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What Is So Confusing About Consent?

There is an emphasis right now in society on protesting police brutality of black folks.

As this continues to go on there is another issue that I believe still needs some addressing. This issue I speak of is rape. Sexual contact that is not consensual. This has been in the forefront of Black America ever since Hannibal Buress alluded to a rape charge that Bill Cosby garnered a few years back. This charge apparently was not known by the majority of us. Since Hannibal’s comments, there has been this discussion about rape, consent, and the role prominent men play in all of this. You can cite the sense of entitlement in that regard.

As of late, new revelations of Nate Parker and Derrick Rose have taken center stage.

Both men either presently, or at one time, were confused as to what consent meant. Derrick Rose went as far to say in a deposition that he didn’t know what consent even meant! Well, why not? Why are grown men who are doing grown things not sure as to when a woman wants to have sex with them?

I think in many cases, it’s an alarming glare of immaturity.

If a woman doesn’t want to have sex with you, she will spell it out plainly for you. I promise you, she knows she won’t enjoy it if she doesn’t want to do it. She also knows it won’t feel good if she’s not relaxed. Now, I think many men have experiences that they can draw from in which they had to discern if a woman wanted to or not. I’m going to share my story with y’all today.

I was a sophomore in college and at that time I had three other roommates in this huge room on campus. This was a rare Saturday in which everyone left and I had the room to myself. Our room was so large that I put two twin beds (XL) together and used king sized sheets for my bed that year.

Anyway, with a huge room to myself I decided I can finally have me some company uninterrupted. So I invite this one girl over that I had been talking to. Allow me to say that I was completely fine just kicking it. I had no intentions of doing further than maybe a little kissing or something. Nevertheless, I did none of that. The young lady came over and we really just kicked it and talked. There were times where I rested my hand on her knee while talking. No crazy caressing, nothing like that. We sat close to each other in the bed and I really hadn’t thought anything about it.

Not really a long story short, the time came for her when she had to leave.

Once she got back to her room she texted me. She said that she felt uncomfortable the times where my hand was on her knee. I had no idea while we were together. In my mind, I didn’t think it was a big deal. The truth is, in a case like that, what I thought didn’t matter.

Now, her telling me this had me shook to the point that I fell all the way back. I stopped talking to her just out of the skepticism that I may do something else unsuspectingly and run the risk of being accused of something worse.

I tell this story to say that we as men have to be smarter.

I always like to say that when a woman says “stop” she means it. Don’t push it after stop. We have to use our discernment. Sophomore year of college was nine years ago, time has passed. There’s no reason why Derrick Rose should even find himself in a position as to where he could be accused of such an act. The idea that you’re rich and you can have any woman to be your nasty toy is dangerous. Rose is absolutely innocent until proven guilty, but as black men we just have to be better.

I’m currently watching preseason basketball and Jeff Van Gundy made a point to address sexual assault. The statistic he gave on air is that a woman is assaulted in this country every nine seconds. Every nine seconds. That means by the time you finish reading the end of this line, two more women may have potentially been assaulted. That’s nuts. That’s disgusting. Lastly, that’s not right.

There is no better feeling as a heterosexual man than getting chicken and getting busy with a woman in the words of the Philosopher known as Jazz. To me, one of the best appeals about sex is that the other party is a willing party. You both want the same thing. To me, that’s the fun. If both parties don’t want the same thing, what do you call that?

So fellas, take women seriously when they decline. Cut it out.

These are my words and I make no apologies.

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About DamnPOPS

Pops is a staff writer currently at Brooklyn Buttah that's hoping to bring material that people can connect with. If it's a touchy subject, expect him to speak on it. You may have seen him featured on sites such as Single Black Male and Madame Noire. This Brooklynite has a passion to captivate people with words. Roll with him on this trip.

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