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Full Version: What the F@%&?! And more feminist outrage...
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greenbean
I saw some pictures of her with her head down, one shoe off, leaving the party. They were painting her as a sloppy drunk. I think I saw it on an "entertainment news" show, which reeeeally pisses me off.

Nohope, I dont see the comparison the way you do. In each case it seemed to me like the general public has the attitude of, "shes a liar trying to cash in". I think the issue here that gets under our skin is that when rape cases are made public with the undercurrent of "is she telling the truth?" it really makes it hard for other rape victims to come forward. Is it possible that a woman/girl could lie about rape? Sure, but its a rare exception not the norm. When the media sensationalizes a story like this, it gets into our female subconcious that if we are raped, its just too much extra trauma to go through a trial.
kittenb
According to the FBI, more people falsely report their own deaths than falsely report a rape. Just my $0.02.
snafooey
Homophobes Protest Tolerance Policies (fancy link wouldn't work b/c of the commas):

http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/la-na-christians10apr10,0,6596503.story

battygurl
I really don't get how they can argue that they are being restricted from practicing their religion. Their religion isn't "harass gay and lesbians" it's (debatably) "don't engage in homosexual activity." As long as they aren't being forced to engage in homosexual activity their freedom of religion isn't being hindered.

It's all so fucking ridiculous. "Wah, I'm not allowed to be hateful or intolerant."
alligator
Well, Batty, it's a little more complicated than that. Some of the laws in question define "harassment" so broadly that even a frank but civil discussion of one's religious beliefs violates them.
tyger
but those people aren't getting in trouble for having a frank civil discussion about their religious beliefs (and if their 'religion' is spreading hate then i don't consider it a religion at all, but that isn't the point here). they're getting in trouble for anti-gay slurs and homophobic shirts, and if that's their 'religion' then it deserves to be classified as harassment. one of my best friends was raised catholic and had no problems with people other than straight while she was still part of the church (she left recently). my mother is christian and has no problem with her brother being gay or me being queer. i say people need to stop hiding behind their religion; if you don't want to come out and say you hate a certain group and own your hate and your opinion as your own, keep you damn mouth shut
smurfin
Ehm... can someone help me? I seem to have read (in the article Snaf posted) that the boy scouts do not allow gay people in? Is that true? If so, HOW?

How can that *not* be discrimination? How... I'm just speechless. Really. And inexplicably happy I don't live in the US...


ETA I just visited the boy scouts' national website, and yes, it says: 'anyone who declares himself to be a homosexual would not be allowed to join', but fear not: 'Applications for leadership and membership do not inquire into sexual orientation'.

So all you have to do to be accepted is lie.
Again.

Yuck. I'm going to go and scrub my eyeballs now.
miss_jane
smurfin, got any spare eyeball scrub?
kjhink
I think that the woman mentioned in Snaf's argument is a repellant human being who is sorely deserving of a serious ass-whoopin'.

Sadly, I also think that she's probably right.

The problem with the 1st Amendment is that it requires that on occassion one must put up with the most outragageous of idiots. She has a fundamental right to be an intolerant asshat. She has a right to send a nasty letter to the Pride Alliance.

She hasn't been accused of stalking its members, or threatening them, or inciting others to do so. She's being an intolerant and hateful brat. I think she has a right to do so. This woman does own her hate. Her particular "sect" seems to own it, too.

When I used to do clinic escorting, the other escorts and I certainly ridiculed the protestors. They were absurd, not to mention judgemental and stupid. That said, though, I had to recognize their fundamental right to be there and wave their stupid signs. Threaten me? No. Touch me? No. Threaten patients? No. Act like a twit? Sadly, yes.

I think it should be noted that I find a big difference between her right to write stupid letters and wear stupid shirts and the Boy Scouts' refusal to allow gay members. Namely, the Boy Scouts are subsidized by government in ways large and small, and they have in their rules a fundamentally intolerant and exclusionary rule. Why should my tax dollars support that stupid shit? It shouldn't.

