A man walks into a bar

A man walks into a bar, gets legally intoxicated, meets a woman who hasn’t had a drink. They go outside to her car and have sex. Since he is unable to make this decision due to being drunk, was he raped? If he was unable to perform, but she still was physical with him, is this sexual assault?

I don’t get it.

And the bartender says, “that’s not my duck!”

Its not a joke. Its a question. If you reverse the roles and have the woman intoxicated instead, everyone agrees its rape. I’m just wondering if people think its rape if the roles are reversed.

I know. Just messing with you. :wink:

To answer your question, if you remove gender from the question entirely, it is clearly, by current societal standards, sexual assault. Inserting gender in any order does not change the answer.

It is a commentary on the ridiculous idea floating around in some fringe circles that women cannot possibly consent to sex if they have had even one drink. The argument is infantile and generally aimed at college students but falls apart quickly when you ask what happens if the man is the drunk one or if the people involved are married and both drunk.

The answer to this specific question is of course it isn’t rape. That is the reason he went to the bar in the first place. I was 16 when a 22 year old woman got me so drunk that I could barely drive home just so that she could have her way with me. I knew what was happening and didn’t even know that I was supposed to feel like a victim. As a matter of fact, I thought it was awesome at the time and my opinion hasn’t changed in the ensuing decades. The same is true for almost every man and the vast majority of women in every bar in the world. They didn’t go there to drink milk and pray. Ridiculous hypothetical cannot counter reality.

Everyone that has gotten a ticket for DUI would love to use this as a defense.

I took it as yet another example of Men’s Rights Warrior “men (especially white men) aren’t treated the same as everyone else and it just isn’t fair.”

I’m slightly bothered by the idea that a woman can be too drunk to consent but a man can’t be too drunk to recognize that the woman is too drunk to consent.

On the other hand, I am not sure if it happens enough to be a concern in the legal system. Slightly more likely in a college/social/work environment where the burden of proof is lower.

Men are told that a woman can be too drunk to consent as a way of making men wary of having sex with women who are too drunk to stand up. The real problem isn’t women who are too drunk to use good judgment, but men who take advantage of women who cannot physically resist due to intoxication.

Most cases of “rape while drunk” have to do with women who were nearly unconscious, or actually unconscious.

Unfortunately, like many things regarding public awareness, the wrong people get scared. Just like pregnant woman who might have had all of two drinks in nine months, but instead abstain entirely, including from things like rum cake, while alcoholics who get pregnant continue to swill two six packs every day, men who would never dream of taking advantage of a semi-conscious woman are now afraid of having sex with their girlfriends if they have one drink, and rapists keep raping.

I don’t think “legally intoxicated” is the relevant standard here. I have a general sense that in practice, when assessing ability to consent to sex, the law typically looks for an unspecified level of intoxication significantly higher than the legal limit for driving a car.

By the way, if the woman’s keys were reasonably accessible to the man during the act, he probably could be charged with DUI. Drunken people sleeping in their parked cars have been.

No, everyone doesn’t agree that it’s rape. There is a world of difference between being legally intoxicated and too drunk to consent. Being unconscious or unable to verbally articulate consent are rape scenarios.

I assume the law agrees with me, but could be wrong. Can someone provide an example where a man was convicted of raping a woman who was merely intoxicated and not incapacitated?


I think there are examples of men being accused, but not examples of men being convicted. Probably not even examples of men being charged.

The exceptions are situations where men over 21 provided alcohol to teenagers, then had sex with them. The teenagers may have been over the age of consent (16 in some states), but not legally adults, and not old enough to drink. The teens may have been just slightly tipsy, but the DA may have charged the men with rape in order to force a plea bargain. Google-fu is failing me, but I’m pretty sure I read about a case where a college student provided alcohol to a 17-year-old in order to get her into bed, and was then charged with rape. He ended up plea bargaining down to something else, but the point is without the initial charge of rape hanging over his head, there’s a good chance he would have gone to court over whatever lesser charges might have been pending.

FWIW, providing alcohol to minors is a very serious crime in Indiana. Providing alcohol to people 18-20 is also a crime, but not as serious, because they are legally adults, so while you are still doing something illegal, you are not “contributing to the delinquency of a minor.” (Talking about private citizens-- merchants who sell to people 18-20 can still get into deep trouble.)

Said basically no-one, ever. Nice straw man, though.

A woman is too drunk to consent if she is unconscious, nearly unconscious or so drunk that she cannot articulate consent or resist an assault. If we hold the perpetrator to the same standard as the victim, that would mean that someone nearly unconscious or physically unable to resist an assault would himself be able to commit an assault in order to reach the same standard of ‘inability to determine consent.’

Two nearly unconscious people having sex? I feel like that probably doesn’t happen often.

As women are traditionally (but by no means universally) ‘less physically strong’ than men, sexual assault woman on man will never be viewed the same way as men on women. Just a fact of life. :dubious:

Is that a legal definition of not being able to consent? In what jurisdiction?

I was thinking more along the lines of the Occidental College case.

There are problems with that article - the woman’s view is only from official reports while the man was interviewed. It was a case of two people drunk to the point of neither really remembering what happened but she texted “I’m going to have sex” before going to his dorm room. The police declined to file charges, the college expelled the male student.

Yes, but it seems like the emphasis of sexual assault awareness and prevention these days is away from the stranger-in-a-dark-alley type, and more toward the date-rape. intoxication, he-said/she-said situations. Physical force and strength is becoming less a part of the discussion.

No, it’s my definition. As I stated upthread, I’m not sure what the legal standard is in practice. The facts of the Occidental case as you’ve presented them (I have not yet read the article) seem to support my perception that my own definition is much in line with the legal definition, as no charges were filed in that case. Sounds like what the college did was bullshit. That’s Zero Tolerance for you.

If some of us reject that double standard, what’s stopping the rest of society?