Trigger warning for rape, including a description of an instance of rape/sexual assault.

I have a friend who was… I’m not sure how to describe it, because he doesn’t define his experience as a rape and I don’t want to disrespect his autonomy in that matter, but it walks and talks and quacks like a rape to me. Call it an instance of incredible disrespect for consent.

My friend had just recently broken up with his fiancee, the only girl he had ever dated, and he was understandably heartbroken. His friends thought he should fuck another girl to cheer himself up, but he wanted to reserve sex for a committed relationship. So one night when he was on X for the first time at a party and had probably taken too much and was in no way capable of resisting one of his friends had sex with him.

The thing is… I think that girl doesn’t think of herself as a rapist. Or even as someone who forced sex upon someone. From her perspective, she was cheering up a friend after his breakup, the sort of thing a good friend would do.

That doesn’t mean she’s a nice girl who made a few mistakes. It doesn’t mean that it’s something anyone could do. It doesn’t erase her culpability. It doesn’t make it a fucking MISUNDERSTANDING.

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[Sparkly text: Intent! It’s fucking magic!]

Fun fact: sometimes people believe things which make them think that it is okay to do evil things, and that doesn’t mean they aren’t evil. For instance, if you believe it’s okay to murder someone for cheating on you, it does not mean you aren’t a murderer. If you believe that God commands you to spank infants, that does not mean you are less evil for spanking infants. If you believe that you can fuck a sleeping woman because she was flirting with you the night before, you are not a nice guy who happened to misunderstand her signals.

Of course it’s important to examine why people believe evil things. The blame for people spanking infants doesn’t just belong to the people who spank them. It belongs to Michael Pearl for writing a book that says spanking babies is God’s will and to the larger culture of normalization of abuse and “parental rights” and lionizing obedience to authority without question. But blame is not like a pie where if Michael Pearl gets a bigger piece then the people who spank infants get a smaller one. It can be everyone’s fault at the same time.

I do not know what shop people get this “people do evil for reasons, therefore it is not evil!” illogic from, but it needs to close down yesterday.