Male Rape - The Situation in Scotland

The Executive must recognise male rape is a piece in The Scotsman which highlights that in Scotland the sexual assault of a male is considered differently to that of a woman whereas in England this is treated differently. As a matter of equality it seems to me ridiculous that there are offences which can be carried out against one sex but not another. The Scottish Executive Justice Minister displaying an amazing non-understanding of the argument said,

"Non-consensual intercourse with a man can constitute two specific common law crimes: indecent assault and sodomy. Penalties that can be applied to these offences are limited only by the court in which they are heard, and for cases in the High Court that can mean up to life imprisonment. This applies equally to female and male rape.

I have no plans to review the definition of rape or other sexual offences. I believe that present common law provisions are flexible and robust enough to deal with rape cases."

The Scotsman says that Rape in Scotland is defined as "the carnal knowledge of a female by a male person, obtained by overcoming her will". But in England and Wales, a man is judged to have committed rape if "he has sexual intercourse with a person... who at the time of the intercourse does not consent to it, or is reckless as to whether the person consents to it".

It seems to me that the time is ripe for a complete review of this legislation, perhaps doing away with the term 'rape' altogether. Is one assault worse than another whether sexual or not? Does the person who is beaten unconscious and left with broken bones feel better than the person who is sexually assaulted about having been the victim of such assault? Assault is assault and should be treated seriously, while trying to understand and rectify the motivation for the act. Is it necessary to single out sexual assault on males or females for a special class of treatment ot should it all be treated as some kind of aggravated assault?

Posted by Paul at August 31, 2003 04:49 AM |
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There is a great deal of difference between been beaten by someone and being raped. Being beaten involves the bruising of outer skin and although it may cause someone to be fearful to walk in that area or at that time again the repucussions have no measure against being raped. The act of rape is more than just being forced to have intercourse it is a complete violation of the self. Having sex is considered by most to be something special to share between people you love, it is difficult to detach the emotions that go hand in hand with sex therefore to be forced into sex by a complete stranger not only bruises the outerbody but also the inner. On top of this many people are left feeling not only violated to their core but also ashamed. I do agree that there is little difference between male and female attacks, rape is rape but i feel strongly that there is a great difference between assult and rape.

Posted by: Pugz Mac at November 27, 2003 12:54 AM

It is so sad that we even have to have this discussion

Posted by: git at December 16, 2003 01:24 PM