Monday, October 5, 2009

Lie To Me*

New FOX Show Touches on the Reality of Racism in the Judicial System
By Brianna Savoca

The second episode of FOX's new show "Lie To Me*" aired tonight and focused on many controversial topics, including rape and racism.

The plot: The star football player hooks up with a pretty blonde at an post-game celebration party. The next morning, police arrest the football player for statutory rape, as the girl was only 16 years old.

One of the women on the defense team, Zoe Lightman, recognizes the charges for the black football player seem extreme. She feels race is a factor in the harsher punishment, and says a white football player would not be facing the same charges. Zoe knows the football player's future will be destroyed by this crime. She calls in Dr. Lightman, the "lie expert," to help lessen the charges.

During the interview, the football player says the girl claimed she was in economic classes and other college courses. Later, Dr. Lightman learns the girl went to the same high school as his daughter. He goes home, questions his daughter about fraternity parties, searches her belongings and finds fake IDs and birth control.

Dr. Lightman grapples with his discovery. His 16-year-old daughter could potentially be having sex and attending college frat parties. Zoe defends the use of birth control, sighting the consequences for a woman not on the pill. Still, Dr. Lightman must interview and fairly assess the football player's honesty without any prejudice or personal interest.

This poses a couple interesting questions:

-Do parents have right to prohibit their underage daughters from taking birth control?

-Would our justice system charge a black man with a harsher punishment than a white man for sleeping with an underage girl?

-Regardless of the "legal" age, does a 16-year-old have the knowledge, sense, and maturity to consent to have sex?

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