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15 April 2005

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NP

Now you see why so many people are queasy about the "Sexual Revolution." I think strong anti-rape laws would still make sense under a deterrence rationale even in a sexually-indifferent world, because men are much more aggressive sexually and concerned about the physical sensation of sex; plus they are stronger than women. Given the fact that rape is mostly rooted in biological realities and is a peculiarly unpleasant experience for women I think there would still be a deterrence rationale.

The Pragmatist

Well, the question is: Why is it "a peculiarly unpleasant experience for women"? Maybe there are some biological reasons that being raped is different from being subjected to other types of physical violence. But maybe the only reason it's more unpleasant derives from our cultural placement of sex as something special, a view which seems to be fading. This question, however, might be empirically answerable.

I still don't think that from a deterrence perspective too much would be necessary--all that's needed is to increase the cost of rape above that of buying sex plus whatever special pleasure is derived from rape.

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