Thursday, March 27, 2008

NOW Web Site defines 'consent' incorrectly

This is a recent post from the California NOW Web site, defining the legal affirmative defense of "consent" too broadly:

How Do You Define Consent?

What comes to mind when you think of consent? Some words that come to mind are agreement, mutual and coerced.

Yes, I said coerced. Because many times when a person does not agree to consensual sex they may be coerced or pressured into agreeing to it. Sometimes we are faced with the question, “If you loved me, you would” or “I thought you loved me”. That is NOT consent! Consensual sex is when you both agree, not when one person forces the other.

Recently, I was on a college campus and women were discussing the “walk of shame”. This was described as when a woman is drunk and she has nonconsensual sex. All of these women were unaware that in the state of California, you are not legally able to consent if you are drunk. This was a wake up call for them! They asked me questions and did not realize that was the law. Prior to this they thought the “walk of shame” was just something that, as they said, “happens all the time”.

Dialogue alone can create change and when that dialogue begins online it can be the first step in making change in your community. What does consent mean to you? How can you create change?

Guest Blog by Lisa Covington

(Emphasis added)

Note from Editor of this Web site: This is a gross misstatement of the law. Is it any wonder radical feminists are able to maintain with a straight face that rape is rampant on college campuses given that they are applying a nonsensical over-broad definition of the crime? One can just imagine when the feminist writer was discussing the "walk of shame" with young college women -- their bright eyes must have widened at the epiphany that women are being "raped" with abandon, probably even they, themselves, have been "raped" under this twisted -- and incorrect -- definition. And it probably dawned on them for the first time how privileged, how selfish, how downright awful are the young males they go to school with, and by extension all males. Including their own fathers and brothers.

The only problem is, that's not what the law says. Under California statutory law, a person is guilty of rape, among other things, "Where a person is prevented from resisting by any intoxicating or anesthetic substance, or any controlled substance, and this condition was known, or reasonably should have been known by the accused."

Under this statute, according to a California state court that interpreted it, in order for a rape to occur the victim must be so intoxicated that he or she is incapable of exercising the judgment required to decide whether to consent to those sexual acts. An honest and reasonable but mistaken belief that a sexual partner is not too intoxicated to give legal consent to sexual intercourse IS a defense to rape by intoxication. PEOPLE V. GIARDINO, 82 Cal. App. 4th 454; 98 Cal. Rptr. 2d 315 (2000).

THAT is pretty damn drunk.

A recent Massachusetts appellate court explained: "In determining whether a person is 'incapable of consenting' to sexual intercourse as a result of intoxication, the inquiry focuses on whether that person is "wholly insensible . . . in a state of utter stupefaction . . . caused by drunkenness . . . or drugs."

Telling women that they have been raped if they have sex while they are merely intoxicated, without any further explanation, is incorrect and absolves them of all responsibility for their actions. It creates a presumption of victimhood that the law does not accept.

It is also gender divisive because it unfairly disparages countless college men by branding them as rapists when they are not. But sadly, I suspect that was the whole point. Every revolution needs a devil, and radical feminism has "the male."