A student, George Lawlor, became hit the headlines he posted an article about an invitation he was sent to some ‘consent lessons’ about sexual behaviour.
Lawlor, a student of Warwick University, who doubles as a senior reporter at the Tab shared the article, titled “Why I don’t need consent lessons”, just to prove a point that he doesn’t need the lesson because he believes that being a rapist comes but naturally.
He wrote: “I feel as if I’m taking the “wrong” side here, but someone has to say it – I don’t have to be taught to not be a rapist. That much comes naturally to me, as I am sure it does to the overwhelming majority of people you and I know.
“Brand me a bigot, a misogynist, a rape apologist, I don’t care. I stand by that.”
His decision, just as expected, stirred several reactions of disgust from internet users.
Some branded the article as ‘one of the most ignorant, misinformed, short-sighted and downright incorrect articles I’ve ever read.’
Twitter users shared some Tweets, mostly aimed at criticizing the young man’s decision.
One user, Jane Casey wrote: “The irony is that this is exactly the sort of twit who needs to go on a consent course.” while another added, “Speechless at how someone can undermine such important education that fills a crucial hole in our curriculum, awful.”
Speaking to Metro UK on why he was being a target for criticism, Lawlor who had since deleted his Twitter account said: “I feel like I don’t need to go and people I know don’t need to go.
“But people will say that’s because I live a privileged white middle class lifestyle.
“They may be right, they may be wrong. But I feel as though their efforts are wasted. It may be beneficial for some people and stop instances of abuse, but it just seems like wasted efforts.
“I found the invitation to the lessons insulting.
“I don’t consider myself to be somebody who doesn’t know what consent is. Maybe I just have too much faith in my peers.
“I don’t think consent requires teaching. I don’t think they need to be taught not to be a rapist.’
Lawlor feels that people like him, from a ‘privileged white middle class lifestyle’, are ‘not what [rapists look] like’.
When asked why he felt the lessons were not suitable for students, Lawlor added: “I don’t want to be dogmatic about it.
“One reason may be because I’ve never been groped by somebody. Perhaps i’m shielded and naive.’
“Maybe, under the influence of alcohol, it raises the question of who can kiss whom on a night out. Both parties have to be drunk [or] both parties have to be sober.
“How will a drunk person remember consent lessons?”
George continued to complain about the length of the course itself. ‘It’s short. It’s only going on for a week. I don’t think something as short and quick is going to change anything. You have to be taught it growing up. And I’m going to imagine most people were.’
But he does concede that there are issues to be dealt with:
‘There definitely is a problem with sexual harassment and rape, there’s no denying that,’ he says.
‘Something needs to be done but I don’t think this is the best way.’
And these consent lessons, he says, would only be preaching to the converted: “I imagine it’ll be an echo chamber.
“If you’re likely to mistreat somebody in a situation like that you’re not going to go to a consent session.
“I envisage these consent sessions to be people telling each other what they already know.”
In response to a question that bothered on how he felt a victim of sexual attack would respond, Lawlor said: “I’m not going to presume to know what a rape victim would say because they’ve been through something so traumatic that I can’t properly comprehend.
“I’m sure the people running the lessons are nice people and they do genuinely care. If they saw a rape victim they would empathise with them and try to help them but in a bigger scale, it isn’t going to help.”
Some of the photos of the much criticized student are below. (Click on any image to enlarge).