Campus rape & drinking | Rapists lose inhibitions

… and  Victim sobriety is irrelevant.

The former president of George Washington University, Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, came under attack as school resumed September 2, 2014 when he implied that parents ought to teach their daughters not to drink in excess so that they can prevent their own rapes.

Maybe he was reading too much of Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto’s rants about victims being responsible for their own rape if they are drunk. Neither person makes any sense. How did they get ‘cush’ jobs like that being so stupid? Think about it. (Unless you are drunk and then you can’t think.)

The first area of the brain affected by the toxin alcohol is the prefrontal cortex which is all about judgement and inhibitions. A rapist might do things that would have been stopped by the prefrontal cortex if not for dead and toxic-shocked cells. Meanwhile nobody under these circumstances is capable of giving consent.

A plethora of studies suggest alcohol contributes to sexual assault through multiple pathways, often exacerbating existing risk factors such as sexually aggressive behavior.

These two gents are completely backwards. First of all, if you have sex with a drunk person who is not your partner and therefore not a person with whom there can be an unequivocal pre-existing and on-going consent, you are committing the crime of rape. A drunk, not being of sound mind and body, cannot consent to anything. Not anything!

Wait eight hours until your new friend’s intoxication has expired because they cannot legally consent to sex until they are sober.

There are genuine reasons for not drinking as a young person. Let’s look at those instead. For one, it’s illegal in most of the USA until you are 21 and all around the world its 18, 19 to 21. You can spend a lot of time in jail on that score.

But every time a person under 25 drinks (“drinks” as in 4 drinks per female and five drinks per male) their brain dies a little. Alcohol is toxic. It kills living cells of any kind but in particular it kills brain cells. If you “drink” once a week as a kid, you are cooked. You’ll have trouble completing difficult tasks, processing information and making decisions as you go through life.

Drinking just once a week has been shown to cause long-term brain damage in teens. Drink in excess and you could give yourself acute alcohol toxicity, like a drug overdose.

If  a person passes out from alcohol poisoning and doesn’t get medical attention right away, they may die. Remember that. Call 911 should you ever witness that.

Drunk people also die from losing consciousness, puking and choking on their own vomit. It’s a horrible way to go. I learned that had happened to a friend. Sad.

Joel Trachtenberg really missed the good reasons for telling a son or daughter not to drink. Also it would make more sense to tell rapists not to drink. Rapists seem to lose their inhibitions when drinking and are more in pursuit of power and control as if their deviancy is now on sterioids. The sobriety of their victims is irrelevant.

When I was a teen I learned the connection between drinking and rape was that the rapists lost their inhibitions and became very aggressive when they were drunk and were really hard to shake off.

Another thing about “drinking” is that you do stupid things during your insobriety, like text your ex and beg them to come back; send a text pleading to your mother for forgiveness for being such a failure; accidentally text your “moon-selfie” to your school principal; allow pictures of yourself in very compromising positions or just say stupid things like Joel Trachtenberg did when he castigated daughters for getting too drunk to prevent their own rapes. I wonder how drunk he was at the time he said that? Does he have a daughter? I dunno. If I was his offspring likely I would want to be getting smashed after he opined that nonsense.

An interesting paper has been published by a group in Detroit, Michigan: Antonia Abbey, Ph.D., Tina Zawacki, M.A., Philip O. Buck, M.A., A. Monique Clinton, M.A., and Pam McAuslan, Ph.D.

Alcohol and Sexual Assault

ANTONIA ABBEY, PH.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Community Medicine, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan.

TINA ZAWACKI, M.A., PHILIP O. BUCK, M.A., and A. MONIQUE CLINTON, M.A., are research assistants in the Department of Community Medicine and doctoral students in the Department of Psychology, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan.

PAM MCAUSLAN, PH.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences, University of Michigan-Dearborn, Dearborn, Michigan.

This work was supported by a grant to Dr. Abbey from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.