I’m sure you’ve all read or heard or seen the news reports about the 12-years-old boy who was arrested and taken away from school in handcuffs for kissing a 13-years-old girl. On a dare. He probably should have been pistol-whipped every step of the way to the police car, and there should have been an armed escort to the police station. The cad!

Sounds like adolescent humor. No harm, no foul.

On the other hand, unwanted was his advance. The girl was not pleased, flattered, or otherwise made happy. She was offended. She did not like it. She protested. Good for her. But I’m wondering if perhaps a less drastic resolution could have been had under the circumstances. Maybe she could have slapped him, or punched him out. My daughters would have. So would have my wife at that age. I know of a female to whom I am close who, when she was in junior high and a boy snapped her bra strap, she turned around and punched him. Hard. That took care of it. Self-reliance is cool.

But arrested? And handcuffed?

When I was in 6th grade a girl kissed me, without my asking. It was at her birthday party. The kiss was nice, and I floated as I journeyed the dozen blocks or so to my house. And I forgot to take her to court for sexual assault. Her name was JoAnne.

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