I also don't think that universities should be forced to give recognition in the form of money to groups that promote intolerance. One fool's speech and the money he or she chooses to spend on it is one thing, but I don't think other students should be required to subsidize it.
tyger
i think that being homophobic should never, ever be protected under law. why should it be treated any different than racism? if it was the KKK and neo-nazis suing for the right to speak out against people who weren't white christians, wear racist shirts to school, etc, most people wouldn't take them seriously. i don't know anybody who has chosen to be gay. i have a friend who was almost run down by a car, had someone from another school come to our school and try to knife her, was jumped in the street, simply because the was the first out lesbian at my school. did she choose to be a lesbian? no, she damn well didn't. did i choose to be queer? no. did my uncle choose to be gay and persecuted? no. so why on earth should someone have the 'right' to wear homophobic shirts to school and speak out against my sexual orientation when i didn't chose it? if your religion says you have to be an intolerant bigoted asshole, fine, but you shouldn't get protection of your bigoted assholeness. you should get a punch in the face.

i'm sorry. the only thing i really can't stand is intolerant people. i find it disgusting that in this day and age people still think it's okay to deem something different than them wrong/evil/deviant/deserving of scorn. and if the first amendment is going to protect their rights to discriminate me, i want it changed. (though i'm in canada and therefore the first amendment doesn't effect me, but i think i made my point)
kjhink
tyger, I'm fully willing to agree with you on most of your points. Being gay is not a choice. Of course it's not, but even if it *were* I would support gay rights because who am I to tell consenting individuals whom they should love. I also fully agree that bigotry of every stripe deserves confrontation.

And of course you and your friend and your uncle should be protected from physical assault and harrassment. No matter what.

The thing is, though, is that I think that people have a fundamental right to be bigots. I think it's disgusting. It should be discouraged, denigrated, ridiculed, routed, DRIVEN from our culture. Until it is, though, I still believe they have a right to say what they think.

And in your example, I do support the KKK's right to say what they want as long as it isn't a call to mow down a synagogue or a group of black kids on the playground. They have sued, and they've won.

This all gets much more gray in the workplace, as it should. You don't have a right to behave any way you want at work, my business casual attire is testimony to that. And I don't believe speech should be unencumbered in quite the same way in elementary and secondary schools. Children, frankly, can't and shouldn't be expected to have that level of responsibility.

Colleges and universities are different, to my mind. Everyone is an adult, and people need to 1. exchange ideas (no matter how fucking stupid)and 2. learn how to get along in as adults. Consequently, I think that even ugly speech should be protected.

There is a line between offense and harassment, and I feel that unitl it is crossed, people have a right to be an asshole.

And everyone else has a responsibility to tell them loudly and repeatedly to drop dead.
vesicapisces
You also have to remember - freedom of speech, etc. as laid out in the Constitution are only guarantees that the *government* and public institutions cannot abridge those rights. Individuals and their behavior, and private organizations, aren't restricted by them. Which is why the Boy Scouts, a private, not-for-profit organization, is allowed to discriminate in who they allow to be members/leaders.
greenbean
One of the things that needs to be addressed more is the difference between homosexuals and pediphiles. A lot of ignorant Americans can't distinguish between the two. The boys scouts have had instances of child molestation, and unfortunantly, they think banning gays will solve that problem. They don't get that a pedophile is a sick orientation in and of it self, and that being gay doesn't atomatically make you one, just as being a straight married man doesn't mean you arent capable of being one.
another note, the girls scouts do not have a ban against lesbians...
tyger
yeah, but greenbean (at least here in canada) women and men have always been allowed to be boy scout leaders (even before girls were allowed to join as members, which they now are), but men aren't allowed to camp overnight/be leaders for girl guides (canadian equivalent of girl scouts)

quote from someone who thinks it might have originated from michael ignatieff, paraphrased. your right to free speech is like your right to swing a fist; it ends when it hits someone else
treehugger
Well, I'm coming into this discussion late but I thought the issue was religious freedom? Not so much freedom of speech? At least, that's what THEY are bringing up. So, God hates gays. Kewl. Keep it to yourself, eh?

Just because "god hates gays" doesnt mean you have to be hateful. Just my two cents.

I don't understand how tolerance is undermining religious freedom at all. I mean, what's killing your religion, that you need to be courteous and not hateful?

I just don't get it. I live in a very gay-friendly city and yet we still get some of the fringe religious groups that come in and protest various things...put billboards up and so forth.

