Firstly, this article [“Jaw-dropping chances of your daughter being raped”] is taking another article and translating what was said without apparently looking at the original study to determine if it is actually a sound study. I looked at the full text, and it would have been nice if they had mentioned that there was a lower chance for freshmen females to be raped than in the general population.

Secondly, the researchers used surveys that are incredibly subjective, especially in today’s society where it’s considered rape if you regret it later. Additionally, these participants were all from one university. How can you say that is representative of all universities? Also, there does not appear to be any control over things like political beliefs or control groups.

Thirdly, most of the times both people have been drinking heavily, so why is it that only females are unable to consent while drunk? Why is it that only males have a responsibility and women are never responsible for their actions?

Here are the weaknesses listed by the study:

“These results should also be considered in light of study limitations. First, as with any study using self-reporting, the data are subject to inaccuracies because of cognitive and social biases (Schroder et al., 2003). Second, our assessment strategy did not distinguish between incapacitation due to voluntary consumption of alcohol or other drugs and nonconsensual use of date rape or predator drugs such as Rohypnol (Kilpatrick et al., 2007; Testa & Livingston, 2009). Prior research indicates that incapacitation because of voluntary consumption is more common (Lawyer et al., 2010; Littleton et al., 2009), but our data do not allow us to distinguish these two forms. Third, the baseline assessment took place in the first few weeks of the semester, referring back to the month of August. Thus, some students may have arrived on campus during the final few days of the baseline period. Last, our study did not examine risk factors in the college setting. By definition, IR cannot occur without drinking to incapacitation, an acute state with both distal and proximal determinants. It is likely that both pre-college and concurrent factors increase the risk of IR.”

Since they do not distinguish between voluntary consumption and non-voluntary, it is very hard to call voluntary acts “rape” When you volunteer to drink alcohol and do drugs you may consent when you might not otherwise, and later regretting it does not constitute rape.

Seth Bross

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