“And some women do call themselves “humanist” while claiming they are working for a more equitable society. The big problem with that, though, is that no group is identified as disadvantaged. There is no pattern of racism, there is no pattern of sexism, it’s just one unfortunate individual after another experiencing some random bit of misfortune. The “humanists” are simply too wishy-washy to identify the aggressor or his pattern of aggression, which renders them unable to stop the pattern of aggression committed by a repeat offender, but that title does allow “humanists” to feel good about themselves in spite of their worthlessness.”—
“Every man who visits a men’s rights site concerned about male victims of rape is a man who’ll be told that women are the problem and will be offered no practical solutions, a man who won’t be connected with direct services for survivors if he needs them, a man who still doesn’t know about Just Detention International, which works to end prison rape, or Service Women’s Action Network, which is taking the lead to end sexual violence in the U.S. military for both men and women. Every man who comes to them concerned about the high rates of on-the-job fatalities for men is a man taught to blame women but who is never encouraged to support or join unions. Every man who comes to them concerned about the male suicide rate is a man who won’t be encouraged to help out with the life-saving work The Samaritans do every day.”—
Just Detention International is a health and human rights organization that seeks to end sexual abuse in all forms of detention. The rape of detainees, whether committed by corrections staff or by inmates, is a crime and is recognized under international law as a form of torture. In the U.S., sexual assault in detention has reached epidemic levels, with more than 200,000 people subjected to this form of violence every year.
Cases of sexual abuse in detention are not rare, isolated incidents, but the result of a systemic failure to protect the safety of inmates. Survivors of prisoner rape suffer severe physical injuries and psychological harm; many contract HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases as a result of their abuse. Once released — and the vast majority of inmates do eventually get out — survivors return to their communities with all of their physical and emotional scars.
JDI advocates for the safety and well-being of all inmates, whether they are confined in federal, state, or local facilities — both private and public — including prisons, jails, juvenile facilities, immigration detention centers, halfway houses, and police lock-ups. JDI works to: hold government officials accountable for prisoner rape; promote public attitudes that value the dignity and safety of inmates; and ensure that survivors of this violence have access to the help they need.
SWAN is a nonpartisan civil rights organization. We challenge institutions and cultural norms that deny equal opportunities, equal protections, and equal benefits to servicemembers and veterans.
Similarly, the inclusive approach we take is pivotal to healing the various forms of discrimination and violence faced by women and other marginalized populations in the military, including sexism, racism, and homophobia.
SWAN assists service members and veterans without regard to sex, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity.
The content of SWAN’s work is directly informed by the experiences of the populations that we serve.
Whenever possible, women veterans design, supervise and lead SWAN’s programs, in order to foster a sense of belonging, ownership, and community and to build personal skills that increase leadership experience, self-sufficiency, healing and well-being.
SWAN extends opportunities to and promotes the voices and agency of servicewomen and women veterans, regardless of the context, era, or type of their service.
^^^Just some information about the resources mentioned in the above quote.
White guys are so proud of their ability to be not offended. When one of them tells a rape joke or uses a racial slur, they wink and pat themselves on the back and give endless attaboys for their superior skills in being not offended. They decry the “politically correct” society they find themselves in and look down on anyone who has the lack of fortitude to be offended by anything.
Of course, what allows them to be not offended at rape jokes and racial slurs is that they are not targeted at them. For white guys, these are fun toys to play with; while for much of the rest of the world, they are tools of violence and oppression. Not just relics of the past, but very much alive and well today. So, then, the magical quality that allows these guys to remain so aloof and above-it-all is, quite simply, privilege.
And if you want to watch hypocrisy and cognitive dissonance in action, simply bring up privilege to these not offended white guys and see how fast and hard they become offended. Privilege is a concept so simple and obvious that most social scientists take it as axiomatic, but the mere mention of it gets these guys worked up into a rage. They’re so proud of their ability to be not offended by oppressive language and stereotypes, but they’ll be damned if you point out why. Funny. It’s almost as if they are the beneficiaries of systems of oppression and want to subtly encourage those systems so as to continue benefiting, while simultaneously stifling all mention of those systems, so as to mollify their fragile egos and underused consciences.
But by all means; continue to congratulate yourself on your superior ability to be not offended by oppression and cruelty.
