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Ched Evans and the Myth About Male Sexuality

23/10/2014 11:50 BST | Updated 22/12/2014 10:59 GMT

Michael Burke has recently caused outrage by implying that the woman who was raped by Ched Evans doesn't deserve any 'credit' because she was so drunk. Implying she should be ashamed of herself.

Hmmmmmm...

It gets worse, he also says '...the two footballers who had sex with her in the most sordid of circumstances."

Wrong on both accounts Mr. Burke.

Firstly, if a woman is drunk it is not ever her fault that she is raped. Second this footballer did not have sex with her, he raped her, there's a big difference.

We certainly have a binge-drinking problem in the UK where abusive drinking has reached epidemic proportions. We also have a problem with the perception of what constitutes rape and sexual abuse due to deeply ingrained myths we hold about men, women and sexuality.

The argument that usually comes up when a drunk woman is raped is that at some point she has to take 'responsibility' for her actions. If she made the 'choice' to put herself in dangerous situations, then she has to take some 'responsibility' for the outcome.

If you believe this then you are very wrong.

This faulty belief perpetuates the myth that male sexuality is basically uncontrollable. That men are like wild beasts and if you add booze and a drunk girl who doesn't know what she's doing, then they cannot be held responsible for their actions. That it's not really their fault, they just couldn't help themselves.

This is what Michael Burke was implying and this mistaken belief has been implied many, many times when a drunk woman had been raped. There is an entrenched view a drunk woman is not just the same as a sober woman. That a woman who lets herself get into that state really deserves everything coming to her.

The epidemic of abusive drinking in the UK combined with this myth about male sexuality has enabled this behaviour to continue. If we continue to believe this then we will continue to believe that men can't be entirely blamed if a women gets so drunk she doesn't know what she is doing, and therefore it doesn't matter what is done to her.

Instead of focusing on how much this woman drank why are we not discussing the choices Ched Evans made?

I mean seriously, what was he thinking?

Did they go out that night hoping to get laid, to cheat on his girlfriend?'

Or, did he go with the intention of finding a drunk girl, who was incapable of defending herself or saying no.

Or did he just notice her and think, 'it would be kinda fun to take her clothes off and see her naked, she'll never know.'

Did he think, 'I'm going to have sex with her because clearly she doesn't care.'

Was that how he convinced himself that what he did was acceptable?

Was it because our culture views drunk girls differently?

With drunk girls, all bets are off, they don't care, their feelings don't matter?

Ched Evans had a complete lack of empathy. He didn't view his victim as a person, he viewed her as an object, a drunk object he could do whatever he wanted. He denies he did anything wrong because he sincerely believes the myth. He believes that when a woman gets that drunk she ceases being a human being and becomes an object and therefore what he did was ok.

Men like Ched Evans are held up as heroes in our society, young men admire and look up to them. They want to be like him. He is cheered, applauded and admired.

And now they want to give him his job back so he can be cheered and applauded even more. I don't begrudge Ched Evans making a living but I do think it's appalling that he could go back into a job where young men will look up to him and admire him.

Especially when some of those people still believe he is only partly responsible for the circumstances of the rape.

Young men need better role models. For too long the conversation has been about keeping women safe when it needs to be about how men behave and that they and only they are responsible for their actions.