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University of Michigan Law School

Legislation

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Children

2011

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Full-Text Articles in Law

When Sixteen Ain't So Sweet: Rethinking The Regulation Of Adolescent Sexuality, Nicole Phillis Jan 2011

When Sixteen Ain't So Sweet: Rethinking The Regulation Of Adolescent Sexuality, Nicole Phillis

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Legally speaking, sexual maturity poses a significant enough liberty interest for a minor to make medical decisions regarding contraceptive medicine or to choose motherhood without parental involvement, but not quite enough for her to obtain an abortion independently. The law incentivizes teenage motherhood by only granting decisional autonomy to those minors who choose to have a child; the minor female's right to procreate vests regardless of her individual maturity. The law discourages teenage abortions by using the choice to terminate a pregnancy to trigger a presumption of immaturity; the minor female's abortion right is pitted against personal autonomy ...