Love isn’t about race, ability, religion or gender. So why should someone call a relationship between two people of different ages wrong or creepy?
Recently Hugh Hefner, founder of “Playboy” magazine, announced that he is getting married to 24-year-old Crystal Harris, who is 60 years his junior. One might question a relationship between an 84-year-old man and Playboy’s Miss December 2009.
“I think it’s ultimately up to the people involved to decide what makes them happy,” said gender and women studies major Karen Medina. “As long as there’s not a minor involved, there’s no limit.”
While it is one of the more extreme examples of age difference in romantic relationships, I maintain that love is love, no matter how wrinkly.
One might think that there ought to be a limit of some kind but as long as everyone involved are adults, the decision to marry is still theirs to make.
In Hefner’s case, one might suspect the marriage is for publicity or money. To this I say, who cares? Celebrities do that all the time and I applaud their commitment to pleasing their fans.
That being said, it’s entirely probable they are genuinely in love. Hefner shows no sign of slowing down in his twilight years so they may have a lot of fun and party together.
Harris is beautiful, and Hefner is driven and philanthropic. She likely enjoys learning from Hefner’s extensive experience in the porn industry and Harris’ spirit should help Hefner feel youthful again. I don’t know how to define love, but enjoying your time together is good enough for me.
Age is just another aspect of relationship stigmas to be abolished. At one point, dating someone from outside your tribe was forbidden and we romanticize those Shakespearean endeavors of forbidden love.
In the U.S., it used to be illegal to marry someone outside your ethnicity until the famous and aptly named case of Loving v. Virginia in 1967.
At the moment, the progressive movement is trying to get social and legal equality for same-sex couples, and I can see clearly that equality will eventually win out.
Thankfully, couples with age gaps do not have to worry about the law barring them from marriage. Following with the progressive movement, I hope we can move toward a more universal acceptance of consenting relationships.
Take your boyfriend, your wife, your grandmother, your pet goat, a cucumber and a riding crop into your bedroom and have a grand old time. I don’t mind how strange it is and neither should anyone else.
I’m thrilled for Hefner and Harris. They found their own brand of happiness and it must be fun to know that while few approve of their relationship, everyone seems to care.