One time during my freshmen year of college I forgot to do a history paper that was worth 20% of my grade and the teacher didn’t accept late work, so I waited until the professor handed back the papers and angrily asked where mine was. The teacher felt so bad for losing it he let me re-do the entire paper and gave me an A-
you kids these days with your rapidly growing concern for the state of the world and your knowledge of important issues at increasingly younger ages despite having been told your opinions don’t matter by the adults who put you in these situations
Apologies in advance for the really serious post, but I think I’ve actually made my point pretty well in the text below and it’d mean a lot to me if you’d read it. Trigger warning for rape and sexual violence.
I want to prove two things:
Rape is a unique crime not comparable to being robbed or murdered.
The unique nature of rape makes rape jokes especially heinous.
This post is a sort-of response to a question I got this morning.
Rape is a unique crime.
Rape is not like murder or being robbed, rape is a type of torture - an exceptionally malicious act that has, at its core, no purpose except to inflict exceptional pain on you. It’s an act where the perpetrator not only wants to hurt you in a uniquely personal way, but enjoys the violation. Rape is so much more than just the act of sex - it destroys your bodily and sexual autonomy.
To rape is not merely to deny someone’s will, but to deny them their very personhood. The humiliation and shame experienced by rape victims is completely unique; they experience complete subjugation and the intimate loss of control of their own bodies.
A few weeks ago, I was mugged at gunpoint on North Carolina Ave. in Southeast DC. Now, if I’m ever back there, I’ll be much more apprehensive of my safety than I would’ve been before. This is pretty common - when you experience a violation, the area of the violation no longer feels safe. With rape, the area of violation is your own body.
Jokes about rape are uniquely horrible.
A recent joke that “comedian” Daniel Tosh made about how funny it would be if a girl was raped created a little bit of an internet shitstorm, forcing him to semi-apologize on Twitter. He followed up his apology with this Tweet:
(Personally, I find dead baby jokes a little bit gross.) “How do you get 10 babies into a jar? Blender. How do you get them out? Nachos.” Dead baby jokes, though, operate on in an area entirely removed from reality - nobody who tells that joke is actually contemplating using a baby as hummus, and functionally 0% of people know anyone who’s ever thought about or attempted to eat a pulverized baby.
Compare that to the prevalence of rape in the status quo. It’s estimated that 1 in 3 women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. Now, if 1 in 3 babies was killed and eaten with tortilla chips, people would think of it not as a joke, but as a horribly serious reality.
Murder jokes are less heinous for a similar reason. The national homicide rate is 4.8 per 100,000 people, meaning that the chance a given person hearing a murder joke will actually be killed is 00.0048%. The chance that you’ll actually trigger a terrible flashback from someone who’s been nearly murdered is damn low.
What really makes the difference between murder jokes and rape jokes, though, is not just the statistics. Murder is something that is taken extremely seriously in our society. Report rates are pretty high, and victims of attempted murder don’t need to worry that they’ll be accused of “asking for it” or being told that what happened to them isn’t a big deal. To be clear, I’m not justifying jokes about homicide.
Jokes about rape serve to make rape less serious. People who enjoy rape jokes commonly want to be told that rape isn’t a big deal, that it’s just sex, and that other people think so, too. A study of unreported acquaintance rapists done by Hinck and Thomas in 1999 found that “These individuals’ propensity to rape was significantly related not only to their acceptance of rape myths and of traditional ideas about male and female sexuality, but also to their belief that male sexual aggression is normal.”
That doesn’t mean that anyone who’s ever laughed at a rape joke is a future rapist. What it does mean is that these jokes provide the ammunition that these people need to justify themselves and think, “Hey, rape is not that big of a deal. It’s funny. Look, they all think so, too.”
Furthermore, the fact that rape isn’t taken seriously or that the blame is attributed to the woman keeps more women from coming forward, seeking justice for themselves, or even from getting counseling. After all, if rape isn’t that big of a deal, and if it was possibly their fault, there’s really no point. Every time a rape victim hears a rape joke, not only can the victim flash back to the rape and relive the experience in excruciating detail, but the victim also has to experience that mindfuck with the invalidation of suffering that comes with the levity of a joke.
To sum up:
Rape is a type of torture, and rape victims experience severe psychological trauma that goes well beyond the physical damage.
The prevalence of sexual assault makes it much more likely that either a rapist or a rape victim will hear a given joke about rape.
Rape jokes perpetuate our society’s fucked up belief that rape isn’t serious.
Rape jokes empower would-be rapists.
Rape jokes further harm the victims of rape.
Very well put, especially about the unique nature of rape as opposed to other crimes.
Pay special attention to the “I am a man and I consider myself some sort of feminist.” THIS IS WHY I AM SUSPICIOUS OF MALE FEMINISTS. THIS. THIS RIGHT HERE. -Alyssa
i hate whenever you suggest a poc actor for a mcu role and all these comic book assholes crawl out of the woodwork and raise a finger going “eeehhh excuse me but doctor strange / janet van dyne / etc etc etc was white in the comics, soooooo” like thank u im so glad u have pointed out that comics written 50 years ago by racist white people didnt have any diversity in them i mean gosh thats really relevant to a movie casting decision in 2014
the first female chinese immigrant to america was a sixteen-year-old girl who was part of a cultural exhibit where she sat in a life-size diorama and people watched her eat with chopsticks while wearing silk clothes and that’s really all you need to know about the commodification of chinese women
Afong Moy. Her name was Afong Moy. Say the names of people who should be remembered.
