Florida parent says “religious zealots” got teen daughter arrested for lesbian relationship

By | May 20, 2013

20130520-080629.jpg20130520-080640.jpgAn 18-year-old girl was arrested for statutory rape over a same-sex relationship in Florida because of bigoted parents, according to the mother of the arrested teen.

Kaitlyn Ashley Hunt was arrested February 16 by the Indian River County Sheriff's Office on two counts of lewd or lascivious battery on child.

Her mother, Kelley Hunt Smith, explained on Facebook that Kaitlyn began a "mutual consenting" relationship with a girl at Sebastian River High School who was about three years younger. The parents of the younger girl were upset by the situation and contacted police, she wrote.

"They were out to destroy my daughter, they feel like my daughter 'made' their daughter gay," Kaitlyn mother's said. "They are bigoted, religious zeolites [sic] that see being gay as a sin and wrong, and they blame my daughter."

The parents of the younger girl also pressured the Indian River County School Board into expelling Kaitlyn, she added. The teen is now attending an alternative school.

"Those parents have forced the State Attorneys office to go thru [sic] with felony charges and are trying to ruin my daughters life," Kaitlyn mother's continued. "This is insane. This should have never been a legal matter, it is a family matter. They are trying to send an innocent young girl to prison because they are full of hate and bigotry. These girls are teenagers in high school, who had ONE mutual consenting sexual experience. My daughter isn’t a criminal, she isn’t a predator."

Kaitlyn has until Friday to accept or reject a plea deal of two years house arrest and one year probation, according to her mother.

In response to the incident, friends and family setup a "Free Kate" Facebook page and online petition in hopes of having the case dropped. Support for the young girl appeared to be strong. The petition had more than 27,000 supporters on Sunday morning. …



Free Kate…and her girlfriend.

Odds are the parents of Kate’s girlfriend have unresolved homosexual feelings causing them to be this hateful. That would make sense genetically if they had a gay daughter. Their hate could be self-loathing.

Attackers of gays turn out to be repressed homosexuals who hate themselves because their own closet gay patents spent so much time expressing hate toward gays.

Both gay people and confidently non-gay people (that’s most of us) don’t care if some people are gay.

Kate being terrorized with jail time by these people pisses me off. No one can make a daughter gay except the parents. It’s genetic. Well epigenetic, actually. Kate’s girlfriend’s dad didn’t have enough testosterone at a key time and that can’t be changed now.

The hereditary link of homosexuality has long been established, but scientists knew it was not a strictly genetic link, because there are many pairs of identical twins who have differing sexualities. Scientists from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis say homosexuality seems to have an epigenetic, not a genetic link.

Long thought to have some sort of hereditary link, a group of scientists suggested Tuesday that homosexuality is linked to epi-marks — extra layers of information that control how certain genes are expressed. These epi-marks are usually, but not always, “erased” between generations. In homosexuals, these epi-marks aren’t erased — they’re passed from father-to-daughter or mother-to-son, explains William Rice, an evolutionary biologist at the University of California Santa Barbara and lead author of the study. …

“There is compelling evidence that epi-marks contribute to both the similarity and dissimilarity of family members, and can therefore feasibly contribute to the observed familial inheritance of homosexuality and its low concordance between [identical] twins,” Rice notes.

Rice and his team created a mathematical model that explains why homosexuality is passed through epi-marks, not genetics. Evolutionarily speaking, if homosexuality was solely a genetic trait, scientists would expect the trait to eventually disappear because homosexuals wouldn’t be expected to reproduce. But because these epi-marks provide an evolutionary advantage for the parents of homosexuals: They protect fathers of homosexuals from underexposure to testosterone and mothers of homosexuals from overexposure to testosterone while they are in gestation.


More detail:

… First, evidence shows that homosexuality can run in families. Still, only 20 percent of identical twins are both gay, said Rice. Furthermore, linkage studies looking for a genetic underpinning to sexual orientation have not turned up any "major" homosexual genes, Rice noted. "This made us suspicious that something besides genes produces heritability that isn't genetic." Epigenetics fits the bill.

The model focuses on the role of epigenetics in shaping how cells respond to androgen signaling, an important determinant of gonad development. The researchers suggest that androgens are also important factors in molding sexual orientation, and that various genes involved in mediating androgen signaling are regulated by epigenetic modifications. These epigenetic marks, they argue, can be passed on between generations.

As an example of how androgens shape sexuality, the researchers point to girls with congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), who produce very high levels of testosterone and often display masculinized genitalia and higher rates of same-sex attraction. But testosterone levels are sometimes the same in normally developing male and female fetuses–without masculinizing the females–suggesting that something else must be playing a role.

The answer, they hypothesized, has to do with sensitivity to androgens. There are a variety of proteins that can modify androgen signaling, and the researchers hypothesize that differences in sensitivity to these signals between male and female fetuses help mediate their sexual differentiation. Rice and his colleagues suggest that such sensitivity may be regulated by the acquisition of epigenetic marks that make girls less sensitive to masculinizing androgens, or make boys more sensitive.

