Life and this world are rife with inconsistencies and anomalies. According to the UN Convention on the ‘Rights of the Child’ any human being below the age of 18 is deemed to be a child! But do we agree with the following age restrictions?
- The age of ‘consent’ in the UK is 16!
- The age of criminal responsibility in England, Wales and N. Ireland is 10 and Scotland is 12!
- The school leaving age is 17 (in 2015 it will rise to 18)
- You can join the army at 16 (parental consent is required if under 18)
- It’s 18+ to buy fireworks, alcohol, lighter refills, tobacco, air guns, pellets
- You must be 16 to buy chocolate liqueurs
- To buy a lottery ticket or scratch card you must be 16+
- You can request a repeat prescription at 16 (in fact a parent cannot do so)
- You can start driving a car at 17 and a moped at 16
- You must be at least 18 to use a sunbed
- In the UK you must be 18 to vote in the general election.
So, one is deemed a child below the age of 18! Yet the age of consent and the purchase of chocolate liqueur is 16! These are of course of equal importance! “Should I consent to sex” vs. “hmm, which brand of chocolate liqueur should I buy?” To think that a 16 year-old can go through the act itself yet not be allowed to watch a movie because “the film has been rated an 18 due to sexual scenes and violence!” You cannot buy firearms or fireworks until you’re 18, yet you can join the army at 16, hold a gun and make an informed decision whether or not to shoot! Bizarrely, online multiplayer shoot ‘em ups like Call of Duty, have an age limit of 18; whether they can enforce such a restriction is another matter! You cannot buy alcohol, cigarettes and lottery tickets or even use a sun-bed until you are 18, but you can request a repeat prescription at 16! In England, Wales and Northern Ireland you can be held responsible for a criminal act at the age of 10, (12 in Scotland)! Yet they are not deemed to be capable of enough rational thought to vote until they are 18 years old! Our government needs to rethink all these laws and restrictions. As an adult I question the validity and strength of reasoning behind these age restrictions, and however much I am against violence, wars, weapons and cruelty I maintain that in order to gain respect, understanding and genuine citizenship the law must prove itself to be more than just a governing body. Their laws must depict logic and reasoning and exist entirely for the care and consideration of the public, and not be just another ruling! As it stands I see no logic just inconsistencies and anomalies, which is not what encourages a community of courteous followers. This only breeds frustration! We once had a society, more importantly a ‘community’ that held strong! We can only hold strong if we all agree, understand and value our set laws! Our governing body is in place to provide us with laws and guidance to help create harmony and to sustain and improve our way of life. If you don not approve or understand any law set by our government you must speak up. There are many organisations that rally on your behalf. One of which is 38 degrees. I am a regular supporter of their campaigns!