I just HATE intolerance and bigotry.
minx
Whatever happened to the addage "Love the sinner, hate the sin"? If these people are truely Christian, they really wouldn't be in the business of "hating" anyone. Bring back the new covenant.

This is one of the main reasons why I loathe religion (and that is excluding me being a staunch, unapologetic atheist). It is the incredible amount of hypocrisy which I find alarming and vomit-inducing. I rather think that most of the extremists are not so much "Christian" as "Sociopaths" who got lost and perseverated upon a dogma which suits their not-so-latent phobias and abject fear of death.

Who in the fuck are these people fooling? Get back into your bubble, or go find your own damned country where you can have your fucking THEOCRACY. Until, keep your GODDAMNED religion out of my GOVERNMENT.

*BTW, did anyone else notice that these chicks go to a PUBLIC university? Go fagbashing at one of your private schools. I think it is incredibly embarrassing that a prestigious polytech university like this would tolerate this sort of sophomoric behavior. State-funded education ought not be plagued by phantoms, the living dead, or crazy Bushheads*

Freedom to practice religion my achin' white ass. If you want to be like that, start paying your fucking taxes like every other establishment in America (well, unless you happen to be a Big Business who is a friend of the Bush-bots).

And yeah, I know this is vitriol on my part, but I don't walk into their churches demanding that they give up their false idols. Unless they are inviting that sort of attention from the Pink Mafia, they ought to pray silently and hope for the rapture to take them a bit sooner than planned.
venetia
Surely the people who work in a tertiary/"higher ed" institution have the right to be protected from hostile workplace.

I mean, when you attend a university you are agreeing to abide by its rules and it is agreeing to provide you with a specific type of education. If students can reserve the right to run around hate-speeching people without consequences within an institution, what's next - reserving the right to turn in crappy, badly spelled, unresearched papers and still get an A?
smurfin
Tyger, I think I love you.
smurfin
Crappitycrap, double post


(and all my own fault, as well!)
kissmypineapple
I'm kinda with kjhink on this one. The second you start telling people that not all speech is protected, simply because it offends you (and don't get me wrong, it offends me too) is the second that no speech is protected. It's a slippery slope, and as much as I don't want to hear anybody gay-bashing, psycho fundies probably don't want to hear me yelling that abortion should be 100% legal and on demand. That offends them. We hear bigotry, they hear murder.

Secondly, does anybody know if the Boy Scouts retained their 501(c)(3) status? I know that Bob Jones University lost theirs because they would not admit unmarried black people, and they basically made it so that interracial relationships were grounds for expulsion. So, they can do that, they just can't be tax-exempt and do it...so it seems like a similar situation with the Boy Scouts. (Of course, the crappy thing is, none of us could initiate litigation to have them stripped of their tax-exemption, b/c with non-profits, you have to be a board member, member, or the attorney general to have standing...)
katiebelle2882
The reason, I think its not equated with racism is bc although I believe homosexuality isnt a choice, it has yet to be proven. the fact that gender/race is genetic really isnt up for debate.

personally i think whether its a choice or you are born that way should be irrelevant.
vesicapisces
Tax status doesn't have anything to do with discrimination or lack thereof. I believe that Bob Jones U. turned down *federal grants* that would have obligated it to accept students on a non-discriminatory basis. Boy Scouts is still 501(c)(3).
tyger
i guess that the people in the article are rather confusing to me. i mean, if they want to be allowed to speak out and discriminate against the queer community, then they can't be safe from discrimination/being spoken out against for their discrimination, right? i think that they don't see that they are fighting for the right to be treated just like they treat gay people.