Such epi-marks are typically accrued early in development, as cells are programmed to become specific adult cell types. … they could be inherited from a parent. Most epigenetic modifications are erased during development of germ cells and soon after fertilization so that cell lineages can be programmed with new epigenetic modifications. But if epi-marks that direct sexual development are not erased correctly, a mother could pass down epi-marks that direct female development to her son, resulting in an attraction to men, and vice versa for a father and his daughters …

They also expect that specific epi-marks will regulate sensitivity differently in the brain versus gonads, resulting in same-sex attraction even when normal genital development occurs, said Gavrilets….


Further research will tell, but this is the current most plausible biological basis.

6 thoughts on “Florida parent says “religious zealots” got teen daughter arrested for lesbian relationship

  1. Michael

    Homosexuality is really not the crux of the issue here. You could substitute a heterosexual couple and they would be in the same situation. There is simply a problem with the law. Many high school seniors turn 18 during the school year. Many are still kids in their minds and do not view themselves as adults, although they wish to be given adult privileges. They are largely ignorant of the law. Yesterday, they were 17 and could legally date their younger girlfriend/boyfriend, but today they had a birthday and would be guilty of statutory rape were they to continue the relationship. Legally, no sex need be involved, only an implied amorous relationship. To kids, this is all rather confusing. They still go to the same school, may still be in the same school clubs together, still go to the same pep rallies, but now they cannot be together as a couple. I remember risking jail for a full year after I turned 17 (majority age regarding sexual relationships in my state, but not drinking or voting, etc.) while waiting for my 16 year-old girlfriend (who also just turned 16) to finally have her 17th birthday. Many of my friends, though, did not understand my dilemma. I realize this is anecdotal evidence, but although my friends were aware of the age 17 rule, they all believed it only applied after you graduated high school, but not while you were a student. This confusion and ignorance of the law, the lack of proper education regarding the law, has left many young people with wrecked lives and the stigma of jail time and being labeled a sex offender, which follows you forever. The law needs to be amended. Make it 19 and call it a day.

    1. Xeno Post author

      I posted this story because from what I’m reading the parents of the younger girl were afraid Kate would turn their daughter gay and this seems to me to be a biologically absurd concern. I don’t think a girl can “turn another girl gay,” no matter what they do.

      1. Michael

        Well Xeno, there are a lot of ignorant folks out there. My main complaint is about the law and the choice of age-related demarcation. It is strongly suggested by the article, if accurate, that the parents of the younger girl are attempting to use the law as a weapon to punish the older girl. Despite what the law states, and I believe it is unjust, an 18-yr old is still a kid. Any teenager is still a kid and any cognitive psychologist will tell you that. There are other laws in place which intended to protect people but have been wantonly abused. For example, hate crime laws. If our laws were equitably applied, there would be no need for hate crime legislation. Although I am a minority, I am firmly against such laws. They are often used to inflate sentencing when the underlying motives of a conflict did not involve race. It is simply a perversion of justice, as is this particular case.

  2. Michael

    Further, how many news headlines have we seen lately regarding teacher-student relationships? Too many. I am specifically referring to ones between 18-yr old seniors and their teachers, not between a teacher and a minor. In those cases, there was a clear ethics code violation, which should result in the termination of the teacher’s contract. However, and this is most troubling, loopholes in the law have allowed states to press criminal charges as well, since the 18-yr old adult was still in high school and therefore some form of “minor”. Although we might find such relationships between,for example an 18-yr old senior male and a 28-yr old female teacher, technically it is legal. So, the legal system needs to set clearer guidelines and eliminate ambiguities. Not all of us are attorneys.

  3. SilverBee

    I am 100% in accordance with remarks about homophobia and the extremist activities against gays. In particular, I think the actions of the Westboro Baptist Church are a shame and a blight on the face of the United States of America. Having said that, though, we prosecute severely any adult, especially men, who preys on children. Should we excuse a lesbian who does the same? True, the younger girl may have consented and may even have initiated contact–but that doesn’t excuse a man who has consensual sex with a minor. Have I missed something in this piece?

    1. Michael

      Any adult that preys upon children should be thoroughly prosecuted to protect the public. About that, let there be no doubt. What I see here happening is the use of a law as a weapon rather than a protection. I believe the problem lies in the legal definition of an “adult”, not any issue regarding the gender of either party. I do not know if you have children, but high school years are seen by kids as a series of progressions toward adulthood, but not necessarily ending in adulthood. Also, the legal responsibilities of 18-yr olds are not really ever explained to them in school. Why does that matter? In any legal case, it is imperative to ascertain the motives of the accused. A high school senior does not see themselves as really any different than a sophomore or a junior, except that a junior has just started driving and a senior can now vote. That’s it. Still the same social/peer group. That being said, an 18-yr old should not be considered a man/woman. Do you not find the concept odd that kids and adults go to school together? The age of “adulthood” should be raised to a reasonable, post-high school graduation age such as 19, although I have known a few graduates who turned 19 just prior to graduation. This would eliminate quite a few problems.

      Note my cited personal example above. For my girlfriend, one day I could legally be her boyfriend and the very next day, I could not. That is a problem for many high school students and I have met a few people who are young adults and are listed as sex offenders simply because of a birthday they had which put them over an imaginary borderline while still in high school. Caught parking a day before with their significant other (when they were both 16), they would have been charged with indecent exposure. The day they were caught (one 16 the other 2 days past their 17th birthday), however, one of them was charged with statutory rape and their life ruined. There are many cases of this injustice and it needs to stop. That law was intended to protect children but it is misused. High school students should be regarded as children.

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