Remove the condom in secret, without the couple finds out during the course of sex will from now considered another form of sexual assault also constitutes an offense under the Civil Code of California , the first state in the US to take this step in defense of women’s rights.
Although this law applies to both female and male victims , the figures from different studies from US universities on this sexual assault reveal that those who suffer this type of practices are girls and women.
The unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and psychological sequelae are some of the consequences of the victims of the stealthing (stealth, in Spanish), known in English as this maneuver.
The way to punish this practice was not easy for California legislator Cristina García, who had to battle for four years for this new law, now in effect, to be approved in the Golden State Legislature.
“It took us so long because at first we wanted to include it in the penal code , but in the end we yielded to different opinions and opted to classify it as a civil crime,” Democrat Garcia, who has been in the state Assembly since 2012, tells Efe in an interview.
Victims celebrate this first step
In that conversation, García assures that the hundreds of victims from all over the United States who have contacted her and her team during these four years since she outlined the first law have celebrated this “first step . ”
One of these victims, a 34-year-old woman who lives south of Los Angeles and who prefers not to reveal her identity, says that this new legislation “puts unfortunate practices like this on the table” and makes men and young people who have done stealthing throughout his life, in addition to the punishment attached.
From now on, the victims will be able to report what happened and request rewards for the damages caused, whether physical or psychological.
In the particular case of this woman, who has experienced this type of episode on two occasions with different men, she asserts that on the second occasion it happened she contracted genital herpes , a disease that cannot be cured and that causes her pain and discomfort from Many years ago.
“Taking off the condom without warning is totally selfish and simple ; it can’t get into my head,” criticizes this woman born in the state of Oregon, northern California.
“Right to distribute your seeds”
What led legislator Garcia to push for this regulation were hundreds of misogynistic comments in online communities of men who encourage and advise to remove the condom without permission during sex with women to demonstrate “male dominance . ”
In these online forums, users provide advice with “explicit descriptions”, according to Garcia, on how to successfully trick their partners into removing the condom without consent.
“They said they had a right and a duty to distribute their seeds. That gave me a lot of anger and disgust , and I decided to legislate against this practice,” recalls Garcia with a disgusted face.
The goal is for it to be applied throughout the United States
Now that California has taken the initiative to punish this move, the president of the National Organization for Women (NOW), Christian Nunes, hopes that other states or the federal Congress will begin to legislate in that direction.
So far, some legislators in the states of New York and Wisconsin have tried – unsuccessfully – to pass laws similar to the one recently enacted in California.
Although Nunes believes that the California law “is a great start at the state level , ” she is convinced that Washington should be “consistent” with current affairs and declare that removing a condom is another form of sexual abuse of women.
“It is sexual abuse because you are acting against the will of the other person”, says without hesitation Nunes, who leads one of the largest feminist organization in the United States, with more than 500,000 affiliates.