Sunday, May 22, 2011

Rape: What Men Can Do About It

photograph is from here
Links at the end of this post were added on 28 May 2011.

I've just finished reading a piece of thoughtful writing about rape, including the rape by a man that she survived, by feminist Suzanne Moore, a British white woman at The Guardian. Please see *here* for that, if you wish. What follows is a response the the men who she sites in her article. And to the men who continue to deny rape is something men must be responsible for ending.

Crafters and protectors of existing rape laws in whitehetmale-dominated countries like England should endeavor to make them more effective in ending rape of all women across class and political conditions (including, for example, being an immigrant, not being in the land of one's upbringing, being poor, being a prostitute, being Indigenous, being a girl in one's own home raped by one's father). But to do this, rape must be framed as a class-based form of gender terrorism and a key part of men's overall war against women.

Rape ought to be seen and responded to as a practice of social-sexual subordination by men of women and girls, as a component of the overall the gross and systematic destruction of women's and girls' social status and of women's and girls' self-esteem, self-worth.

Men's commitment of it and to it ought to be understood as one of many means by which men control female human beings and prevent them from attaining the same status and rights as men. This is to say: rape is not just an interpersonal crime committed by one man or by many men at a given time, or against one woman or many women serially.

We are, by any meaningful comprehension of morality, by basic regard for human life, required to view rape as both interpersonal and institutional, both personal and social, both a singular action and the manifestation of deeply embedded structures of misogynist, male supremacist oppression.

Is rape understood to be a violation of women's human rights or is it viewed solely as a violent crime against her personhood, with both the raper's and the harmed person's "personhood" presumed to not be gendered? Do we hold onto an assumption that rape is one of many other violent interpersonal crimes that "people seriously harm people and there ought to be legal remedies when such serious harm happens"? It is that, but is that all rape is? Which political groups get to define "harm" and "serious" in law, and which political groups determine whether law is the appropriate means through which to end an atrocity--that being not only rape, but the overall social-sexual-economic-religious subordination of women to men, by men?

Let's consider this tidbit from *here*, in a piece not written by Suzanne Moore, also at The Guardian.
Miliband told Clarke at prime minister's questions: "The role of the justice secretary is to speak for the nation on matters of justice and crime. This morning, the justice secretary was on the radio suggesting that there were serious rapes and other categories of rapes.
What is the role of a justice secretary in ending the oppression of men against women? This question seems to elude the questioners. Why? Is that political objective seen as being beyond the scope of someone allegedly empowered to address and end "injustice" and "crime"? Is men's oppression of women seen as either of those? And, if not, what is it in addition to injustice and crime? Can criminal lawyers state this clearly? Can their legal tools and the perspective on society in which these tools are made to work to remedy the problem (occasionally or allegedly, depending on what groups you are part of)? I'd say no, because law is so crafted within a context in which women are presumed to be "just human" or "not quite human" but never as fully human as men, while positioned differently (in an inferior place regarding social status and stigma) in society, structurally, by men--including by men's laws.

Whose interests are represented by people who obtain positions of parliamentary or governmental political power in a country? Are women, as a class of people? Are poor women? Are women who do not have race, ethnic, religious, and citizenship privileges and entitlements, who may not have access to the courts at all? Ought such women have remedies to stop rape? Ought men protect and support such remedies, if men say they are against any form of rape happening at all?

Here are some remedies:

1. The removal of rapists from society is understood to be a social good. Men who breach women's human rights by raping them, by domestically terrorising them, by systematically degrading them, by repeatedly procuring girls and women for sexual exploitation, are understood to not be socially valuable members of society.

Also men are seen to be dangerous, immoral, and engaging in criminal activities if they participate in the protection of any of the following:
--systems or industries of exploitation,
--practices of physical violation,
--cultural, religious, and legal defenses of discrimination,
--policy-making which effectively supports gendered, economic, or raced subordination of women by men, and
--laws refusing to acknowledge rape and other forms of interpersonal terrorism as not just interpersonal terrorism, but also as class-based terrorism, as terroristic and terrifying as any other form of terrorism recognised by law and dominant, pro-status quo society.

2. The oppression (including: discrimination, subordination, exploitation, degradation, violation, and terrorism) of women by men is both recognised and opposed. And whatever women need to do to end it is considered a social good, is considered to be politically necessary, and no men will be allowed to stand in the way of activists seeking an end to such oppression.

3. Whenever rape is discussed publicly or socially, including in reading materials, it is discussed as one of many manifestations of male supremacy and men's oppression of women, globalised across the world. The crafters of educational materials, medical reports, media statements, and news programs, must discuss rape in those terms.

4. When a girl or woman is raped by a man, the woman is presumed to be truthful, rather than the accused raper being presumed to be innocent. Law flows from this presumption, not the one that puts the interests of rapists above those of the raped.

5. Boys--all of them--are required to learn how to not rape or otherwise terrorise and degrade girls. They are taught that rape is part of a larger problem: men's domination of women, and that boys have an important role in ending this.

Social-political solutions ought not place the burden on women and girls to prevent or curb men's violence against women as by modifying girls' and women's behavior. Rape is understood to be a problem of what men and boys do that is wrong, dangerous, and shameful, not what girls and women do that is wrong, dangerous, and shameful.

Rape ought to be understood as an  intimate and intricate reinforcer of several forces, not only male supremacist war on women. Also: heterosexism, white supremacy, globalised capitalism, genocide of Indigenous People, and gross destruction of non-human animals and other Life, including the Earth. And it ought never be viewed as not male supremacist, regardless of the gender of the abused and abusers.

