Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby DaBigCheez » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:23 pm UTC

I think Aaeri's said about what I was going to say, but with better phrasing - sexy behavior, or interpreting another person's actions as sexy, is not necessarily objectification, especially in the context of a relationship where it's already clear that you care about your SO as a person.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:29 pm UTC

Aaeriele wrote:
sigsfried wrote:Is all objectifying inherently bad. On the occasions that I get home from work to be met by my girlfriend wearing very sexy clothes who then does a strip tease or similar I think she would be very disappointed if she thought I was thinking about her in purely innocent terms. That does not mean it is always right, in fact it is nearly always wrong but I am not prepared to consider it always wrong.

I don't see how the situation you described is objectification...

"Sexual objectification refers to the practice of regarding or treating another person merely as an instrument (object) towards one's sexual pleasure" (wp)

Emphasis mine. The fact that she is already your girlfriend, and that you state "not purely innocent terms," makes it fairly clear that you are not treating her merely as an object, but as a person who also happens to be sexy, and the fact that you talk about her being disappointed implies that there is probably at least some desire on her part involved (not knowing her, I couldn't say for sure of course).


True objectification is bad - it doesn't go both ways, but instead is imposed by one person onto others.


All very well but at that moment, not before not after but at that moment I can't truly say my thoughts are on much more than sexual pleasure. At that point I am not treating her as "a person who happens to be sexy".
not knowing her, I couldn't say for sure of course


Not being her I can't say for certain either but I think it has to be the only assumption it is sane to make, while of course I enjoy such things I have never one put her under any pressure to do them.

But even if this case isn't then surely all porn is definetly going to fall short of this. I am not interested in it but I don't like to call any action undertaken by consenting adults that involves no third parties as wrong. Objectification is wrong only, in my opinion, when it is against the wishes of the person involved.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:52 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:All very well but at that moment, not before not after but at that moment I can't truly say my thoughts are on much more than sexual pleasure. At that point I am not treating her as "a person who happens to be sexy".

And then in the next moment, you're (hopefully) a loving, caring boyfriend. We're not talking about things on the moment-to-moment level here, we're talking about the sum total of how people relate to one another.

sigsfried wrote:But even if this case isn't then surely all porn is definetly going to fall short of this. I am not interested in it but I don't like to call any action undertaken by consenting adults that involves no third parties as wrong. Objectification is wrong only, in my opinion, when it is against the wishes of the person involved.

Porn is its own tricky issue, that I'm not going to get into here. There are problems with objectification in porn as well, the picture is just less clear and the issues more complex.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby DaBigCheez » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:59 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:But even if this case isn't then surely all porn is definetly going to fall short of this. I am not interested in it but I don't like to call any action undertaken by consenting adults that involves no third parties as wrong. Objectification is wrong only, in my opinion, when it is against the wishes of the person involved.


I can see merit to this position, and I agree that between two fully consenting adults there's very little I'd have a problem with; the issue I take with this statement is twofold.

#1) I do not believe porn falls purely into the category of "undertaken by consenting adults which involves no third parties" - my knowledge of the subject is hazy, but while I'm sure some porn actors/actresses are doing so entirely of their own free will, I believe there are many who have been pressured into it (either starting or continuing), and have not in fact freely given consent. With the exception of amateur porn, there is also necessarily the involvement of a third party, in the form of the producers.

#2) Even if #1 does not hold, and all porn is produced by actors and actresses being objectified entirely of their own volition, this runs the risk of making this be seen as more of the "normal" state of affairs by porn viewers - that is, that women want to be objectified/should be objectified. In short, if the objectification were limited entirely to the scenario presented (in this case, the specific actor or actress), that would probably be fine. The problem is that, like with any other form of media, the perception can become generalized, and become a part of culture. And the culture formed by the objectification of women would fall pretty squarely within the realm of rape culture.

Or, to put it another way, what happens between two consenting adults in the privacy of their own home is entirely their own business. That includes objectification. The issue arises if it leads to objectification in society which is *not* according to all parties' wishes and consent - which is much more likely in a public venue such as porn.

With your girlfriend, there's no such thorny issues; it's just between you two, there's no reason I'd expect it to generalize to your expectations/treatment of all women, and it's unambiguous whether you care about each other as more than objects.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:06 pm UTC

With the exception of amateur porn, there is also necessarily the involvement of a third party, in the form of the producers.


