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Response to MineralMan (Original post)

Sat Apr 19, 2014, 10:29 PM

21. I agree with much but disagree with the part about "whining" etc.

 

You write:

If you've been whining, pleading, arguing, or using any psychological strategies, it's no.


This is far too broad. A person can't give legally effective consent (to sex or anything else) if unconscious, or threatened with force, or underage, or any number of other situations -- but all of us routinely engage in nonviolently persuading other people.

A case study for your consideration:

Example 1: Star college athlete has dated another student a few times when they have a conversation.
He: "I'd really like to have sex with you right now? Would that be OK?"
She: "No, I'm uncomfortable about that. Let's take this a little more slowly."
He: "Well, I'm really horny and I'm uncomfortable with waiting longer. If you don't want to have sex now, I'll respect that, go away, and never date you again. If we have sex now, you can be my girlfriend, go with me to the many parties I'm invited to, be part of my crowd, and be more popular on campus."
She agrees and they have sex.

Example 2: A salesman for a lawn-care company has come to the door of a single woman who owns her own house.
He: "I'd really like for you to hire us to care for your lawn. We'll remove dead leaves, plant some flowers along the walk, and use fertilizer that will make your grass look much greener and prettier. Would that be OK?"
She: "No, I'm not interested in that."
He: "Right now you have, frankly, one of the most decrepit-looking lawns on the block. If you hire us it will make the whole block look better and you'll be more popular in the neighborhood."
She agrees and gives him the money.

If Example 1 is rape, then is Example 2 theft? Put more broadly, are we saying that adults can make their own decisions about money (provided there's no fraud, no threat of force, etc.), even if their decisions are procured by whining, pleading, arguing, or using any psychological strategies, but that adults (or maybe just adult women) are incapable of making free decisions under those circumstances if the context is sex rather than money?

Finally, I agree with your conclusion about communicating with the other person, so here's another case for your comment:

Example 3:
He: "I'd really like to have sex with you right now? Would that be OK?"
She: "No, I'm uncomfortable about that."
He: "Oh, what are you thinking about what's happening?"
She: "I'm worried about HIV, and even a condom isn't absolutely 100% certain protection."
He: "I understand. I can tell you that, after my last relationship ended, I waited three months and got tested for HIV. The result was negative. Since that relationship ended, I haven't had sex, protected or unprotected, with anyone else, nor have I used IV drugs or received a blood transfusion. As I understand the medical science, those facts combined mean that I'm not carrying HIV."
She: "In that case, yes, let's have sex."

Was that rape? He engaged in arguing. (An argument is a connected series of statements to establish a definite proposition, as anyone knows who's seen the "Argument Clinic" by Monty Python.) By arguing, he changed her No to a Yes. It seems that, by your definition, he raped her, or at least committed a sexual assault. I'd say his behavior was perfectly proper.

By contrast, the man in Example 1 was a selfish and insensitive clod. To say that he committed rape or sexual assault, however, seems to imply that the woman is not capable of making her own decisions about sex. I say that it's not rape or sexual assault -- because I respect women's autonomy.

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MineralMan Apr 2014 OP
CrispyQ Apr 2014 #1
MineralMan Apr 2014 #2
MineralMan Apr 2014 #3
alp227 Apr 2014 #23
MineralMan Apr 2014 #31
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MineralMan Apr 2014 #5
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MineralMan Apr 2014 #11
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MineralMan Apr 2014 #19
Prophet 451 Apr 2014 #76
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MineralMan Apr 2014 #18
MuseRider Apr 2014 #20
LineReply I agree with much but disagree with the part about "whining" etc.
Jim Lane Apr 2014 #21
nomorenomore08 Apr 2014 #22
Jim Lane Apr 2014 #24
CFLDem Apr 2014 #27
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