Dec 29 · Last update 23 days ago.

Is sex without consent rape?

On 17th December 2020 Denmark’s parliament voted to change the legal definition of rape, from a forced-based definition to defining all sex without consent as an act of rape. Denmark now joins nine other European countries that have updated the legal definition of rape to be based around consent, in order to help fight sexual crime and violence. However many view defining rape in this way as problematic, with the issue of sexual consent being a hugely nuanced area that is not easily well-defined or agreed upon, either ethically, legally, or socially. Do more problems arise than are solved by such laws? Is Denmark’s new law enforceable? Is sex without consent always rape?
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In passing this law Denmark has become the 12th European to strengthen rape laws to modern standards and outlaw sex without explicit consent. This is in direct response to the country's failed handling of rape cases, the large number of such case despite perceptions internationally of Danish society being one of gender equality (around 11,400 women a year), and the burden of proof of violence falling on the victim. The Danish Justice Ministry has stated that prosecutors will still have the burden of proof, but the law is open to recognising the full scope and reality of rape and sexual assault. Denmark's older law defined rape by the presence of violent coercion, threat, or the victims inability to resist, however this definition failed to recognise the common psychological victim response of physically freezing and being unable to act in threatening situations such as sexual assault. At the end of the day such a law is already in place in Sweden and has had positive results, with a 75% increase in rape convictions, and this law will help make this safe country increasingly safe for women.

independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/denmark-rape-law-sex-consent-b1775963.html aljazeera.com/news/2020/12/17/denmark-to-define-sex-without-explicit-consent-as-rape nypost.com/2020/12/17/denmark-strengthens-rape-laws-outlaws-sex-without-explicit-consent system.suny.edu/sexual-violence-prevention-workgroup/policies/affirmative-consent

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Dec 30