Ok, when I said third parties I meant parties that were not clearly also consenting. The producers are clearly consenting to their role in it. As much as there is a problem with coercion I doubt this extends to producers being coerced into their roles.

With your girlfriend, there's no such thorny issues; it's just between you two, there's no reason I'd expect it to generalize to your expectations/treatment of all women, and it's unambiguous whether you care about each other as more than objects.


So if instead of me having been in one long relationship for the past, well long enough for my (much) younger cousins to know my girlfriend better than they know me (somewhat to my annoyance but she is very good with young children). I had had a string of one night stands and short relationships. Would it become wrong then? After all in that case it might start to change my attitude.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby DaBigCheez » Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:09 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:Ok, when I said third parties I meant parties that were not clearly also consenting. The producers are clearly consenting to their role in it. As much as there is a problem with coercion I doubt this extends to producers being coerced into their roles.


Right - I misparsed that, sorry. "All parties consenting", then. The remainder of the point should still stand, I believe.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby fr00t » Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:53 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:Now the details, he (I'll call him A and her B) was at a pub, it was a year since his father died and he was wearing his fathers war medals in memory of him. His girlfriend had left him only an hour before and he was drunk enough to only know the outline of the story. B turns up and according to her saw the medals and decided she wanted to spend the night with "the hero" A. She got them both a drink sat down etc. Part way through the drink she realised that the medals cannot be his (I think she said she noticed a date or some such) and decided she was going to torment him for being a fraud. Some time later

They go back to hers and after a few more drinks she starts "tormenting him" she is careful not to let him touch but undresses somewhat then tells him to leave. As he gets up to go, somewhat confused he decided to kiss her. The amount B has drunk means not only does she go along with this but ends up not being able to say no. They then ended up in bed together. Wake up the next day and start piecing it together. That was apparently the point they both decided it was rape.


This story indicates something about our society, but not that we have a culture where rape is acceptable; rather, the idea that the man is ultimately responsible for any sexual conduct, and a lack of consent falls squarely on his shoulders. If neither party has any malice aforethought and the unfortunate circumstances leading to "non-consensual sexual conduct" were, at the very least, evenly split between both parties, how can there be rape? I find it disgusting that they both came to the conclusion that they should turn the guy in to the cops, rather than mutually apologizing and moving on with their lives.

As long as sex is a game where one party is "defending" and one "attacking" there will always be a vast grey area that you can call coercion (because it isn't actually a symmetrical agreement), and what is necessary for consent will be hard to pin down. It's one of the unfortunate results of our particular evolutionary path, and something that I hope we can move beyond, but the scope of the problem seems broader than rape culture.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby dedalus » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:25 am UTC

fr00t wrote:If neither party has any malice aforethought and the unfortunate circumstances leading to "non-consensual sexual conduct" were, at the very least, evenly split between both parties, how can there be rape?

Ooooh, shotgun posting the definition of rape in the thread!

It doesn't matter if she strips off and says 'take me now I want you'; if she then turns around and says 'no wait, I'm joking, I don't' and you continue, that's rape. It doesn't make her a particularly nice person, but that doesn't justify the rape. And as far as I can tell, sigsfried's friend's ultimate decision was 'we should let a jury of our peers and a judge figure out exactly what the outcome should be.' Which I think is a pretty good response, especially considering what most people would have done.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:15 am UTC

dedalus wrote: And as far as I can tell, sigsfried's friend's ultimate decision was 'we should let a jury of our peers and a judge figure out exactly what the outcome should be.'

Technically, a guilty plea probably wouldn't end up in front of a jury.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby dedalus » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:24 am UTC

Touche, but either way it's putting the outcome in the hands of someone neutral. Which is a good way to do something like this.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby pizzazz » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:43 am UTC

Except pleading guilty *wouldn't* put it in the hands of someone neutral.

edit--"it" being determination of guilt. I suppose sentencing would still come from a neutral judge.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Boomase » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:52 am UTC

dedalus wrote:
fr00t wrote:If neither party has any malice aforethought and the unfortunate circumstances leading to "non-consensual sexual conduct" were, at the very least, evenly split between both parties, how can there be rape?

Ooooh, shotgun posting the definition of rape in the thread!

