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DATE RAPE AND WHY SOME PEOPLE JUSTIFY IT

Updated on October 15, 2014

Date rape is part of a variety of violence and abuses in relationships. When one of the partners tries to get hold, hurt or control the other, without his or her consent, this is nothing but abuse. According to Webster’s dictionary, rape is a sexual intercourse without the partner’s consent irrespective of whether the duo knew each other or not. However, many people including some women and juries consider criminal rape to constitute only sexual violations by a stranger. It should however, be noted that sexual abuse by an acquaintance results to an immense emotional impact to the victim. Among the major reason, for this aspect is that many date rapes are not reported, making the victims to suffer in silence.

In accordance to FBI report, in 1986, the number of forcible rapes in U.S amounted to 90,434. Between that year and 2000, that rate was increasing by 42%, making it the most increasing crime in U.S. In fact, some analysts described this as an “epidemic of sexual assault”. However, the rate of “date rape” or rape by an acquaintance has not been clearly documented. This paper provides arguments on the justification of rape (Howard, and Kavenik, 2010, 25).

Discussion

Why Some People Justify Date Rape

According to Bridges, (2011) most men who claim that date rape is justified base their beliefs on tradition beliefs and myths on sex roles. Accordingly, most belief that if a woman asks or accepts a date from a man, goes with him to his room, or accepts the man to pay for the expenses, then she was leading a man on. This as per these traditionalists and other non-traditionalists implies a sexual invitation and that the woman had no right to withdraw later! On the other hand, some people argue that particular women’s behavior will make a man to forcefully have sex with the woman (134).

Why Date Rape Is not Justifiable

In many cases, the “rapist” in a date rape incident may try to transfer the blame on the other person for any other reason. However, the abuser ought to understand that he or she has an obligation to stop any abuse from occurring. The law prohibits any form of abuse including sexual abuse on people irrespective of the relationship. The law is even clearer that if one of the dating acquaintance forces the other while on date to have sex without consent, this is act is classified as rape (Parrot, and Bechhofer, 2009, 65).

There could be no good reason why some tradition myths on sex are still carried on by some people. For instance, interpreting that a woman means yes when she say no is a total blunder, as you cannot expect a woman to be saying something while meaning a different thing altogether. It is agreeable that some women have difficulty in being open especially on sexual issues, and others will be comfortable in letting men to take initiatives. This cannot however, be assumed to be true on all women. This is even simpler from the perspective of date rape. Men should understand that what a woman says, she means it and in case the he thinks that she may be acting, it would be better if he asked her. Thinking that they are not obligated to listen on what the woman means is holding on the belief that supports rape.

Others have justified date rape on account that some women do lead men in having forced sex by their actions and behaviors. However, it should be considered that individual’s behavior, and actions such as the manner of their dress, dancing, drinking or flirting is not a pass for anyone to force himself sexually on her. We do hear cases such as, if she was ready to have sex with him, why did she kiss him. The answer to this question may just be that she only wanted to kiss him and nothing else. We also hear cases such as what was she expecting to happen? People need to remind themselves that forced sex cannot be justified under any circumstance. Certainly, the woman in this situation was not expecting rape. Additionally, there is no level of being turned on, being led on or being flirted that may justify forceful sex on another person. It is an abuse of a relationship to force another person to have sex without consent.

Conclusion

There are various things, which men do to view forceful sex for what it is and start trying on how to stop it on either a personal or societal level. Men must understand that coerced or forced sex even if the other partner is the lover or friend is considered rape. It can never be acceptable for a man to force himself on a woman even if he thinks that the woman could be leading or teasing him to perform such an act. The assumption that women mean yes when they say no is a myth that should be discarded at all costs. On the other hand, women should become aware on the use of their assertive actions, which may be used by men as an interpretation for justifying rape. Apparently, this does not translate that women ought to avoid being assertive, but they must be aware on how to use their assertiveness in such a way that it is not wrongly interpreted by men.


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    • Nyamweya profile image
      Author

      Silas Nyamweya 2 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      thank you for your insightful comment

    • dashingscorpio profile image

      dashingscorpio 2 years ago

      Date rape is still rape. In fact another topic rarely discussed is marital rape. California PENAL CODE SECTION 261-269 states: "Rape is an act of sexual intercourse accomplished with a person (not the spouse) of the perpetrator..." This would seem to imply that a husband can (legally) force himself onto his wife.

      While marital rape has been illegal in every state and the District of Columbia since 1993, it is infrequently prosecuted.

      In both date rape and marital rape the victim often assumes some of the blame which is why many of them decide against reporting it. They don't want to have to go every detail leading up to the rape.

      As you noted people will ask what was she expecting going into a man's hotel room at 2:30AM? Being gullible or naïve does not justify rape.