Coerce or Consensual

I dont know of any of you have heard of Bishop Eddie Long. He is a mega church pastor around the Atlanta area. His church is where Coretta Scott King’s funeral was held. He is accused of having an affair with two teen young men aged 17 and 18. They are 20 and 21 now. From what i read, he took them on several trips and gave them money and expensive gifts. And then engaged in sexual contact with them.

In my mind, coercion is threatning someone with blackmail or violence. That doesn’t seem to be the case here. It seems he just kept giving them money until they agreed to have sex with him. And at 17 and 18, you are too old to be “taken advantage of” in that sense. You know full well what you are doing when it comes to engaging in sex.

You cant say he coerced them by giving them money and gifts, because they could have just as easily said “no thank you” and refused to accept them. I think it’s a case of the Bishop stopped giving gifts and the money well has dried up, and know the young men need some more money. I dont believe for one second their was coercion involved.

And I would say the same thing if it was 17 and 18 y/o girls involved in the same set of circumstances.