Thursday, March 15, 2007

FAQ: -What’s wrong with suggesting that women take precautions to prevent being raped?

Updated 04May07

Short answer: because it puts the onus on women not to get themselves raped, rather than on men not to do the raping; in short, it blames the victim.
(from Grendelkhan, in comments, emphasis added)


Blaming the Victim
Melissa McEwan (Shakespeare's Sister): Dear Ladies: Please Stop Getting Yourselves Raped

Key quote:
Left to my own devices, I never would have been raped. The rapist was really the key component to the whole thing. I was sober; hardly scantily clad (another phrase appearing once in the article), I was wearing sweatpants and an oversized t-shirt; I was at home; my sexual history was, literally, nonexistent—I was a virgin; I struggled; I said no. There have been times since when I have been walking home, alone, after a few drinks, wearing something that might have shown a bit of leg or cleavage, and I wasn't raped. The difference was not in what I was doing. The difference was the presence of a rapist.

JoAnne Schmitz (Jupiter9): It's not the empty street that causes rape

The question is, why do the warnings not help? Is the warning not strong enough? I don't think so. I don't know any women who don't consider rape a realistic threat to them, and I don't know any women who never alter their behavior because of a fear of rape.

Well, the obvious answer: Rape keeps happening because rapists keep doing what they're doing. Because it works. So how can what they're doing work if we have all these strong warnings about?

The warnings women get are misleading. They leave out the acts of the rapist himself. They focus on the situation. They also may focus on the "kind of man" the potential rapist is. If he's a friend of a friend, or your uncle, he's "safe." It's the stranger who's the threat.

And we know that's not true.

Men against rapists:
ross (The Talent Show): I am not my cock

Clarifying Concepts:

Rapists are rarely Strangers
ifritah (GROWL): Facts and Figures - a 2005 post citing studies several years older then, however patterns have not changed much.

Stranger rape and sexual assault is only one of several possible types of sexual violence. Here's the reported percentages according to National Health and Social Life Survey:

- Someone with whom the respondent was in love: 46%
- Someone that the respondent knew well: 22%
- Acquaintance: 19%
- Spouse: 9%
- Stranger: 4%

(Rathus, Nevid and Fichner-Rathus, 565)

Amanda Marcotte (Pandagon): Real Consent Manifesto

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