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Sexual Assault and Rape

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Terms and Concepts in Sexual Assault continued...

Intercourse between consenting minors

Intercourse between consenting minors, which is very common and widespread, is against the law. In practice, these laws are selectively enforced at the discretion of law enforcement and prosecutors. Enforcement can vary depending on factors such as the age difference between the minors involved. Most sexual activity between minors is not reported and is consensual. When accusations about sexual acts surface, generally related to consent versus nonconsent issues, this law is used to press charges for the act of intercourse itself in addition to any other charges that may result from other specific sexual acts.

Sexual assault of men

Men can be sexually assaulted. Sexual assaults of men can take on conventional characteristics of force and coercion and can be perpetrated by both men and women. Although the overall incidence of occurrence and reporting is considerably lower, men who have been sexually assaulted (most commonly anal intercourse by other men) should be, and generally are, treated equally under the law.

The male response to the sexual advances of women and sexual assault

Another circumstance that men should be aware of is using good judgment in how they respond to the sexual advances of women. In general, men have a lower threshold than women do to engaging in sexual activity if it is offered to them. This well-known lack of restraint by a man can be used by a woman who is acting recklessly or with bad intentions to engage with men in sex.

Women who are seeking sexual interactions may be doing so for reasons other than a genuine interest in the man. They may be intoxicated and acting rashly or they may desire sex in general. Many cases have been reported where women have had a specific intention to have sex with a particular man for the wrong reasons and with bad intentions. Women in any of these situations can engage in seductive behaviors that men find hard to resist, especially if they are intoxicated.

Afterwards, the women's specific intention, guilt, or remorse can lead to an accusation of sexual assault when no assault occurred at the time the encounter took place. If the woman characterizes this situation as a sexual assault, the man is almost always charged with sexual assault, even though the actual interaction may have been initiated and controlled by the women. Many men who would never engage in sexual assault can be drawn into situations such as these quite easily.

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