A No means No is what was hammered into our heads through Pink (the film).
A Yes can mean a No. Not uttering a specific Yes ,even while playing along ,can be construed as a No. Ask Mahmoud Farouqi,the director of Peepli Live, for suffered for lack of a specific Yes.
Consent is specific to particular act, session , frequency and manner -there is nothing called ‘absolute’ consent .There are no consent cards with wholesale validity. Gursimran Khamba (AIB) would vouchsafe. Julian Assange can also shed light.
Consent is not just a word , it’s a line ,says Anurag Kashyap . A No or a Yes is preceded by a series of hints and events .Be prepared to become an investigator ,a psychiatrist and a truth-detector all-in-one to catch the correct line and assess the proper drift.Or hone your batting skills under the aegis of a classical master like Rahul Dravid .
Remember ,Tacit Consent is meaningless .It has no legal value .Non-verbal signals like coyness in one’s eyes ,or tugging at one’s hair don’t carry special meanings .Poetry is all fake ,consign it to dustbin already .It is a ploy designed to take liberties with the helpless ,and then cloak all filth behind veneer of aesthetics. Don’t read too much into hugs ,touches ,blushes ,hand-presses ,winks ,pecks-gestures which don’t tell a concrete story . When and if things go haywire, reliance is placed only on Words, and in India, only the written ones at that.
Words . Better still, collection of words. It is only in them that one can place semblance of trust. Lest misunderstandings might result. Lest clarity is a casualty. There can be many slips between your intent and her consent. What would be the safeguards then ?
The answer is Covenants . Mandatory to establish consent in cases of disputes.
Verbal consents are just thin air. A stifled , half-hearted Yes can later be claimed to have been a No ,if there is any hint of duress or influence.Or in the hindsight ,if you come across as a person who should be slapped with a charge and shamed publicly, how would a Verbal Consent come to his defence anyway ?
Steadfast resolve and obdurate obsession with Written Consent is the only way to ensure safe relationships and rule out future foul play.It should be exhaustive and explicit in nature .Remember that implied ones might get you impaled someday. There are no time bars. If 375 or 376 wont , there is #metoo to shame you into destruction. There should be clauses which mention –
1.That there is no pressure, duress or blackmail involved ,of any kind-physical or verbal -related to past,present and future.
2.There is no allurement of any kind being offered as quid-pro-quo- like pay-hike ,career advancement, promotion ,foreign trip or posting ,nor even any assurance of turning blind eye towards massive fuck-ups at work.
3.It should clearly mention if the consent is being provided for the whole session or only for one act.
4.It should also clearly spell out the allowable frequency in case it is for the whole session.
5.The Contract should clearly describe the desirable manner of the act-positions ,use of prophylactic ,and permissible activities.
6.Clear reference should be made of the intoxicants being consumed at the time ,their amounts consumed and the state of drunkenness.The duo (or multiple members) should ask each other to spell a word as per their direction before they begin the act.(Something like Floccinaucinihilipilification or pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanokoniosis would be apt as it would demonstrate the mental alertness of the players involved ).
One can embark upon foreplay and indulge in tomfoolery only after safekeeping this properly signed explicit consent.
Later ,at the first possible opportunity ,get this Explicit Written Consent laminated and then deposit it in a personal locker,which I suggest one must buy only in his own name.No other member of the family must lay their eyes on this/these Consent letters.
Also take care that the Written Consent has only one copy which remains with you .The other side doesn’t need it .Like only one party can sheath their weapon in this whole business.IT is they alone who can be prosecuted under law .There is no statute that would consider her guilty of rape ,sexual assault, molestation or exploitation .This Written Covenant is only for your protection .Of course ,like stamps ,some vainglorious fools would flaunt their numbers and in process possibly misplace them . Remember ,any other copy of the Consent can be used to blackmail you by virtue of full or limited disclosure.
There are many whose fires go down as they grapple with condoms/ caps .Such elaborate procedure would definitely cut down fruitful copulation by atleast fifty percent ,and population by hopefully ten .The time lag might not just result in physiological failure ,but also mental rethink on the part of the participants.
This measure would take care of the present and future complications vis-à-vis relationships.As for the past such cases,a temporary Truth & Reconciliation Commission ,on the lines of South Africa ,be created.
It can be a court-like restorative justice body which can hold trials of deep-seated grievances.Witnesses who are identified as victims of gross sexual violations and assaults might be invited to give statements about their experiences, and some can be selected for public hearings. Perpetrators of violence could also give testimony and request amnesty from both civil and criminal prosecution .This ,along with Written Consent, can go a long way in providing healing touch and fostering productive and stress-free partnerships between the two sexes.
In the absence of a TRC ,we are holding trial-by-media in which shoot and run tactics are being adopted .India can do without this feminazi -run sexual McCarthyism in the long run.
But of course ,no one can save any man from the wrath of a woman who feels used, ignored and scorned, is confused and disturbed ,drunk or on psychaedelic trip ,battling with depression ,low self-esteem ,schizophrenia and other mental issues .One can always attribute motives and apply circumstances to the Written Consent as well ,but then again,a legal protection is much better than holding your limp ,lifeless tool in the palm .