I know I’ve written about this before, but I think it’s important enough to write about again. I heard a news story this morning about the newly launched website Not Alone: Together Against Sexual Assault. I am not the least bit interested in any kind of debate about the good, bad, or otherwise of the federal government being behind this site, so keep those comments to yourself. In the report, a startling statistic was offered: 1 out of every 5 girls is sexually assaulted in college, often by someone she knows and most likely in her freshman or sophomore year. Mix that with the recent story about Harvard telling a student/victim of sexual assault to forgive her assailant (also a Harvard student) and the other recent story about the sick culture of rape surrounding an unofficial yet unchecked fraternity at American University, this mom of a daughter finishing her sophomore year of college is pretty freaked out.
So as I mentioned in a previous post, I’d like to reiterate that if you’re a guy who wants to have sex with a girl, the only way it is okay is if she offers an unencumbered “YES”. That means she’s not drunk, high, or otherwise incapacitated wither by her own doing or anyone else’s. That means she is fully conscious and aware of what she is doing and what you are doing and of her surroundings. That also means that if at any time whatsoever she changes her “YES” to a “NO” you must stop. I don’t care how good it feels. I don’t care how backed up you are (I love that ridiculous “excuse”). “YES” means “YES” unless it becomes “NO”. And “NO” is always “NO”. It doesn’t become a “YES” if she is coerced or cajoled into sex. It doesn’t become a “YES” if she doesn’t say “NO”. It doesn’t matter how the girl is dressed — or if she is dressed at all. A naked girl on your bed saying “NO” to sex doesn’t mean “YES” because she’s naked and on your bed. It doesn’t matter how much or how little alcohol the girls drinks. Sex without a direct “YES” is sexual assault/rape, and at that point it isn’t even about sex. Now it’s about the power and control the guy has over the girl. The sexual act is the weapon used to harm.
And while I’m on my soap box, more men need to speaking out about this. Too many people discount this issue when women talk about it — they see it as sour grapes or some other nonsense.
Sex without a “YES” is not sex. It is rape. End of discussion.