Remember that old Van Halen video "Hot for Teacher"? Yeah, they probably wouldn't be able to make a video like that now. But that doesn't mean there still aren't teens hot for their teacher. And one teacher may likely go to prison because a 16-year-old was hot for her ... and she for him. Brianne Land Altice, a 34-year-old teacher in Utah, admitted that she had sex with a 16-year-old male student twice. She's being charged with rape and forcible sodomy. Never mind that the teen reportedly admitted in a pre-trial hearing that he did his best to get her into bed. He said he made it his "ultimate goal."
Altice said she resisted his advances for a long time -- but finally couldn't. Boo hoo. Not an excuse. She's the adult, he's the teen, she's the teacher, he's the student, end of story. Never mind that he "ultimately broke down her resistance." If she was being sexually harassed, she should have reported it.
But looking at the comments on this story, does this woman deserve the sentence of a rapist? A child molester? The men are saying things like, "Lucky boy!" and "I need to go back to school!" and "This kid deserves a medal!"
We have to admit to ourselves that there are teen boys who want to have sex with an older woman. There are teen girls who want it with older men. This used to be called statutory rape, but now it's just called rape. And, in her case, "forcible sodomy." Forcible. Altice's lawyer argued that the state did not make the case that the sex was not consensual and the teen's reported testimony seems to back that up.
But the state made a good point -- Altice had influence over the student. She could, essentially, make or break him. She had control over his grades, she could discipline him. By any deduction, it is a very unfair power balance.
Additionally, teen boys do not fully understand the ramifications of sex. What if she got pregnant? His life would be unalterably different. What if he got an STD? Sex is not only fun and games. He also may not even be fully cognizant of the feelings of shame and anger that may only hit him when he's older.
While, yes, a 16-year-old and a 34-year-old might be fully legal under some circumstances (look at Courtney Stodden and Doug Hutchison), this was not one of them. An adult has to have the maturity and restraint for both people. She was a teacher, she's being held to a higher standard.
But whether she should go to prison for 20 years or more like a rapist might -- well, that is where it gets complex. Is it a "slap in the face" as one reader commented to people who have been forcibly raped to use this term in these circumstances?
Do you think she should go to prison?
Image via Davis County Jail