Friday, October 19, 2012


I've long had a problem with the argument that "rape is not about sex; it's about power." If that were the case, there'd be a lot more bar fights between men, ending with the loser getting forcibly sodomized, than there are. I mean, if it's not about sex, but about power, who has more power in the world? Men have more power. Therefore, if I guy wants to establish his status and power in the world, it would make more sense to rape another man.

If it wasn't about sex, then why are there so many guys who convince themselves that they're not raping anybody? "No doesn't always mean no." "I thought she wanted me." A lot of education has gone into having to convince guys that "No means no." If part of the problem is guys stupidly convincing themselves that they're all ultra-studs and that all women want them underneath all the play-acting of refusal, how does "power" involve itself (and not sex)?

I think it's more accurate to say that it's about respect, or the lack thereof, towards women. In the instance of your stereotypical rapist lurking in the bushes, it's the idea that women are objects that can be used as necessary. For the stereotypical frat-boy/jock rapists, it's pretty much the same thing. For the husbands, boyfriends, fathers, brothers, acquaintances, who think there's some sort of emotional give-and-take going on, it's the idea that women don't really know their own minds and that men know them better than they know themselves. It's based on hatred and disgust of sex and the attraction towards women (for heterosexual men) that afflicts twisted puritans.

Here's something: Some have said that a large portion of sexual assaults occur in the early hours of the morning, around sunrise because this sort of rapist has been up all night unable to sleep because of his urges. What urges? The urge to exhibit power over another human being? Or the urge for sex?

The place where a lot of male rape of other males happens is supposedly in prisons. I would suggest that the absence of females has something to do with that.

 Stacey May Fowles, writing in the National Post said something that really affected me:
The week the Bloor and Christie suspect was revealed by the police, a male friend walked me home through the neighbourhood where the attacks took place. It was late on a Friday night, and he insisted on accompanying me after sharing dinner and ice cream, noting the sheer lunacy of me doing it myself after the constant reports, tweets, blog posts, Take Back The Night and self-defence course invitations.

While we were walking past Bloor and Grace, where one of the assaults reportedly occurred, two extremely drunk boys, estimated to be in their teens, staggered towards us and slurred their directions. We obliged them, and watched as they stumbled on their way, towards the subway.

In that moment, I realized they were enjoying a freedom I had never had and could never have. Blind drunk and exposed in the middle of the night, they wandered gleefully, happily and safely, conversing with strangers and inviting attention. The very things the written words that week had told me I wasn’t allowed to do.

The idea of it — their liberty vs. my need to be gratefully, soberly escorted by virtue of my sex — enraged me. In fact, we should all be enraged, every moment of every day, in a way that words can never express.
I think the root of this shameful male behaviour is the profound disrespect that a patriarchal culture has for women. I think rape is about sex, but it's about sex with people you don't respect. No, I don't mean that rape = sex. Sex, mixed with contempt, becomes rape.

I don't want to sound patronizing in this next part. It's more a product of my thinking now that I understand what women are up against, just trying to live their lives. And I'm not a feminist, because due to a number of habits that I've got, I know they wouldn't have me as a member, but I have this sense of admiration for women now, when I encounter them. Half of the human race, treated like "the Second Sex," blamed (usually by some twisted patriarchal religion) for being attractive (to heterosexual men) or completely unattractive (by some homosexual men), having to live constantly on guard, having to work twice as hard.

My mother was born in 1931 and can be described as a socially conservative feminist. I used to roll my eyes when she'd get into a rant about men. (They were usually brief, disparaging comments, but they were pretty frequent.) I can say that women have their problems and as individuals, some of them are more likely than any man will, to get under my skin and infuriate me. But it's we men, who, as a group, need to do more to put our act together and stop being such disgusting and stupid rapists.

Women should be as free to walk alone at night as I am. If some young twenty-something is drunkenly asking you for directions on the street at night, respond to her as if she's a human being asking directions, not some bitch who is "asking for it." Don't be an asshole rapist scum-bag.

Thank you very much.

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