I hope everyone had a great weekend. Today, we’re still discussing pet peeves, and I’m still on my pet peeves with certain parts of the judicial system. If you have a daughter under the age of 18, you might want to consider locking her up or perhaps moving to an otherwise deserted island after you read this.
In the United States, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (otherwise known as HIPAA) guarantees a patient’s right to privacy. If the patient is a minor child and they go to the doctor with their parent, even using the parent’s healthcare insurance to pay for the visit, the doctor is still obligated not to tell the parent the diagnosis, especially if the condition is the result of consensual sexual contact.
In other words, your 15-year old daughter can have a sexually transmitted disease, including HIV or AIDS, or she can be pregnant, and the doctor is not allowed to violate her confidence and tell you. However, even though you’re not allowed to know of your daughter’s condition, if you fail to provide her with appropriate medical treatment or prenatal care for said condition that you don’t know about, you will likely be arrested and charged with child neglect.*
Have you ever watched a movie where two kids have sex and the parents of the girl get the guy arrested for statutory rape? Not true. A 16-year old girl can consent to be with an up to 22-year old man with no consequences, and there’s not a thing you can do about it. Worse yet, she can consent to engage in sadomasochism and be covered in bruises brought on by her sexual encounter, and there is still nothing you can do about it. However, if you confront her and she gets so belligerent that you slap her ever so lightly, you, my friend, can be arrested and charged with assault as well as child abuse!*
It gets worse. In the United States, a child has to be 17-years old to go to a Rated R movie where some profanity or some slight nudity is shown. However, in Rhode Island, a girl can be a professional stripper at only 16-years old. (However, if she were here in Florida and took a photo of herself and emailed it to her own 16-year old boyfriend, they would both be arrested for distribution of child porn, and both would be required to register as sex offenders for the rest of their lives!) Too bad she can’t use the money she makes taking off her clothes to go to the movies with her friends.
Of course, the underage children don’t have to wait until their seventeenth birthday to go to a Rated R movie to see some nudity, because in New York City, it’s perfectly legal for women to walk around topless because they have the same rights as men. Of course as the parent of young children who might see the topless women on your way home from church or while you’re out purchasing a bag of apples, you do not have the right not to have to see her bare breasts. Go figure.
(*These are true at least in Florida. I have no idea how the other forty-nine states may view these same laws.)
Talk to me: If you caught your 16-year old daughter in bed with a 22-year old man, what would you do? Would you ever risk going to jail by protecting your child from someone you felt was a danger to them, even if the law didn’t agree with you?