Rape and Inebriation
Trigger Warning: As the title suggests, I will be discussing rape and for many people who have been raped, this can trigger them. Also, I’m going to ask a question that is probably stupid, but I am genuinely curious. I do understand the possibility of me coming across as excusing rape. I hope you don’t take what I say in that light.
FYI for the Neanderthals in the audience, under the age of consent or anywhere near inebriated will get you the deserved moniker of rapist
I get age of consent. I also get that when someone is sufficiently drunk, their ability to consent is compromise. I also get that there are guys who get girls so drunk that they are basically comatose when they rape her. But the phrase “anywhere near inebriated” seems to throw a wider net and makes all sex after pickups at a bar suspect. This intuitively seems absurd.
Obviously, the net is not that wide. So, there must be some line after which a person is so drunk that even if they say yes or if they do not say no, that is not a sign of consent. Morally speaking, I think that this will have to include more than the passed-out-from-drunkenness test. I believe that there are levels of drunkenness where even if a person said yes, they lacked the adequate faculties to truly give consent. But I’m not sure how this is legally handled. So, question for the lawyers:
1. How is this legally handled in the US (or whatever jurisdiction you are in)? At what level of inebriation is a person’s apparent consent not counted as genuine for legal purposes?
Suppose that it is the case that someone can be drunk enough that their saying yes does not count. The reason why this should count, morally if not legally, as rape is that the inebriated person (usually the girl) had sex against her will. But, morally speaking, if a person can be sufficiently drunk as to be conscious yet not have full control of their faculties and their alleged consent is nullified, then that can also be true of the alleged rapist as well*. Morally speaking neither of them were in a sufficient mental state to have counted as consented.
2. Thus, were they both raped? Or was it just that an unfortunate thing happened and neither are responsible?
Suppose we were to say that the guy is responsible because he shouldn’t have gotten so drunk in the first place,
3. Why don’t we say the same about the girl?
And a question for lawyers:
4. How is this handled in you jurisdiction? Does I was drunk too count as a defence?
*Since I am likely the least experienced in such matters I would like the league to answer a question: Can a guy who is so drunk as to not be in full control of his faculties still be able to have sex or is he likely to get temporary erectile dysfunction? At least if Hollywood is to be believed a guy can get so drunk as to land in bed with a girl and not remember anything when he wakes up.