i also can't stand that it's their 'christian faith' compelling them to do this. okay, i'm christian. my mom is protestant. one of my friends is baptist. i've been to a catholic church service wherein the priest said that it didn't matter if people were gay or straight, they were people and deserved the respect that all humans deserved. it is NOT the christian faith that is compelling these people to hate. it is their own close-mindedness that is being encouraged by their branch of christianity, and if they can't see the hipocrisy in 'god loves everyobody (except those deviant evil homosexuals)', then...i don't know. but i do know that if i protested outside their church for being homophobes and wore shirts that said 'god loves gays as much as anyone else' they'd be up in arms, and those are the rights they're fighting for
venetia
Maybe I don't understand this because I'm not form US America, but ... how is it against their freedom of speech to ban them from doing something on Campus? If they want to do this they can still do it everywhere else, it's not like you're stopping them from doing it. How is it different from, say, Contempt of Court laws (where you can't get up and say whatever you like during a court case)?
kjhink
venetia, I'm certainly not a lawyer, and it might not be technically violate the first amendment. It could probably be argued that since the individuals who are suing have chosen to be a part of that university community, then they have also decided to take it upon themselves to abide by that uni's rules regarding hate speech. In fact, if this thing lands in court that might very well be the school's argument.

That said, though, the uni receives government support in myriad ways. I think it is a Georgia state school and, consequently, a public university. Limiting someone's speech might be touchy.

Plus, she's getting in trouble for taking issue with the speech of others. Her argument could be that *their* speech is offensive to *her.* If the Pride Alliance can say that they think it's okay to be gay, then she can say the opposite.

Plus, I just think that it's a bad idea to limit most speech between or among adults. If she wants to be an evil bigot. . . I have to say that I feel that she has that right. If you strip it down to its very barest bones, she's saying she has the right to tell someone she disagees with them. I think she does have that right.

I think the contempt of court example you used would be more applicable if she called someone a name in a class. She, however, got in trouble for writing someone a letter (among other things).

Again, lest anyone get the wrong idea, I think this woman is a miserable hag who could most benefit the world with her silence. I just say that if she wants to talk, she probably has a right to do so.
kissmypineapple
Actually, (and I'm not trying to split hairs or be condescending...just trying to keep the record straight!) BJU did lose their tax exempt status for discrimination. I just read the case 2 weeks ago in my Law of Non Profits course. Discrimination has quite a bit to do with tax exemption, b/c if your organization violates public policy, you don't qualify for exemption. So, I guess the bigger question is, why is discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation not yet a matter of public policy?
nohope
In America as I think most of the rest of the world there are no garneted freedoms of speech. In the family the ruling member usually a male sets the boundaries on what is acceptable speech, at work courts have determined that the business owner sets the standard for what is acceptable speech and in school the administration stets the standard what is acceptable speech. Our speech for most of the time is censured.

I agree that censorship is wrong, whether that censorship exercised by courts, by husbands, by police, by death squads, or by school administrators.

That however has no relationship to whether is right to not harass another human being. It can be wrong to deny me the right to harass at the same time that is wrong for me to harass. The fact is we can’t be moral agents as long as our right to be immoral is denied.

This is a pro-choice issue.
venetia
Kjhink, thanks, I think I misunderstood the article. I thought she was harrassing people in class or writing hate mail. Which is not something I would put up with. People have every right to go around foaming at the mouth - outside in the street.

Now it seems to me that she is trying to file a lawsuit against Georgia Tech based on her fears of being stifled rather than on any actual restriction of her speech?
alligator
i'm sorry. the only thing i really can't stand is intolerant people.

Funny. :-)

And I agree, but this brings us right 'round (baby, right 'round, like a record baby) to the whole point of protected speech.

Yeah, it's unfortunate that malicious bigots can shield themselves behind the 1st Amendment, but that's also the whole point of having it. We don't need the 1st Amend for speech everyone agrees with or which doesn't cause a ruckus. The very purpose of the thing is to defend people who say things that make us want to punch them in the nose.

I see the word "homophobia" being thrown around. "Homophobia" is a very specific psychological condition. It does not mean "any dislike or disapproval of gay people or homosexuality whatsoever."

In fact, "homophobia" is a pathology; a kind of mental illness. By calling people less gay-friendly than we are "homophobic," we are essentially saying that they're crazy, which makes US frightfully intolerant because we are defining OUR point of view as exclusively sane.
anarch
badly written Wall Street Journal article blaming feminism for rape.

Thoughtful comment addressing well-meaning guys who react to news of rapes with "Women shouldn't get drunk, go home with guys they just met at bars, should keep their wits about them, should this, should that": "It could be useful for us all to examine our own behaviours and to have discussions about those boundaries with our friends and loved ones. Have you ever ignored an initial protest hoping that your partner would relent? . . . What if we looked at rape like that? How can I take personal responsibility to make sure I don't ever cross the line? How can I encourage other people to do likewise?"

