"[TW: Rape] That’s at the core of a lot of this, the idea that if we make rape of unconscious people a crime, then there’s no “consequences” to girls drinking a lot/being “slutty”/etc… Rape as corrective tool is at the heart of a lot of rape culture attitudes, including that prisoners deserve to be raped, rape to punish/fix queer people (“rape you straight”, etc), rape as a tool of torture, rape as part of “hazing,” and that women who are “bad” (sex workers, “slutty,” drink a lot, wear few clothes, etc.) deserve “consequences” for their behavior. Behind a lot of rape apologia is the undercurrent of “but if we stop this, how will these people get punished for acting against how I think they should?”
Part of the refusal to focus the responsibility and agency of committing the crime on the rapists (“what do you expect would happen?” as if the rapists are like a force of nature) is that these people DO think she deserved to be punished for her behaviour that they disapprove of, and they LIKE the idea that there are other people who will punish her for it. They WANT rape to be something that “just happens” to you if you’re bad, or go to jail, or whatever, rather than focusing on who does it, because if you do the latter, you might stop it, and if you stop it, then there’s no punishment…
Rape apologists believe that women acting a certain way is something that should be “corrected.” They just don’t want to be the ones to do it, but it’s useful to them if others “fix” the problem for them. So, it’s useful to them if homophobes believe that killing somebody is self defense because of “gay panic,” or men believe that raping an unconscious woman is something they can’t (and therefore don’t need to) control. It allows them to have something “uncontrollable” to threaten people with, and put the onus on the victim to avoid getting killed/raped rather than on the perpetrator, because in the victim-blaming narrative, there isn’t one. The rapist is like the wind, and the victim is a person who built their house poorly.
And that’s why people also are defending the rapists and acting as if it’s unfair for them to be convicted of a crime, because they believe these people weren’t wrong, that without them, how would this girl be punished? What would be the consequences of her drinking too much as a girl without the rapists? How could you threaten women to behave in our society if there isn’t a threat of rape? These guys were just enacting the “consequences” that they wanted her to face for being a girl and drinking too much.
The rapist as force of nature, rather than human being responsible for choosing to assault somebody, is really important to rape culture, to rape as corrective social tool, and a way to control women’s behaviour. In a way, these rape apologists aren’t wrong when they claim they aren’t blaming her for being raped because in order to blame her, you’d have to think her rape was wrong in the first place. And to them, it wasn’t, because to them, she’s the one that did something wrong. She’s the one that partied, drank, and flirted as a girl. She deserved punishment. To them, the rape wasn’t wrong. It was justice."