Yes! No! Maybe!

There is nothing about this that is valid in any way:

The state’s highest court ruled Wednesday that a man can be charged with rape if he ignores a woman’s calls to stop — even if she had previously consented to sex.

And this is what makes taking a rape complaint to the police, without blood and bruises anyway, something many women just choose not to do.

With this expansion of the legal definition of rape, Maryland joins seven other states whose courts have determined that a woman can revoke her consent after intercourse begins.

“This goes to the heart of women’s autonomy,” said Lisae C. Jordan, legal director of the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault, which filed a brief in the matter. “It says that, yes, women do have the right to make decisions about something as intimate as sexual intercourse.”

You should pardon my language, but this argument is bullshit. Of course women have the right to decide, but until people stop being lying bastards nothing like this idiot legislation is ever going to work as it is intended. Does anyone for a second think that cases brought under this expanded definition are going to be the result of anything other than vindictiveness and vengefulness?

I was raped when I was 16 (by a guy in his twenties who was getting married a few weeks later, just for extra-added scumbag points), and I can still hold the opinion that this law is wrong. People MUST be responsible for their own actions, and using the law to try and justify poor judgement is just rape of another sort.


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7 Responses to “Yes! No! Maybe!”

  1. Madrocketscientist Says:
    April 18th, 2008

    The way things sounded in the article, both boys began sexually assaulting her by groping her and she consented to avoid being violently raped?

    Am I reading that wrong?

  2. Hazel Stone Says:
    April 18th, 2008

    That was the way I read it, too. Doesn’t excuse bad legislation, however.

  3. MadRocketScientist Says:
    April 18th, 2008

    Not legislative, judicial.

    I can see your point in that such a ruling can open the door to abuse from women seeking to excuse a poor decision to have sex, and I would suggest that such a claim must also carry a greater burden of evidence to avoid false accusations.

    But I can also see how a woman can be cowed into consent through the fear of violence.

    It’s a sticky spot.

    Maybe this is because more families these days have only have one child, or because our society is so hyper-sensitive to children fighting, but it seems to me that women are becoming more and more fearful of violence, such that they will subject themselves to the most unpleasant of things so as to avoid being hit. I know women who have gone their whole lives (30 – 40 years) without ever being hit. Usually the women I know who aren’t horribly afraid of violence are the ones who grew up with a bunch of brothers about the same age, or have close male cousins or friends. Basically girls who roughoused with boys as kids and got beat up and scraped up and all that.

    I’m also starting to see the same fear of violence in men too.

  4. Drumwaster Says:
    April 18th, 2008

    There was a case out here in CA last year where a 17yo boy had his Rape-1 conviction upheld because he didn’t stop fast enough. IIRC, he and his then-girlfriend were having consensual sex, but in the middle of the rhythmic friction, she changed her mind. It took him about 30 seconds to finally stop, and she cried “rape” because of those 30 seconds.

    He’s now a Class A felon and a registered sex offender because his gf changed her mind mid-stroke.

  5. Falco Says:
    April 19th, 2008

    In England and Wales, (as far as the legal sytems of the UK are concerned England and Wales form one block, Northern Ireland is slightly separate and Scotland is very distict), this has been the law for a very long time. It is a basic tennet of consent that it can be with drawn at any time. However, in the CA case the poor chap must have had a particularly pathetic lawyer. I know of no conviction in England or Wales that would have resulted in conviction on the facts above.

    This law does have a considerable amount of sense behind it because otherwise you have no distict finishing point for consent, that it has been misapplied is a matter for the courts rather than the legislature.

  6. Drumwaster Says:
    April 19th, 2008

    But once the consent has been given up to the point of actually achieving repeated thrusts, then it’s pretty much a moot point as to whether the sex was consensual. Withdraw it at that point and the guy can be forgiven for taking a few extra seconds to remember where he was, much less the legal ramifications of “taking too long”.

    C’mon, guys, how would we have reacted at that age (17)? Is he truly deserving of a rape conviction because she changed her mind mid-thrust? Whatever happened to the mens rea requirement? Do you honestly think that HE thought he was committing a crime?

  7. Mycroft Holmes Says:
    April 19th, 2008

    The logical extreme of this ruling is that the woman will be able to claim rape if she tells him to pull out and he goes ahead and finishes inside her. At which point “the point of no return” would need to be legally defined.

    I don’t think women (or men, I suppose) should be forced to complete the act if they change their mind midway. However, if we’re going to call continuing after someone calls it off a crime, I’m thinking rape might be a little much. Unless the nature of the event changes in some significant way (violence, nonconsensual bondage, etc).

    I suppose people could just control themselves and not have sex until they’re sure, to avoid the whole situation. But that’s just crazy talk.


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