Next time this topic comes up, I'm jumping in early with this kind of point - challenging guys to take some personal responsibility for making sure they and their male friends/family know where the line is and how not to cross it, and for calling male friends/family on asshole attitudes too. Challenge them to give that equal time with their "women shoulds".

Most of the early-mid thread is the usual crap, though.
venetia
In your estimation Alligator is that the everyday use and everyday common understanding of the term "homophobia", or are you making like Jacques Derrida and deconstructing it for us?
nohope
I think alligator has a point regarding Homophobia.

But intolerance of person who don’t pose an imminent threat to you is insanity. When you believe they do, despite the fact they don’t, that is called paranoia, also a mental illness.
nohope
anarch that article is interesting. The solution would be simple, how about women only bars…. Bars were women could go drink and party as much as they want and not have to worry about being raped by a man.

I think an idea like this is past its prime. I think a lot of women might be interested in going out, having a few drinks with the guys, but then when it’s time to get totally shit faced and let it all hang out, go to a bar that only caters to women and provides safe passage back home.
natulik
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06116/685098-55.stm

WTF?

Okay, I'm not surprised per se, but I am definately outraged that high schools don't ever focus on how these things are an everyday reality for girls, and how they just grow used to it all instead of striving to change their environment.
alligator
In your estimation Alligator is that the everyday use and everyday common understanding of the term "homophobia", or are you making like Jacques Derrida and deconstructing it for us?

Venetia, that WAS how it was used, until gay rights defenders decided they needed a catchy, one-word "-ism" or "-phobe" term to describe those who were insufficiently supportive of their cause.

Which brings us to the present day, where the word is just shorthand for "anyone one step to the right from me on matters homosexual," which is stupid because actual, for-real homophobia does exist and is a real problem for gays and straights both.

It's similar to what happened to "racism,' which used to mean a hateful, mendacious theory of biological determinism but now apparently describes anyone who opposes Affirmative Action or thinks Jesse Jackson is a buffoon.

Ditto with "feminist" (radical or otherwise), a term thrown around so loosely both pro- and con- that it's hard to say WHAT it means anymore.

PS - Don't knock my homeboy Jacques. ;)
alligator
But intolerance of person who don’t pose an imminent threat to you is insanity. When you believe they do, despite the fact they don’t, that is called paranoia, also a mental illness.

Agreed. Real homophobes are paranoid.

What they fear is really inside them. Since they can't admit that, they project the menace outward and "defend" themselves against it through hostility and violence.
miss_jane
Comment from the article that alligator posted:

"I'd think that the feminists had set these young girls up to be victims so the "cause" could use them as poster girls against male violence."

Yes thats right, we want women to be raped. Sheesh.
venetia
Alligator - I get it. Don't worry, I'm down with Jacques. Though, when you say "What they fear is really inside them." it sounds more like the Homosexual Panic murder defense...
kissmypineapple
NoHope, do you really think the solution is to have female only bars? One of my big issues with that article was the insinuation that since we probably won't be able to change male behavior, women ought to just suck it up and not get drunk, not go party, b/c really, we ought to know better. And so...you know, rape is sort of our fault. And while we're not drinking or partying, we should probably cover up and stop flirting with men, b/c everyone knows that if you flirt, you're really just asking for it. When are people (outside of this board of course) going to acknowledge that there is something wrong with the culture of men, and telling women to stop "putting themselves in dangerous situations" is a bandaid. How about, men, stop endangering women? And I think your much earlier point is absolutely true. There ought to be some equally life threatening incentive put forth for men, since some of them can't seem to come up with the motivation themselves. Ugh.
anarch
The point (mine and many other Busties'), Nohope, is that changing most peoples' frame of reference, currently fixated on the narrow mantra "to prevent rape it's up to individual women to be more careful", would ultimately pre-empt any need for creating female-only safe spaces.