“When men say that they “love to see the woman underneath the makeup,” they’re not saying they want to see your leg stubble and greasy bangs—they’re saying they want you to be better at hiding your maintenance routine. Because the maintenance spoils the fantasy.”—
Every time one of my guy friends says they prefer women without makeup I give them the hardest fucking side-eye. Like, I definitely don’t really mind either way but, I’m pretty sure some of these dudes has scarcely seen a woman without makeup.
“While Ms. McKenna “did not ‘abduct’ the child,” the court said, “her appropriation of the child while in utero was irresponsible, reprehensible.”—
Sara McKenna, a former Marine, became pregnant during a brief relationship with Bode Miller, an Olympic skier. While seven months pregnant, she moved from California to New York to go to school, leading a judge to scold her for “virtually absconding with her fetus.” Now, the fight for custody of their son has become “a closely watched legal battle over the rights of pregnant women to travel and make life choices.” (via bebinn)
“If you wanna be a girl, and you wanna call yourself a girl gamer and wear pink ponytails, and go cosplay, I don’t give a FUCK. And I’m gonna say fuck here, because you know what? She’s being who she want to be, and maybe it’s not about your penis.”—
Date rapists are widely assumed to be basically good guys who, because of a combination of too much alcohol and too little clear communication, end up coercing sex upon their partners. This image is widely promulgated, but it is flatly contradicted by research.
In a New England study published in 2002 in the journal Violence and Victims, 120 rapists were identified in a sample of 1,882 college students. Of the 120, 76 were serial rapists who had each, on average, left 14 victims in their wake. Their collective, grim tally included the following: 439 rapes and attempted rapes, 49 sexual assaults, 277 acts of sexual abuse against children,
66 acts of physical abuse against children and 214 acts
of battery against intimate partners.
These statistics leave little room for perceiving these men as basically good guys who fall victim to miscommunication and too much alcohol. Their violence and predatory behavior mirrors precisely that of the sexual predators who have been incarcerated and studied, except that by targeting non-strangers and by refraining from gratuitous violence, they have escaped prosecution.”—David Lisak (via rabbleprochoice)
(Trigger warning for gruesome description of sexual violence against a child) .
In Yemen, an 8 year old child bride died this week as a result of genital tearing and internal bleeding on her wedding night (READ: She was raped to death by her 40 year old husband). A large percentage of females in Yemen are married off as children, to become sex slaves and baby making machines to the men they’re sold to by their families for a dowry.
I weep to think about their enslaved lives, what their quality of life must be like, how they’ll have to give up school in 5th or 6th grade due to pregnancies and motherhood, what could have been their full potential. And of course it goes without saying I weep to think about how they have to endure the actual rapes themselves. Internal bleeding is extraordinarily painful. As if raping an 8 year old child isn’t bad enough, there is no way this man, her husband, didn’t know he was seriously injuring her/killing her during the commission of the act. I think we can all agree this whole situation is an atrocity.
In 2009, the Yemen government recognized that 8 year old brides is a human rights concern, and passed a law making the minimum age of marriage 17 years old. This was in response to a 12 year old bride that agonized through three days of labor trying to give birth, and another girl who also died shortly after her marriage due to internal bleeding caused by rape. However, the law was reportedly later repealed because forbidding a 40 year old man to marry an 8 year old girl is “against Islamic teaching”.
Folks, we need to have a serious conversation about this. We (those who despise violence against women and girls) blog, and we write news articles, we do SlutWalks, and we form facebook groups denouncing slut-shaming, victim-blaming, and rape jokes. We rail against song lyrics and magazine ads that mock or condone sexual violence. And I’m so glad we do, because these efforts are so important in creating a world that will abhor sexual violence as much as we do. But if we’re failing to have an honest, critical discussion about the ways in which religiosity plays into global rape culture, we’re failing.
Why can’t we talk about this? Well, I’ll speak for myself, and why I usually feel like I can’t publicly confront what I see as policies and traditions of the Abrahamic religions that contribute to tolerant attitudes about violence against women.
1. Religiously fundamentalist people do not want to hear one shred of criticism about their beliefs, and will make life difficult and even threaten violence against those who criticize their beliefs. I’ve been sued by a Catholic Church for opening a feminist sex ed shop 3 blocks from their building, I’ve had notes demanding I “repent” left under my car windshield. I’ve had a religious leader say I should be taken to the town center and stoned to death, and my high school sweetheart dumped me after he joined a Christian cult and became convinced I was going to burn in Hell. In my personal experiences, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of room for discussion or reason.
