Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Kirk Douglas: Seduced at Age 15 By Teacher

In his autobiography, "Let's Face It -- 90 Years of Living, Loving, and Learning", actor Kirk Douglas revealed that he was a willing "victim" of statutory rape, when he was seduced by a schoolteacher at the age of fifteen. Kirk wrote that he didn't consider that the woman could have faced prison for their relationship, but that he still doesn't regret a thing.

Douglas wrote, ""I had been a ragamuffin kid of 15 coping with a neighbourhood filled with gangs... Under her guidance I became a different person. I am eternally grateful. "By today's standards she would have gone to jail. I had no idea we were doing something wrong. Did she?"

Well, this was 1932, and I seriously doubt that anything beyond losing her job would have happened to the teacher. While I don't think anyone would have approved of what happened, I don't think the classification of statutory rape would have applied to this situation at that time, considering that many people then quit school at 16, got married, and took on adult jobs. Of course, it would have been a whole different ball game if the teenager had been a girl and the teacher a man, needless to say.

This story was especially interesting to me because I lost my virginity at the same age to a woman 20 years my senior, the details of which can be read on my other blog. Douglas' feelings about the matter, of not regretting it for a minute, also correspond to how I view what happened with me. It rings true.


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