"Downton Abbey and its writers are guilty of a gross negligence that is all too common. If someone says “no” to sex, then it is rape. Period. There is no nuance when it comes to consent. This is what Hollywood has such a hard time with and why they insist on only showing shockingly violent rapes that virtual strangers perpetrate. Why? Because if we acknowledge that rape occurs within many contexts needing only the criteria that the victim say “no”, how many men would then be rapists? How many women and others would then be survivors of sexual assault or rape? How many people would we have to now believe when they claim they were raped? A shocking number. A staggeringly, shocking number. In the US alone, 1 in 5 women will be raped. Three percent of men will be raped. An estimated 1.3 million women will be raped each year, and 97 percent of rapists will never see the inside of a jail cell. Pretending there’s not a problem doesn’t make the problem go away. Instead, it becomes more ubiquitous and insidious until it’s a pandemic. I don’t want to live in a world where rape is the norm and survivors are liars who were asking for it, and I mean, really, do you? We’ve got a long battle ahead of us, but each of us can start by acknowledging that rape culture exists, accepting that survivors are never asking for it, and believing that survivors are telling the truth."
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