Now, men: get busy ending rape and all the other manifestations of men's global war against women. And stop pretending the war doesn't exist to benefit your social status as men-not-women, preserve your entitlements as men-not-women, and protect your material well-being as a member of a gendered class of people: men, not women.

See also these posts and readings:
http://www.xyonline.net/content/where-men-stand-men%E2%80%99s-roles-ending-violence-against-women

http://radicalprofeminist.blogspot.com/2009/12/100-male-privileges-checklist.html

http://radicalprofeminist.blogspot.com/2009/11/pop-quiz-on-dishonesty-deception-and.html




24 comments:

theoreticalgrrrl said...

It doesn't help when the well-respected evolutionary psychologist and author Steven Pinker says "I believe that the rape-is-not-about-sex doctrine will go down in history as an example of extraordinary popular delusions and the madness of crowds. It is preposterous on the face of it, does not deserve its sanctity, is contradicted by a mass of evidence"

He thinks rape is motivated by the natural need for males to pass along their genes, an adaptive reproductive strategy, and that seeing it as a weapon of power is false and not helpful in attempting to stamp it out.

I think that if the motivation is sex, the fact that a man is ignoring a woman's privacy and bodily integrity by forcing himself on her while she is telling him to stop is *always* an expression of power and contempt. It's a sense of entitlement to a woman's body regardless of what she wants.

What is the typical excuse or justification used for rape? It's rarely 'I was just really desperate for sex, sorry.' It's 'she's a whore' or 'slut', she deserved it or she was out where she shouldn't have been or was wearing the wrong clothes. That's about punishing women for not obeying the rules of patriarchy and that is definitely about power.

The fact that the statistics of women who are raped are high, 1 in 4, is seen by people like Pinker as proof that rape is a natural thing.

For a great rebuttal of this idea and the bad science behind it I recommend biologist Jerry Coyne and Andrew Berry's "Rape As An Adaptation?"
http://www.eurowrc.org/06.contributions/1.contrib_en/11.contrib.en.html

And Jerry Coyne's article in The New Republic "Of Vice and Men: The Fairy Tales of Evolutionary Psychology":
http://www.uic.edu/labs/igic/papers/Coyne_2000.pdf

A theory that rape has its origin in evolutionary biology is seriously flawed.

Julian Real said...

Theoreticalgrrrl, do you know of this book, which also has a similar message as that CRAP promoted by Steven Pinker? Here's a link to it:

A Natural History of Rape: Biological Bases of Sexual Coercion, by Randy Thornhill and Craig T. Palmer

I've noted elsewhere on this blogthat Men's Rights Assholes call feminists "man-haters" for allegedly saying (but not really saying) that men rape because they can't help themselves--because they're natural-born rapists. But that's not what feminists say. It's what patriarchal, masculinist MEN say.

Such views are not only misogynistic and pro-rape, but also racist, as not all populations of men commit rape. Peggy Sanday, among others, has identified some of the conditions which make societies more--or less--rape-prone and pro-rape. But this has been known in many Indigenous societies for a long time. It's just that too many whites ignore the realities of Indigenous people altogether and assume that the ways that non-Indigenist people live applies as well to all other adult males on Earth, across era and region.

Here are the links to the decidedly less sexist materials you referenced with your introduction to each:

For a great rebuttal of this idea and the bad science behind it I recommend biologist Jerry Coyne and Andrew Berry's "Rape As An Adaptation?"

And Jerry Coyne's article in The New Republic "Of Vice and Men: The Fairy Tales of Evolutionary Psychology"

theoreticalgrrrl said...

Yes, I am aware of the Randy Thornhill and Craig T. Palmer book, whose premise Coyne and Berry pretty much destroy in "Rape As Adaptation?"

Unsurprisingly, Conyne received much criticism and hostility for his rebuttal of "A Natural History of Rape" and was accused of being anti-scientific (Coyne is an expert in biology and evolution and pretty much rips the book to shreds WITH SCIENCE).

Coyne is well-respected in the scientific community, but this seems to be a taboo thing for a man in male-dominated science to do, to point out when science is being misused to promote a white male supremacist agenda. And he especially miffed evolutionary psychologists when pointing out the obvious problem, "evolutionary psychologists routinely confuse theory and speculation," and "If evolutionary biology is a soft science, then evolutionary
psychology is its flabby underbelly."

I agree Julian, the 'all men are rapists' nonsense seems to come more from patriarchal men than any feminists I know of. And in traditional Native American cultures women were protected from violence and mistreatment by men and child abuse was unthinkable, which the 'civilized' white colonialism tried to destroy/erase. (The view that Native/Aboriginal peoples had a healthier relationship to the earth & were less violent to each other, with a strong sense of community, is disdainfully called 'the doctrine of the noble savage' by Steven Pinker. Isn't he just a love?)

Mastenship said...

"4. When a girl or woman is raped by a man, the woman is presumed to be truthful, rather than the accused raper being presumed to be innocent. Law flows from this presumption, not the one that puts the interests of rapists above those of the raped."

This goes against the core values found within the U.S. justice system as a "presumption of innocence"..or innocent until proven guilty.

Unless the Constitution of the United States is altered via amendments to reflect this status across ALL laws pertaining to criminal cases, this is just not a viable solution.

If the law is altered to reflect a "guilty until proven innocent" ideology, then the ensuing chaos would tear the fabric of society apart.

There would be no "peace" among the common populace, because evil people would use the law to have anyone imprisoned. This is exactly what happen during the famous witch-hunts and the Inquisition, wherein thousands of people were killed.

