It was late, it was dark, and I was fairly distracted by listening to 80’s music because it’s ridiculously catchy.
Now, I rarely feel scared walking home in the dark. If that’s because I lack a self-preservation instinct or that I stubbornly chanted ‘strong independent woman’ to myself when I was 14, well, who knows?
Point is, I suddenly noticed a long shadow next to mine.
Surprised and unexpectedly terrified, I jump a little and turn around to see a buff guy walking close behind me. As my was simultaneously berating me for getting scared and planning exit routes, he simply stops, raises his hands and goes:
“I’m so sorry to scare you, I really didn’t mean to, excuse me.”
He then steps over to the other side of the road, gives me a quick smile, and keeps walking. I looked back a while later, only to see him crossing the road to step into a house on ‘my’ side.
So basically, this guy just stepped away and gave me space to make sure I felt safe, and waited long enough on the other side for me to have gotten far enough away not to be startled when he crossed again. It felt shockingly good to have a guy acknowledge that my fear response wasn’t ‘stupid’, because if he hadn’t I’d probably be bashing myself for the irrational fear that grabbed me.
I’m not saying that all guys should do this or anything. I’m not even sure what I’m trying to say. It’s just been a while since I saw a guy outside tumblr who didn’t act like because they weren’t rapists, they had nothing to do with the issues of rape culture. Of course, I have no idea who this guy is, maybe he doesn’t know or care about these issues. But he cared enough to make an effort, and to not dismiss my response or blame me for it. To me, that’s something.
shoot me in the face
Yeah, the Sanctity of Life Act was really messed up. Guess who fought for the bill’s absolute restriction on abortion after conception or CLONING? The King of Freedom: Ron Paul. Poor decisions by Pauls all around.
This is beyond disgusting… The epitome of rape culture all around. Ugh.
STUDY - More Than Half Of Black Girls Are Sexually Assaulted:
Sixty percent of black girls have experienced sexual abuse at the hands of black men before reaching the age of 18, according to an ongoing study conducted by Black Women’s Blueprint.
More than 300 black women nationwide participated in the study and 700 more are being sought to take in the survey by March 2012.
Farah Tanis, Co-Founder of the New York-based organization and co-author of the study, says the issue of domestic and sexual abuse in the black community is rarely discussed and that a sixty percent rate should be a wake-up call to black women.
“A similar study which was conducted by The Black Women’s Health Imperative seven years ago found that that number was about 40 percent,” Tanis says. “So that means there is an increase and we need to stop neglecting that issue.”
So the next black man that comes flapping his mouth about how black women don’t know how to treat a black man? I’m going to introduce his front teeth to my fist.
|—||Jon Stewart (via deathofadollmaker)|
That sums it up
This reminds me of a discussion we had in school, and one girl was talking about living in fear of her safety because she is a girl, and this guy chimed in and was all “It’s hard for guys too! I’m so awkward around girls! It’s embarrassing!” Yeah, not the same thing, exactly?
This reminds me of an article about online (heterosexual) dating that I read a while ago. It listed men’s and women’s worst fears about meeting someone from online. The highest ranked fear that men had was that their date would be fat, whereas the highest ranked fear that women had was that their date would turn out to be violent and kill them.
I think that says a lot.
If I was that girl, I woulda smacked the ginger off that little boy. She said no!
She is letting him know she aint gonna take any of that patriarchal men-are-entitled-to-unlimited-access-to-women’s-bodies mess.
what the fuck? BOY BACK OFF HER
I am STILL that kind of little girl.
Can I say I love this little girl for standing strong
But I kind of wanna punch all the adults who watched like this hsit is cute.
She said no.
He needs to learn to respect that
Agreed…if adults were present, watching this and laughing, that’s exactly how the boy is going to learn that it’s cute, and it’s how the girl is going to learn that nobody’s going to back her up when a boy is grabbing her. It’s the adult reactions that really gender this situation.
And people wonder why we have a problem with creepy people who ignore signals and “no”s, and rape culture? This is social conditioning on display, right here, from a very young age.
