RAPE AND REALITY

I just read a very interesting, very courageous article about rape, written by The Daily Mail’s Sarah Vine.  I call it courageous because Ms. Vine said something that. while 100% true, is attacked every time it is pointed out.

Here, let me show you via the following excerpts:

Sex without consent, whatever the circumstances, is always a crime.

Whether a woman is drunk, sober, unconscious or conscious, dressed as a nun or channelling Rihanna, if she is sexually attacked then it is never, ever because she was ‘asking for it’.

Nevertheless, I refuse to join in the chorus of feminist disapproval aimed at Calderdale Council in West Yorkshire, which has caused outrage among anti-rape campaigners for a poster featuring a young women, make-up smudged, hair dishevelled, dress wonky, shoes in hand, clearly not much in control of her faculties.

The caption reads: ‘When you drink too much you lose control and put yourself at risk.’

Why is that so offensive? It is, after all, the truth.

If a man violates a drunken girl against her will, he is still, of course, guilty of rape. Indeed, I would argue that taking advantage of a woman on the basis that she’s had a few too many drinks should actually carry a tougher sentence, since only a man of the vilest character would attempt to have sex with someone in no fit state to assent to it.

But the best outcome is to ensure that situation never arises. In feminist terms, that means accepting responsibility for your own safety. In anti-rape charity terms, that means showing women how to protect themselves, not arguing over semantics.

And in common sense terms, that means not getting so drunk that you can’t remember your own name.

Yes. Exactly right.  Rape is rape, regardless of the circumstances. But women who dress suggestively, and/or behave in a way that suggests they are loose, and/or get blind drunk, are increasing the prospects for it to happen.

To repeat an example I’ve used before…why do you suppose retail businesses have cash registers instead of just laying money out on the counter in neat piles of ones, fives, tens, twenties, etc.?

The answer, of course, is that leaving their money on the counter would maximize the likelihood of it being stolen.  And though there is no doubt that the thief would be to blame, the store owner would have tempted that thief by making the money so easily accessible.  By not exercising basic common sense, the storeowner would therefore share part of the blame for it happening.

Doesn’t the same logic apply with rape?  If a man is capable of rape, does it not stand to reason he will be most likely to pick a victim who, he can rationalize, was “asking for it” in some way?

Why in the world should it be considered courageous to say this?  Isn’t it just plain common sense?

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