The only other way to keep control of the population at that point would be the threat of state violence on a massive scale...and even then, nefarious individuals within the state would abuse the power to have alleged dissidents imprisoned on a word, rather than using any basis of empirical evidence.

I think a victim's accusation of rape should be taken seriously and promptly investigated. If there is substantive evidence to bring the case to trial then the prosecutors should not hesitate to redress this grievous crime. I believe the guilty should face the punishment they deserve as proscribed by state and federal laws.

However, the Founders did understand the potential for the abuse of the legal system by unscrupulous individuals, hence why someones "innocence" is presumed.

This is also why we have perjury laws, wherein those acquitted for reasons of false accusations may address the courts for damages done the them. This also includes anti-slander laws.

It is the best system we have without resorting to totalitarian state rule and restricting everyone's freedoms like North Korea or the former Soviet Union.

The nice thing about the system is that it can be altered according the voters. We vote in our legislators, and local judges, and our local law-enforcement individuals.

Active participants in society are freely able to raise concerns about the state of the Union, and have those voices represented by lobbies, unions, special-interest groups, or even good-old grass roots organizing.

Interestingly, those who choose to subsume the "guilty until proven innocent" ideology often do more harm to themselves in the long run. Larger and more powerful groups will take advantage of that, and will make sure that such "free-thinking" individuals conveniently disappear in the annals of history. This smacks of collective thought....and collective guilt..and if you arm yourself with these notions, instead of with the idea of personal responsibility and temperance, then you may very well find that proverbial gun aimed in your direction by groups who wield more power than yourself.

No one should have to live that way.

No....the law has to stand as it is.

Julian Real said...

Hi again Mastenship,

Have you read the recommended reading for this blog? It doesn't appear you have. Please do.

I'll respond to bits of what you say below:

"4. When a girl or woman is raped by a man, the woman is presumed to be truthful, rather than the accused raper being presumed to be innocent. Law flows from this presumption, not the one that puts the interests of rapists above those of the raped."

This goes against the core values found within the U.S. justice system as a "presumption of innocence"..or innocent until proven guilty.


Yes, that's the idea. The core values of this country of mine are these: the domination of women by men; the domination or eradication of people of color by whites; and the domination and destruction or exploitation of the poor by the rich. Never has this country not operated out of those values, if you've bothered to notice.

So, yes. My proposal goes against those oppressive and inhumane values and practices. Which you should know just from reading the heading of this blog.

Unless the Constitution of the United States is altered via amendments to reflect this status across ALL laws pertaining to criminal cases, this is just not a viable solution.

That's what Civil Rights law does and is organised to do, isn't it? Are you against Civil Rights laws? Apparently you are. Or do you feel you're the only type of person who should decide who gets what sorts of rights and entitlments?

If the law is altered to reflect a "guilty until proven innocent" ideology, then the ensuing chaos would tear the fabric of society apart.

Are you assuming that rape, battery, harassment, trafficking, gross sexual and economic exploitation, slavery, and incest are not rending the fabric of society? And that if those are all left in place, we'll be just fine? Who? You? Why don't you spend a year with enslaved girls and trafficked women and get back to me when your heart opens to the suffering of people who don't look just like you.

There would be no "peace" among the common populace, because evil people would use the law to have anyone imprisoned.

You mean the way white men do right now against men and women of color? Like that? The way the rich do against the poor. Like that?

This is exactly what happen during the famous witch-hunts and the Inquisition, wherein thousands of people were killed.

Like the witch-hunts of the McCarthy Era and the witch-hunts of the White Christian Bible Belters? Which actual witch hunts are you speaking about? The witch hunts against women, by men, which the term's name comes from? Or are you jumping into the land of hypotheticals just when it is convenient for you, while you charge feminists working for women's human rights with not living in reality? Again, sir: whose reality matters most to you? I already know the answer to that. For you, clearly, it's whites' and men's.

Julian Real said...

The only other way to keep control of the population at that point would be the threat of state violence on a massive scale...

Like the state violence against the poor, uninsured, and poisoned? Like the state violence against Indigenous Americans, women, and people of color? Like THAT kind of state violence on a massive scale??

and even then, nefarious individuals within the state would abuse the power to have alleged dissidents imprisoned on a word, rather than using any basis of empirical evidence.

Like GWBush, D. Rumsfeld, and Dickhead Cheney? Like CEOs of fortune 500 companies? Like bank officials and Wall Street thugs? Like the owners and shareholders of gun, health insurance, and pharmaceutical companies? Like the lawyers for the rich? When that word is "Guilty" or "Dangerous" or "Terrorist" but only if it applies to people who aren't rich, white, and male?

I think a victim's accusation of rape should be taken seriously and promptly investigated.

Meanwhile, sir, most aren't right? And most women and anyone else who is assaulted don't report it, right? And most of us who have been assaulted carry those stories to our grave, right?

And most people who bring charges are threatened with lawsuits for even bringing up the charges. And most people who are poor cannot have a hope in hell of defeating a guilty rich person, only because the poor person is poor, without expensive legal support, and the rich have all they want.

So what world do you live in? Whose interests are you protecting? Some abstract "humanity" that must have liberty or death? Who has that liberty, and who is, in reality, dying? Have you bothered to notice?

If there is substantive evidence to bring the case to trial then the prosecutors should not hesitate to redress this grievous crime.

Right. Now try living in reality. You ought to know, really, that this is not how court and criminal justice systems work. And if you don't know it, please go and find out how they really work. It's not about "justice" sir. It's about who can pay for the best defense, and clog up the courts with never-ending appeals, defending people's criminal and inhumane behavior.

