While Mr Galloway’s position is untenable, it does hint at something important: namely, the grey areas often involved in the concept of consent; the coded signals, the subtle hints, the criss-crossing network of gestures and intimations that reveal, sometimes by degrees, that two people are up for it. It is foolish and dishonest to pretend, as some feminists do, that the question of consent is always glaringly obvious. Sometimes, it isn’t. And we should be honest enough to admit that.

Matthew Syed responds to George Galloway’s outburst about consent and rape in the Julian Assange case


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