Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Is Ignorance Bliss Or Even Safer?

The Star Tribune column: The 'everyone does it' hooey keeps the STD epidemic going
By KATHERINE KERSTEN about the rate of STDs in children contains a rant against casual sex and blames the sexual revolution (ie. feminism) yet fails to even once discuss sexual violence against children.

The solution? Enlightened folks tell us it's more sex education, counseling and treatment. They call for more tax-funded initiatives such as a $1.3 million bill for screening and public education recently considered by the Minnesota Legislature.

But few are talking about the real reason for the epidemic: too many kids are having sex at too young an age.

Her blind assumption that comprehensive sex education, counseling and treatment cause the spread of STDs is very dangerous. As a fellow Minnesotan I will be supporting the initiatives she opposes. And not because I want to encourage kids to have sex.

In her worldview all of these infected children got infected because they made bad choices. None of these children were the victims of childhood sexual abuse by trusted adults and none of them were the victims of rape or other forms of sexual violence, including coercion, by other children or teens. If all these children are to blame for the STDs they get, then an absence of STD screening and treatment makes sense.

STDs become a punishment given to sinful children.

Certainly none of these children got infected with STDs because they heard lectures on abstinence and thought oral sex, which spreads STDS, was a valid way to practice abstinence.

If Kersten did begin to think about the role of sexual violence and abuse in the rate of STDs then she would have to listen to those she quickly dismisses as crackpots who are supposedly pushing young children to become sexually active. She gets near a discussion of sexual violence and then blows it.

Here's another myth: that young women are as eager to hop in the sack as young men. Surely, lots of women remember fighting off groping guys in high school and mashers at college frat parties.

If you are a girl or woman and you have to fight a guy off to stop him from having sex with you that is attempted rape. Not wanting to be raped says nothing about girls' or women's inherent sexual interest. It is not:

[...] the average hormone-driven guy -- who sometimes can't wait to brag about "scoring"

A boy or man attempting to rape a girl and then succeeding is not committing a hormone-driven act. Even those who buy into the lie that date rape is hormone-driven cannot reasonable defend the subsequent bragging as being hormone-driven. Yet many of them are so entrenched in their rape denial that they will do just that.

If this type of rapist is average it is because of the pervasiveness of the belief that it is his target who is to blame for his actions -- even by people who claim to be against all sexual activity outside of marriage.

This sexual violence comes from the pervasive belief that boys and men have the legal and moral right to push girls and women into unwanted sex (rape) and to circumvent lack of consent.

All girls and women who fail to block this type of push are the people who were traditionally given negative labels. This belief predates the sexual revolution and many who cling to this belief want a return to the good old days when those who raped their dates or their spouses were viewed as people who did nothing wrong.

If the solution to attempted and completed rapes and bragging about those completed rapes is to tell girls, "Don't be like those immoral girls who have sex" this will not help anyone except the sexually violent and those who make excuses for them.

When sexual violence committed by boys against girls is normal and all consensual sex outside of marriage is abnormal something is seriously wrong.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 10:03 AM   1 comments links to this post


At April 09, 2008 4:49 PM, Blogger JENNIFER DREW said...

Lynne Phillips in her book 'Flirting With Danger' rightly lays the blame with men and boys having been taught it is their male right to have sexual access to any woman or girl. Only women and girls are held accountable for men's actions, whereas men and boys' sexual violence and behaviour is excused and justified. Women and girls continue to be in a no-win situation if a man or boy rapes a woman/girl it is the woman's/girl's fault. This is called male sexual entitlement and it is time men were held accountable for their sexual violence. Women still have a long way to go before they too achieve the right of sexual autonomy. Men were given that right centuries earlier. STD's are predominantly passed from male to female not the reverse.

Once again women and girls are being blamed and conveniently the endemic male sexual violence against women is ignored.


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