I believe the guilty should face the punishment they deserve as proscribed by state and federal laws.

While you don't support any substantive means through which that might actually occur. I'm accusing you of moral dishonesty, sir. I believe your words don't have the weight of humane action behind them.

However, the Founders

Do you mean "The Slave Owners"? Those Founders? The men who considered their wives to be chattel property? Those Founders? The property-owning rich white men? Those Founders?

did understand the potential for the abuse of the legal system by unscrupulous individuals, hence why someones "innocence" is presumed.

And you might wish to note who gets away with murder in this country, sir. It's not poor people, women, or people of color, usually. It's often rich white men, especially when they do all their murder off-shore.

Julian Real said...

This is also why we have perjury laws, wherein those acquitted for reasons of false accusations may address the courts for damages done the them. This also includes anti-slander laws.

It's not slander or perjury for me to say that someone assaulted me, if they did. If they did it, they did it, regardless of what a biased court finds. Isn't that true? Or do you put the power to name and experience reality only in the hands of the privileged few?

It is the best system we have without resorting to totalitarian state rule and restricting everyone's freedoms like North Korea or the former Soviet Union.

I'm not calling for totalitarianism: we live, currently, in an oligarchy, right? So the rich are ruling and they are doing so quite unethically and terroristically. I'm calling for a democratic state, not run only by whites, men, heterosexuals, and the rich. Doesn't that sound democratic and anti-totalitarian to you?

The nice thing about the system is that it can be altered according the voters. We vote in our legislators, and local judges, and our local law-enforcement individuals.

Well, you're leaving out some pretty major pieces of how this system works. Like, say, this one: people get to vote for only members of two parties, on the presidential level. Repubs and Dems prevent third party candidates from even being able to debate on television against the R and D candidates. Why? Whose interests are served. Don't you think that we'd be better off with more than two functioning parties? Don't you think we'd be better off if the two parties we have weren't owned by big business?

Julian Real said...

Active participants in society are freely able to raise concerns about the state of the Union, and have those voices represented by lobbies, unions, special-interest groups, or even good-old grass roots organizing.

No. We're not. Because WE, the many, don't own mass media. THEY, the few, do. So "we", the many, cannot get on television. They, the few, can. And you know how few people actually own the conglomerate media outlets, don't you? About a half dozen people or "interests"? If that isn't totalitarian, what is it?

And if you think that doesn't matter, imagine how the world would be different if instead of 24/7 news coverage of celebrities, tornadoes, and stock market rises and falls, we instead had 24/7 news service about corporate corruption, military terrorism, class warfare by the rich, white supremacy, and patriarchal harm to girls and women by men.

Interestingly, those who choose to subsume the "guilty until proven innocent" ideology often do more harm to themselves in the long run. Larger and more powerful groups will take advantage of that, and will make sure that such "free-thinking" individuals conveniently disappear in the annals of history. This smacks of collective thought....and collective guilt..and if you arm yourself with these notions, instead of with the idea of personal responsibility and temperance, then you may very well find that proverbial gun aimed in your direction by groups who wield more power than yourself.

So are you or are you not for the rich, whites, and men, as collective groups, not at all as individuals, fighting to protect **their** rights to label poor people, people of color, and women as "guilty without being charged with anything at all", using mass media and other resources which are not owned and operated equally among all members of society?

No one should have to live that way. No....the law has to stand as it is.

By "no one" do you mean all the people who do live and die at the hands of the powerful and corrupt? Do you mean children abused by very protected priests? Rich white men protected by expensive attorneys? Corporate heads protected by laws that protect only their interests, not the interests of the masses of people?

Do you get how incredibly biased and CRAP-protecting virtually everything you write is, sir?

Please clue yourself into the pro-status quo, CRAP-filled ideological nonsense you're promoting in your comments before doing so further, here.

theoreticalgrrrl said...

Mastenship, when are people accused of a crime NOT presumed innocent until proven guilty?

You have it backwards.

Women who are raped and try to come forward are the ones presumed guilty. Guilty of doing something to 'provoke' or 'ask for' a violent assault against their person.

Is there any other violent crime where the victim must prove they are innocent, not of LYING or false accusation, but innocent as in she has to prove she's never had sexual partners in the past, was a wholesome sweet girl next door or a nun. Anything less than living the life of a saint makes you guilty of the crime of being a 'slutty' female who deserved violence against her.


You single out the accusation of rape, but if you accuse someone of stealing from you or if you are murdered and there is a witness, the police must investigate the accused.

Investigating the accused or most likely suspect does NOT mean they are presumed guilty.

If they can't prove the person was the one who committed the crime, it doesn't mean the accuser was lying. The police could not have had enough evidence to prosecute or it could have been a case of mistaken identity.

Where I live there was a case where a young woman was raped by a photographer when on a modeling assignment with him. The prosecution decided not to pursue the man because she had lunch with him at a restaurant and went to the shoot willingly. There was no question on her being assaulted. They didn't prosecute because a woman who accepts a meal from a man or goes out with him is presumed to have consented to sex, or if she didn't consent, rape is seen as just punishment for a woman being foolish enough to trust to be alone with a man or maybe the photoshoot was a 'sexy' one so she should be punished for being a 'slut'.

My best friend was sexually abused by a neighbor when she was eight. When she confided in her mother about it, her mom just laughed at her and said if she was stupid enough to go into his house, it was her fault.

This is SO common. Almost all my female friends have gone through something similar. People accuse not only adult women but girls as young as three of being seductive and therefore deserving the violence of rape or sexual assault.