It doesn't matter if she strips off and says 'take me now I want you'; if she then turns around and says 'no wait, I'm joking, I don't' and you continue, that's rape. It doesn't make her a particularly nice person, but that doesn't justify the rape. And as far as I can tell, sigsfried's friend's ultimate decision was 'we should let a jury of our peers and a judge figure out exactly what the outcome should be.' Which I think is a pretty good response, especially considering what most people would have done.


Wait ok now I'm confused. It turns out this is really complicated and I don't understand it enough to have the best opinion. I don't mean this in a sarcastic way, but could someone correct me on the following thoughts as necessary, I really want to understand this better. So the fact that she told him to leave and they ended up having sex makes it rape? Let's say for a second there was no alcohol involved. This is what confuses me the most. If they hadn't been drinking at all, the same events transpire, the girl says the guy should leave, instead the guy non-forcibly goes to kiss her meeting no resistance and things eventually escalate to sex. Is this still rape? I can see how it would be considered so, because of course not saying no isn't the same as saying yes. But, and this is where I'm hazy, is returning the kiss, allowing things to escalate and eventually allowing the sex to occur while not being under the influence of alcohol, drugs etc. or being under any threat or any form of coercion, not equal consent? I could see that as being "Well I change my mind and don't want you to leave, but I think it would sort of break the flow of things if I said that out loud, and besides I think you kind of figured that out by now." Does consent have to be specifically verbal and can't be given through actions. If this is so, wouldn't it still be rape even if she had never asked him to leave in the first place, because verbal consent was never given. If non-consent is given (e.g. "leave") can that be undone in a non-verbal manner?

If the previous situation wouldn't be considered rape without alcohol, and I don't know you tell me that, then it's the introduction of alcohol that makes it so because then the girl isn't in the condition to explicitly refuse the advances. This seems all well and good, but I have a few questions. Does the fact that he had been consuming alcohol come into play at all? Let's assume they were equally incapacitated. I don't want to say that because he was drunk he couldn't understand her asking him to leave and instead test the waters. But I do find it at least interesting that when sigsfried said the girl was incapable of refusing the kiss it was because she was "drunk", but when the guy stayed it was because he was "confused". I know, being drunk doesn't justify the thing, I'm just saying I found the language interesting. Also, irrelevant, but it seems like it was initially the girls plan to get the guy drunk and then have sex with him, this would also be rape yes?

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:59 am UTC

Can we please not get into yet another episode of "but is X with Y and Z and circumstances A, B, and C actually rape?"
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:30 am UTC

How can we meaningfully discuss what rape culture is and what to do about it if you don't think we should discuss what is actually rape.

On the use of language I am reporting the story as it was told to me, I also find the use of language interesting. As I say they are friends now, one of the things that makes me wonder if they both truly believe it was rape.

For those who think it wasn't rape would the story have been any different if he had been wearing the medals with the intention of tricking someone into sleeping with him, rape by deceit or some such.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:36 am UTC

sigsfried wrote:How can we meaningfully discuss what rape culture is and what to do about it if you don't think we should discuss what is actually rape.


Discussion what is actually rape is fine. Your original anecdote was general enough in nature that it could serve as a starter for a general discussion for the matter of "but what if both parties aren't thinking straight"?

Discussing individual extremely specific permutations of theoretical scenarios, on the other hand, is pointless. Any particular extremely specific scenario is highly unlikely to actually occur without any other confounding factors in the real world, and thus belies the inherently complex nature of the matter. This is why I posted my response to Boomase's most recent post, because it was moving away from "here's something that happened, what do people think about it" to "well what about if we make X small change? And then what about Y? Is it not rape yet?"

Spending a bunch of time debating about one particular modification to an already somewhat specific scenario doesn't really gain us much overall.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:45 am UTC

But if we can find cases of the nature of "X is rape" but "X with minor change A isn't rape" then we can come to far more useful conclusions about where we consider the boundaries of rape to be. A series of statements of "X is rape", "Y isn't" unless we can get most scenarios covered (we can't) is much less useful or interesting.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby dedalus » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:13 am UTC

But we've already established there's not even a hard and fast boundary; that's why we have terms such as 'grey rape'. And either way, if someone is toeing the line they're doing it wrongTM. It's like arguing over 'if he insulted you and you slap him, is that assault. What if you don't hit him real hard.' Either way, regardless of what he's doing, the standard is if it's not in self-defence, you shouldn't be touching the other person. Doesn't matter if he'd get laughed out of court for taking offence to you poking him in the shoulder.