There Is No Excuse
Italy, 1992. A 45-year-old driving instructor picks up an 18-year-old girl for her first lesson, takes her to an isolated road, pulls her out of the car, wrestles her out of one leg of her jeans and rapes her. She courageously tells her parents. They help and support her in pressing charges, leading to the perpetrator’s arrest and prosecution. He is convicted of rape and sentenced to jail.
He appeals. The case reaches the Italian Supreme Court, which overturns his sentence and releases him. “Because the victim wore very, very tight jeans,” the Court notes in their decision, “she had to help him remove them, and by removing the jeans it was no longer rape but consensual sex.”
“You want to say Hi to the cute girl on the subway. How will she react? Fortunately, I can tell you with some certainty, because she’s already sending messages to you. Looking out the window, reading a book, working on a computer, arms folded across chest, body away from you = do not disturb. So, y’know, don’t disturb her. Really. Even to say that you like her hair, shoes, or book. A compliment is not always a reason for women to smile and say thank you. You are a threat, remember? You are Schrödinger’s Rapist. Don’t assume that whatever you have to say will win her over with charm or flattery. Believe what she’s signaling, and back off. If you speak, and she responds in a monosyllabic way without looking at you, she’s saying, “I don’t want to be rude, but please leave me alone.” You don’t know why. It could be “Please leave me alone because I am trying to memorize Beowulf.” It could be “Please leave me alone because you are a scary, scary man with breath like a water buffalo.” It could be “Please leave me alone because I am planning my assassination of a major geopolitical figure and I will have to kill you if you are able to recognize me and blow my cover.” On the other hand, if she is turned towards you, making eye contact, and she responds in a friendly and talkative manner when you speak to her, you are getting a green light. You can continue the conversation until you start getting signals to back off. The fourth point: If you fail to respect what women say, you label yourself a problem. There’s a man with whom I went out on a single date—afternoon coffee, for one hour by the clock—on July 25th. In the two days after the date, he sent me about fifteen e-mails, scolding me for non-responsiveness. I e-mailed him back, saying, “Look, this is a disproportionate response to a single date. You are making me uncomfortable. Do not contact me again.” It is now October 7th. Does he still e-mail? Yeah. He does. About every two weeks. This man scores higher on the threat level scale than Man with the Cockroach Tattoos. (Who, after all, is guilty of nothing more than terrifying bad taste.) You see, Mr. E-mail has made it clear that he ignores what I say when he wants something from me. Now, I don’t know if he is an actual rapist, and I sincerely hope he’s not. But he is certainly Schrödinger’s Rapist, and this particular Schrödinger’s Rapist has a probability ratio greater than one in sixty. Because a man who ignores a woman’s NO in a non-sexual setting is more likely to ignore NO in a sexual setting, as well. So if you speak to a woman who is otherwise occupied, you’re sending a subtle message. It is that your desire to interact trumps her right to be left alone. If you pursue a conversation when she’s tried to cut it off, you send a message. It is that your desire to speak trumps her right to be left alone. And each of those messages indicates that you believe your desires are a legitimate reason to override her rights. For women, who are watching you very closely to determine how much of a threat you are, this is an important piece of data.”
an excerpt from Phaedra Starling’s “Schrödinger’s Rapist: or a guy’s guide to approaching strange women without being maced” (via lostgrrrls)
Can this article be handed out to every guy ever?
Fuck this post.
Seriously, I hate the language here. It’s a great idea to try to point out how to tell if someone wants to be left alone (yes, I’m going gender-neutral here, because not being interested in conversation with strangers is not gender-specific even if the fears are). But to say that any man who dares say anything to a woman who doesn’t want to talk to him is basically a rapist?
No. Fuck that.
There is a world of difference between failing to correctly interpret implicit signals in body language, and harassing someone.
That entire quote could have been put like this:
You want to say Hi to the cute girl on the subway. How will she react? Fortunately, I can tell you with some certainty, because she’s already sending messages to you. Looking out the window, reading a book, working on a computer, arms folded across chest, body away from you = do not disturb. So she probably won’t react well. Don’t disturb her, even with a complement, because for whatever reason - and the reason doesn’t matter - she’s not interested. On the other hand, if she is turned towards you, and making eye contact, you are getting a green light - she will probably react well.
