Man wearing ‘are you 18?’ t-shirt sparks fierce TikTok debate

Slogan t-shirts aren’t everyone’s cup of tea at the best of times, especially not when they invite debate about the age of consent.

That didn’t stop one many from donning a sports jersey emblazoned with the words: “Are you 18?” on the back.

A TikTok user (@honkytonk29) filmed the culprit from behind as he walked through town with a friend. Sharing the clip on the platform, she asked: “Why would you wear something like this?”

Her video racked up more than 235,000 views and 41,800 likes in just two days, as fellow TikTokers attempted to answer her question.

“It’s a male species thing,” one user replied.

Another, referring to the shirt-wearer’s stature, suggested he was driven by “short men’s audacity”.

A third commented: “He looks 35… he needs a hobby.”

Meanwhile, another suggested that, since the man looked “older than 25”, he shouldn’t be approaching much younger women. She wrote: “Sir, just [because] it’s legal doesn’t mean it’s right.”

The age of consent in the US (where the footage was shot) ranges from 16 to 18, depending on the state.

Clues in the clip – including a sign reading “The Nash Collective” – suggest it was filmed in Nashville, Tennessee, where the legal age is, indeed, 18.

For anyone interested, the age of consent stands at 16 in the UK, no matter what the person’s gender or sexual orientation.

As well as the criticism levelled towards the man in the clip, there were also attempts to defend his wardrobe choice.

One commentator joked: “At least he’s making sure.”

While another argued: “There’s nothing wrong with the shirt. He’s just making sure anyone he hits on is 18+. It is kinda weird but it’s good that he doesn’t like minors.”

However, the video’s creator retorted: “If he has to wear a shirt like that because the women he’s hitting on could pass as minors, it’s a little creepy to me, and the claim that he likes little girls still applies.”

Another user agreed, adding: “If you even have a doubt in your mind [whether] someone’s 18 or not then don’t even mind asking.”

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