Figures released by the Legal Aid Board following a freedom of information request in 2017 show that over the past five years, an average of 30 per cent of rape trials involved questions about a complainant’s sexual history.In 2016, the practice was used in 28 rape trials out of the 99 which were scheduled.A trial judge always has discretion as to whether or not it’s permissible to cross-examine a complainant on their sexual history.
Figures released by the Legal Aid Board following a freedom of information request in 2017 show that over the past five years, an average of 30 per cent of rape trials involved questions about a complainant’s sexual history.In 2016, the practice was used in 28 rape trials out of the 99 which were scheduled.A trial judge always has discretion as to whether or not it’s permissible to cross-examine a complainant on their sexual history.Tags: Broken Windows EssayEssay ReflectiveSample Of A Literature Review PaperA Thesis Statement Can Never Be FactThe Banking Concept Of Education Thesis StatementThe Painted Door Short Story EssayHow To Help With HomeworkKu Honors Program Essay QuestionsEssays On Policy Making ProcessDissertation Marking Scheme
This damaging perception of masculinity means that men can feel uncomfortable or self-conscious explicitly turning down unwanted sexual advances.
Men are also raised to value their physical strength, and their ability to physically resist any threat.
From childhood, girls are usually taught to be polite and deferent, and are often criticised if they are perceived as being overly opinionated or “bossy”.
Women are thus implicitly and explicitly taught to be agreeable, conflict-avoidant and to de-escalate emotionally charged situations by remaining calm and pleasant.
The law also states that consent can be revoked at any time and that “any failure or omission on the part of a person to offer resistance to an act does not of itself constitute consent to that act.” Ireland made marital rape illegal through the Criminal Law (Rape) (Amendment) Act in 1990.
Though it has proven difficult to enforce, with only four convictions to date, the marital rape amendment was an important development.Acknowledging the existence of rape within relationships helped to dismantle the cultural myth that previous consent implies future consent, and the myth that most sexual assaults are committed by violent strangers, when 2016 figures from The Rape Crisis Centre show that 85 per cent of victims knew the perpetrators. A sexually active past is still often used to discredit complainants during rape trials.However, the phrasing of the amendment regarding martial rape only refers to vaginal rape of a wife by her husband, which still leaves the law concerning sexual violence towards men within a marriage, or sexual violence between same-sex couples, ambiguous. Solicitor Mark O’Sullivan explains that “you have to get the leave of the trial judge, so from a defence point of view, there would be an application in the absence of the jury where you must show that it is relevant to the case.The complainant will have their own lawyers advising them on that process.” Despite this protection, the mindset behind this type of questioning remains disturbing, as it can reinforce damaging myths about sexual violence, by implying that previous sexual activity can predict future consent.The reality is that consent must be given on every single occasion, and cannot be transferred across sexual acts, interactions, or partners.Like fight or flight, freezing is now recognised by psychologists and health professionals as a common reaction to a threat.Freezing leaves victims unable to articulate themselves clearly, and so relying on their ability to specifically say “no” is not just unrealistic and ineffective, but dangerous.However, men too can freeze or feel intimidated when faced with sexual violence, and so verbally saying “no” or attempting to fight back is not always possible.By demanding verbal and physical resistance from victims, we are ensuring many victims will never come forward and report assaults, as they will blame themselves for not speaking up or fighting back, and they will – often correctly, unfortunately – believe that others will blame them, too.But being perceived as confrontational or disagreeable is not just socially frowned upon; in certain circumstances, it can endanger women.Many women have experienced unwanted catcalling, propositioning or indeed sexual touching from men.