Women can choose certain behaviours to reduce chances of rape happening, sure. We hear this all the time. Here's the part we rarely hear: Men could, men should (especially those who go around handing out advice to women on how to "prevent" rape), also choose certain behaviours to reduce chances of rape happening. Any man could if he really gave a damn, talk (in the same breath as "Women need to do...") about how he has responsibility for 1. examining his own behaviour 2. educating himself about rape myths and realities, 3. discussing with male (or female) friends or family members things like "How do I know for sure she's ok with it? How can I make sure I don't cross the line? How can I encourage other guys to do likewise?" and 4. calling out friends or family members who make casual comments ("Look at what she was wearing...she's a stripper...she slept around") or crack "jokes" ("No means maybe").

ok, maybe not all 4. I'd be quite happy if 15% of the men in that thread I linked talked about ONE of these things HE could do to reduce rape, while he was sermonizing about "Women should".

Imagine if just half of all the men we knew incorporated even two of these things into the regular way they live their lives and relate to their buddies, as vigilantly and constantly and automatically as we lock our doors, keep keys in our fists walking around after dark, keep hyperaware of our surroundings and possible dangers.

How about, men, stop endangering women?

Kissmypineapple, thanks for your "bandaid" comments which express what I was trying to. I would add that "stop endangering women" addresses stranger rape, but is not so effective (when talking to men) for acquaintance rape because I think the following comments from that thread I linked make good points too: "I believe it's possible for a respectable person to get caught up in their horniness and stop listening, or to try and push the boundaries; "come on, honey" or keep kissing or whatever. . . . I do think many rapists (date rapists, anyway) are just regular people who made a bad judgement, crossed a line, and wronged someone."

And "I think that discussions about personal responsbility and judgement would do more to further re-thinking rape than saying "don't do it, asshole" because most people don't think of themselves as an asshole and don't think themselves capable of doing it."
alligator
Comment from the article that alligator posted:

"I'd think that the feminists had set these young girls up to be victims so the "cause" could use them as poster girls against male violence."

Yes thats right, we want women to be raped. Sheesh.


I think Anach posted that link. I do agree that the quoted statement is repulsive.
alligator
Ven,

Could be, could be. Given how wonky the DSM has become, the two might well be conflated in the next version.

My understanding of for-real Homophobia is that it's based on repressed doubts and fears about one's own sexuality. Misogynist violence feeds off this kind of inner demon, too, I suspect. My cousin the cop tells me that guys who (finally) get arrested for domestic violence are always going on about "women" this and "women" that. Some of them don't even complain about the actual women they assaulted.
hoosierman78
It saddens me, no that's not right....pisses me off to see the way some men refuse to blame anyone but the woman who has been a victim of rape. It actually somewhat surprises me to read the amount of garbage these guys post in threads as well. When has no ever meant maybe?? Granted, I've lived my entire life in the Mid-West, and my friends and I were all taught by our parents to respect women, and treat them the way we'd want others to treat our mother or sister. Yes, we discussed our sex lives with each other, just as is done here by you busties, but I honestly can only recall one friend that bragged about talking his g/f into doing something. I also remember the beast that was our middle linebacker (and went on to play the same position in college) giving him a locker room lesson, so to speak, in how to treat women. Come to find out, she was glad she went ahead and did what he wanted to (as she greatly enjoyed it - her words, not mine), but he got the point we were making.

As for myself, before I was married I didn't ask if anything was ok like a play by play anouncer, but I also didn't push. I don't get the mentality of just because she's letting you feel her boobs, that means she's going to let you do anything you want. I don't get that. If I even got so much as a slight hesitation, I'd back it off a couple notches and would pretty well make her pounce me to take it any farther.

Besides, not that I have any desires to make a woman have sex with me, I'm also pretty damn confident in the fact that, had I done something like that while in high school or college, my father would have beaten me within an inch of my life. No, he is in no way an abusive person, he just feels very strongly in how men treat women. If I were to do it now, all the guys that I am friends with would beat me within an inch of my life. I guess I fall into NoHope's category of having a real incentive (other than I'm not an asshat rapist) to not force myself on a woman. Too bad more guys don't have fathers/friends like I do. There are definitely a lot out there that apparently need that incentive very much.
alligator
When are people (outside of this board of course) going to acknowledge that there is something wrong with the culture of men, and telling women to stop "putting themselves in dangerous situations" is a bandaid. How about, men, stop endangering women?