And cops, judges, and the media agree. As well as a great deal of men and women.

Now who is living in a totalitarian regime?

Julian Real said...

Thanks for enriching the conversation, theoreticalgrrrl,

Mastenship, when are people accused of a crime NOT presumed innocent until proven guilty?

You have it backwards.

Women who are raped and try to come forward are the ones presumed guilty. Guilty of doing something to 'provoke' or 'ask for' a violent assault against their person.


I surely agree. As I reread what I wrote I'd want to be sure that point is clear, so thank you for adding it right here!

I'll also add that it is not ALL men who have the presumption of innocence within the US. It is white het men with class privilege who have enough social status and structural support to not be stigmatised as guilty of any crimes at all. Even tax evasion.

It also depends on who is raped, and historically in the US Black men and now Brown men as well will not have the same protections if the person raped is white and assumed to belong to a white man.

And, as I hear about it, it is not all women who are presumed guilty "equally". Girls and women in prostitution and pornography, girls and women who are trafficked and enslaved, for example, have far less cred--as Truth-tellers--than more socially privileged and statused women. And, being female and a woman is enough reason for some men to not believe her--lots and lots of men won't believe anyone female and a woman who charges a man of rape--regardless of how many times she's been raped. And, as you well note, if she's been raped in the past her credibility is impugned.

Julian Real said...

Is there any other violent crime where the victim must prove they are innocent, not of LYING or false accusation, but innocent as in she has to prove she's never had sexual partners in the past, was a wholesome sweet girl next door or a nun.

And, even then, if the good girl accuses her father--who has been raping her for years, or if the nun accuses a socially beloved priest, she'll not be believed and will be made to prove he's a rapist by first proving she's not capable of lying. The defenders of the rapists will come up with some example, perhaps, of how she once lied or once didn't tell the whole truth, or how she might have some "ulterior" motive for charging him with the crime/s he's committed.

Anything less than living the life of a saint makes you guilty of the crime of being a 'slutty' female who deserved violence against her.

Yes, theoreticalgrrrl. And, even if one lives the life of a saint, as soon as she accuses a privileged man of rape, her credibility is impugned for doing so--as if the very act of speaking out about about sexual assault against her is a sign she might be lying and not-so-saintly.

You single out the accusation of rape, but if you accuse someone of stealing from you or if you are murdered and there is a witness, the police must investigate the accused.

Unless the thief is rich and is doing it on a massive social-economic scale. Or if the thief has enough social-political clout to not be stigmatised as a thief, which few people have if they are poor, for example.

And if the murdered person is a woman or girl of color as well as poor, chances are high that her death will not be noticed by media, not reported at all, be under-reported, and not be responded to as if a human being has been killed.

In North America and Central America, if a woman is Black, Brown, or Indigenous, as well as poor, whatever happens to her that men do that is violent and criminal will not be seen or reported as such by dominant society.

In Asia, if she is raped by a US male soldier, her rape and other crimes against her humanity will not be reported as such--or at all--by dominant US media.

Investigating the accused or most likely suspect does NOT mean they are presumed guilty.

But to hear whiny rich white het men talk about it, you'd think the accusation is WORSE than being raped, or, at LEAST, is equal to being raped, which clearly demonstrates how little some people know about the trauma and effects of being raped. Privileged men assume any pain or suffering they endure MUST be the worse pain and suffering that any human can endure and survive. Little do they know that their suffering cannot and will not approximate, on the collective level, on the macro level, on the institutional level, on the global scale, what the people experience who are oppressed by him and his institutionally protected brethren.

Julian Real said...

If they can't prove the person was the one who committed the crime, it doesn't mean the accuser was lying. The police could not have had enough evidence to prosecute or it could have been a case of mistaken identity.

Yes. Anything at all. And of course most rapes never get that far--the police won't ever know about them, get involved, care, or be humane in their response.

Most rapes are never reported and are never spoken of. Most rapes effectively silence the abused, the traumatised, the humiliated.

None of the rapes and other sexual assaults I know of--and I know of many--were reported to the police. The police have never heard about me being sexually assaulted at twelve, or anyone in my family--disproportionately people who are female--who was raped, sexually assaulted, or incested.

What is too often forgotten by middle class or wealthier whites is that many people who are not from that social-economic-political demographic don't and won't contact the police about anything at all--because the police are the enemy of people of color, often enough and too often. And of the poor as well. I'd bet the woman you speak about next is white and/or class-privileged, for example.

Where I live there was a case where a young woman was raped by a photographer when on a modeling assignment with him. The prosecution decided not to pursue the man because she had lunch with him at a restaurant and went to the shoot willingly. There was no question on her being assaulted. They didn't prosecute because a woman who accepts a meal from a man or goes out with him is presumed to have consented to sex, or if she didn't consent, rape is seen as just punishment for a woman being foolish enough to trust to be alone with a man or maybe the photoshoot was a 'sexy' one so she should be punished for being a 'slut'.

Yes. There are a thousand reasons why women with some status and cred will not be able to prosecute anyone at all who rapes them. And we must consider all the many factors that result in her not even being able to speak about such assaults in court. For example, if she is suing her ex-husband and the father of her children for custody, attorneys will inform her she ought not bring up his abuses of her.

For her to do so is seen as a strike against HER credibility, not a strike against HIS capacity and ability to be a humane, non-criminal, safe family member.

My best friend was sexually abused by a neighbor when she was eight. When she confided in her mother about it, her mom just laughed at her and said if she was stupid enough to go into his house, it was her fault.

