Maryland rescinds “once it’s in, it’s in” law

Thank god.
After the highest court of Maryland reheard the case which made the horrifying ruling that a woman cannot be raped once she has consented to sex, the court has overturned the decision and broadened the definition of rape to, um, rape:

With this expansion of the legal definition of rape, Maryland joins seven other states whose courts have determined that a woman can revoke her consent after intercourse begins.
‘This goes to the heart of women’s autonomy,’ said Lisae C. Jordan, legal director of the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault, which filed a brief in the matter. ‘It says that, yes, women do have the right to make decisions about something as intimate as sexual intercourse.’
The Maryland Court of Appeals’ opinion in a rape case from Montgomery County overturns what defense attorneys and a lower appeals court said was existing common law and the high court’s own 1980 opinion.

Like Jessica said, it’s hard to believe that this was actually up for debate in the first place, but at least the right decision was made. (Nearly two years later.)

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56 Comments

  1. Virago
    Posted April 23, 2008 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    Jabes1966:
    Do you even know what empathy is? It’s puting yourself in another person’s place. How would you feel if you’re being raped? It wouldn’t be too much a stretch of the imagination to know how a woman would feel. Most men are raped by other men. I said most people-male or female- are capable of understanding IF THEY WANT TO. You have to put yourself in the victim’s place even if it’s just in a hypothetical situation. That is what I was getting at. That’s how a person empathizes with another. And wrongsides couldn’t do this. And apparently neither can you. That’s a far cry from saying that I said men have no empathy.
    You apparently didn’t read all of Rhowan’s post because she brought up two different studies. Your quoting from the first one.
    As for the studies, I don’t know where your looking.
    http://catholicwriter.wordpress.com/2007/12/06/if-you-could-rape-a-woman-without-getting-caught-would-you/
    As for my site about the canadian study:
    (Helen Lenskyj, “An Analysis of Violence Against Women: A Manual for Educators and Administrators,” Toronto: Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, 1992)
    It lists the name of the manual, and who put it out.
    There are other studies, but you do your own homework. If your not looking in the right place, that’s on you.It’s not surprising that you don’t have any faith in so-called feminist studies because men like you think that all women are liars anyway. But unlike your stereotyping women as liars, I actually believe what the men are saying in the surveys.

  2. sly
    Posted April 23, 2008 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    This ruling is a travesty. It stands common sense on its head. For instance, the suggestion that Baby’s “I don’t want to rape you” means that he in fact WANTED to rape her is asinine. If, indeed, it was a subtle threat, a la “an offer you can’t refuse”, then he wouldn’t have stopped raping her after 5 seconds. The fact of the matter is, he asked her consent, made clear that he DIDN’T want to rape her, and she agreed. When she withdrew consent he stopped after about 5 seconds. No one suggests that a woman can’t withdraw consent. The inanity here is that a 15 year old might be imprisoned 18 years for just 5 seconds. If he kept having sex for a minute, or if he actually fought her, that would be one thing…but clearly this is a woman who decided to engage in some tawdry acts with 2 BOYS & then, when her conscience got the better of her, decided to hold the boys accountable for her own actions.
    That the DA supported her juvenile behavior is the travesty. This so reminds me of the 1900s lynchings of black boys for the audacity of looking at white women.

  3. ellestar
    Posted April 23, 2008 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    For instance, the suggestion that Baby’s “I don’t want to rape you” means that he in fact WANTED to rape her is asinine. If, indeed, it was a subtle threat, a la “an offer you can’t refuse”, then he wouldn’t have stopped raping her after 5 seconds.
    He told her that right after he had just helped his friend rape her. Many of us would take that as, “I don’t want to rape you, but I will if I have to.” The entire situation was such that any action she took was in order to survive with the least harm. That is not consent.
    The inanity here is that a 15 year old might be imprisoned 18 years for just 5 seconds.
    Well, the 5 seconds plus the time it took him and his friend to take her out to a place she couldn’t get away from, the time it took them to hold her down and rape her in the first place, and the second rape which wasn’t true consent to begin with.
    If he kept having sex for a minute, or if he actually fought her, that would be one thing…
    Oh, a minute is too long? How about 45 seconds? 30? Where is this magical cut off time so that it could be written into the law? “A person is allowed to keep having sexual intercourse with someone against that person’s express will for 30 seconds.” *rolls eyes* The magical cut off time is when a woman says NO.
    And if he fought her, I would fully be in favor of adding battery charges against him (another 5 years on top of the 18 he might get).
    Furthermore, we don’t determine punishments in direct correlation with the amount of time that it took to commit the act. It takes a split second to pull a trigger to end someone’s life. So some people are sentenced to life (or even death) for “just” .01 seconds. So that argument doesn’t hold up.
    but clearly this is a woman who decided to engage in some tawdry acts with 2 BOYS & then, when her conscience got the better of her, decided to hold the boys accountable for her own actions.
    Yeah, it’s so “clear” that courts systems which routinely fail to provide justice to survivors of sexual assault unanimously supported this decision.
    This so reminds me of the 1900s lynchings of black boys for the audacity of looking at white women.
    If there is a racial component here, I’m not aware of it.
    In fact, I would say that people’s ability to continue to have sexual intercourse with someone once consent has been revoked is similar to attitudes in the Jim Crowe South. It is a way to humiliate, degrade, and physically harm a person based on that person’s biology. So this ruling is more akin to legal actions that try to stem systemic biases within the courtroom.

