One too many beers changed this life forever

Eric Ariel Salas

Eric Ariel Salas

Say you found a stranger very attractive (however you define attractive). Would you want to have sex before or after gulping bottles of beer?

Sex under the influence of beer is common and easy. All you need to do is get yourself drunk (10 bottles will suffice) and in a matter of hours you’ll find yourself on someone else’s bed, most likely with the stranger you often exchange smiles with in the bar, whom you lusted or dreamed so long to be with. Make sure that both of you are extremely intoxicated so that the alcohol will do all the thinking, talking and the strategic planning of where and how you would perform the sex escapade – hmmm, in the car, at the park, beside a big rock, behind a pine tree, in the garage or just to make it sound so nice, in the comfort of your own room.

Under-the-influence-of-beer sex with a stranger you have just met once has a tag: risk, big risk. Take for instance the case of Lance Cpl. Daniel Smith, a young U.S. Marine who went to the Philippines as part of the Philippine-American war games or also called the RP-U.S. Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA). Just one night of drinking and then quick sex with a Filipina in a van changed Smith’s life forever. Daniel Smith was charged with rape. He was with other American soldiers at that time but all, except him, were acquitted.

Nicole, the rape victim, testified that she was drunk and too weak to stop the assault by Smith, as the other Marines inside the van laughed and listened to loud music. Nicole further testified that the incident happened after a night of drinking with Smith.

Smith had testified that the sex was consensual and this idea was supported by a number of the Filipinos, especially those who knew who Nicole was. Why would any woman in her right mind hook up with a group of young and, let’s be honest here, horny soldiers in a bar called Neptune (of all places) and late at night? The family of the girl insisted she was no prostitute and that Nicole has a college degree (which of course is no guarantee of not being playful and nasty at times). Here enters another question: What happened to her common sense that night when she agreed to join the Marines in their drinking spree? I am sure she was aware of the consequences she could be getting into by joining a group of men. When she said she trusted the men, damn, no way that you can trust anyone, in this case a gang of men, in just an hour! Upon joining them, alone, she had already voluntarily offered herself!

When the Philippine court handed down the verdict – GUILTY to Smith, a lot of Filipinos cried unfair and stirred emotions in the country. Many believed Smith did not take advantage of the victim and that the latter was fully aware of the events.

The controversial case happened over two years ago. However, recently, the case has resurrected. This time it is regarding the custody of the convicted rapist. Smith is detained at the U.S. Embassy compound and Nicole’s lawyer wants him to be transferred and serve out his sentence in a Philippine prison. If the transfer pushes through, it will be the end of Smith. I tell you, Philippine prison is beyond hell.

Nicole had sex with a stranger, Smith, after getting drunk over beers. It seems the intention of the two was casual sex and to satisfy a night of lusty craving. Whatever happened that night, why Nicole suddenly cried for rape, was still not certain for most Filipinos, even up to now.

What we know is this statement from Nicole after the long delay of Smith’s transfer to Philippine prison: “If I had the choice, I would like to be a U.S. citizen now because they [the U.S.] would defend a citizen, even if he is a convicted criminal, while the Philippines would not defend someone who is fighting for her rights.”

So what really is Nicole’s intent?