Same thing holds here - it's pointless to attempt to arbitrate a moral judgement of 'person X is in the wrong here, here, but not now.' What's much more important is 'person Y would be in a better emotional state if person X had never got to this position, thus person X should know not to get to that position in the first place, and education should be this and this.'

That being said, I can't exactly stop you from discussing the minutae. But, a discussion I think would be much more useful - what education should there be during formative years to get beyond the culture we have right now? I haven't thought much on this issue...
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby MrConor » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:31 am UTC

Boomase wrote:Does the fact that he had been consuming alcohol come into play at all?


I don't see any reason why it shouldn't. There is precedent in law for a limit to the amount of alcohol individuals may consume and remaining eligible for positions of responsibility. In the UK, for a specific example, you're not allowed to be in charge of a vehicle with more than 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood. One may argue that this is largely for the protection of other individuals rather than protecting you from your own reckless driving, but there is still an element of the latter in the intent of the law. Similarly, it is illegal in the UK and many other countries to be drunk when in charge of a child. Whilst the focus of these laws is, clearly, the protection of others from your drunken antics we can still see a precedent: 'Look, there are some things you are legally allowed to do as an adult. However, if you become inebriated, those privileges may be taken away from you.'

The ability to give informed consent requires a certain degree of maturity, self-control and intelligence. Sexual relations with children, who are not legally considered capable of giving informed consent, is statutory rape. I'm not sure of the law regarding this, but I'm also prepared to assume that sexual relations with people who are severely mentally disabled or ill and thus also incapable of giving informed consent would also legally qualify as rape (and if it doesn't, it certainly should). Excessive consumption of alcohol causes a short term loss of maturity, self-control and intelligence in most people. Therefore, is there any reason why we should not legally stipulate a blood-alcohol level after which it is considered impossible to give informed consent? Rather than having 'grey areas' in cases of, "Bro, she wanted it last night [when she was barely able to stand], so it's wasn't rape." would it not be better to have, "Bro, she's too drunk, that's statutory rape regardless of whether she says she wants it."

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:17 pm UTC

Would you be willing to see a married couple both convicted of rape because they had sex whilst they were both over the legal limit?

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby MrConor » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:35 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:Would you be willing to see a married couple both convicted of rape because they had sex whilst they were both over the legal limit?


Yes, if they chose to prosecute one another. It would strike me as a little unusual that they would choose to, of course, and I would be highly suspicious if the police force decided to investigate and prosecute without the consent of a defendant (which, in the UK at least, they are able to do in cases of statutory rape of a child) if there were not some mitigating factors (such as evidence of domestic violence).
If such a law were put into place, I would assume that a certain amount of discretion on the parts of authorities would be required, but I'd rather have the two consenting drunken adults able to prosecute one another if it also allowed the woman who had sex when she was too drunk to say no a clear means of prosecution if she considered herself to have been raped.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 3:44 pm UTC

How about we all go ahead and *don't* turn this into yet another goddamn thread about "but what if we were this drunk? is it rape then? no? well how about this drunk?"

Liminal cases can be worked out in the legal system, or at the very least in a thread about them. Because rape culture is still a thing and still a problem regardless of where different people think different lines should be drawn through the gray area. So how about we discuss that, being as it's what this thread was supposed to be about?
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:47 pm UTC

I would suggest that potentially criminalising such a normal behaviour (that of couples going out for drinks and then sleeping together) can only be incredibly damaging to the motivation of reducing rape culture, simply because you would end up turning a substantial minority of the population into rapists. That will surely do more to make rape considered normal than anything that happens now.


Yes, if they chose to prosecute one another. It would strike me as a little unusual that they would choose to, of course, and I would be highly suspicious if the police force decided to investigate and prosecute without the consent of a defendant (which, in the UK at least, they are able to do in cases of statutory rape of a child) if there were not some mitigating factors (such as evidence of domestic violence).


