I'm not sure how to write about this. I don't even know what I want to say yet (which is--as always--why I'm writing in the first place).
You've probably already heard more than you care to about the girl who
was raped behind a dumpster and how her rapist got sentenced to only six
months in prison. Part of me agrees that you can never say too much
about how awful that was. But part of me is also emotionally exhausted
by all the hate and horror floating around on the internet.
If it's not police violence, it's a gorilla getting shot. If it's not a
gorilla getting shot, it's how males are absolute pigs and responsible
for "rape culture."
Are males responsible for rape culture? Well, they are statistically
more often the rapists and than the victims. Males do have more of a
reputation for objectifying and sexualizing women, and reputations don't
just form for no reason. So, I guess yeah, males are primarily responsible for rape culture.
But not ALL males. Gem is not responsible for rape culture. My dad is
not responsible for rape culture. And I resent all the broad, sweeping
statements about how "No, you know what, because you have a penis you
ARE part of the problem and the fact that you don't think you are means
you're even worse and there's nothing you can say or do to make me
change my mind."
I'm sorry, but isn't that just another form of sexism? Don't women get
enraged when sweeping statements are made about them? People are individuals. "Men" is not a homogeneous group of macho rapists any more than "Women" is a homogeneous group of emotional b*tches.
Brock Turner did something wrong. But TWO other males did something right by stopping him and calling the police.
Yeah, males are primarily responsible for rape culture. But not ALL males.
I also happen to think that it is really stupid for a young woman to get
so drunk she can't remember her night, so drunk she thinks it's wise to
wander behind a dumpster with a strange boy. I do NOT mean that it was
"her fault" that she was violated. But you are more likely to get knifed in a dark alley alone than in a well-lit Starbucks. You are also more likely to be molested if you are totally plastered and unable to enforce your wishes. (A 2012 study posted by Campus Safety Magazine reports that "90% of acquaintance rapes involve alcohol.")
But then again. I just read an article
(why do I even do that to myself? It's like reading the comments on
YouTube) by a 20-something Christian guy who made a point I had somehow
overlooked: "As men, it’s our job to protect women regardless of what
they wear or how much they drink."
How could I have forgotten the way I was raised? How could I have
forgotten the Southern values I hold to so proudly? How could I have
forgotten the Biblical responsibility of men?
I've been so caught up in how dumb and irresponsible it is to wear short
skirts and get plastered in an alleyway that I forgot that THAT
SHOULDN'T MATTER. In a common sense and empirical kind of way, it
totally does matter, but on a moral, Christian, Southern level, it
shouldn't matter at all.
Men are supposed to protect women, not because women are weak or
cowardly, but because it's polite (and clearly women are the ones who
need protection in this particular case, since most rapists are men and
most victims are women).
But no matter how confident in and proud of Gem and my dad I am, I will
never wear a short skirt and get plastered in an alleyway.