This evening, I read a letter to an advice columnist on Slate about the subject of alleged date rape.
The gist of the letter was that a woman had confided to a friend that she’d had a one-night stand after getting wasted at a bar the previous night. The next day, she regretted her actions once she was sober again. Later, she reconsidered the matter and had changed her tune by telling others that she was the victim of a “date rape” and now wanted to press charges. The letter writer also mentioned that this friend also got so drunk on other occasions to the point of not remembering what she did the next day.
When this woman called a rape crisis center, they encouraged her to press charges, saying that if she was drunk, she was “incapable” of giving consent.
My opinion? In a word — bullshit!
Yes, yes, I know all about men who put something into a woman’s drink to drug her in order to have sex with her. But the most likely scenario is that they were both drunk and decided to have a one-night stand with no coercion involved. It happens every night in bars everywhere.
During my college years, I had quite a few one-night stands from bars. Most of the time it was perfectly satisfactory for me, but there were a few times I’d get up the next morning and think to myself, “Eww, why did I sleep with HIM for?” But instead of playing the victim card and crying rape, I simply chalked it up to a stupid decision on my part and moved on, not thinking another thing about it.
It never occurred to me not to take responsibility for my own actions. After all, nobody made me go to the bar, nor did they pour an excess of beer down my throat. I did that. And I often went to bars with the idea of getting laid in mind. I’m also sure that some of these men, when they woke up the next morning, probably said the same thing about me, too.
I’ve always taken the view that women are not the moral equivalent of children, who are unable to make their own choices and mistakes, nor take responsibility for those choices.
This woman apparently isn’t willing to take any responsibility for her own actions, but she’s more than willing to ruin someone else’s life so she can assure herself that she’s really a victim, instead of someone who had simply made an unwise choice, or that she might really be an alcoholic with self-control issues.
As the advice columnist rightly pointed out in her answer, women like this also make it harder for those women who are violently assaulted to seek justice. The two types of situations are in no way similar, in my view.
I’m sure some will disagree, but this is how I see it.