I am tired of receiving emails that start with the age old MRA cliché "I admire you for supporting women’s rights, but do you know that men suffer too, blah blah blah.” Do I look like I care? Do you want me to bellow from the rooftop of my apartment building that I am a feminist? How clueless can you get? Let me spell it out for you: I care a rats ass about your whiny *what about men too waaa* wailing. Comprende?
I may seem cold hearted or bitchy or whatchamacallit, but I don’t want to faff my way through a post highlighting 'men’s suffering'. I do not want to dabble in an issue which I have absolutely no interest in. If you choose to give me flak for the above statement, well then, I await the flaming.
I would also like to thank the folks who actually took the time out of their lives and emailed me with legitimate questions about rape and abuse. This post is dedicated to them.
Rest assured, I will name no names. I will only reproduce the questions.
So without further ado, let’s delve right into it.
1. Why do some girls go to a party and get drunk out of their minds, when they know that they can be in a position of compromise? Aren’t these girls, in a way aiding the rapist? And why don’t the men at the party help them?
Note: I would have dismissed this question as another chauvinistic stunt, and in many ways it does reek of ignorance and sexism. But I do have good days occasionally, and so I allowed myself to indulge in a rare act of benevolence.
First of all, I would like you to realize that women attend parties and the like for the exact same reasons as the men, read; to actually have some fun. Now, fun does NOT equal rape. Is that so hard to comprehend? Grasp that idea and feed it to your conscious.
The 'drunk out of their minds' phrase in your question unsettles me. Was that really necessary? Why do you have to attach sexist insinuations to your query? But I digress.
When we think 'rape' a leering man with messy clothes and shifty eyes usually fits our mental image of a typical 'rapist'. But blame the movies for propagating that far-from-accurate image. Usually the rapists in this particular situation you have envisioned (a party) are friends of the rape victim. These men use the trust placed in them by the rape victim and twist it to feed their own highly sadistic fantasies. If you still don’t believe me then this should convince you.
As for your 'aiding the rapist' part, pray tell me how? I am trying to be civil here without blowing my handle but WHY do you address the rape victim? Why can’t you question those sadistic perverts who actually perpetrate the rape? The fact that somehow she was ‘aiding’ the rapist by just being there is one of the most pervasive, sexist, and senseless rape myths floating around. Try to fathom the painfully simple fact that no woman in her right mind will show up at a party expecting or wanting to be raped.
2. Doesn’t rape ultimately boil down to sex? Isn’t rape almost equal to sex?
Forgive me for being rude, but I would like to answer both your questions with one word: Wrong. And wrong.
‘Rape = sex’ is one of the vilest rape myths propagated in our society today. Rape is and always has been an act of power. It is an act of aggression, of possessing the victim sexually. Sex is used as a tool to literally ‘own’ the victim. This stems from severe feelings of inadequacy and a driving need to control, to assert his authority, and the rapist uses physical and sexual onslaught to feed his obsession with power.
Trivializing an assault spurned by pure unadulterated hate fused with an absolute need to assert dominance on a human being and equating it with the normal act of sex (Yes, you heard me. Having sex is normal, you culture police freaks) is foolish and horribly inaccurate, to say the least.
I hope I cleared your doubts about the vast differences between rape and sex.
3. What about men who rape for pleasure?
Your query unravels a complete sub-species of rapists. I present to you the sado-masochistic rapist. These are the kind of men who rape for pleasure.
They indulge in tormenting the victim i.e. they revel in the pain, suffering, anguish and absolute powerlessness of the victim. And they derive a twisted gratification from the fusion of sexual aggression and physical violence. Quite simply put they get off on it.
To them the act of extreme violence (including sexual assault) is erotic.
4. Why does the abuser (in a relationship) always look calm and collected while the abusee always seems flustered? Shouldn’t it be the other way around?
Let me assume that you are talking about violence in a marriage or a relationship. Do you know why the abuser always looks calm and collected and several people around him will swear upon all the Gods that he is the friendliest/calmest/nicest/quietest person they know?
Mr. oh-so-calm abuser has taken out all his aggression and anger on his wife/girlfriend by verbally abusing her with the choicest expletives or by beating her senseless or both. At the end of each episode, he will be the poster boy of calm while his wife/girlfriend will be a frightened, whimper-y mess.
When you have your very own personalized punching bag at home to kick around and abuse, why wouldn’t you be calm and composed when you step outside the house?
The persona of an abuser has given rise to many a question as to ‘how can a person who seems to be so genial, resort to such acts of violence?’ This behavior, I believe is the split personality or the dichotomy of the abuser psyche.
So after all this, my answer to your question is NO. It need not be the other way around.
I hope these explanations cleared all your doubts.
Believe it or not, if you do have more queries I will be glad to answer them as long as you use an impassioned approach in framing your question. Questions reeking of sexism and 'oh so funny' digs at feminism will be ignored.
Post Script: Jupe left a link in the comments section that begs to be read.
Here it is.
Gut-wrenching, to say the least.
P.P.S: Title inspiration: T.S. Eliot.