Proposed reform of Scotland’s rape laws

It’s an easy life (relatively speaking) if you are a sex criminal in Scotland. Want to rape someone without being prosecuted as a rapist? No problem – since rape is defined as the penetration of the vagina by the penis, simply pick an alternative object, an alternative orifice, or just bugger a man. If you don’t fancy a struggle, there is an even easier way. It’s only rape in Scotland if she has explicitly refused (or her refusal is implied, e.g., if you have to bash her around beforehand). So pick some nice girl in a pub, then ply her with booze until she passes out unconscious. Unless she told you earlier that she wasn’t up for sex – and someone else heard her tell you and is willing to stand up in court and say so – you’re home and dry! (If only other crimes were treated similarly – ‘It wasn’t theft, officer! He didn’t say I couldn’t take his car!’ )

Unfortunately for sex criminals, this happy state of affairs may not continue for much longer, because legal types in Scotland have unveiled proposals for reform. The changes will make it possible to rape a man. They will also redefine ‘against someone’s will’ to mean lack of consent, rather than presence of refusal. Furthermore, they will spell out various scenarios where consent cannot be given, which include, when the person is unconscious. (If having sex with inert bodies is your thing, then you might be better off just investing in a good quality sex doll.) Also, if the reforms go through and you happen to find yourself up in court on rape charges, just claiming ‘she said I could’ won’t cut it – you’ll have to explain to the court what you did to ascertain whether or not she was up for it. A small suggestion: maybe just ask politely next time you meet a lady and want to take her home to your bed.