In the light of the Qatar rape case, I invite you to consider the similarities between this and the Stanford rape case. In both cases the man attacked the woman while she was unconscious. In the Qatar case, the woman was accused by the authorities of sex outside marriage. In the Stanford case, the perpetrator blamed his actions on “drink and promiscuity”. Not rape. Promiscuity. So in other words, in both cultures, there are those who think that rape is just a form of sex outside marriage, and that rape is not caused by rapists but by promiscuity.

Consider also the Ched Evans case, where a star footballer was found to have raped a woman who had sex with one of his friends (the friend alleges with her consent, she alleges without. Interestingly, in this case also the victim believed that her drink was spiked), after he joined in and had sex with her whilst she was unconscious. His defence was basically that she had consented, despite the fact that she could barely speak, presumably on the grounds that if she was up for it with one man she must be up for it with another. He, like the rapist in the Stanford case, was found guilty, but again, like the Stanford case, was defended by his family and, unbelievably, by his fiancée, all of whom seemed to believe that rape isn’t really rape when it happens in the context of drink and partying.

To go back to the analogy of drink driving, does this happen in drink driving cases? Do we blame drink driving on a culture of drink and cars, rather than on drunk drivers? Do drunk drivers blame their drunk driving on the fact that they were pissed and we all nod and go “Yep, understandable. It is really easy to crash your car when you’re drunk.” Does the defence barrister quiz the victim, demanding to know if they’d been drinking? How much had they been drinking? Were they weaving? How unsteady were they? Could they see straight? What about their clothes? Were they dressed in high visibility clothing? Why not? Did they not want to be seen? Did they look before they crossed the road? Really? How carefully? Did they not see the defendant’s car? Really? Were they not looking carefully enough? And so forth.

More shortly.