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Sun Jan 27, 2013, 12:57 PM

When the law won’t call it rape

Trigger warning

http://www.salon.com/2013/01/26/when_the_law_wont_call_it_rape/

...

When the verdict was announced, Cuomo said she just lost it. “It was like, oh my god. I’ve sat through this. I’ve waited for this. And this jury just told me ‘you were sexually assaulted, but you weren’t raped because you couldn’t remember the color of a car.’ Apparently there was a car in the alleyway. I honestly don’t remember a car at all. I was in shock. There was a gun pressed to the side of my head. I don’t need to justify it. It’s just insulting. It was offensive. And it was just devastating to think ‘I might have to relive this again.’”

Others also found the verdict preposterous. Jennifer Long, the director of AEquitas, an organization that studies laws dealing with violence against women, said the case showcases how bias can be present among members of a jury. “One can speculate the reasons why they chose to convict of maybe the perception of the lesser crime,” said Long. “Whatever the reasons were for the outcome, it really belies the evidence.”

...

“Rape is a very emotionally charged word,” said Simotas. “It means a lot to victims and it means a lot, I think, just to society. People whom I’ve spoken to — victims and their families — they all, if they’re violated in this way, if they’re forced to engage in a sexual act against their will, the word they use is ‘rape.’ They don’t use ‘sexually criminal act.’ People don’t even know what that means.”

...

The differences between states’ laws go beyond the linguistic. For example, laws vary in terms of whether penetration is required to prove rape or if contact is sufficient. They also differ in how they define consent, and whether the victim’s silence indicates a lack of consent — or whether a person has to explicitly say “no.” Jennifer Long of AEquitas said codes can differ by level of complexity, as well. “Some jurisdictions have neater, simpler laws, and some are much more complicated — but they may all cover the same conduct.”

...



The FBI made some important and long overdue changes recently, but what we really need is a massive overhaul of state laws.

5 replies, 1019 views

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Arrow 5 replies Author Time Post
Reply When the law won’t call it rape (Original post)
redqueen Jan 2013 OP
ProgressiveProfessor Jan 2013 #1
lumberjack_jeff Jan 2013 #2
ismnotwasm Jan 2013 #3
seabeyond Jan 2013 #5
ismnotwasm Jan 2013 #4

Response to redqueen (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:03 PM

1. You would have to Federalize those laws/crimes which would take Constitutional change.

The alternative is a set of model ordinances that states/localities could adopt. That tends to work with building codes but not so much for criminal law historically..

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 05:10 PM

2. The paragraph you snipped would have been a relevant bit of info.

...“Whatever the reasons were for the outcome, it really belies the evidence.”

In New York, the sentencing requirements for criminal sexual act and predatory sexual assault are just as heavy as what’s required for rape. Pena was sentenced to at least 75 years in prison, and he later pleaded guilty to rape. But the fact that the different forms of penetration went under different names angered some policymakers — specifically, Queens Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas. She’s in the process of introducing a bill to the state legislature that would place all forced sexual penetration under the term “rape.”


Certainly, "rape" should encompass many types of sexual contact, if for no other reason than the fact that under current law, it's impossible for a male to be a victim of rape... which would help to explain why it's comparatively uncommon.

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 05:34 PM

3. I found this

Men Can be Legally Raped: New FBI Definition
By Andrew Chow, JD on January 6, 2012 2:17 PM | No TrackBacks
For the first time ever, the FBI's definition of rape now includes male rape. The change could affect the prosecution of sexual assaults nationwide.

Attorney General Eric Holder announced the expanded FBI rape definition Friday, The Washington Post reports. It's expected to cause a rise in reported rapes across the country.
While most state laws already define rape in broad terms, the FBI's rape definition hadn't been changed since 1929, the Post reports. The FBI's old definition of rape was "the carnal knowledge of a female, forcibly and against her will."

The new FBI rape definition states that rape is:

"Penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim."
The wording is broad enough to include male and female rape. It also drops the term "forcible" in favor of "without consent."

An FBI advisory board recommended the change, and FBI Director Robert Mueller approved it last month, the Post reports. It's hoped the updated definition will lead to "more accurate reporting and a far more complete understanding" of rape and its effects, White House adviser Valerie Jarrett told the Post.


http://blogs.findlaw.com/blotter/2012/01/men-can-be-legally-raped-new-fbi-definition.html


Saying its about time is woefully inadequate

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 06:06 PM

5. or children under 12, or sodomy, or intoxicated, drugged, unconscious rape. but hey,

rape numbers are down. especially since so many of the rapes do not go into the numbers.

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 05:38 PM

4. I still say

Rapists and the term rape shouldn't define 'sex' if I'm raped, I certainly haven't had sex, no matter the intentions of the rapist.

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