One tiny little word and apparently one big problem for some people.
Today we have more nasty news: some low-life, bottom-dwelling scum has hacked the private phone accounts of some well known female actors, found intimate and private pictures of them and subsequently posted them on the internet.
The actors in question have agreed to publicise films they appear in, and occasionally they endorse products by sponsors. They have not consented to having private images of themselves pimped around the internet by men who do not understand the difference between their fevered little masturbatory dreams and public life.
Hacking a phone account and peeking at private photos is no different from taking a pair of ladders, sneaking into a garden and peering at woman who is undressing behind curtains. Sending a woman an unsolicited picture of your dick isn’t different from ‘flashing’ her in the local park. This is abuse, and if you do it, you are an abuser. Consent from the woman involved wasn’t given – you are performing a criminal act.
(If by the way, you search for these images on the internet, you are aiding and abetting a criminal. In all likelihood you will not be charged and perhaps you shouldn’t be. But in effect, you are holding the ladders for the peeping tom, or setting up the tripod for the cock-shot. And you should be ashamed of yourself)
Meanwhile in Rotherham, Oxford and apparently nearly everywhere else, children have been subjected to sexual abuse. If (in the UK) you have sex with someone under 16 you are raping them. Why? Because a child cannot give consent. It doesn’t matter if she seemed up for it, or if he seemed like a bit of flirt, if she was wearing adult clothes or if he was drunk or on drugs. If they weren’t 16 they can’t give consent and you are therefore raping them if you have sex. Perhaps she/he seemed older, or they told you they were 16? Doesn’t matter, as the adult involved you have a duty to establish beyond doubt that they were old enough to give consent. If there is any doubt (ie. they look young) – it’s simple, don’t have sex. Sex by the way isn’t just intercourse. It’s making the child suck you off, hold your cock or let you touch them. If you’re 15 and you have sex with another 15 year old and you both gave consent enthusiastically, well it’s still not legal. Wait a year. Sorry.
Does your potential partner seem to be so drunk they can’t talk or so stoned they can’t walk? Then you cannot have sex with them because they cannot give consent. In this case, ‘Sex’ also means that you cannot undress them and stick objects into their vagina, you can’t take photos of them and distribute them around the internet either. They did not give their consent and you are a rapist and/or an abuser.
Let’s say your name is Jimmy and you have access to sick, disabled and/or mentally handicapped children and adults, can you have sex with them? No, because they cannot give consent and you are therefore a rapist. Even if you are famous, chirpy and known to be a national treasure. If you find out that someone like this is abusing the people in your care should you keep quiet about it because the person is famous/chirpy/a national treasure? No, because that person is raping the people under your care.
To be clear, if the person you want to have sex with, male or female, straight or gay, black or white, young (over 16) or old, says no at any point you can’t have sex with them. Touching some part of them (breasts, bottom etc) or persisting in ‘persuading’ them after they’ve said no is not allowed either. If you’re not sure, simply ask – do you want to have sex? Saying you ‘thought’ they were up for it and persisting when they seem reluctant is rape. Using forceful language and your bulk doesn’t help your case.
If someone says yes at first, and then changes their mind? Still rape. If they say yes, but you subsequently make them do something that they don’t want to do? Sexual abuse at best, and possibly rape.
Let’s say you are someone’s boss, head honcho, manager or guy in charge of recruitment and career advancement in the political party of your choice. You cannot use your position to barter for sex. A position of power should not be used to ‘make’ someone have sex with you. If you persist in doing so you are liable to charges of sexual abuse and possibly rape too. Happily for you, if you are a member of the establishment and your name is prefaced by ‘Lord’, in all likelihood you will find yourself having to give nothing more than a weaselly apology. But it’s still criminal behaviour and you are still a horrible person.
So to sum up, if you want to have sex and the other person doesn’t, you cannot have sex, because it is rape. If the person you want to have sex with is underage, unfit, unwell or unable to give consent you cannot have sex and if you do, it is rape. If you want to use your position of power to make someone have sex with you, you cannot because consent must be freely given, if you persist it’s rape. If you take images illegally from someone’s phone and post them on the internet you are not a hero, you are a criminal, if those images are sexual, you are abusing the victims privacy and that is abusive behaviour.
Are we clear?
Rapists aren’t just men in dark jumpers, hiding behind bushes in the local park. Or some slightly glamorous psychopath with a pretty face on TV or indeed some celebrity that’s all over the news. They are people who make someone have sex with them and don’t ask first. They are people who take advantage of the young and vulnerable. They are nasty little perverts who don’t understand the difference between private and public.