Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

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Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby Nepene » Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:32 pm

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfre ... p-with-him

I thought it was quite an interesting article in light of the recent comic themes. In there during an initially consensual encounter her boyfriend kept having sex with her after she said no, orgasmed within her, then gave her the middle finger and said "Fuck you, I did it, I came inside of you." She stayed with him till later he broke up with her for guilting her about his actions. She doesn't feel it was rape but did feel fairly traumatized.

"That’s the most violent bit of the story. I call what he did “rape-like”. He called it “pushing my boundaries”. You say tomato, I say sexual assault."

It makes what I feel is a quite valuable point that the lack of any ability or will to prosecute a rape shouldn't mean that you can't talk about a rape or describe something as rape like.

So how do people view this, is this rape? Should you be able to describe something as rape even if you don't intend to prosecute?
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby crayzz » Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:06 pm

Yes and yes.

I suppose you could get really pedantic and say that unconsensual act was finishing inside her, not the sex itself. I don't think that would be remotely useful, though.

This isn't a case of someone revoking consent halfway through, and the other party not reacting instantaneously. It was deliberate:

"Fuck you, I did it, I came inside of you."


Side note: What an awful, malicious human being.

I can see a "this is only rape by technicality" argument, and so long as people give proper weight to the lack of consent (the actual issue, everything else is just categorization), I wouldn't hold it against them. And I won't dispute the victims wish to describe her experience as she wants.*

To expand on "Should you be able to describe something as rape even if you don't intend to prosecute?": I literally cannot think of even a halfway valid reason why. Steelmanning the argument as best I can, I would say that, if we allow people to talk about their experiences as rape without seeking a full investigation, people might lie, so the best way to avoid false accusations is to demand that such discussions include investigations. That argument is awful on its face, and it's about the best I can think of.

* The opposite happened on Shia Labeouf's recent experience of sexual abuse. He wanted to call it rape, and though I disagree with him, I don't really contest his use of the term.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby vvn » Fri Mar 06, 2015 4:45 pm

Nepene wrote:So how do people view this, is this rape? Should you be able to describe something as rape even if you don't intend to prosecute?

Yes:
crayzz wrote:I suppose you could get really pedantic and say that unconsensual act was finishing inside her, not the sex itself. I don't think that would be remotely useful, though.

Actually, the way I read the article, this is exactly the non-consensual part. She did not ever tell him to stop.
he said, “I want to come inside of you.” This was not dirty talk – it was a proposal. I told him not to, I didn’t want him to.

And, sex proceeded. He then told her after he came inside her that he had done so.

and Yes:
As far as calling it rape without prosecuting. Of course, if it's rape, call it that. Crimes are committed without prosecution all the time. Doesn't make it not a crime. Even if nobody notices, it's still a crime. "It's only illegal if you get caught." is simply not true.

crayzz wrote:Side note: What an awful, malicious human being.

YES!

Which makes me bring up a point of view I am sure I will regret.
We are told that as guys, we aren't doing enough to prevent rape. That we should not tell rape jokes, or encourage slut shaming. That by our behavior we should use peer pressure to show other guys that these things are not acceptable. But, there is one way to discourage this behavior that we, as third party guys, are simply not able to do: Stop having sex with those guys. It's an extremely powerful way to change behavior. The girl in the article pointed out that she didn't break up with him, or take any other action. (Maybe start making him wear a condom so he couldn't do it again.)

I have to admit that if I was a friend of this girl, I would have a difficult time figuring out what to do. I would probably tell her to get as far from him as possible. She would probably tell me something like, "It was intoxicating to feel like a pinch of salt dissolved in his black, turbulent seas." Then later when he raped her again, or got her pregnant, I would console her and feel horrible for her. But, inside my head there would be a little voice saying "I told you so."

Please don't take this to mean I think rape is the victims fault. It's not. Ever. But, just as you lock your car and hide your money when you are in the bad part of town, teaching girls to take precautions is a practical matter.

Men live to woo women. If we are taught by these women that certain behavior does not get you laid, we stop doing it. This is the inherent power all women have. Used wisely it changes society. Use it. Wisely.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby MysticWav » Fri Mar 06, 2015 5:12 pm

On the one hand I sort of understand some of what you're saying, but I think your framing of it is pretty unfortunate. It reads like

"Ladies, the way to get men to stop having sex with you against your will is to stop letting them have sex with you." Is not a message you want to be attached to even accidentally.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby crayzz » Fri Mar 06, 2015 7:53 pm

Actually, the way I read the article, this is exactly the non-consensual part.


