As I've been mulling over what people can agree on regarding the Duke rape case, I thought I'd look into how the environment at that party, before the first stripper walked in the door, could impact men's sexual behavior.
From @ Health about the relationship between sexual assault and alcohol:
Most investigators agree that alcohol's effects on aggressive behavior are mediated by alcohol-induced cognitive deficits. Alcohol consumption disrupts higher order cognitive processes -- including abstraction, conceptualization, planning, and problem-solving -- making it difficult for the drinker to interpret complex stimuli. Thus, when under the influence of alcohol, people have a narrower perceptual field and can attend only to the most obvious (i.e., salient) cues in a given situation (Taylor and Chermack 1993). In aggression-inducing situations, the cues that usually inhibit aggressive behavior (e.g., concerns about future consequences or a sense of morality) are typically less salient than feelings of anger and frustration. Therefore, when a person is intoxicated, inhibitory cues are ignored or minimized, making aggression seem like the most reasonable response.
This pattern is relevant because an ESPN report stated that there was a dispute at the Duke lacrosse party over money and the amount of time two dancers were expected to perform which led to players using slurs and other bad language. That would give us the dangerous mix of alcohol, anger and frustration.
And here's one rabbi's perspective on college life in America:
University men in the Western world view going to college as an opportunity for the fulfillment of their unbridled lust. And, sadly, it is these ostensibly exalted educational institutions that one finds the greatest contempt for women. Saddest of all, unless these activities lead to some terrible tragedy, like rape, nobody cares.
If the definition of a heterosexual man is a male who is attracted to women, then most men today are barely heterosexual.
It's a sexed up version of the belief that girls have cooties. On the cootie meter, strippers would have been off the scale.
That attitude explains this from an earlier post of mine:
According to a nationwide study of college students in 2000, between 20% and 25% of women reported experiencing completed or attempted rape. College women appear to be at higher risk for sexual assault than their non-college-bound peers.
Which leads me to this, from the Washington Blade about the significance of the 2 cases pending against Collin Finnerty:
A criminal psychologist said Collin Finnerty, the Duke University lacrosse player charged with rape and assault, could be attempting to prove his masculinity.
"Masculinity is something that has to be proven," she said. "It is not innate or natural. It's something young men have to establish, and they have to establish it publicly."
And what could be more emasculating than losing an argument with a stripper?
Then there's this from an interview with Roy Hazelton, a longtime FBI profiler of sexual crimes:
Gang rape: This involves three or more offenders and you always have a leader and a reluctant participant. Those are extremely violent, and what you find is that they're playing for each other's approval. It gets into a pack mentality and can be horrendous.
So what these various observations put together lead us to is this motto:
I am a manly MAN, see me get the best of women without becoming dependent on them or taking their side against my buddies when they are proving to me that they are manly men.
Technorati tags: rape crime politics sexual assault feminism women Duke+rape Duke+lacrosse