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Sleep With Your Teacher In Arkansas!

Where were they indeed...

Until recently, Arkansas had a law making it illegal for teachers to sleep with students. Obviously, the issue wasn’t students who had not yet attained majority status, it was already illegal for an adult to have sexual contact with a minor. The law instead criminalized sex or other romantic relationships between students 18 years old or older. Why it was only until recently is because the Arkansas Supreme Court has rightly ruled that adults can do as they please and the state cannot criminalize that sort of thing.

I support the idea that teachers and students, even if both parties are adults, should not be permitted to be in a romantic relationship of any kind. Where Arkansas lost the plot was making that sort of behavior criminal. I certainly think teachers should be fired for that behavior, but there is nothing wrong with consenting adults having all the sex they want. (unless they want me to pay for it, if you want someone else to pay for your birth control than you have as good as invited them into your bedroom)

It’s not dissimilar to extra-marital sexual relations and how those are treated by some religions/organizations. There is no way that it should be made illegal to have extra-marital sex, but legality has nothing to do with disciplinary measures taken by organizations against their employees or members. What one considers moral or immoral is a personal matter and how you react to what you perceive as immoral is likewise not a matter for the state, but for individuals to decide and then exercise their freedom of association.

Just as an example, the Catholic Church has no issues with homosexuality, they have issues with the practice of certain sexual acts and/or relationships. One may certainly be openly homosexual and catholic, and take communion without violating any part of church law. What the homosexual in question is doing behavior-wise and what the church does regarding that are matters strictly between that individual and their chosen church. For the most part morality is arbitrary, and one view is just as valid as another, so long as one isn’t being forced to conform to an others sense of morality against their will.

Another example is I don’t see the problem with Islam requiring women to do this or that, or wear a burka, or whatever. At least in cases where the woman is freely choosing to be a muslim. That isn’t always the case, I’ll go so far to say it’s not the case most of the time, but for the ones who are deciding that is the religion  they wish to adhere to, it’s not oppression of women. At least it is no more so than women who work in the porn industry are being oppressed.

Likewise, teachers and the relationships they might have with students of majority age is a matter that should be left to the teacher, the student, and the school, not to the legislature (with regard to criminalization). The teacher can decide not to work at schools prohibiting relationships, the student can likewise change or leave school, and the school administration can fire or hire teachers as they please. Obviously, I’m just addressing the issue of sexual relationships and restrictions and requirements the concerned parties may place on each other.

So the legislature may certainly make a law saying teachers who are having, or have had, sexual relationships with adult students may not continue teaching, but they can’t send anyone to jail or fine them for it, that’s just absurd.

Just as an afterthought, I’m not sure the best way to deal with these relationships is firing. It’s what I still think should be done, but I’m having trouble deciding whether the conflict of interest involved with a teacher sleeping with a student is any more severe than cases where a student may have a parent who is a teacher. In those cases I would hope the parent has someone else correct their tests and so forth, perhaps that would be enough with the horny teachers too. Although, the number of parents and their relationship with their children is always well known, that isn’t the case with teacher student relationships, making it impossible to police at even a low level.

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