Obviously though if she seems uninterested - monotone response, looking away, and/or asking directly to be left alone - when you say something, even if you thought she’d react well, take the hint. If you get it wrong and stop talking to her when she was interested, she’ll continue the conversation. If you keep talking at her when she isn’t interested - creepy. You won’t ‘wear her down’, you’ll just creep her out, so leave it.
There, I just got exactly the same message across without telling half the population that they’re rapists on the basis of their gender.
The following things will help reduce rape:
- Educating men who are at best morons, about how women who are off their face drunk are not capable of consent
- Not portraying all man/woman relationships in the media as leading to sex
(obviously that’s far from exhaustive but let’s face it, it’s easier to go after the idiots who don’t think they’re doing anything wrong)
The following things will not help reduce rape:
- Trying to give every innocent man gender guilt
Rape is a horrible thing done by horrible people. So think how insulting it is to be directly compared to them.
Good job. Way to (intentionally, it seems) miss the entire point of the article.
It’s funny (read:not funny) that these white tumblrs keep telling me I shouldn’t be a teacher because I don’t give my students access to my body. That makes no sense at all. This wouldn’t make any sense at all, anyway, if I hadn’t been told different versions of this all my life.
It is UNCOOL/WRONG to have boundaries! It’s uncool for me to react when someone says something oppressive, it’s uncool for me to refuse to eat NON-FOOD because it’s not vegan, and it’s uncool for me to not want others’ affections.
I know this because I have been yelled at, alienated, attacked, or ridiculed when I have stood up for myself at different times. But now to say that I am actually harming others by not allowing them to touch up on me? Bring it.
I have worked with infants to 14 year olds and every child I have worked with has had a warm connection with me, but also *and i know some people may be astounded by this* i enforced my boundaries with them as I would any other person! If you think a child doesn’t need to, want to, or can’t possibly learn consent it is only because you have never taught a child consent. You need patience, understanding, and time with the students but yes, you can teach consent to anyone, just as you can teach anyone that unwanted ass-grabbing is an appropriate form of flirting.
Some folks are writing as though I can either have my boundaries around physical contact or I can have healthy relationships with younger people. I maintain that I didn’t start having healthy relationships until I understood what my boundaries were, how to assert them, and to not be ashamed of them.
I do apologize for writing with what my friend refers to as my “hyperbolic flavor” when I wrote that I jumped, yelled, and screamed, but I can promise you, it was not quite as dramatic as I wrote. That is precisely why A felt she could start over and ask for a hug! I keep feeling this heat in my chest telling me to defend myself, but my brain wants me to tell everyone to ask questions more than they make horrible assumptions.
I don’t just flat out “deny my affection”, I carefully explain that I’m not comfortable being touched, and how that does not affect or explain how I feel about them. This is an important lesson to learn! The kids are always learning through observation, so I make sure to be the best example of what I feel is beautiful and loving, which includes being true to myself. I do not apologize for having boundaries and I never will, nor will I apologize for how I react to someone crossing a known boundary. I want everyone to know that you don’t owe anybody anything, and nobody owes you anything. I do not have to let people touch me in anyway just to prove to them that I love them, and if anyone had that demand of me, I would never speak to them again. If anyone makes those demands of any of my students, I want my students to understand that they are being told to give up their autonomy, and I want them to react however they see fit.
Teaching children that people owe them things or that they owe others is a large contributor to rape culture. Before I learned to expect consent, I felt immense pressure to *like* the advances made upon me, and especially as a brown hairy fatty, I felt like I had no choice but to accept and be grateful for whatever attention came my way and to complain about it was unreasonable, illogical, overemotional, etc. As a survivor of trauma, my way of healing is to help others understand that they do not have to be a passive bystander to what others want to do to their bodies!
This is just an awful mess, and I know I won’t feel healed until I talk about this with my students, because who better understands them than themselves? You got a problem with me talking to students like they’re real people? Tough noogies for you!!