“If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also”—
This specifically refers to a hand striking the side of a person’s face, tells quite a different story when placed in it’s proper historical context. In Jesus’s time, striking someone of a lower class ( a servant) with the back of the hand was used to assert authority and dominance. If the persecuted person “turned the other cheek,” the discipliner was faced with a dilemma. The left hand was used for unclean purposes, so a back-hand strike on the opposite cheek would not be performed. Another alternative would be a slap with the open hand as a challenge or to punch the person, but this was seen as a statement of equality. Thus, by turning the other cheek the persecuted was in effect putting an end to the behavior or if the slapping continued the person would lawfully be deemed equal and have to be released as a servant/slave.
“There’s no point to a guy yelling, “Hey sexy baby” at me out of the passenger window of a car as it speeds past. Even if I was into creepy misogynists and wanted to give him my number, I couldn’t. The car didn’t even slow down. But that’s okay, because he wasn’t actually hitting on me. The point wasn’t to proposition me or chat me up. The only point was to remind me, and all women, that our bodies are his to stare at, assess, comment on, even touch. “Hey sexy baby” is the first part of a sentence that finishes, “this is your daily message from the patriarchy, reminding you that your body is public property”.”—My First Name Ain’t Baby: ‘Hey Baby’ and Street Harassment (via official-mens-frights-activist)
A Clitoris is actually an undeveloped penis; since we all, at some point, are both male and female in the uterus, before the dominate gene takes over, the penis on a female and a male is actually the same. And once the dominate gene takes over for a male, the clit actually develops into a penis, so technically, when a girl says: suck my dick… I guess it’s kinda politically correct…
Lol when I took gender studies in high school our teacher told us this and every guy in the room looked terrified
Basic mammalian biology.
I thought this was common knowledge? O.o well, passing it on to educate others :)
Actually female is the default genetic setting so penises are just giant grotesque clitorises.
When we start, only the X chromosome has been activated, so we have a clitoris, nipples, and gonads (inside the body, which would become ovaries). It’s not until later in the pregnancy that any present Y chromosome is activated, causing the clitoris to grow into a penis, and the ovaries to drop down and become testes. The female stays the same, following the X path of development.
Female is nature’s “blueprint.”
Fun and weird fact: If you’ve ever examined the stretchy, “bumpy” skin of the labia, and did the same with the stretchy, bumpy skin of the scrotum and thought, ‘huh, they feel the same,’ that’s because they are. In the fetus, they are called the “labioscrotal folds.” Ever notice that “seam” down the center of your scrotum, boys? That’s from when your folds were fused together once the Y chromosome became activated.
okay so today I was at the mall and this girl walking in front of me and tripped and fell and instead of helping her up like a normal person would- I decided to make her feel less embarrassed and fall down too
but I guess another guy had the same idea because we fell at the same time
and then another person fell
and suddenly I was lying in the middle of an impromptu fainting mob and a lot of people were shouting
and the girl who’d originally fallen looked so fucking happy
"It's a metaphor" I have no doubt that you completely understand and stand by this statement that the act of putting an unlit cigarette in Augustus Waters' mouth is in fact a metaphor. But for some folks, we don't see it asa metaphor, we see it as situational irony, or a simple statement. Please explain how it is a metaphor.
Well, a character in a novel saying that something is a metaphor is not the same thing as the author of the novel saying that it’s a metaphor. Gus’s intellectual grasp often exceeds his reach (he calls a monologue a soliloquy, and misuses quite a few of the bigger words in his vocabulary). But I do think the cigarette is a metaphor, albeit a different one for us than it is for him.
Gus’s idea is that the cigarette is a metaphor for illness, and he keeps it unlit and in his mouth as an expression of his power over illness. “You put the killing thing between your teeth but you don’t give it the power to do its killing.” Gus’s thinking here is that HE has the power. This is why he tends to use the cigarette when he’s feeling nervous or powerless. (He’s also using the most famous commercially available carcinogen to make this statement, so obviously there’s a connection there in his mind: Humans can prevent cancer by not smoking; cancer is something we can have power over; your job is not to give cancer the power to kill you; etc.)
But of course Gus is wrong about all of this, or at least almost all of it. You may have SOME control over whether you die of cancer (you can choose not to smoke), but in most cases humans don’t have control over illness. “You don’t give it the power to do its killing” imagines more agency over illness than we actually have, because in the end much of the fault is in the stars, not in ourselves. So to us, the unlit cigarette is a metaphor for our false perception of control, and our urgent need to feel in control. It’s no coincidence, then, that when Gus’s life is spiraling out of control and he finds himself powerless before fate, he tries (and fails) to buy cigarettes.