Thursday, July 29, 2010

Food for Thought - Implied "Consent"

In a post today, friend of the blog "The Annoyed Feminist" mentioned an article on Jezebel. The article talks about a recent St. Louis court case that found the victim of a sexual assault in a Girls Gone Wild video didn't need to give consent (or somehow had actually given it) for her breasts to be distributed in videos nationwide.

"Patrick O'Brien, the jury foreman, explained later to reporters that they figured if she was willing to dance in front of the photographer, she was probably cool with having her breasts on film. They said she gave implicit consent by being at the bar, and by participating in the filming - though she never signed a consent form, and she can be heard on camera saying "no, no" when asked to show her breasts."

I wouldn't be surprised if we end up hearing about this again. I certainly hope the victim (known only as "Jane Doe") will appeal the St. Louis court's decision.

This is exactly the sort of thing that has influenced my decision to pursue a law degree after I get my bachelor's. I want to work pro-bono and help people like "Jane" get the justice they deserve. If women can have their tops ripped off and their breasts filmed against their will, the sick logic of the jury implies that if any of those girls had been raped, their "consent" would have been "implied" by being involved in the filming.

There is certainly a fine line between an "entertainment" company and a company of sexual predators. This is not to say that the people at Girls Gone Wild all seek out women to assault. There are plenty of women (drunk and sober) who are more than willing to expose themselves for the camera. However, that just brings about the question of why the camera person at this shoot felt the need to remove this woman's top, when they were at a party full of dancing girls... It doesn't make sense.

Think about it.
Nostalgically Yours

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