Ugh. I've heard this same story over and over and over again, including when girls report that their own fathers, step-fathers, boyfriends of the mother, or other male family members are assaulting the girls. Women are privately punished if they won't protect not only the rapists, but men's collective right to abuse females at will.

This is SO common.

Tragically, yes. I agree.

Almost all my female friends have gone through something similar. People accuse not only adult women but girls as young as three of being seductive and therefore deserving the violence of rape or sexual assault.

And across many cultures and other demographics, the definition of being female is that you're born to be sexually abused by some men at some point, and so when it happens, it is the playing out of destiny--as defined and dominated by men.

And cops, judges, and the media agree. As well as a great deal of men and women.

Now who is living in a totalitarian regime?


Yes, theoreticalgrrrl. I wish that fool Mastership, above, would respond to your points!! He won't, most likely. Because he's one of many pro-rape men who will not admit to being so, and who will never be accountable for his pro-rape politics and ideology. As we can see, the only systematically "put-upon" population is the most privileged of males.

Julian Real said...

I meant "Mastenship". I can't imagine why it occurred to me to name him "MASTER". Well, I can actually.

Julian Real said...

To Mastenship,

You've written three fairly long comments which I'm holding off on posting for a few reasons. One is because you haven't answered my question about what your ideology is. I'll re-ask it, and pose some other questions to you.

Who are your favorite economic, social, and political theorists, for example? Which of the two dominant political parties do you historically tend to vote for and why?

What are your opinions or views about the reading material linked to in the comments section here?

What do you do that is unethical--as you understand the term? And what have you done that is criminal that you didn't get caught doing? How about men you know personally--who are the same color and class as you?

When you answer these questions just above, and also fully answer the three questions theoreticalgrrrl directed to you, without drifting off describing people who aren't you or who you don't know personally, I'll consider posting the rest.

I look forward to your thoughtful answers.

Mastenship said...

Ideology/socio-political views: right of center libertarian.

I am a conservative with regard to finance.
I do not like the federal reserve, feeling that state banks would be better for the people living in each state.
I do not like the federal over-each of the welfare state, and think think that each community (county or state) knows more about what their people need than a lot of people on Capital Hill.
I think that a federal income tax is unconstitutional, and that each State should instead provide a percentage of income to the Federal Goverment.
I think there is a purpose for unions, but that most unions representing public officials have overstepped their bounds.
I believe in strong State and local laws rather than strong Federal laws. I think the people in a community know better their needs and interests concerning the law better than Capitol Hill.
I think the Constitution and the Bill of Rights is something that should limit the absolute value of what Federal law can be ascribed to.
Historically I have voted Republican.
Unfortunately, there are not enough Independent candidates out there who have the gris to challenge the idea of government overspending, campaign finance reform, and the reformationof medicare/medicaid and social security.
I was in the military for nine years. I have met men and women from hugely diverse backgrounds..rich and poor...muslim, christian, wiccan, agnostic, athiest....of every color..of every sexual orientation (though these were personal and private disclosures to me as a friend...and no I didn't give a rat's ass about it as long as they can carry me out of the trench when the IEDs go off). We laugh and cry together...stuggle together. Share our lives with each other.
We all have a common goal...shared pain..shared success. We ARE brothers and sisters in arms and always will be. I love them.

I do not agree with the how race, class, and sexuality have been boiled down here. I do not think that more restrictive laws need to be present.

My experiences have shown me differently, being in a group of people in which those things were removed from the discourse. It was about "hey...this is what is wrong...you! your trained for this..go fix it!" Rather than much of the discourse here.
It was MISSION oriented. If you are qualified, then you can fix it. If you have an idea, then pass that idea along.

Everything in my adult life has been about performance and personal accountability for one's actions.
Break the law..face the consequences.
If necessary make the consequences more severe...and make the punishment more public.
I think you get the idea. I think those values need to first and foremost.
Unethical? Well..in my youth I was hellraiser. I drank, smoked..(still smoke..horrible habit..if you haven't picked it up then don't). Stopped drinking altogether (it just doesn't appeal to me to flop around on the floor next to a toilet) I partied. Really didn't get involved with women physically very often. Not for lack of attraction! Just because I realized early on the consequences of Marraige 2.0.
I was already cognizant of the breakdown of the family and didn't want any part of it.
Now....I have a wonderful girlfriend who came from the hood I described. She pulled herself up by her bootstraps and raised three wonderful girls by herself. They are grown now.
Criminal..well....how about as a teenager I went ganking for car parts once. (whole time was nothing but fear.)
I know a lot of men who are the same color...but the military has no class. (no pun intended). Since getting out last year I have I have limited the extent of my friendships to my girlfriend..and everyone I knew in the military (no matter the color or the creed).
I hope that gives you some insight as to how I "know" a thing.
These "worlds" simply don't have to exist. I have seen one in which they do not....and I know how it works.

Mastenship said...

Things I have read that I disagree with most of:

Mein Kompf -- Hitler
The Communist Manifesto -- Karl Marx
The Origin of Family, Private Property and the State -- Friedrich Engels
SCUM Manifesto -- Valerie Solanas
Redstockings Manifesto -- uncredited authors
Revolution from Within -- Gloria Steinam
Goddesses, Whores, Wives, and Slaves -- Sarah B. Pomeroy
Pornography: Men Possessing Women -- Andrea Dworkin
Gyn/Ecology: The Metaethics of Radical Feminism -- Mary Daly


Things I have read I agree with most of:

Women: Theory and Practice -- Bernard Chapin
The Flipside of Feminism -- Suzanne Venker and Phyllis Schlafly
The Fraud of Feminism -- E. Befort Bax
Home Economics -- Roger F. Devlin
Sexual Utopia in Power -- Roger F. Devlin
Who Stole Feminism -- Christina Hoff Sommers
The War Against Boys -- Christina Hoff Sommers

Julian Real said...

