Eminent feministGermaine Greer has claimed thatrapists should not be jailed becauseit is not a spectacularly violent crime.
Insisting thatmostrapeis just bad sex and more likely to be merely lazy, careless, or insensitive, the prominent academic and author told an audience at the Hay literaryfestival that the crime should be punishedby 200 hours of community service and an R tattoo on the cheek.
Most rapes dont involve any injury whatsoever, shesaid, adding: Most rape is just lazy, just careless, insensitive. Every time a man rolls over on his exhausted wife and insists on enjoying his conjugal rights he is raping her. It will never end up in a court of law.”
Victims becamelittle more than bits of evidence she said.
Instead of thinking of rape as a spectacularly violent crimeand some rapes are, think about it as non consensual that is bad sex,” she added.”Sex where there is no communication, no tenderness, no mention of love.
Greer also questioned what she calledthe official position,that 70 per cent of rape victims sufferedfrom post-traumatic stress disorder in comparison with 20 per cent of military veterans.
At this point you think, what the hell are you saying?” she said.”That something that leaves no sign, no injury, nothing, is more damaging to women than seeing your best friend blown up by an IED is to a veteran?
Arguingthat society should stop pathologising rape and saying that it destroyed womens lives, she said:We havent been destroyed, weve been bloody annoyed, is what weve been.
I reckon 200 hours of community service will do would do me, she said. I suggested a long time ago that maybe a little tattoo would be a good thing. Maybe an R on your hand. Id prefer it on your cheek.
As an 18-year, she said she had beenviolently raped and beaten half-unconscious by a rugby player.
She did not report the crime to police and the man went on to rape again, she said. His second victim did give evidence in court either, she added.
Feminists would tear my head off for saying this,” said Greer, now 79, but I wasnt that angry .. I still dont feel angry enough.
She went on to suggest that the penalty for rape be lowered along with the burden of proof for securing a conviction.
Why not believe the woman and lower the penalty? she said.
Acknowledgingthe controversial nature of her thesis, she said:It is moments like these, I can hear the feminists screaming at me, youre trivialising rape.'”
But she added:”You might want to believe that the penis is a lethal weapon and that all women live in fear of that lethal weapon, well thats bullshit. Its not true. We dont live in terror of the penis A man cant kill you with his penis.
In cases ofevidently violent rape however, she said courts should focus on the violence, which should attract longer sentences, rather than holding long trials where women are humiliated for protracted periods.
Greer’sbook On Rape which setsout her argument will be published in September.