  4. iqonefiftynine
    Posted April 24, 2008 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    ellestar,
    “If there is a racial component here, I’m not aware of it.”
    OMG! What planet are you from? There is a huge racial component to the justice system in America and in Maryland and this case is not an exception. Even more so, the history of defining “rape� in ways so that it can be used as a political rope is well documented. The rich have done it with “rape = property�. The Klan has done it with “rape = interracial sex� Feminists attempted it with “rape = all sex� and now the posters on this forum are trying to do it. They write “Stop Immediately�, “Stop Immediately�, or in other words “rape=male disobedience� This endeavor is not new. The book was titled� Against our will� not “Don’t hurt us�.
    The sad fact is that through this trial the reactionary non-profit legal hacks found some young black male necks on which they could make a point. It is sickening that this has become Modus operandi for these people. I pray that one day somebody… anybody… will actually create a law about trauma and violence without framing it inside a Machiavellian political term. I don’t see that happening anytime soon and so until then this is just the latest local case that has became a national feminist lynching. Justice is the opposite of vested interest.

  5. Virago
    Posted April 27, 2008 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    “The sad fact is that through this trial the reactionary non-profit legal hacks found some young black male necks on which they could make a point.”
    WTF? One boy pinned her down by sitting on her chest and trying to put his penis in her mouth while the other boy was taking off her jeans. The girl told them to STOP. Both of them moved her around so that one boy held her arms down while the other boy penetrated her vaginally and anally. That’s rape. Of course, she gave in after that because she was outnumbered. The other boy said he “didn’t want to have to rape her”. You don’t bring rape up in consensual situation. She said she would have sex with the other boy(under duress) if he would stop when she said. She told him to stop because he was hurting her, you fucking moron. In fact, she had lacerations in her vagina and rectum that is consistent with rape.The boy kept going, and she was pushing at his knees trying to get him off of her. You don’t push at someone’s knees to get them off you in consensual sex. That’s rape.What part of this don’t you understand? You’re I.Q. has to be 59.
    I’m judging this by the actions of the two boys,and they raped this girl more than once. I don’t give a damn if they were white, black, or something else. THEY RAPED THIS GIRL MORE THAN ONCE. Racism is just a fucking smokescreen used by you trolls to distort the facts. If these two black kids were accused of robbing a gas station, you wouldn’t give a shit if it was racism or not. If this was a case of a black woman being raped by two white boys, you wouldn’t give a shit about the woman (or any woman for that matter). If this was a case of a black woman killing her husband in self-defense, you wouldn’t give a shit about the color of the defendant than. As for non-white trolls, if you think this particular case is racism, you can fuck off. Non-white men have the same sense of male entitlement as white men toward women, and it doesn’t matter what color the woman is either. Men of all races think that they should be able to rape or beat up women without being held responsible for their actions. In the case of non-white trolls, you want to hide behind the race card. It’s pretty fucking sad when men of all races only find equality through mysogany.

  6. ellestar
    Posted April 27, 2008 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    What planet are you from? There is a huge racial component to the justice system in America and in Maryland and this case is not an exception.
    My comment earlier was regarding the races of the people involved. I hadn’t seen any pictures or read any mentions of race in this case. And yes, I know how pervasive racism is in the American judicial system. I also know how misogynist it is in cases of sexual assault and domestic violence.
    The statistics show that most sexual assault is intraracial. Studies using sexual assault cases as vignettes show that white victims generally are more sympathized with than are black victims. However, since most of the time the women that are accusing black men of sexual assault are also black, the racism and misogyny of the criminal justice system hurt black women the most. This ruling should be applied both to white victims of sexual assault women of color who experienced sexual assault as well. Whether it will be applied the same remains to be seen.
    However, the answer to racism in the criminal justice system is not taking power and voice away from women when they are already at a disadvantage in cases of sexual assault because that will not solve the problem that women of color face within the courts.

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