Also, while I was writing this someone actually replied to my original post to be upset at me for forcing upon my students my transgender agenda (there’s a better way to say that, right?) by teaching them pronouns that are “not standard” and also while putting *non binary gender* in quotes. THATS FUNNY. I am too tired to reply to that post but hay, maybe someday? Just for the lulz.
Where did anybody get the idea that students were entitled to make contact with their teacher’s body? Holy shit. Nobody is ever entitled to touch anybody else. Ever. Wow.
its not rape if its under a mistletoe
WHO THE HELL THINKS THIS IS FUNNY?
What the fuck.
I go to Planned Parenthood today to get more birth control. On their forms there is a spot to check if you have been forced/coerced into sexual activity recently, I check yes.
In the room, the RN [who first reads it off, looks at me and asks me to explain—uh, I was at a party, was left alone with a guy and he assaulted me] says to me: “You won’t be letting that happen again, to the best of your knowledge, right?”
ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?
So. Incredibly. Angry.
Hey tumblr. So this here ^ is one of my very absolute best friends in the entire world.
She also happens to be somebody who was mistreated by first this shithead of a guy and then this Planned Parenthood RN.
Spread the fucking word and get pissed off, friends. That shit is completely unacceptable especially in what many think of as a “feminist” space. PP provides some great services. It also has a lot of flaws, as does any organization. Here is an example of one of them.
NO ONE “lets themself” get assaulted. THE ONLY ONE TO BLAME IS THE ASSAULTER.
If I have sex with my girlfriend after she tells me that she is on birth control, then is that conditional consent? I wouldn’t have consented if she hadn’t been, because I didn’t have any condoms and didn’t want to risk her getting pregnant (not that condoms always work anyway). So my consent rests mostly on that promise. I consented to sex with control, but I definitely didn’t consent to sex without. So if it turns out that she lied and wasn’t, does that not make my consent non-existent, and did she technically rape me?
It’s basically tricking somebody into sex. I know coercion can count as rape. If you threaten somebody then their consent doesn’t count. If they are drunk then their consent doesn’t count. If you are pretending to be someone else then their consent doesn’t count (it’s dark, you pretend to be either a celebrity or their boyfriend, and take advantage of the deceit). So why not other deceit? If you went to bed on the basis of a promise, and that promise is broken… you may well be a rape victim.
Personally, I would support clear legislation stating that purposely misrepresenting reproductive status or failing to disclose an STI should be considered grounds for at least a charge of sexual assault, and possibly a charge of rape. Obviously this cuts both ways. Similarly, this should cover cases of contraceptive sabotage and possibly some examples of reproductive coercion. Lying about reproductive status is fundamentally harmful and a horrible breach of trust. It should be treated as such.
Unfortunately this issue overwhelmingly affects men more than women, so it’d be silly to expect the courts to actually be sensible about this. [/sarcasm]
That sounds good. Conditional consent should count, then. If we do class such things as sexual assault, that makes my example of rape victims being forced to let their rapist have their baby a much more common and bigger problem, and so maybe the feminists will ease up and let the law take away the autonomy of the rapist, or not shout at us for not letting a rapist do whatever they want ‘with their own body’. In situations of rape, the reproductive rights should go solely to the victim, regardless of whether or not they have a uterus.
I do think what counts as “conditional consent” should be somewhat limited though. As I said, reproductive circumstances of the agreement to have an abortion should be considered that way, failing to disclose an STI should be, but a promise of (for example) marriage or someone misrepresenting themselves as wealthier than they actually are (or hiding debt, for example) should not be considered.
Thus cases of conditional consent should be clearly limited to things affecting the sex act directly. Misrepresenting yourself as someone’s significant other would be unacceptable, but pretending to be a celebrity….not so much. Similarly, promising money in exchange for sex (prostitution) might perhaps be considered this way, pretending to be a millionaire would not because that money is not an intrinsic part of the sex act.
I feel that conditional consent must be approached quite carefully because it’s very easy to lower the bar too far.
