Wall Street Journal Editor: Drunk Women Equally to Blame for Being Raped

Via Media Matters, Wall Street Journal Editor James Taranto wrote in his weekly column that if both a rapist and his victim are drunk, they share equal blame. No, I’m not making that up.

What is called the problem of “sexual assault” on campus is in large part a problem of reckless alcohol consumption, by men and women alike.


If two drunk drivers are in a collision, one doesn’t determine fault on the basis of demographic details such as each driver’s sex. But when two drunken college students “collide,” the male one is almost always presumed to be at fault. His diminished capacity owing to alcohol is not a mitigating factor, but her diminished capacity is an aggravating factor for him.

As the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education notes, at some campuses the accuser’s having had one drink is sufficient to establish the defendant’s guilt … In theory that means, as FIRE notes, that “if both parties are intoxicated during sex, they are both technically guilty of sexually assaulting each other.” In practice it means that women, but not men, are absolved of responsibility by virtue of having consumed alcohol.

The twisted “logic” of this column would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic. Not only does he half-exonerate rapists, but he goes on to compare rape — rape! — to a car crash. No, see, the only person who’s guilty of rape is a rapist. Vulnerability to attack isn’t a blame-worthy trespass. By this logic, we should equally blame the 9/11 attacks on both the victims, for not being alert enough to stop the terrorists or to escape the buildings in time, and the terrorists themselves. Insane.

Bob Cesca is the host of the Bob Cesca Show podcast, a twice weekly political talk show. He’s also a contributor to Salon.com. Follow him on Twitter and on Facebook.