If a person is incapable of saying no to sex, does that mean the answer is yes?
In real life, rape rarely resembles the stereotype of the lurking stranger in an alleyway. The overwhelming majority of rapes are committed by someone the victim knows, frequently someone they trust. Very often, people involved report being unclear as to how consensual the sexual contact was. More often than not the blame falls on the victim, especially if they were using drugs or alcohol. As Buzzfeed reported recently:
The [Edmonton police] department reports that alcohol was involved in over half of their sexual assault investigations in 2011.
Even more disturbing was a recent U.K. study involving 18- to 25-year-old males that revealed that 48% of men didn’t consider it rape if a woman is too drunk to know what was going on.
In an ideal world consent would be black and white. Yes means yes, no means no, and if a person is incapable of giving consent then the default answer is no. But the world we live in is far from ideal. So, to help combat this confusion and make it as clear as possible to both potential rapists and victims, the Edmonton police department has found an effective and straightforward way to drive home the importance of consent. The ad campaign, which was launched two years ago and continues today, consists of posters depicting men and women in all-too-common situations where consent is often ignored.
Read more about rape and consent:
Picture: Kevin Krejci/Flickr