At first glance this story would seem to be a spoof or an April Fools’ joke, but it’s not — Sweden really will implement this new law next week.
Many thanks to K. From Germany for translating this article Fria Tider.
Sex Law to Apply From Next Week on: Consent App Launched
June 24, 2018
From next Sunday on, the new consent law will apply, and then all intercourse will be forbidden in Sweden — voluntary or forced — which is not preceded by express agreement of consent. The app ‘Libra’ is being launched now, which will make it easier for women to issue their express consent.
According to Aftonbladet, the app makes use of bank-ID technology to secure consent before intercourse, which can lower the risk of getting convicted for rape after having had voluntary sex. This risk predominantly threatens men who engage in sexual activities from next week onwards, when the controversial Swedish consent law begins to apply.
The app is being launched by the female lawyer Baharak Vaziri, who states on her website that she works as a plaintiff’s attorney and defence attorney.
On the app’s homepage, the company behind it writes that the new legislation can imply great difficulties in proving consent between two parties who want to engage in intercourse.
“The app is designed to facilitate and strengthen [the concept] that persons who are about to enter a sexual connection shall do so voluntarily and consensually”, it says, inter alia, in the description in the App Store.
In an article in Aftonbladet, the reporter Miriam Bratt speculates that the app might make it more difficult for women to “change their mind” in the middle of intercourse and subsequently assert claim of criminal liability for rape. But the attorney disagrees with this criticism.
“This app is not meant for cases of sexual assault or in which women are in an exposed situation. This is only for those cases where things are unclear in some way, and such cases occur quite often,” says Baharak Vaziri to Aftonbladet.
However, one can never be entirely sure of not committing rape. This is because the law demands that consent be obtained “before each new moment” during the sex act, and it is dubious whether one can avoid criminal liability by obtaining consent for all moments beforehand, which is the idea behind the app.
“Witch hunt” against Swedish men
The new sex law has received harsh criticism in other countries, but completely evaded debate in Sweden’s so-called established media. Germany’s biggest daily newspaper Die Welt stated recently “Sweden Drives Sexual Correctness to the Extreme”.
The paper also takes on the reversed burden of proof which de facto applies in Swedish laws on sexual crimes and mocks the so-called problem which this law is thought to correct.
“In recent times (December 2017), Swedish women have been reporting violations every day. They report rape while sleeping or being too drunk to say no. They describe that they wake up with a ‘mental freeze’. Others, such as a politician for the Green Party, explain that it wasn’t before days or weeks after the occurrence that they understood that in fact they had been raped.”
According to the newspaper, the Swedish debate only broke out in full under last autumn’s #MeToo hysteria, which had as a consequence that the country’s establishment went on a campaign of outright persecution of sexually active Swedish men.
“Since then there has been some form of witch hunt in Sweden: Many men got fired from their jobs after a leading newspaper outed them as being accused of rape, particularly with the accusers’ being anonymous women. Sometimes the claimed assaults lay decades in the past,” writes Die Welt.
The newspaper states that the procedure violates the presumption of innocence in the European Convention, which says that anyone accused of a crime shall be treated as innocent until proven otherwise. But this is not allowed to be debated in Sweden, which the Swedish establishment made patently clear already when the columnist Staffan Heimerson was fired from Aftonbladet after he had questioned just how things stand with the presumption of innocence in connection with accusations of sexual crime in Sweden, reports Die Welt.
|1.||Bank-ID is a digital authentication tool widely used in Sweden for secure online banking.|
|2.||The term ‘plaintiff attorney’ is what machine translation gives for the Swedish word’s Wikipedia page of which no other language version is available; the translator lacks the legal expertise to say whether there is an English equivalent.