This Court Just Made A Landmark Decision In Defining Rape

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In a world where the courts still asks sexual assault survivors what they were wearing when the incident occurred, progress often feels lost in a sea of personal and political agendas. So when a court makes a decision in favor of a survivor, it's a major ordeal.

On Wednesday, a man who removed his condom without his sexual partner's knowledge two years ago was found guilty by the Federal Supreme Court in Lausanne, Switzerland, according to The Independent. The landmark decision resulted in a 12-month suspended sentence.

In June of 2015 the 47-year-old man met up with the woman he'd met on Tinder for a second date. And it was then when she realized that he'd purposely removed the condom. While she consented to safe sex, she didn't consent to unprotected sex. Thusly she was exposed to the threat of STIs.

"This comes down to a discussion about 'conditional consent," Dr Sinead Ring of the University of Kent, explained to Broadly. The victim's lawyer even described the verdict as "a first in Switzerland."

The nature of consent — what it is, who gives it, where it should be given, and so on — has been a long-time debate everywhere. And while WikiLeaks'Julian Assange was able to avoid charges, both of the women who previously accused him of rape disclosed that Assange removed his condom during sex, as also noted by Broadly. This is not a new problem.

Names like Brock Turner, and issues like toxic masculinity and victim-blaming, have jumpstarted much-needed discussions on rape culture. And while we have a long way to go, the idea that someone can be convicted due to violating an agreement with their partner is a step in the right direction.
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