Yes. I pointed that out.

Stop having sex with those guys.


How is one supposed to know before hand? It might work to deter further abuse (unless there's emotional abuse involved, or if your social circles are intertwined and making a big deal out of what can be spun as just "bad sex" is likely to hurt you in other ways, or if you're depressed and have trouble functioning, or if you were abused in the past and have trouble distinguishing abusive and healthy behaviour, etc), but it really just sets up an "everybody gets one" system: every guy who can hide it well enough gets one free borderline rape that the police won't take seriously.

C'mon ladies, we told you to just not have sex with those guys.

But, just as you lock your car and hide your money when you are in the bad part of town, teaching girls to take precautions is a practical matter.


Do you think women don't already receive plenty of instruction on this matter? It's about the one thing our culture is consistent on: that victims need to take responsibility. I don't understand how people can look at a deficient system, then decide that what we definitely need more of is the already prevalent element. We've already got

I'd go the other direction in cases like this: precaution can only get you so far when it comes to abusers. Teach people how to react well. Teach men and women to have higher standards for how others treat them sexually. Do this concurrently while making sure that, as a cultural norm, such behaviour is unacceptable: make sure that victims know we have their backs; that standing up for themselves will not lead to condemnation.

It's trivial and next to useless to say "victims should just say no more forcefully" or "victims should punish their abusers socially." But without a cultural norm to back them up, its basically just dismissing their problems as not worthy of our time.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby Nepene » Sun Mar 08, 2015 6:31 am

vvn wrote: But, there is one way to discourage this behavior that we, as third party guys, are simply not able to do: Stop having sex with those guys. It's an extremely powerful way to change behavior.


I have no issue personally with 'stopping' having sex with these guys. Dunno why you find it hard to stop sleeping with those guys.

Just saying "Don't sleep with those kinds" isn't a practical solution. Those guys are charismatic and people are lonely and lots of people get into bad relationships. What would be more helpful is having schools, the media, books and such present signs of abusive relationships and give people clear plans of action to get out of them. Women (and men) should stop having sex with those guys, and they shouldn't be mean to their partner, and they shouldn't be too emotional, and they shouldn't be mean to nice guys, and they should wait till the third date to have sex- people have lots of often contradictory commands from others on how to behave, if people aren't understanding the rules you should clarify them, not just repeat the rules louder.

Plus it's not like if one random one stops sleeping with them others will follow the same ideas. Women are not a gestalt hive mind, they do not share brains.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby Tem » Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:50 am

Stop having sex with rapists? Yeah, that'll work. Only, no, it won't because, you know, that's why they're called rapists.

Here's a suggestion for men who want to stop rape: Stop being friend with those guys. Rapists don't care if they don't get consensual sex, they'll go to a prostitute or just, y' know, rape someone. But they'll start to see the error of their ways if no one wants to be friends with them. If no one will hear to their complaints about not being able to get a girlfriend. If their colleagues at work don't talk to them anymore.
Or maybe they'll continue raping, but it'll become more difficult for them to get to know women if they have no friends. They may have to resort to raping strange women on the streets. You know, the kind of rape that actually might get them into jail.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby MysticWav » Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:06 am

Can't they just be friends with each other in that scenario?

I'd honestly be surprised if I found out a lot of nonrapist people were friends with rapists. Also, having trouble getting a girlfriend does not equal rapist. And I'm not sure how actual rapists are thwarted from meeting women by not having nonrapist friends, though again I don't think they have a lot of nonrapist friends at this juncture anyway.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby yomikoma » Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:03 am

Rapists don't wear big "I'm a rapist" signs. They have lots of friends who don't know they're rapists. To stop being friends with them you'll need to pay close attention to what they say and how they act.
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Re: Rape grey zones. "My boyfriend 'sort-of' raped me."

Postby luislsacc » Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:37 pm

As long as we're talking about grey-zones, to get slightly off-topic, what do you say about this situation?

Boy and girl meet at a party/ club/ boozy social event. They both get drunk, while no one person makes an effort to make the other people drink more, but they're enjoying drinking and the conversation so they end up sloshed and go somewhere where they make the beast with two backs. While both consented to sex, they were drunk at the time, so I don't personally believe they were able to give meaningful consent. Are they both rapists? Neither? Do you disagree with any of my assumptions (other than disagreeing on the basis of statistical unlikelyness of the specific situation)?
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