Consent is still Sexy
From a young age parents tell their children to keep an open mind and embrace different cultures. They teach us to be courteous and mindful of different backgrounds and traditions. But would one teach their child to embrace the idea of assaulting women? Do we accept assault simply because it’s embraced in one’s culture? A brand new culture has been introduced to society today. A culture that doesn’t rely on different food or a person’s origin. Rape culture is when society blames victims of sexual assault and normalize male sexual violence. Do we want to raise our children to believe that women shouldn’t be victims rather than teaching them not to victimize women?
Rape culture exists because men define rape. As a society we let the group of people responsible for majority of rapes define what constitutes it. Men defining rape dates all the way back about 1780 B.C. to the Code of Hammurabi. The law stated that if a virgin were raped it was considered property damage to her father. If a married woman were raped she was an adulteress and was thrown in the river. Since then it hasn’t improved too much. In 1814, Dr. Samuel Farr stated that if a woman didn’t squirm a lot during her attack, it wasn’t rape. His reasoning, “you can’t thread a moving needle.” Flash forward to 2012, the FBI gave a newer definition. “The new, expanded definition includes other forms of sexual assault, other genders, and instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity, including due to the influence of drugs or alcohol or because of age.”
The inconsistencies of defining rape has led to injustice to the victims. Only 16% of rapists spend a night in jail. The victims may be severely traumatized by the event and their attacker is most likely going to roam free the very next day. Due to the inconsistencies rapists have no fear when it comes to punishment. Instead of being prosecuted, they are free to assault or abuse once again.
You didn’t ask for feedback, haveanelephantasticday. Here’s some feedback anyway.
P1. Conceptually, this is a brilliant opening. We trap ourselves into accepting extremely distasteful attitudes when we try to remain open to other cultures. That’s very well observed. But PLEASE lose the rhetorical questions and state your obviously intelligent claims boldly, clearly, and positively. Don’t ask if we would condone assaulting women. (It’s an insult to our intelligence to patronize us this way.) State clearly that we wouldn’t and why. Your last sentence illustrates the rhetorical danger of rhetorical questions. It asks us to choose between A and A. Should we raise our kids to believe A) women shouldn’t be victims, or A) not to victimize women? You won’t run the risk of asking such questions if you’re making claims instead.
P2. You’re doing little here beyond summarizing the provided source material, elephantastic. Your 2012 update doesn’t in any way advance the earlier “definitions,” so it’s purpose is unclear. Therefore, if the point of the paragraph was to connect the ancient definition of rape to the contemporary definition of rape, it fails. More importantly, what is a definition paragraph doing at the heart of a causal argument? When your entire argument is a scant 350 words or less, you really should be spending all of them on causal arguments. Is your entire argument really that notions of property are the cause of rapes? How does it explain date rape? How does it explain the role of inebriation or peer pressure or any of a dozen other contributors to sexual assault?
P3. Inconsistencies in what defines rape are certainly loopholes that exonerate much nasty behavior, but saying so does not begin to prove the claim, elephantastic. You haven’t named a source or provided the evidence to persuade a skeptical reader.