They split up a month later then one goes to the police and makes the complaint. Once one has started the proceedings, if the other is still able to, the other might also start them. Break ups are frequently very unpleasant and this would only make them more so.
Then there are going to be all the boundary cases, someone innocent because their partners alcohol level was 0.1% below the threshold. I can't really see having a legal limit as anything other than damaging.

person Y would be in a better emotional state if person X had never got to this position, thus person X should know not to get to that position in the first place, and education should be this and this


Except there are plenty of cases where an action through no fault on person Y's account leaves person X in a worse emotional state. There are also plenty of cases where it might not be the good thing to do but it falls a long way short of rape.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:10 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:I would suggest that potentially criminalising such a normal behaviour (that of couples going out for drinks and then sleeping together) can only be incredibly damaging to the motivation of reducing rape culture
Why? Would you stop wanting to prevent the more deeply traumatizing forms of rape just because you might have to start reconsidering whether it's a good idea to have sex with your really drunk girlfriend?
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:37 pm UTC

Because by making couples that agree to go out drink and then have sex (though of course not in such blunt terms), not something I have done but most of my friends in relationships have, count as rape then you make it that most of the population have been raped, and most are rapists. That makes rape seem pretty normal, mundane even. Rape is one of, if not the, most vile crimes to produce a situation where even 10% of the population thinks it is something they have, technically. committed and been a victim of is going to make it seem normal.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Роберт » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:38 pm UTC

For the specific instance mentioned, it sounds like things went pretty much as well as the could for a rape. He admitted to it, was sorry for it, and willing went to the police with the intention of pleading guilty. He and the girl are friends now. What good do you think would come of convicting him for it?
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:52 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:Because by making couples that agree to go out drink and then have sex (though of course not in such blunt terms) count as rape
Going out to drink and going out to get drunk are two very different things.

And again, you are still trying to divert the discussion into one of liminal cases, where there was an appearance of consent but the consent wasn't really there, which like false accusations doesn't happen that often. And it certainly happens *far* far less often than would seem to be the case based on the number of people who insist on bringing it up every fucking time there's a discussion in any way related to rape.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:15 pm UTC

I suppose I mention it because I know lots of people have done it and because well it seems absurd that you can have a sexual encounter where both a guilty of rape.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:18 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:I suppose I mention it because I know lots of people have done it and because well it seems absurd that you can have a sexual encounter where both a guilty of rape.


It seems more absurd that every single damn discussion of rape devolves into discussions of corner cases.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:45 pm UTC

Because that is the only place where there is real controversy is. Otherwise there is nothing but everyone agreeing rape is awful, arguably the most awful crime. There is an institutional bias against prosecuting it (clear cut from the case I mentioned, when someone is willing to plead guilty without any desire for lenience to be shown to them for the police to tell them to go away without so much as taking their name is inexcusable) and that does need to be addressed but you are never going to get a change in attitudes if you produce bizarre situations like both participants being prosecuted for rape. Look at the regard in which Health and Safety laws are regarded because of the crazy situations, caused generally by people misunderstanding the laws.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:58 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:Because that is the only place where there is real controversy is.
Bullshit. Just a few posts ago there was discussion of James Bond's behavior, which some people think is sexy and other people think is rapey. And yet no one has to be drunk for that controversy to exist.

Also, just because everyone says rape is wrong doesn't mean there's no rape culture, just like everyone saying racism is wrong doesn't mean there's no racism. They might give lip service to the awfulness of rape, and yet be rapists themselves because they don't understand how consent really works. And not just in cases where one or both people are drunk.

Controversy about rape and the existence of rape culture and all that would exist even if there were no such thing as a mind-altering substance. So stop trying to make everything about drunken sex, for the love of Christ!
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby sigsfried » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:06 pm UTC

True enough I suppose. My original post I was mostly interested in the attitude of the police (who threatened to charge them both with wasting police time). I do feel we got sidetracked but I thought it was an interesting discussion, I can only apologise to everyone involved for mentioning it and return to lurking rather than disrupting this thread).

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby podbaydoor » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:20 pm UTC

sigsfried wrote:simply because you would end up turning a substantial minority of the population into rapists.

The problem with this - and the reason why several people were irritated - is that a substantial portion of the population is already not considered rapists even when they should be. We are saying that a fair few people who have excused themselves from the notion of raping, have probably actually raped or come close to it. The entire purpose of rape awareness and education is to lay open, in a clear-eyed manner, behaviors which have long been accepted or justified away, as actual rape.

Lots of people think rape is awful. Very few actually consider themselves rapists.* And yet 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men (that we know of) are raped in the United States, and this situation hasn't improved much in a long while. Clearly there is a problem with people not considering themselves rapists.

