Sorry about posting late; I got my days confused.
I thought about saying something about what happened in Steubenville and the subsequent media fallout, but after reading a couple of posts that said everything I thought and more, I decided to link you to them instead.
Lauren Nelson in "So You're Tired of Hearing About 'Rape Culture'?" examines how what happened in Steubenville is just one expression of a a systemic problem in our society.
Someone asked me today, “What is ‘rape culture’ anyway? I’m tired of hearing about it.” Yeah, I hear ya. I’m tired of talking about it. But I’m going to keep talking about it because people like you keep asking that question.
Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and though there are dozens of witnesses, no one says, “Stop.”
Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and though there are dozens of witnesses, they can’t get anyone to come forward.
Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and adults are informed of it, but no consequences are doled out because the boys “said nothing happened.”Read the rest here.
Soraya Chemelay's response is "10 Small Changes You Can Make to Avoid Another Steubenville" which outlines individual actions that can collectively address what she calls "problems we face involving men with unchallenged power."
If you use the expression “boys will be boys,” think about why and what it means. Then STOP. Yes, boys and girls are different. I’ve got it. But, any two boys are as different from one another as “boys” are from “girls.” That expression reveals a myriad of beliefs related to gender essentialism, binaries, and stereotypes that lie at the root of sex-based hierarchies that subtly cultivate violence and the reduction of girls and women to the value of their reproductive potential. It’s commonly used to excuse behavior that is rude, entitled, and gender-privileged.Read the rest here.
It is astounding and heart-breaking to me that these types of dialogues are still necessary. In no other violent crime is a victim mistreated by the media and society at large. Our culture will never truly flourish until it stops spending so much effort to keep half of its members living in fear of being brutalized, trivialized, mocked, or ignored for no other reason than physiology.
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