The current discussion of anonymous rape accusations in the atheism/skeptic community highlights an ugly aspect of the current brand of feminism. It shows what happens when you expand the definition of rape to include “he gave me alcohol, I knew it was alcohol, I drank it, we had sex”.
For some hardcore feminists this constitutes as rape — even when no force was involved, just because a man gave a woman alcohol. I mean, sure, when the aim is to intoxicate a person to force her to sex, then, yes, it should count as rape. BTW, it should count as rape no matter whether the victim is female or male. But as part of a normal interaction? Alcohol has its function as a social lubricant, not to mention that it is polite to make sure that your conversation partner has enough to drink. It is one thing to regret a one-night stand that you had when you were drunk, but quite another to be forced against your will. The first one is a mistake you can learn from, the second is a crime that should have serious consequences for the rapist.
I think the different definition of what constitutes “rape” is the main problem of the whole rape accusation issue. In the beginning of every discussion you have first to define your terms, otherwise you risk false dis-/agreement.
And I suppose that if the discussion starts with a definition of the terms first it would become clear that some feminists have expanded the term “rape” beyond the scope of instances it should cover. It would also show that feminism has become a religion that follows a dogma and not empirical data.
The discussion would also show that feminism promotes a world-view which makes the world an ugly place. Because let’s face it, the aim of these anonymous accusations is not to make the community a safer place. The aim is to change the interaction. To introduce insecurity, self-censorship and inhibition. To make (some) women the sole arbiter of what is acceptable or not in social interactions. And the equivocality and arbitrariness removes any dependability for men when it comes to social interactions. It keeps men in the defensive, always on their toes whether what they do is right or wrong.
I can see the power in it, I can see that it might be fun in some contexts, but it is not a form of interaction I would consent to in a normal public setting.
And after all, rape and other forms of violence are serious issues. Rapists — men and women — should be punished for it. Anonymous accusations and diluting what counts as rape does not help the victims of actual rape. On the contrary, I think the whole discussion makes it harder for victims of actual rape to come forward, because the discussion is not about preventing crimes, it’s about power and political gains.
Seriously, I wonder what the reason for that expansion of rape to include “he gave me alcohol” is? Do they want to create more instances of “rape” that do not really qualify, but help them gain support for their worldview that men are evil and they should be in charge? Do some feminists want to claim that they were ‘raped’ without really experiencing a rape? Hell, how can anyone think of politicizing violence and rape?