Mastenship,

Your views are antithetical to the objectives of this blog.

Will you respect this space's right to exist and to express views that you may not agree with?

Please make sure your comments respect my comment policy, linked to in the top right area of this blog. Just a head's up: I don't welcome antifeminist commentary.

Thank you.

theoreticalgrrrl said...

I agree Julian, that the race and economic status of the victim and alleged perpetrator is a big factor on their credibility too, as well as women who work in prostitution and pornography.

I live in the U.S. and black and brown men are disporportionately convicted of crimes at a higher rate than white men, every crime imaginable. And rich hetero white men usually just get a slap on the wrist for the most part, if even that.

"And if the murdered person is a woman or girl of color as well as poor, chances are high that her death will not be noticed by media, not reported at all, be under-reported, and not be responded to as if a human being has been killed."

YES. If you believed mainstream media, it would seem only white middle class girls get kidnapped these days. Which isn't true, they just don't think it's important enough if the victim is a black or brown girl to cover it. That's not news to them.

I'm sorry to hear about your experience Julian. Gay men and women are targeted for hate crimes at such an alarming rate. And there is even a "gay panic" defense that some men actually use when they murder a gay man, which is unreal. Another pathetic victim-blaming tactic. The poor hetero guy was so freaked out at the idea of being hit on by a gay man that they feel justified in murdering them.

UGh, the fact that Mastenship takes misogyinst anti-feminists like right-wing nutcase Phyllis Schaffley and Christina Hoff Sommers seriously along with all the anti-feminist rhetoric of the books he mentioned just says it all. White men are now the victims of reverse sexism/racism...right.

Military women are more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq. I'd like to ask Mastenship if he thinks the sexual assault of women in the military by their fellow brothers in arms and (the non action of their superiors in prosecuting these crimes) is just made up.

And this is just in the U.S. Violence against women across the globe would be seen as the serious epidemic it is if women were seen as fully human.

Yet all I hear is how hard it is for straight white men to deal with "political correctness" and how oppressed they are by it.

Mastenship said...

That’s one of the great things about the United States. I believe in YOUR right to say what YOU want. I don’t have to agree with it, I certainly can help to push for legislation of equal treatment through legal means, and I’m even willing to put my life on the line to protect that freedom for YOU. I joined the military to defend this country and it's basic values...including free speech.
I placed myself in harm's way, and I will do it again if I am called to do it.
There are those in the world who would seek to take that away from you, but I will fully defend your right to say what you need to say.
Regardless of how antithetical our views are to one another, I will never seek to suppress your right to express them.
I make my comments based on policy of law, and not out of a majority view.
If you wish not debate openly on these views then I will respect that wish, however...It is my humble opinion that not doing so will only hinder the free spirit of competition of ideas, and the ability for people to make well-informed decisions for themselves based upon the varied evidence that we can kick back and forth to each other.
I am well versed in all manner of Hate Speech Laws in multiple countries...and with civil and criminal libel laws as well. I know where to draw the line in personal and public discourse, and I know better than to generalize or make a personal attack on an individual.
IDEAS however....those are free. The imagination is a beautiful thing, for good or evil, and the ability to share those ideas in open discourse is the only way that a common ground can be established.
Simply say the word, and I shall....disappear.
I thank you for trying not to label me in your last couple of posts. It is refreshing to be seen as a HUMAN, rather than for my skin color, my background, or my sex or sexual orientation.
If we must part ways then know that I will still defend your right to free speech and peaceful assembly.
Yes....I am an MRA.
I wish you good health, and will respectfully meet you upon the battlefield of words and ideas.
Please do me the HONOR of posting those three that I sent in.
I am not a cold-hearted bastard, and would not want to be painted as such. Let others know that there ARE people like me out there who HAVE seen the pain.
We just disagree on how to solve the problem.

Julian Real said...

Hi theoreticalgrrrl,

I hope mastenship respectfully answers your questions. Here's a bit more about him from his blog:

My formal Introduction
Social-Political Standpoint: Conservative Libertarian

I think the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights define an absolute limit to the power of State and Federal Law.
I do not support in the welfare state in its current form, as it creates dependency.
I support strong State and Local laws rather than strong Federal laws. I think the people in a community know better their needs and interests concerning the law better Capitol Hill.
I support a strong military defense force.
I support a Free Market system based on the needs of supply and demand, without using subsidies to create artificial markets or government dependency.

I support a challenge to government overspending, campaign finance reform, and the reformation of medicare/medicaid and social security.

Julian Real said...

To mastenship,

You wrote, above:

Break the law..face the consequences.
If necessary make the consequences more severe...and make the punishment more public.
I think you get the idea.


So what do you recommend should happen to US soldiers who kill civilians abroad? And what do you recommend should happen to the military officers who ordered them to commit atrocities against non-combatants?

What do you think should be done with serial rapists who roam around as normal het men? And with het men who travel from the US to various parts of our country and abroad to rape female children? Or who travel from their "master" bedroom to their children's bedroom to rape their own daughters? What do you feel the consequences should be, and what are you doing to ensure they occur?

How do you plan to help eradicate rape? Domestic terrorism of women by men? Trafficking? Genocide against Indigenous people globally, that is tied directly to US economic and cultural imperialism?

Julian Real said...

I'll respond below to your latest comment, mastenship.