2. I know many non-fundamentalist religious people with faith backgrounds in the Abrahamic religions (Christianity, Islam, etc) who work tirelessly within their own lives to end violence against women. But attempts at discussions with them that would critically analyze religion as it relates to the subjugation of women and sexual violence derail into the defensive “well those are just bad humans doing _____ religion wrong, the REAL people of my _____ religion are peaceful and love women” and “Hey now, I’m of the _______ religion, so don’t criticize _____ religion just because some people use _______ religion as rationale to do _____ horrible atrocity to ______ group of already sexually marginalized people”.
So extreme people can’t engage, and reasonable minded people won’t engage in any discussion in which they might have to objectively discuss a shortcoming or weakness in their religion, even if said weakness is the systematic raping of children by their religion’s leaders or belief that 8 year old girls can be bought and sold- in my experience. So I, as I suspect many others, refrain from bringing up religion when talking about headlines like today’s about the child who died from her rape because I want to be PC, and I don’t want to get the shit storm of angry emails that will be inevitable, and I don’t want to offend the “good” people who follow these religions who will ream me out if I “criticize” their beliefs.
But I’m going to put this out there: If we say we want to end rape culture, and we deconstruct the rape culture in Robin Thicke lyrics that have been heard in passing by 200 million people, but we won’t deconstruct the rape culture found in religious texts read and devoutly followed by over 3 billion people, we’re kinda hypocrites. Religious traditions that condone or promote the rape of children- the rape of ANYONE, can’t keep getting a pass from critical analysis and evaluation.
In response to the Steubenville, Ohio teen rape case, West Virginia U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld is launching a program to teach high school athletes not to post evidence of rape online.
It’s called “Project Future,” and his goal is to teach teens how to avoid getting in trouble with the law by using cell phones, cameras, and social media “responsibly.” Instead of teaching teens not to rape, the U.S. Attorney wants to teach them not to get caught.
This is rape culture at work: The very people who are in charge of enforcing our laws look at a cruel, brutal attack on a young girl and think, “If only the teens hadn’t posted photographic evidence online.”
“Objectification literally means to hold oneself as subject and everything and everyone else as object, the object of one’s actions and thoughts. According to this definition, traditional feminists objectify strippers. This paradox grows increasingly obvious considering the us/them construct such discussions inevitably employ. “Those strippers undermine our ends.” Are not strippers and their patrons the objects of these women’s disapproval ?
Or maybe they mean “object” as a thing devoid of humanity. But a stripper’s humanity, including her sexuality, is intrinsic to her profession. In my experience, few men would talk to me at length and grow aroused by my personality while simultaneously denying my personhood.
I maintain that a man isn’t denying a woman’s humanity if he admires her breast and not her intellect in the appropriate context. Human phyisicality takes precedence in many arenas. As long as theses instances remain free of sexuality, no one complains. Few people argue that Martine Navratilova and Mary Lou Retton, much less men such as Michael Jordan or Mikhail Baryshnikov, are dehumanized when others admire their physical prowess.”—Stacy REED, “All stripped Off”, in Jill NAGLE, Whores and other feminists, Routledge, 1997, p. 182 (via feminismeetputerie)
“Indeed, the idea of ‘winning the girl’ – of overcoming female objections or resistance through repeated and frequently escalating efforts – is central to most of our modern romantic narratives. (Female persistence, by contrast, is viewed as pathetic.) And the more I think about instances of creepiness, harassment and stalking that culminate in either the threat or actuality of sexual assault, the more I’m convinced that a massive part of the problem is this socially sanctioned idea that men are fundamentally entitled to persist. Because if men are meant to persist, then women who say no must only be rejecting the attempt, not the man himself, so that every separate attempt becomes one of a potentially infinite number of keys which might just fit the lock of the woman’s approval. She’s not the one who’s allowed to say no, not really; she should be silent and passive as a locked door, waiting patiently while the man runs through however many keys he can be bothered trying. And if he gets sick of this lengthy process and just breaks in? Well, frustration under those circumstances is only natural. Either the door shouldn’t have been there to impede him, or it shouldn’t have been locked.”—The Creepiness Question (via notemily) Its an extended rape fantasy narrative, is what it is. (via bad-dominicana)
“Does anyone have any resources for the children and families of sex workers? Google’s not been helpful at all in my quest thus far. It’s all been super negative. I’m looking more for how to be supportive of your family remember who’s a sex worker and how to find support for yourself, or self care tips, things along those lines. Thanks a ton!”—
From a Reader of the Site.
Does anyone have any helpful information for our friend?