Good points, but lowering the bar too far would be nothing knew for this sort of thing. You’re already a rapist if I didn’t explicitly say yes or if I did but drank a glass of wine beforehand, so telling me falsehoods to make me go to bed with you is probably just as valid.
a) unfair comparison. absolutely unfair comparison. sure, it’s really shitty to lie about being on birth control, and i knew a girl who did this and ended up pregnant, and she’s a horrible person and i want to steal her baby and give it a normal life that doesn’t involve a mother who i remember saying, if her child had been a girl, would have decked her out in playboy bunny-themed everything. but to say that deceiving someone in a way that does not involve verbally or physically FORCING SOMEONE TO HAVE SEX WITH YOU is not rape. you made the decision to have sex with that person, made the decision to accept the risk of pregnancy, made the ABSOLUTELY IDIOTIC DECISION to have unprotected sex with someone without knowing all that much about them.
rape? no sir.
b) Personally, I would support clear legislation stating that purposely misrepresenting reproductive status or failing to disclose an STI should be considered grounds for at least a charge of sexual assault, and possibly a charge of rape.
No. no no no no no no no no no.
yes, ideally someone should know and disclose their HIV/STI status. but this is not an ideal universe. the way to deal with an issue like this is NOT criminalization — there is already enough stigmatization and misinformation surrounding STIs, which leads to people not disclosing, and criminalizing non-disclosure would only further the problem.
c) just looking at this from a non-vanilla lens, i really think kink fosters a sense of honesty about these sort of matters (ideally, there are douchebags everywhere) as well as a clarity of consent that just isn’t inherent in vanilla sex. with vanilla sex, there are unspoken rules of dominance, consent, and conduct and therein lies the problem - the rules are unspoken.
and a note to just-smith — i initially followed you because i respected your concern for the way gender stereotypes and rape culture affect men, something i feel is very overlooked by the Vigilante Tumblr Feminist Army, but this weird situation you keep bringing up about women boring holes in condoms to get pregnant is so far out of reality. my reality, at least. also, your constant discussion of things like “is eating oysters and taking advantage of the fact that it’s an aphrodisiac rape?” is trivializing and hurtful to myself and many other men and women who have dealt with the reality of rape. i understand you’re turning a critical eye on this shit that is becoming the metanarrative of modern feminism, which i respect because i do think a lot of concepts are losing meaning with each mindless reblog, but you do cross the line quite a bit and seem to forget that we aren’t case studies — we’re people.
Um. Yeah. Conditional consent? Bullshit.
People are responsible for their own reproductive decisions, and “But she said she was on the pill!” is not an excuse for blaming a woman for your own choice. I don’t understand why it is so difficult for some men to accept that they are responsible for where they leave their sperm. If you don’t want to impregnate someone, don’t leave your sperm in their vagina.
Even if hypothetical Lady on the Pill is on the pill, you aren’t just trusting that. You’re also trusting that she hasn’t missed any doses, taken doses off-schedule, been on antibiotics, and isn’t just freakishly fertile in spite of pill-taking. Additionally, just like condoms, the pill is not 100% effective, so you’re also taking the risk that you (and she) may just be unlucky. At no point is a woman “raping” you because of your poor skill at risk-assessment.
Finally, any time you have PIV sex with someone who isn’t sterilized, you are taking the risk of having a pregnancy resulting. For fuck’s sake, make sure to talk about what happens in that situation before you do it.
If at any point you don’t feel comfortable and safe having sex with someone, it’s OKAY to not have sex. You don’t have a condom and you’re unsure about trusting her word that she’s on the pill? Say no, go home and jerk off, and make a mental note to buy some rubbers before your next date. Be honest. Just say, “Hey, I really want to fuck you, but I don’t want to impregnate you,” and most women will appreciate your concern and your responsible attitude about sex. If she doesn’t call you back, then that’s her loss.
And as far as STI status, I feel like again this is something that grown-ups should be able to talk about prior to sex. If you aren’t comfortable trusting someone, don’t have unprotected sex. Ever.
And of course, if you say no and your partner forces you in any way, then rape has occurred.
|—||Sherry Wolf (via jessrosney)|
This might be the best slutwalk sign I’ve ever seen.