (pun intended)? Does he really think that?”
Dershowitz took notice of Painter’s tweets and responded:
“I stand by the constitutional (not moral) argument I offered in my controversial oped: if a 16 year old has the constitutional right to have an abortion without state or parental interference, how could she not have the constitutional right to engage in consensual sex?”
“I challenge my readers to distinguish the cases, as a matter of constitutional law. I did not suggest that it is moral to have sex with a 16 year old, but rather that the issue presents a constitutional conundrum worthy of discussion,” he continued. “I also pointed out that, statutory rape laws are applied quite selectively and often against young teenagers. That’s why I also say there are Romeo and Juliet exceptions. Lets debate not name call.”
Dershowitz, who previously represented accused sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, was accused by Virginia (Roberts) Giuffre that he knew about and participated in Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell’s alleged child sex-trafficking operation.
Giuffree claimed that Dershowitz had sex with her while she was a minor and working for Epstein, although Dershowitz has repeatedly denied this.