I’m even willing to put my life on the line to protect that freedom for YOU.

You didn't do it for me, mastenship. Please don't pretend you were. You don't know me; you did it for you and for your ideals. I don't see soldiers from the US doing anything at all to protect the rights of US Americans to speak out against injustice, including the injustice committed by the US military.

And I welcome you to alert to me what military campaigns were done in the last ten years that effectively makes speech in the US more possible. Are you aware the Patriot Act just got renewed for another few years? How does that respect people's individual rights?

I joined the military to defend this country and it's basic values...including free speech.

I see this country's basic values as white supremacy, male supremacy, economic injustice, slavery, and mass murder of Indigenous people, and I agree that the US government, including its military, accomplishes those atrocities.

I placed myself in harm's way, and I will do it again if I am called to do it.

If I'd have known you, I'd have tried to talk you out of being exploited by military officers. As I'm sure you know, ex-soldiers are treated like shit in the US.

There are those in the world who would seek to take that away from you, but I will fully defend your right to say what you need to say.

There is no one in the world beyond the US who I'm concerned about. There are people within the US who I believe are effectively doing that, such as by passing the Patriot Act and promoting Empire and corporate capitalism.

Regardless of how antithetical our views are to one another, I will never seek to suppress your right to express them.

Thank you.

I make my comments based on policy of law, and not out of a majority view.

I can see that to some extent that is the case. I also think you could read more critically the books you espouse. I think you've been accepting many forms of pro-status quo propaganda.

If you wish not debate openly on these views then I will respect that wish, however...It is my humble opinion that not doing so will only hinder the free spirit of competition of ideas, and the ability for people to make well-informed decisions for themselves based upon the varied evidence that we can kick back and forth to each other.

I believe there's a place for exchanging and debating ideas. But this blog exists primarily to promote and support actions which are seeking an end to Empire, to oppression, to mass murder abroad passed off as necessary.

I am well versed in all manner of Hate Speech Laws in multiple countries...and with civil and criminal libel laws as well. I know where to draw the line in personal and public discourse, and I know better than to generalize or make a personal attack on an individual.

I'm glad.

IDEAS however....those are free.

I'd argue that when some of them become institutionalised, they get rather expensive for many, and they also silence many people.

The imagination is a beautiful thing, for good or evil, and the ability to share those ideas in open discourse is the only way that a common ground can be established.

Perhaps. But the imagination in the US is so atrophied by corporate media, that people accept as telling us the truth. It does many things; truth-telling isn't among them.

Simply say the word, and I shall....disappear.

I'm not asking you to disappear, and appreciate you offering to go if I wish for you to.

I thank you for trying not to label me in your last couple of posts. It is refreshing to be seen as a HUMAN, rather than for my skin color, my background, or my sex or sexual orientation.

I see you as fully human, which is how I see every person.

Julian Real said...

If we must part ways then know that I will still defend your right to free speech and peaceful assembly.

Thank you.

Yes....I am an MRA.

I wish you'd hold fellow MRA'ers accountable for their white supremacist views, for their virulent misogyny, and for their gross homophobia.

I believe, from your reading list, that you're an MRA because you've read some propaganda put forth by very privileged people that blames women for what men actually do that men won't take full responsibility for doing.

I wish you good health, and will respectfully meet you upon the battlefield of words and ideas.

I wish you good health also. Ultimately, I think organised actions are more important than words and ideas. To be precise, it is how ideas and words get acted out beyond the realm of discourse that is most harmful, in my view.

Please do me the HONOR of posting those three that I sent in.

I sincerely believe that aspects of those three posts participate in a kind of discourse that structurally hurts and oppresses people of color and the poor. If I change my mind about those comments, I'll publish them here. But for now, they I view them as in violation of the comment policy here. I'm considering posting them, though.

I am not a cold-hearted bastard, and would not want to be painted as such.

I let your words speak for themselves. I sincerely don't believe you are at all cold-hearted or a "bastard".

Let others know that there ARE people like me out there who HAVE seen the pain.

Done. Have you seen the pain of girls being raped by men who travel from the US or within the US? Have you seen the pain of women who have been serially raped in systems of gross sexual exploitation? I ask this because I'm wondering whose pain is real to you. Have you seen the pain of Indigenous people globally, who are fighting to survive the ravages and rapes of people who fight to keep Western Patriarchal Empire alive and well?

We just disagree on how to solve the problem.

We do. As I read your words here and on your blog, I believe you actively support militaristic, political, and economic institutions that are morally and ethically corrupt, that support the oppression and murder poor people, that support the oppression and murder of people of color, that support the rape, oppression, and murder of women.

I recommend you read the work of Malalai Joya, Yanar Mohammed, Vandana Shiva, and John Perkins to better understand what I'm referring to.

I do wish you well. I'm sorry you had to follow the orders of the military's "brass" who are mass murderers of people who in no way threaten this country or its values. I hope you don't suffer from PTSD. I do, and it's not pleasant.

theoreticalgrrrl said...

Mastenship,
Based on your reading list it sounds like you've been given a lot false information about what feminism is about.

I don't think you are a cold- hearted bastard. I would like the same courtesy though, in not being painted as a man-hating femi'nazi' bitch. Unfortunately being labeled those things has been my experience with the majority of MRAs.

I believe in human equality and would hope that people could treat each other with simple decency. It is not too much to ask, is it?

Feminism is a movement that seeks to make itself irrelevent. I would love the day when I am just seen as a unique individual and worthy of simple human dignity. I believe men and women of all races CAN work together toward that goal.
I'm an optimist.