Monday, September 15, 2008

A Wedding Ring Doesn't Mean That It Isn't Rape

“MADISON, Wis. - Police who videotaped a man having sex with his comatose wife in her nursing home room violated his constitutional rights, an appeals court ruled Thursday.

David W. Johnson, 59, had an expectation to privacy when he visited his wife, a stroke victim, at Divine Savior Nursing Home in Portage, the District 4 Court of Appeals ruled. Therefore, police violated his Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable searches when they installed a hidden video camera in the room, the court said.

“We are satisfied that Johnson’s expectation of privacy while visiting his wife in her nursing home room is one that society would recognize as reasonable,” the unanimous three-judge panel wrote.”

The woman’s sister is upset that prosecutors brought charges against him, Kelly said. “She believes her sister’s husband was merely expressing his love for his wife and was trying everything he could to bring her back to consciousness,” Kelly said. MSNBC via Feminocracy

This report starts off from the wrong premise by calling what occurred sex.  For  two people to have sex, both parties must consent to the act, in absence of consent it is rape. Clearly this poor comatose woman was violated.  It is irrelevant that the man that did was her husband.  A wedding ring does not entitle him to life long access to her body.

How his supposed right to privacy could possibly outweigh her right to bodily integrity is beyond me.  To compound this horror, her sister is calling her rape an expression of love.  How can having a penis inserted into your body without your express permission be an act of love?  If this were an employee of the institution in which this woman was staying, there would be no discussion about love, it would simply be recognized for what it is...RAPE.

And people wonder why I have such issues with "traditional marriage". This is exactly why.  It is assumed that when you walk down the aisle no matter the advances produced by feminism, that your ownership is being transferred from your father, to your new husband.  From beginning to end everything about marriage supports patriarchy. 

Until feminists fought for marital rape laws, it was deemed impossible for a man to rape his wife because they were considered one body.  Conveniently the one body clause always seems to apply when the woman is the victim.  In the name of maintaining traditional family values women have been beaten, raped and murdered.

Women who are date raped have difficulty achieving justice under the law and are regularly subject to slut shaming.  How much more difficult is it for a lawfully married woman when it is still socially assumed that her body is the property of her husband?  Who is going to speak for this woman when her own sister seems uncommitted to justice.  His right to privacy does not extend to providing the means for his continual assault of his wife.  A restraining order needs to be issued against his continual invasion of her body, and he needs to face justice just like any other rapist.  When he took his wedding vows and promised to honour, love, and cherish, he clearly did not take it seriously.


AR said...

The police can legally invade anyone's privacy so long as they have a warrant. Apparently, they did not, and so this MUST be thrown out. That's how rights work: if you didn't keep them even when there are obvious negative consequences (eg, not prosecuting this guy) then they're not actually rights. Nonetheless, I agree that action must be taken to keep this guy away from his wife, even if he can't legally be arrested.

elle said...

Sorry for this off-topic comment, Renee, but I just wanted to tell you I sent you an e-mail that is a little time sensitive, if you have a moment.

Anonymous said...

"For two people to have sex, both parties must consent to the act"
No, rape is sex too. It's just not consensual sex.

"How his supposed right to privacy could possibly outweigh her right to bodily integrity is beyond me."
It works like this: to prevent cops from gathering evidence illegally, you have to make that evidence illegal and not use it in court. Otherwise they are encouraged to perform illegal acts. When you look at a particular case it's hard to accept, but when you look at the big picture it's the right thing to do. It's not the guy's privacy that's at risk if such evidence is accepted, it's everybody's privacy.

lee said...

how could her agree with it?

Anonymous said...

I agree completely with the title, also the police were on your side, why else would they be videotaping?

However, you can consent without expressing consent. Maybe I want my man to sleep with me while I'm in a coma; and even her sister thought it was alright.. A complete stranger raping a comatose woman is a bit different.

Anonymous said...

You are pathetic. Wrong and pathetic.

Cara said...

Maybe I want my man to sleep with me while I'm in a coma

And may be this woman did, too. I don't know. But he didn't either. Unless he knows for a fact that he has consent, he does not. This isn't fucking difficult.

and even her sister thought it was alright.

