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George Washington U. Law Prof on Affirmative Consent Law: “It Infantilizes Women”


But wait, I thought “Yes means yes” empowered women?

Andrew Desiderio at The College Fix has the story:

A prominent law professor is speaking out against California’s new “yes means yes” law, calling it “confusingly complex,” “contrary to both common sense and the law,” and downright “ridiculous.”

John Banzhaf, a professor of public interest law at The George Washington University, first spoke out about the law a month before it was enacted in late September, predicting it could cause legal chaos.

Today, he continues to be a prominent vocal critic against the new law, which requires students who attend public universities in California to obtain explicit and ongoing “affirmative consent” when engaging in sexual activity.

“Many people are convinced that there is a wave of campus rapes and we have to rush to do something,” Banzhaf said in a telephone interview Tuesday with The College Fix. “[The California law] doesn’t solve the real problem, but instead it infantilizes women because it assumes that they don’t have the common sense to say no when he begins to do something they don’t want done.”

The law states it is the responsibility of each person involved in a hookup to ensure they have affirmative consent to engage in sexual activity, thus the “yes means yes” nickname.

“Lack of protest or resistance does not mean consent, nor does silence mean consent,” the law states. “Affirmative consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time.”

But Banzhaf points out that California college students engaging in sexual intercourse could be guilty of sexually harassing each other under the law if neither one asks for consent at every single step of the process. He said this is confusing because “what’s gone on before can imply consent.”

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