Monday, October 17, 2016

Sexual Assault?

A legal definition of a sexual act is necessary for there to be a classification of sexual assault, and I don’t see how such a classification is possible if sex is now to be understood as the Department of Justice wants us to understand it, as an internal sense of gender and, hence, an incorporeal identity. One could respond that the premise of modern sexual assault law has nothing to do with sexual or gender identity but simply that the victim feels sexual assault to be more heinous than other kinds of assault. But doesn’t this just beg the question of what constitutes sexual assault? If nothing bodily picks out a person’s sex--and according to the DOJ Dear Colleague Letter to say otherwise constitutes constitutionally impermissible gender stereotyping--then how can any bodily assault be ‘sexual’?  Why should assaults involving penises and vaginas be considered "sexual" while those involving hands and faces are not when the former have been deemed to be as asexual as the latter?

There’s another problem with classifying assault as sexual. There are just too many fetishes, and if we included them all in the definition of sexual assault, then we would have to acknowledge such things as foot and hand fetishes, which would make unwanted handshakes or stepping on another’s toes sexual assault. This is obviously absurd, but doesn’t the principle of equality that underpins the legal recognition of same-sex “marriage” demand equal treatment under the law of the sexual preferences of all consenting adults?   This would require the recognition of all fetishes under the rubric of "sexual assault", but doing so would criminalize normal everyday human interaction. Ignoring all fetishes would mean ignoring all the hand and foot fetishes along with the penis and vagina fetishes and thereby abolish the concept of 'sexual assault' altogether.   But how can there be any middle ground? If you define sexual acts as coitus, that’s heterosexist bigotry. Define them to include various penetrations of the vagina or by the penis, you are trivializing the sexual choices of foot fetishists, hand fetishists, and so on and so on, and thereby denying the dignity of their sexual lives and choices. You are also implicitly singling out some parts of the anatomy as sexual, and that, once again, runs afoul of the DOJ’s New Doctrine of Gender Identity.

Yes, I know that all this sounds quite silly, but silliness is no longer an objection. Thirty years ago most people regarded the idea of same-sex “marriage” to be silly. Most people now would think classifying anatomical expectations of sex as gender stereotyping to be silly. And yet both these ideas now have the force of law behind them.

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