I agree. And to be fair, a lot of men do as well. If I beat up or raped some woman (girlfriend, friend, stranger, whatever) I'd run TO the cops because I'd be more afraid of what my male relatives and friends would do to me than going to jail.

That aside, I don't think we're crossing the line into "blame the victim" territory by advising women to take certain precautions and develop street smarts.
kissmypineapple
But Alligator, I can't think of a single woman on earth who doesn't (like Anarch said) walk to her car with her key poking out between fingers of a fisted hand. It's not enough to just say, women develop street smarts, because that's not the point. Just because I know not to ever put my drink down at a party, or to walk to my car alone, or to leave my door unlocked, etc. etc., doesn't mean it's right for me to live in fear of being raped. And when we constantly tell women that they need to wise up, or that they should know better, then that does open the door to blaming the victim.

Also, Anarch, I agree with your entire post, but I would say that "men, stop endangering women," covers aquaintance rape too. If a man takes the steps that you suggest, then he is taking steps to lessen the chance that he will get out of control.

Lastly, and this a question to anyone who wants to answer it. I kind of feel like a man knows when he's forcing someone, whether he says he didn't realize he was crossing a line or not. Is that totally off base?
tyger
kmp, i'm betting in some cases men keep telling themselves they aren't crossing a line so they can keep going, but i'm not a man, nor do i know any rapists personally, but i think many would have the mentality of 'i think i'm not doing anything wrong so i'm not'.

i agree completely with what anarch and kmp have said on this. it's not fair that i carry my 'rape alarm' keychain, a bottle of cheap perfume or bug spray, have extra keys on my keychain to poke out of my fist and walk the entire way around my car checking the floor and back seat before i get in, all out of fear of having a man attack me because he feels it's okay for him to do so (i know most men aren't rapists, i'm not trying to paint the gender with the same brush or anything, really). most men don't live in that kind of fear, doing things as simple as walking to their cars after class in the dark, or walking to the bus stop in the morning before the sun is up (days are REALLY short in the middle of winter where i live).

why can't the world just get to the point where 'she/he was asking for it' is a repulsive comment on a rape. it's a crime, where the perpatrator is at fault. it's not like our breasts send out subliminal messages that say 'have non-consensual sex with me'.
alligator
Lastly, and this a question to anyone who wants to answer it. I kind of feel like a man knows when he's forcing someone, whether he says he didn't realize he was crossing a line or not. Is that totally off base?

Depends on the man. I do know guys who have been taken by surprise when their girlfriends/dates/etc said, "Hey, not so fast! I'm not ready yet" because they honestly thought both of them WERE ready.

That said, I cannot see how even the most clueless guy (me, for example) could be oblivious to a woman's clear, explicit expression of disapproval or discomfort.
greenbean
Thats a good question, KMP. I've never been raped but I've been in uncomfortable situations, and the strangest one goes as follows:

I went away to college and when I came back home for the summer I went to a party with some high school friends. I ran into one of my guy friend's younger brother, (I was 19 and he was 18) and he had grown up to be real cute. Lets call him Joe. Joe and I made chit chat about punk rock and after a few drinks he confessed to always having a crush on me. I was flattered and we started to make out. This was in a room with other people and he started to try and pull me into a bedroom. I went with him into the hallway but I knew I didnt want to have sex so I didnt go all the way into the bedroom, but I kept kissing him in the hallway. He kept saying things like, "I worship you", "you are a goddess" and "you are true punk" words I would think I would like to hear but in this case it was starting to feel awkward. I started to pull away but he kept pulling me closer. I tried to lock eyes with a guy friend of mine and telepathically ask for help, but he didnt look at me.

Joe kept trying to pull me into the bedroom and I finally said no, and that I wanted to join the rest of the party. It was as if I didnt hear me because he kept grinning at me and kissing my neck and tugging at me. I was so confused because I liked kissing him, but my gut was telling me something was wrong. Once his grip felt less playful and more forceful, I used all my might to get out of his clutches and leave. He just kept grinning.

So yeah, I have no idea if he felt like he was being forceful or not, if he was too drunk to think straight (not an excuse) or if I just wasnt being clear enough. But it was one of the most awkward situations I've ever been through, especially since no one there realized anything was wrong.

