Skip to main content

View Diary: Solving Rape? - A Very Short Statement For Those Who Just Don't Get It! (358 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  The problem is that we suck at it (5+ / 0-)

    we suck at teaching girls to avoid rape, and we do it in a fundamentally different way than we teach people to avoid other crimes.  (generally speaking, I don't know what you specifically have taught people in your life).  

    The issues is that with young women and teaching them to be cautious of rape, almost always these 'teachings' feed into or originate from serious cultural falsehoods such that the teachings can actually CAUSE harm and promote rape.  

    If we teach girls to not walk alone at night as a rape prevention it may suggest that stranger rape is the primary fear, when acquinatance rape is a far greater danger for most girls.

    If we teach girls that dressing slutty somehow puts them in danger it ignores the fact that the vast vast majority of rapists don't even remember what their victims were wearing.  So we're teaching nonsense.  Then when a girl is raped her failure to dress appropriately is evidence of her culpability (just as a pool owners failure to put a fence around it would be evidence of their partial culpability of a drowning - to use your example).

    But the main problem with the way we teach girls to avoid rape is that it quickly shifts responsibility for rape to the victim and actually encourages, empowers and protects rapists.  

    If someone breaks into my unlocked house and steals my stuff, they are not going to argue that I wanted them to steal it.  So the fact that my door is unlocked may be foolish, but it is unlikely to be a fatal flaw in their prosecution.  It won't get me harrassed by people, or cause people to assume that I am a bad person.

    Shifting the focus of sexual assault is about taking away some of the cultural power we have given rapists.  

    Obviously this doesn't mean we can't teach girls about the dangers of sexual assault.  But what it does mean is that many of the current efforts out there to do that are disengenious bullshit that only serve the cultural biases that protect rape culture.  

    unfortunately this makes it far trickier to provide safe teachings because people get all messed up on this issue.  (wouldn't it be nice to be able to say "don't drink until you pass out" without that phrase also empowering someone to blame a passed out girl for the sexual assault perpetrated against her because it was partially her fault for breaking the rules)

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site