Statutory rape is defined as a case in which an adult engages in sexual behavior with a participant who considered as being below the age legally required to consent to sexual behavior; in some states, this extends to teenagers who have consensual sex. Basically, physically and mentally incapacitated individuals as well as minors (persons below the statutory designated mental, functional age or age of consent) are all considered incapable of consenting to sexual activities as defined by rape laws in a majority states. As a result, these people deserve special protection by the law especially because they are more vulnerable to sexual assault due to their age or condition.
In this regard, any person who engages in statutory rape indeed commits a criminal offence that calls for legal action and punishment. This is because until an individual reaches a certain age that is considered as a bench mark for maturity, such an individual is regarded as being lawfully unable to engage in or consent to sexual activity. Consequently, the law makes an interpretation that even if such an individual willingly engages in sexual activity with another individual who is mature and of good mental state, such an activity is not consensual. As a result, the social policy that requires that statutory rape convictions be placed on the sex offender registry in is a good one in that it will go along way and assist in the protection of individuals who as a result of their chronological age, mental or physical state are unable to consent to a sexual act with an adult of sound mental state.
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In addition, Cocca, C. E. (2004) suggests that minors are generally considered to be unequal to adults in many aspects such as legal, social and even economic standing in the society and therefore the presence of this social policy gives the minor, mentally or physically challenged individuals a good amount of protection against those adults who could be in a powerful position over them making it illegal for an adult to engage in sexual activity with individuals in such states. As a result, this alleviates the possibility of adults who could be in an advantaged position from taking advantage of minors, mentally or physically challenged individuals.
In conclusion, in my opinion, the social policy requiring statutory rape convictions to be placed on the sex offender registry is a good social policy because it brings sanity in to the society by offering sufficient protection to minors, mentally or physically challenged individuals who would otherwise be taken advantage of by capable adults. This also shows the society's respect for their plight and condition enhancing harmony and understanding. In this regard, the best way to impact this social policy is by involving all stakeholders in the society including social and legal organizations, human right groups and every member of the society by creating knowledge and understanding of the laws governing statutory rape.
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