I’d like to tell you a story. A story about two friends. They’re young, maybe 21 or 22. One’s name is Steve, the other, Marcus.
Marcus is outgoing and known to be a frequent party-goer and very generous. He’s often willing to give his friends money, or buy everyone a round at their favorite dive bar. Behind his back, he’s sometimes called a “sucker.” He knows some people say these things, but he tries not to let it bother him. It’s his money, and he can do with it what he wants.
Steve seems to be a good guy and has a lot of friends. He holds a good job and doesn’t seem to ruffle too many feathers.
One night at the bar, Steve runs into a problem. He’s forgotten his wallet. Noticing his friend’s plight, Marcus offers to help. “Here, man. I’ve got this.” He opens his wallet and pulls out a $100 bill. Steve can’t help but notice that it wasn’t the only one in Marcus’ wallet. “Dang! Mr. Moneybags! How’d you get so rich? Wanna share some with me?” Marcus laughs but lets Steve know, “Hey, if you’re ever in a bind, just let me know.”
Several months go by, and Steve hasn’t been around much. He’s lost his job, but is too ashamed to tell anyone. Rent’s due, and he’s getting desperate. He needs money. He calls Marcus.
“You alright man?” Steve is too afraid to come right out and ask for what he wants. He suggests they meet for a beer. Maybe the time will be right then.
As they finish their first round, Steve works up the nerve to share his troubles. But surprisingly, Marcus doesn’t offer to help. He expresses sympathy and tells Steve, “If he ever wants to talk or needs connections to find a new job,” let him know. While he does offer to buy Steve’s beer, he doesn’t extend more help. Steve begins to grow frustrated. He thought Marcus was his friend. Why didn’t he give more?
They part ways, and Steve goes back to his apartment, wondering what he’ll do next.
Late that night, Steve’s phone rings. It’s Marcus. Maybe he’s finally decided he wants to help.
“Hey, man. I need a ride.”
What? Marcus was needing HIS help now? He sounded drunk. Really drunk.
Steve grabbed his keys, and headed out the door. By the time he found Marcus slouched over on a bench outside a downtown nightclub, Marcus was nearly passed out. Steve loaded him into the back seat of his car, where Marcus then lost consciousness. He didn’t seem well, but Steve was sure he’d sleep it off and be fine.
When they pulled up to Marcus’ apartment complex, Steve rummaged through the pockets of Marcus’ coat looking for his keys. He found them. And something else.
He knew he shouldn’t, but he did. He opened the folds of Marcus’ leather wallet and looked inside. His heart quickened. $454 in cash. Why did he carry this much around with him?
He had a decision to make. Did he take out a few bills hoping Marcus wouldn’t notice? No, too risky. He knew he shouldn’t take any at all, but that’s not the option he chose. He quickly slid Marcus’ entire wallet under the driver’s seat. It was simple, really. Marcus would wake up and wonder where his wallet was. If he asked Steve, it could easily be explained away. After all, he was so drunk the night before, it wouldn’t be too hard to believe someone at the club or someone who walked past him while he was in a drunken stupor on the bench outside had swiped it.
Steve was confident Marcus wouldn’t suspect him. After all, they were friends.
Now, imagine this story isn’t quite what it seems. Imagine instead of a young man named Marcus, it was a young woman named Marcia. Imagine it was her body, and not her money, Steve wanted.
Rape is NOT okay, even if a woman has a reputation for freely giving her body to others.
Rape is NOT okay, even if a woman has given her body to a man before.
Rape is NOT okay, even if a woman has shown a man her “goods.”
Rape is NOT okay, even if a woman has offered her body to a man in the future.
Rape is NOT okay, even if a man has desperate sexual urges.
Rape is NOT okay, even if a woman is unconscious, and may not even be aware what’s happened.
Most of us believe rape is wrong when a woman (or man) is brutally attacked by a stranger. But some feel there are “blurred lines” when it comes to acquaintance rape. Please pass this story along to those who have a hard time understanding why rape is wrong in ALL situations.