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After a week of national media coverage over a column by Alex Knepper casting doubt on the existence of date rape, American University student newspaper The Eagle has devoted its home page to serious discussions of the problem of rape on campus. In one story, the paper discusses proposed changes to the school’s sexual assault policy; in another, an anonymous victim of campus rape shares her story. Has the campus conversation at AU progressed from these widely-publicized accusations of “rape apology”? Let’s go to the comments!

In response to news that the school’s new sexual assault policy would clarify definitions of terms invoked to describe sexual assault, and would “differentiate between the charges students receive for different types of sexual assault,” commenters complained:

Everything was better in the ’60s:

Men are tired of 5 decades of women telling us what we say is unacceptable. We will say what we will, when we will, in the manner that we so chose.

What you believe we should say, how we should say it, or the way we should say it, is of no importance.

If you do not like the way in which we state our opinions, then too bad.

The law is so inconvenient:

What the hell is the school doing keeping records on students for sexual assault? Isn’t that the job of the police?

The first boy who gets falsely accused (it will happen with people like Gail Hanson in charge) should sue AU into the dirt. Furthermore, the false accuser should be expelled forthwith.

This fragile imagery will not stand:

Get the fuck over yourselves and your fragile imagery of women, its embarrassing and you give women everywhere a bad name.

This guy figured it out, everybody!

I have a way to prevent rape. How about all of yall stop sluttin it out and wait until you are married to have sex. Have a blessed day.

Token completely nonsensical comment:

How about AU gets it’s own abortionist? Problem solved.

This article about sexual assault on campus sounds like a great opportunity for me to make a rape joke:

What about girl on girl date rape?  It’s a serious issue.  I would know.  I frequently date rape other chicks.

Shut up. They like it.

Wait, someone else had the exact same idea!

This guy in my class raped me in my dream. Can I press charges?  I’m pretty sure Women’s Initiative would approve of that idea.

Did you know that preventing rape hurts women?

We need to prevent rape.  Here’s how we do it.  We need to protect girls because they are fragile and men are evil.  So here is what we will do.  We will petition the university for a new rule that says girls can’t leave their dorm rooms after 5 PM.  If they must leave, they shall be escorted by campus security.  If any man comes within 50 feet, he will be tasered on the spot.  DOWN WITH EVIL MAN-RAPISTS!

Rape victims are huge whiners:

The same thing happened to me my freshman year at a frat party.  But I am not going around claiming “rape” and trying to get sympathy.  If the girl and the guy are both drunk, the girl does not get to claim “rape”.

Unless you say “No”, “Stop”, “Get off me” or something to the likes, then it isn’t rape.  Two drunk people having sex and later regretting it does not equal rape.  It’s called a mistake.

Policies meant to prevent rape are so immature!:

People will act in their own self-interest. As a mature and educated person, one ought to expect other people to act in their own self-interest. If a drunk guy spots a drunk girl and the drunk girl is coming onto him, he is going to attempt to have sex with her. This is not rape. It is human nature.

Rape is just one big misunderstanding:

Guys can’t read girls’ minds.  Many drunk girls come to frat parties wanting to get drunk and hook up.  How can we tell which drunk girls are wanting to hook up and which drunk girls are not wanting to hook up if both sets of girls are acting the same way?  Unless the girl tells me that she doesn’t want to have sex, I am going to assume that her come-ons are genuine and she wants to have sex.  And I will pursue sex unless she tells me to stop.  How am I supposed to know what she wants unless she tells me?

Just like drinking and driving causes dangerous accidents, so too does drinking and partying with frat boys.  I’m sure people who drink and drive do not intend on crashing their cars, but they still do because they made the stupid decision to drink and drive.  They knew that alcohol affected their judgement yet they still chose to drive.  And they deserve to die in car crashes.  Have a sense of self-responsibility and stop blaming others for your mistakes.  The guy was probably just as drunk as you.  You knew drinking would effect your judgement.  And you still chose to get shitfaced.  You brought this on yourself.  I do not feel sorry for you one bit.  Hopefully you learned something from your mistake.  But as evidenced by it happening to you again, I guess you didn’t.  It will probably happen to you again and again until you learn some self-responsibility.

Plenty of anti-rape AU students are also making their voices heard on this thread. To the haters, I have to ask: What is so threatening about a policy revision that would make the school’s sexual assault policy easier for students to understand?