Rape is a crime, not 'having fun'

14th April 2006 at 01:00
I was appalled to read the article headline "The accidental rapist", in your edition of March 31.

If a man has sex without a woman's consent, then it is rape - there is no accident about it. He may believe that he was just a lad "having fun", as Stuart Waiton describes it but, as a survivor of rape myself, I can assure you that there is absolutely nothing fun about rape for the victim. If lads think that it is fun to have sex without a woman's consent, then this issue has to be addressed.

The proposed changes to the law are not suggesting that regretted sex is rape: they are saying that sex without consent is rape. Concerns that this will lead to a rash of false accusations are based on the myth that women lie about rape. As the majority of women who are raped do not report it to the police (and who can blame them with the conviction rate at an all-time low), it is clear that women do not find it easy to bring accusations of rape and statistics show that there are very few false accusations.

With most women being raped by someone they know, it is time that the law and society as a whole work together to ensure that they have protection from this devastating crime.

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