*As Gmal said, it's similar to racism if you want to try to understand through analogy. Everyone protests that they aren't racist, but turn around and blame Mexicans for taking jobs away or something.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby fr00t » Fri Jun 10, 2011 10:46 pm UTC

dedalus wrote:It doesn't matter if she strips off and says 'take me now I want you'; if she then turns around and says 'no wait, I'm joking, I don't' and you continue, that's rape. It doesn't make her a particularly nice person, but that doesn't justify the rape. And as far as I can tell, sigsfried's friend's ultimate decision was 'we should let a jury of our peers and a judge figure out exactly what the outcome should be.' Which I think is a pretty good response, especially considering what most people would have done.


I was kind of assuming that she never said something along the lines of 'no wait, I'm joking'. That would be an integral part of the anecdote, if he had ignored retracted consent and forced/coerced the activity.

Given the way the story was told I was assuming it was more along the lines of "We had sex against what would have been my wishes if I were sober; therefore the male is the rapist".

podbaydoor wrote:And yet 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men (that we know of) are raped in the United States


Based on personal experiences, I can believe that statistic, but it's widely assumed that far more females than males are victimized, why?

Is the psychological damage of rape different to the male and female psyche? Granted, that in either case it can be a very harmful influence; but could females be socialized in such a way that they are more profoundly impacted than males?

Aaeriele wrote:It seems more absurd that every single damn discussion of rape devolves into discussions of corner cases.


It's probably because I've lead a priviledged, sheltered life; it is so hard for me to appreciate how common rape is. The cases I can relate to are corner cases; i.e. where alcohol is involved, or there is some degree of social or emotional coercion. Having been on the receiving end of this type of thing is what motivated my question about the disparity in impact between males and females, because I can't imagine anything short of brutal physical coercion causing me to lose any sleep.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby netcrusher88 » Sat Jun 11, 2011 12:22 am UTC

fr00t wrote:Based on personal experiences, I can believe that statistic, but it's widely assumed that far more females than males are victimized, why?

There is a disparity, but you're right, it's assumed to be bigger than it actually is.

The reasons are varied and complicated, and sometimes circular, and many of them can be traced back to the meme that rape victims are weak. Men are substantially less likely to report being raped, for one - because they don't want to be seen as weak, especially by (typically male) peers. Mostly, the idea of male rape victims doesn't fit the Narrative - the one that says men are the stronger sex and capable of taking care of themselves and such. The one that says men are dominant. More in control. Less emotional, when combined with the meme that victims of psychological trauma are just overemotional and weak. The one that says men are more resilient. Also, in a crowning clusterfuck of sexist and rape memes, society views men, in general, as less sexually desirable and/or less attractive thus who would want to rape a man, or something like that (compare "who would rape an ugly girl/fat chick?" attacks on the appearance of women who report rape). Continuing in that theme, society doesn't really sexualize men like it does women.

Basically: shit runs deep.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Vash » Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:45 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Bullshit. Just a few ...for the love of Christ!


I don't think an empathetic person could force someone for much more than a moment to do something against their will in spite of the assuredly negative reaction. There has to be an explanation for why empathy is suppressed. A normal person could penetrate without asking (and when it is unwanted), but the implausibly high, almost complete rate of abuse among rapists indicates that in most cases it might be mental illness or victims becoming predators.

Rape is very different from racism in very significant ways. I don't think friend vs enemy classifications manifested in social categorization are comparable to rape, even in their uglier incarnations.

I am not personally afraid of saying that a normal person who thinks rape is ok is more likely to be a rapist (I'm also not sure that it's true. I think it requires pathological rage to believe something like that, or even more so, to do it). They shouldn't think that. It's kind of a terrible thing to think even if they are not a rapist. As for the statistics on whether people do, I would have to look at every study that has been posted recently and compare results and metrics (some metrics may be more useful for superceding denial, and others may introduce broader, incorrect definitions). 2% of people say "rape is ok," basically. Up to 30% of people really think that rape is ok (based on the metric of forced sex, which is unclear in the sense that people can also mean forced in the sense of "my mom forced me to go to the supermarket" rather than "someone gave me roofies and viagra, and then had sex with me even though I didn't want to.") 8% of people are rapists (all from the NYC thread, which I will link later when I am less sleepy). If there are better studies to look at, I would like to see them.

