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Domestic and Sexual Violence - Essay Example

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Rape is a very misunderstood crime. Common sense dictates that if "rape" is difficult for the justice system and society in general to define, then it will be very hard to understand. The definition of rape even varies from state to state and penal code to penal code…
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Domestic and Sexual Violence
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Domestic and Sexual Violence

Download file to see previous pages... Rape is defined by Webster as "the crime of engaging in sexual actswith a person who has not consented." Rape is defined "The carnal knowledge of a woman by a man (or vice versa) forcibly and unlawfully against her will. In order to ascertain precisely the nature of this offence, this definition will be analysed." (The 'Lectric Law Library's Lexicon, 1) There are many forms of rape in America's judicial system. There is rape, date rape, statutory rape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, and sexual assault with intent to do injury. Instances of rape have surely been happening since the beginning of man. It's depicted in Jean M. Auel's novel "Clan of the Cave Bear" about prehistoric times and there are still movies and novels containing rape today.
Before 1970 laws in most states required that a rape victim's testimony be corroborated by other evidence, (Linda Farstein, 1). Because this was before the days of DNA and forensics most cases didn't make it to the courtroom. Not to mention the fact that this was well before the "rape shield" laws, when victims were still cross-examined about the prior sexual history. Though rape shield laws also vary state to state and penal code to penal code. Some do the job they were designed to do, while others are insufficient to say the least. Some only protect victims of "on the job" sexual discrimination.
Rape wasn't in the media until the early seventies. ...
Sadly this is still an accepted wide-spread belief today. More recently in New Jersey a group of high school boys brutally raped a seventeen year old mentally ill female and the community expressed a "boys will be boys" attitude. The boys in question were not tried as adults, (as they could have been), and they served very little time for their crime.
Raves started popping up in the late eighties/early nineties and immediately date rape drugs were being used and investigated. There were several instances before females were finally warned to watch their drinks at bars, clubs and parties. Yet there was still an attitude about the girls being responsible. Many in society were under the assumption that if girls don't want to have sex they wouldn't be out drinking and dancing, dressed sexy and looking for a "good time." One wonders how being forced to have sex against their will could be construed as a "good time."
Then news hit about the Catholic church with priests raping young boys. It was soon discovered that the Catholic church was aware of these "indiscretions" and didn't report them, or try to get help for the perpetrators, they just relocated them to a different city with the admonition not to let it happen again.
Most recently in the news are teachers raping students. While society has heard of these types of instances in the past, usually it was a male teacher and female student. More often than not in today's society female teachers are the perpetrators and male juveniles are the victims. In 2001 one out of ten reported rape victims were in fact men, (CDC, 2001). This could be due to the fact of the Catholic church ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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