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On Drinking, Consent, and Accountability

Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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11/13/2014 1:00:47 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
As you all know, I have been harping this consent thing for some time now. Not because I am pro-rapist, but because I do not believe alcohol should remove consent, ergo, there is no rape solely because alcohol is involved.

In what will probably be my last attempt to make myself clear I want to highlight the following example:
1. Man gets blackout drunk. Goes home and wants sex. Is denied. Takes it by force.
2. Man gets blackout drunk. Goes home and wants sex. Lover agrees.

In the first example, I find it hard pressed to imagine people would say that the man should be absolved from his actions of raping his lover. However, in the second example, the lover actually is raping the man, by mainstream thought.

Why is the man accountable for his actions in one situation, but not the other?
If judgement is impaired it is impaired, isn't it?

I am aware of the pragmatic issues that rape cases have, and the issue of what was said, and who said what when, and being manipulated and taken advantage of needs to be somehow proven.
However, assuming a perfect scenario, why is giving a drunk the sex they want raping him?
If you still believe this should be rape (the second example, not the first), then tell me at what point alcohol needs to be factored into consent.
How many men have a few beers and go home with the ugly girl from the bar, simply because their judgment was impaired?
How many people use "liquid courage" to overcome their anxiety about having sex or dealing with their family, or telling someone off?

I don't deny that judgment is impaired by alcohol, but are we as a society really going to say that you should be protected from your own bad judgment, and only then, in certain cases?

Finally, think of the closet gay man that only seeks gay sex while drunk.
Is he being taken advantage of by gays, or is he doing what he actually wants to do, but is too afraid sober to admit?

I believe the latter.
I believe alcohol removes inhibitions, and reveal people's true character. As such, I do not believe people are raped while drunk, because they want it (assuming all other factors are kosher).
Growing up with alcoholics is how I came to this view. They get drunk, and they act like I'd expect them to act: angry and bitter. I get hammered, I just talk more (and louder). Odd, I don't do things I get embarrassed of when I get drunk. My wife on the other hand....but that's because she is too self-conscious sober.
Me drunk, high, or sober, I am still quite the boring person, I'm just more vocal.
My work here is, finally, done.
ford_prefect
Posts: 4,138
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11/13/2014 8:16:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
First of all, I have to say I mostly agree with your opinion on this issue. The reason I think a lot of people want to say that any alcohol = no consent, is because of the environments on college campuses that are created by aggressive drinking at frat parties and stuff like that. Also, I notice they often use a gender double standard, where if the woman had a sip of alcohol she can't give consent but if a man was blackout drunk he should still be held fully accountable for his actions.

I would say that anybody who makes the choice to drink to the point of impairing their own decision making ability, should be held accountable for the decisions they make while in that state. If you get hammered and I ask you to give me $100, and you agree and hand over the cash, then it is not robbery. If you say no, or don't say anything, and I take it from your wallet, then that is robbery.

Same thing with sex. If a girl gets drunk and says yes to sex, it's not rape, even if she regrets it in the morning. If she is passed out and can't answer the question, or says no, then it is rape and no matter how drunk the guy is, he should be prosecuted.

But because the current hot topic is finding ways to speak out against rape, especially on college campuses, many people get carried away and want to find rape where there is none. I absolutely think that a decent amount of rapes happen because the victim was too drunk to recognize or escape a dangerous situation. But simply the act of drinking, as you say, does not automatically mean that rape has occurred.
ford_prefect
Posts: 4,138
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11/13/2014 8:20:38 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
This should hopefully be obvious, but just to clarify, in my examples, the person who goes around trying to beg for money or sex from drunks who otherwise wouldn't give those things to him, is doing things that are morally reprehensible and wrong. However, they are not illegal, since it is not against the law to be a crappy person. Other people will learn to avoid his company and not be friends with him. Should he face social repercussions of his actions? Absolutely. Should he be criminally charged with theft and rape? No.
Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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11/18/2014 8:16:40 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/13/2014 8:20:38 PM, ford_prefect wrote:
This should hopefully be obvious, but just to clarify, in my examples, the person who goes around trying to beg for money or sex from drunks who otherwise wouldn't give those things to him, is doing things that are morally reprehensible and wrong. However, they are not illegal, since it is not against the law to be a crappy person. Other people will learn to avoid his company and not be friends with him. Should he face social repercussions of his actions? Absolutely. Should he be criminally charged with theft and rape? No.

Exactly. And, what's the reasoning given? The drunk is taken advantage of? When this happens sober, it's not called rape. It's called seduction. You talk someone into given you sex, if at first they don't give it. What's wrong with that?

And to add to that, I know a guy that, while drunk, becomes SUPER generous, like gives $100 tips, and $20 to homeless, and it's been reported that he has literally just gone around handing strangers money, like "hi, here's $10".

As I say, alcohol doesn't make people different, it just lowers their inhibitions. The man I refer to in this post is generally generous and a nice guy. He's the nicest drug dealer I've ever met, to be sure.
My work here is, finally, done.
Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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11/18/2014 8:28:08 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/13/2014 8:16:23 PM, ford_prefect wrote:
First of all, I have to say I mostly agree with your opinion on this issue. The reason I think a lot of people want to say that any alcohol = no consent, is because of the environments on college campuses that are created by aggressive drinking at frat parties and stuff like that. Also, I notice they often use a gender double standard, where if the woman had a sip of alcohol she can't give consent but if a man was blackout drunk he should still be held fully accountable for his actions.

I would say that anybody who makes the choice to drink to the point of impairing their own decision making ability, should be held accountable for the decisions they make while in that state. If you get hammered and I ask you to give me $100, and you agree and hand over the cash, then it is not robbery. If you say no, or don't say anything, and I take it from your wallet, then that is robbery.

Same thing with sex. If a girl gets drunk and says yes to sex, it's not rape, even if she regrets it in the morning. If she is passed out and can't answer the question, or says no, then it is rape and no matter how drunk the guy is, he should be prosecuted.

But because the current hot topic is finding ways to speak out against rape, especially on college campuses, many people get carried away and want to find rape where there is none. I absolutely think that a decent amount of rapes happen because the victim was too drunk to recognize or escape a dangerous situation. But simply the act of drinking, as you say, does not automatically mean that rape has occurred.

College campuses, especially frat parties, muddies the water and gets the most attention, I agree.
I think the intent is pretty clear, you go get drunk and have sex. Putting yourself willfully in that situation is probably not a good idea.

I think college drinking just gets lumped into the idea of frat parties, and boys being sex hungry maniacs, which some are, especially at that age.
A girl passing out on the bed has her clothes ripped off and sex, is rape.
A girl who wouldn't normally agree to a three-way but under the influence does, is not raped, even if she is ashamed of her actions.

Don't drink if you can't handle it.
Use drugs in safe settings.
It's not that complicated - it's self-responsibility.
My work here is, finally, done.