Also, what are the statistics for "killing" versus "murder"? I would imagine that it would be look even worse, if anything.

In terms of providing moral metrics, it's better to specify certain situations rather than terms, or to allow open-ended responses (especially to guide future research). I would actually love to do this study. It is a very important one. Of course, it's very important to come up with as many distinct situations as possible for such a thing. I love doing that for research (on forums I tend to be lazier, lol).

Based of my understanding of people, and the statistics so far, I don't believe it could be rape culture alone rather than mental illness as well, at least not in most cases. It's still a veritable and important goal to fight rape culture.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby MrConor » Mon Jun 13, 2011 12:00 pm UTC

Vash wrote:Based of my understanding of people, and the statistics so far, I don't believe it could be rape culture alone rather than mental illness as well, at least not in most cases. It's still a veritable and important goal to fight rape culture.


Indeed. Regardless of whether fighting a rape culture would at all reduce the numbers of actual attacks, if it is the rape culture which is preventing some percentage of the victim population from coming forward then it is worth fighting it for that reason alone. More victims coming forward equals more prosecutions equals a greater chance of perpetrators being imprisoned (and, if their crimes do stem from some sort of mental illness, hopefully getting sufficient treatment to prevent them from doing it again after their release).

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby gmalivuk » Mon Jun 13, 2011 12:02 pm UTC

Vash wrote:the implausibly high, almost complete rate of abuse among rapists
What? Big fucking [citation needed] on that.

Rape is very different from racism in very significant ways.
True. But thinking it's wrong without fully understanding its nature isn't one of them, and that's the only trait I was intending to compare. The fact that an analogy isn't 100% perfect doesn't mean it's worthless. It's an analogy. That's how they work.

Up to 30% of people really think that rape is ok
That in itself proves that, at least for those people, there is a rape culture. But even aside from that 30%, there's easily another 30% or more that may not say a rape-like behavior is "okay", but who still laugh at jokes about it and engage in victim-blaming and all the other things we've been discussing for pages and pages.
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Vash » Mon Jun 13, 2011 9:58 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Vash wrote:the implausibly high, almost complete rate of abuse among rapists
What? Big fucking [citation needed] on that.


Sorry, thought you were in the other thread somehow (I was very sleepy). Anyway, it turns out that I made a mistake. I lay out my argument in a much clearer way and in depth here: http://forums.xkcd.com/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=71469&start=233 At the moment, it's at the bottom. Just a line for people who may read this thread far in the future, soon, that will be near the bottom (233/240). It's the post where I assign a letter to represent various different groups I discussed.

True. But thinking it's wrong without fully understanding its nature isn't one of them, and that's the only trait I was intending to compare. The fact that an analogy isn't 100% perfect doesn't mean it's worthless. It's an analogy. That's how they work.


I agree with that entirely.

That in itself proves that, at least for those people, there is a rape culture. But even aside from that 30%, there's easily another 30% or more that may not say a rape-like behavior is "okay", but who still laugh at jokes about it and engage in victim-blaming and all the other things we've been discussing for pages and pages.


Yes, certainly one of the major uncontestable facts about rape culture (and a reason why it is indisputable that it does exist) is that it is evidently used to excuse rapists.

Again, the problem (and the reason I said up to) with the study I was referring to (http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/comm/malamuth/pdf/83JRP17.pdf) was that the wording used in the study was ambiguous. It said "forced sex," which at first glance seems totally accurate, but at closer inspection is ambiguous (in the way I have already mentioned). As I mentioned in the other thread, moral instruments have to actually present specific situations and have people evaluate them. Using terms creates problems with internal validity. Of course, to have sufficient external validity, one must use MANY different specific situations. In fact, that also has an advantage of elucidating the specific nature of rape culture. I might actually do this study.

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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Cheezwhiz Jenkins » Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:02 am UTC

So, you're arguing that forced sex does not = rape?
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Re: Rape Culture (Obvious Trigger Warning)

Postby Aaeriele » Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:06 am UTC

Cheezwhiz Jenkins wrote:So, you're arguing that forced sex does not = rape?


Or to be more specific, "forcing a female to do something she didn't really want to do" does not = rape?
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afuzzyduck wrote:ITS MEANT TO BE FLUTTERSHY BUT I JUST SEE AAERIELE! CURSE YOU FORA!


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