Sunday, January 27, 2008

Abstinence Only Excuses For Sexual Violence

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "The Real Violence Behind So-Called Gray Rape":

Here in lies the problem, people should be abstinent, or maybe someone should work harder about preventing underage drinking. There is no doubt that when you are asked to stop with any type of sexual asked to you should. I do believe that the student should get in trouble for his actions. But he did not seek out this young lady, she initiated the contact so he should not be listed as a sexual predator, don't confuse what I am saying HE WAS WRONG FOR HIS ACTIONS. But maybe we should all have some standards and just say no to start with. Unwanted pregnancies and stds are on the rise because everyone feels the need to "get drunk and Procreate."

This pro-abstinent position provides support for sexual violence. He was wrong -- but ...

Heard that "but" before and before and before for decades. This attitude contributed to my rape. I knew what he did was wrong but ... I also knew that it wasn't wrong enough to be dealt with as if he were a real rapist. You know the type.

Real rapists jump unsuspecting joggers and leave them for dead. When I was growing up, I thought rapists all had labels like "Northside Rapist" and crudely drawn pencil portaits. With my rapist/boyfriend I never feared for my life and I'm sure he never jumped a stranger so by anonymous's logic my rapist shouldn't be lumped in with those who rape innocent women. I wasn't kidnapped off the street so of course part of the problem was that I didn't have standards.

Give me a break. This is a sexual violence apology. A man who isn't violent won't respond to a woman seeking him out or a woman willing to allow some sexualized contact by committing sexual violence.

This excuses the inexcusable while claiming not to do so. Rather than focusing on the decisions of the woman who was wronged this anonymous should be focusing on all the decisions of this man. He didn't have to respond to this woman.

"Not interested" are words that men are capable of uttering. Yet for all the talk of abstinence this is often painted as an impossibility or it is ignored completely. This is very convenient and self-serving for men who say "he was wrong, but ..."

The label sexual predator comes from more than who said, "you want to get together?" For some predators, their internal switch from law abiding citizen to criminal is a woman who initiates a get together or who doesn't seem to hate sexual contact. They understand that mugging and raping an unknown woman is wrong, but don't get that there is nothing that makes sexual violence okay.

That can lead to gentlemanly rapists who openly hate those who rape those they deem to be nice women but who will rape those less than nice ladies with nary a twinge of guilt. If they are caught they will respond with righteous indignation.

Rather than getting their consent from the individual they are with they get it from people like anonymous. It allows them to excuse their inexcusable actions with, "she started it."

Comments like anonymous's open the door to sexual predators who repeat to themselves "this might be wrong but she ..."

The door to sexual violence needs to remain firmly shut. No but cracks allowed.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 12:01 AM   0 comments links to this post

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