Minnesota Supreme Court ruling is terrifying

Mattie Beck, Staff Writer

The Minnesota Supreme Court recently enacted a new ruling that mainly affects women, putting another fear into drinking and sexual assault.

The Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that if an individual voluntarily drinks and puts themself into a state of intoxication, it is no longer considered rape if someone takes advantage of them sexually.

The ruling occurred when a case from 2017 was overturned, which decided that due to the woman involved being intoxicated, under the new law, she was not ‘mentally incapacitated’.

Christina Morales, a writer for the New York Times, explains in her article “Court Overturns Sex Crime Conviction,” what the court considers incapacitated.

“The woman, the court said in a unanimous decision, was “voluntarily intoxicated” at the time because she had made the decision to drink,” Morales said, “and therefore did not meet the threshold for mental incapacitation under state law.”

To break that down, the state considers that when an individual is mentally incapacitated, they can no longer consent to sex and hence making any sexual acts that occur to be classified as rape.

With this new ruling, unless an induvidual was forced to drink by someone, if they voluntarily consume alcohol, they are no longer mentally incapacitated.

This means that if sexual acts happen to someone, even if clearly against their will, it is no longer considered rape under the court system, and is technically the victim’s fault.

This new ruling is terrifying, as rape affects many individuals, specifically women, daily in large amounts.

“One out of six American women have been the victim of rape or an attempted rape, according to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network,” Morales said.

This is a scary statistic, and even scarier is that while knowing this, the Minnesota Supreme Court still enacted the ruling that a woman takes the fault now for something that once brought justice for misconduct.

There is hope that a new ruling may be in place to redefine the idea of mental incapacitation, but the ruling is still newly in place that action is yet to take place.

The new ruling put in place by the Minnesota Supreme Court is a slap in the face, and put into terms, essentially blames the woman for her drunken state that allowed her to be sexually assaulted.