I don't know what would have happened if I went in that bedroom with him. I'm getting a lump in my throat right now just thinking about "what if". The experience made me realize how hard it is send the message to guy that you want to make-out ONLY, because I guess some guys assume if you are comfortable making out, then you are down for everything and THEY SHOULD NEVER ASSUME THAT!
anarch
hoosierman78: If I even got so much as a slight hesitation, I'd back it off a couple notches and would pretty well make her pounce me to take it any farther.

If more guys did that, we wouldn't have to have discussions like these! You sound like a total sweetheart.

Too bad more guys don't have fathers/friends like I do.

Yeah. We need more family and friends to talk about “rape” and “date rape”, and make it clear that you're gonna hurt if you do it. And talking about “ordinary guy crossing the line” situations too.

alligator: I don't think we're crossing the line into "blame the victim" territory by advising women to take certain precautions and develop street smarts.

what kmp and tyger said. Also, saying that makes it sound like women are the only ones responsible for or capable of reducing chances of rape. If a guy wants to tell women that, he has to step up to the plate too and say what HE does to reduce chances of rape – eg talk with guy friends about “How do I know for sure she's ok with it? How can I make sure I don't cross the line? How can I encourage other guys to do likewise?", and being willing to tell other guys “That's not cool” (like hoosierman78's crowd) when they're disrespecting women. Otherwise the effect is that he could come across as a hypocrite (not saying you personally are, but that's the impression that could be created, if you see where I'm coming from).

kmp: I would say that "men, stop endangering women," covers aquaintance rape too. If a man takes the steps that you suggest, then he is taking steps to lessen the chance that he will get out of control.

Agreed. Sorry, kmp, I was in a rush when i posted that and didn't think it through.

I kind of feel like a man knows when he's forcing someone, whether he says he didn't realize he was crossing a line or not. Is that totally off base?

I speculated about this on the other board, but I've got no idea if it's justified. I'm thinking about posting a similar question to AskMetafilter on Monday. If I do and get worthwhile responses, I'll post a link here.

tyger: i'm betting in some cases men keep telling themselves they aren't crossing a line so they can keep going

yeah, wishful thinking and horniness leading to complete obliviousness to body language or even explicit signs?

greenbean – reading your story made me feel shaky. I asked my husband about these issues and he said he thinks a lot of men get the impression that women are meek and need or even welcome coaxing along, or for the man to take the initiative, so maybe that's part of the reason that some guys keep pushing?
kjhink
I think that one of the most effective tools to preventing acquaintance rape is teaching young men to ask, explicitly, “Do you want to do this?” or one of its variants. Although this would be especially useful with young, intimately inexperienced men who might not have done much interpreting of girls’/women’s signals, it would also be a good rule of thumb for older men who are with new partners. The wide variation in human sexual responses and proclivities being what it is, what reads as sexual submission in one partner might actually be ambivalence or discomfort in another.

Of course, hoosierman78’s solution of reading any possible hesitation as cause to back off serves the same purpose in the end. The only problem I foresee for some is that, unlike hoosierman78, they wouldn’t know hesitation if it hit them in the head. Take greenbean’s example. I absolutely thing that that guy was purposefully blowing off her very obvious signals, and that he very likely would have continued to do so. However, for the sake of argument, let’s assume for a moment that he was just a too drunk, too inexperienced guy with no idea that his level of aggression was out of line. If he had it ingrained in his head that sexual banter included the question of “Is this something you want?” then there could be no further misunderstanding.

Sadly, the people on this board are not representative of the world at large. Would that they were. While I think that for the most part most of the women here are good at articulating, more or less, what they do or don’t want, and that the men here are good at intelligently and sensitively interpreting the vibes their partners are giving off, I don’t think that these are skills necessarily present in the general populace.

The fact of the matter of the matter is that I do still know women who won’t explicitly say “I like you, but I’m not going to have sex with you tonight,” and those who do not utilize the street smarts that we’ve been talking about. That doesn’t mean that it’s their fault if they get raped. Good god, no. It does mean, though, that safety education needs to continue.

I strongly agree that as part of that going forward, though, we need to work to educate boys and men, too. Like pretty much every other poster here. :-)
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