So I imagine that if someone "has sex" with you without your permission, it's cool so long as your sister says? What a family.

Renee said...

To the gutless anonymous commentators...if a woman does not consent it is rape. There is not twisting that into anything else.

Fran said...

AR and Anonymous #1: I'd agree with you, but the police did have a warrant; at least according to MSNBC. And lest we forget, the media is calling this sex instead of rape and completely cutting off discussion of its (im)morality by focusing on the fact that the police did something legal.

Rick said...

Even if they need a warrant, it needs to be filled out correctly. It needs to include the time and place of the search, and what is being looked for. It also needs to be supported by probable cause. If any of these things even look shoddy in court, the guy walks.

And I find it deeply disturbing, regardless of the moral complications of this case, that a feminist doesn't take the right to privacy seriously. Other than the right to vote, the right to privacy may have propelled the feminist movement further than any other right—it's what got abortion.

Fran said...

I find it deeply disturbing, regardless of the moral complications of this case, that a feminist doesn't take the right to privacy seriously.

If that was aimed at me, I think it's a bit unfair to assume I don't take the right to privacy seriously, especially as I stated that I agreed with AR and anon #1 about privacy laws, but in this case didn't think the information had been collected illegally.

You may be right about the warrant; it's hard to tell since I can't find any articles that discuss it -- in fact it appears as if it hasn't been considered by the court. If you are right, though, that does not excuse the media's (and the woman's sister's!) refusal to acknowledge that a rape took place.

Anonymous said...

What right to privacy do you have in a nursing home? It was not his house. He was in, for all intents and purposes, a public place. Any member of the staff could have walked in to feed or check on his wife. I don't get how a visitor in a patient/resident's room in a health care facility has any reasonable expectation of privacy, but I have not read the opinion. But still, his home is one thing, a nursing home is not a place where even the residents enjoy what most people would consider reasonable privacy.

Anonymous said...

"acknowledge that a rape took place"

it's not rape unless rape charges are pressed by the victim, and that's not possible either since the woman is comatose. funny how that works.

Renee said...

For the very last time it is a rape when a person does not consent to penetration. any further rape denial commentary will be deleted

Anonymous said...

"any further rape denial commentary will be deleted"

but rape delusion commentary will be allowed? how can there be rape unless rape charges are pressed? that doesn't even make sense.

also, how is this a dialogue if you delete comments you don't agree with? it's not a dialogue. it's your monologue pretending to be a dialogue. you are defrauding your readers. maybe i should press fraud charges.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Renee said...

The only reason your commentary is still up is so that I can add a final thought. Rape apologism is not allowed on this blog. You may disagree with me on any point but it must be done without the following: racism, homophobia, sexism, rape apologism.

Consider your commentary the last one that will be allowed to stand that denies rape. It is not for the justice system to decide what rape is. Any violation of the body without express permission is rape.

Guy Vestal said...

I agreed with you, and you cut my comment? I guess maybe I was wrong about you afterall renee... (Notice the small "r" in your name, that denotes a loss of credibility on your part.) Too bad, but "I guess I know the drill" now huh?

Renee said...

Actually Guy the cut was accidental. I was debating what to do about the comment and hit cancel and it cut anyway. I don't have a problem with you spelling my name with a small r...that kind of ridiculous hierarchy is really meaningless to me. You should have asked for an explanation rather than jumping to a conclusion. In fact I had actually clicked on the wrong comment,I was debating the anon who added more rape aologism after I specifically stated no more rape denial.

Anonymous said...

are you serious??? someone can't be raped unless rape charges are pressed??? you might as well say a person can't be truly dead until you send the person who killed them to prison. that's a really asinine thing to say. one of the definitions of rape is to have sex with someone who is not in a condition to consent. a stroke is not a condition to consent. a murder is also defined by the act done on a person, not by whether or not someone goes to jail for it. are you also going to tell me that people who were molested as children, were not molested by child molesters if they never took the pieces of shit to court???? seriously. think before you spill bullshit from your mouth.