Wednesday, February 23, 2005

How long?

Every year (well, probably several times a year), an article appears in the newspaper about sexual assault on campus.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not denigrating any victims or denying it exists. Far from it.

But I find it very dangerous that the standard for consensual sex has become that a girl (why is it always the girl? can't a drunken male be taken advantage of?) must be sober to give proper consent.

On the one hand, I can see the reasoning behind this. Who can reasonably give proper consent when they are intoxicated?

On the other hand, drunkenness does not completely rid your mind of its cognitive abilities. How drunk do you have to be before it's considered nonconsensual sex?

Now, what if both parties are intoxicated, and someone ends up regretting their actions from the night before? Who took advantage of who? Who is responsible for "rape?" Is anyone? Or will it revert to a "blame the male" kind of thing?

The lack of physical evidence is cited in the article as a reason most cases are never prosecuted. Again, what if this scenario happened to a male? Does he even have any physical evidence to produce that he had been raped? Is there no recourse for him?

I'm not advocating blaming the victims here, but not all situations are as simple as they are made out to be. This is one of them, I think.

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