OPINION: America Desperately Needs More Anti-Child Marriage Laws

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Far too often, the mainstream media covers stories that are sensational, yet lacking when it comes to substance. Many times, people are more interested in celebrity drama or petty spats on Twitter than in taking on actual injustices in the world.

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The murder of Mahsa Amini in Iran is one example. Following this young woman dying in the hands of Iran’s “morality police” (for the supposed crime of showing her hair), the nation has seen massive uprisings in the fight for women’s rights.

Here in America, human trafficking remains a major problem that lacks the necessary media coverage. Though this lack of coverage is not at all indicative of just how widespread and pervasive human trafficking really is.

If there is something that is less discussed than human trafficking, yet equally as worthy of conversation, it’s the disturbing lack of anti-child marriage laws in the United States.

Adults should not be marrying children

Only seven states in America have banned child marriage and removed any loopholes or exceptions of getting around this ban. Those states are as follows:

  • Rhode Island
  • Pennsylvania
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Delaware

Sadly, the remaining 43 states permit child marriage. 20 of these states don’t have any age limits on child marriage whatsoever, so long as the parent or guardian “consents.”