Police prompt fury by tweeting that a kiss under the mistletoe without consent 'is RAPE'

  • Police Service of Northern Ireland ridiculed for the 'nonsense' tweet about rape?
  • It said get consent 'before bumping into that special someone under mistletoe'
  • But the message drew hundreds of mocking comments by social media users?
  • Some accused the force of 'trivialising' rape and being 'social justice warriors'

A police force has been ridiculed for warning people to get consent before they 'bump into that special someone under the mistletoe' —?or else they could be committing 'rape'.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) posted the 'nonsense' message yesterday, drawing hundreds of mocking comments attacking the force for 'trivialising' rape.

The force, which has 159,000 Twitter followers, posted: 'If you bump into that special someone under the mistletoe tonight, remember that without consent it is rape #SeasonsGreetings.'

And it wasn't long before the warning was shared hundreds of time across the social media platform.

The force, which has now removed the tweet, but said that their message had been taken 'out of context'

The force, which has now removed the tweet, but said that their message had been taken 'out of context'

Police Service of Northern Ireland tweeted to its 159,000 followers: 'If you bump into that special someone under the mistletoe tonight, remember that without consent it is rape #SeasonsGreetings'

Police Service of Northern Ireland tweeted to its 159,000 followers: 'If you bump into that special someone under the mistletoe tonight, remember that without consent it is rape #SeasonsGreetings'

@Renown_Vet commented: 'Since when did a kiss under the mistletoe turn into rape? Get a grip, and start being thief takes again not half arsed SJWs [social justice warriors].'

@69mib wrote: 'Bumping into someone, under the mistletoe, is now considered rape? Why do you trivialise such a serious issue with such a nonsense tweet?'

Mike love tweeted PSNI: 'This tweet tells people that a kiss is rape. Do you realise what you've said?'?

But the force only removed the tweet after being contacted by MailOnline.?

One user wrote: 'Bumping into someone, under the mistletoe, is now considered rape? Why do you trivialise such a serious issue with such a nonsense tweet?'

One user wrote: 'Bumping into someone, under the mistletoe, is now considered rape? Why do you trivialise such a serious issue with such a nonsense tweet?'

In a new message, posted this morning, PSNI wrote: 'We posted a message on Twitter yesterday that some may have taken out of context but the message remains the same; when you are out socialising over the Christmas period, please remember without consent it is rape'

In a new message, posted this morning, PSNI wrote: 'We posted a message on Twitter yesterday that some may have taken out of context but the message remains the same; when you are out socialising over the Christmas period, please remember without consent it is rape'

In a new message, posted this morning, the PSNI wrote: 'We posted a message on Twitter yesterday that some may have taken out of context but the message remains the same; when you are out socialising over the Christmas period, please remember without consent it is rape.'

The PSNI has previously faced backlash for social media postings about sexual violence, when in March the Newry and Mourne division posted an image of a distressed woman under the caption 'without consent it is rape' and a message warning people not to 'overindulge'.

Some social media users raised concerns that the message amounted to 'victim blaming' by potentially implying that it is the responsibility of women to prevent rape by not drinking too much.

The 'without consent it is rape' campaign was launched by the PSNI in 2013 to publicise the law on sexual offences in Northern Ireland.?

It comes after a probe was launched in August amid allegations that PSNI officers and staff tweeted racist, sexist and sectarian messages?— and potentially prejudiced criminal inquiries.?

Six PSNI officers or civilian support staff were among the group under investigation.??

The tradition of kissing under mistletoe is centuries old

The tradition of kissing under mistletoe is centuries old

Police Service of Northern Ireland's tweet was shared hundreds of times and ridiculed for 'trivialising' rape

Police Service of Northern Ireland's tweet was shared hundreds of times and ridiculed for 'trivialising' rape

Some of the tweets were said to have included allegations against a Northern Irish journalist and also the abuse of another journalist from a Belfast radio station, The Guardian reported. ?

The posts also included pictures of the interiors of PSNI stations including a CCTV monitoring station in Belfast, it was reported.?

SNI Assistant Chief Constable Mark Hamilton, who is in charge of the force's professional standards department, said at the time: 'I can confirm that the PSNI is examining material posted on personal social media accounts by persons who may be serving police officers.

'In response PSNI professional standards department has instigated disciplinary proceedings against one individual who has been identified as a serving officer.'??

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