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George Will – Making it easier to treat rape does not make us the victims of progressivism

Dear George Will

The victims of progressivism tries to imply that men (and women) cannot change. That the victims of rape are less important than the people who simply cannot understand the concept of consent.

I know who George Will is. To those who are unaware? While my “idea of journalism” mainly came for Photojournalism, I am aware that George Will holds a damn Pulitzer Prize. However? It doesn’t make him good at everything. His commentary on Conservative Politics is okay if you lived in a country where your conservatives aren’t the Republicans or the Tea Party (Party).

His Op-Ed is pretty much par for course with the Republican Party line. Of denigrating and reducing the value of rape in order to control a rash of rape. And they are right. The most effective way to reduce rape is to stop categorising things as rape. So spousal rape? Not Rape! Problem solved! Why! If we define rape as the unlawful and non-consensual sex with a woman (don’t be silly! Men never get raped.) as only stranger on woman the number of rapes drops precipitously. The vast majority of rape is by someone who knows the victim. Hell? Some people have raped without even realising what they are doing is rape. 

The best we can do to deal with rape is take sane precautions and teach our kids the meaning of consent and respect. This won’t eliminate rape but it will reduce the number of women and men being raped. There will always be dickheads and accidents.

Yes, I know rape can occur by accident. Bad communication is one and assumption is another. I have spoken to victims who gave consent out of fear because “that was what they were used to”. As in? A young man who told his boyfriend that he could have sex with him because his previous boyfriend would hit him if he said no. (So A gives B permission out of fear for for a repeat of saying no to person C. It is rape, but B is unaware of the inner turmoil”.

But these are rare. It may not stop these but it will stop a lot of the marital and drunk person rape.

This is progress. The past was not better. These rapes still existed, it is just that no one cared about them when they did happen.

Colleges and universities are being educated by Washington and are finding the experience excruciating. They are learning that when they say campus victimizations are ubiquitous (“micro-aggressions,” often not discernible to the untutored eye, are everywhere), and that when they make victimhood a coveted status that confers privileges, victims proliferate. And academia’s progressivism has rendered it intellectually defenseless now that progressivism’s achievement, the regulatory state, has decided it is academia’s turn to be broken to government’s saddle.

Colleges and Universities have to adhere to basic standards. I understand this sounds “commie” to you but here is the skinny….

Bob Jones University versus Harvard. Who would you hire? Harvard. Why? Stan-fucking-dards. Fuck! I go to some podunk medical school myself and I know that some frightful oik from Oxford with no experience would kick my arse on selection. I have to push through my selection back in the UK by hard graft rather than strength of reputation of qualification.

Standards. A part of that is how they treat minorities including the “silent” majority. You see, they outnumber us. Women. Yet we treat them rather badly.

And I will say this. Yes I am baffled by micro-aggressions. I have had people tell me I am to not “shame obese people” for merely voicing a medically sound fact that obesity is unhealthy and correct people who state that the BMI doesn’t apply to women. I also deal with a world where big aggressions occur. Maybe I just don’t see the little ones. But I am a belligerent man who sadly plays the game of modern conversation poorly. I don’t get office politics and such and maybe such aggressions do occur but I never realise that.

But I know someone who isn’t.

See? I am not around Hera. Hera is for want of a better word. An attractant to dickheads. See? Avicenna isn’t around and the mice will play. People hit on  my girlfriend when I am not there. She often has little say in it. People grab her in clubs and rub up against her when she clearly isn’t interested in rubbing up against them. While I don’t see the problem. No one wants to do that to me, so it doesn’t seem like a problem. But every time she goes out there is a little part of her that has to be wary whether the guy she is talking to is being friendly or being flirty. This includes “friends” of hers who have done similar things. I am not a possessive person so I find the chat up attempts from people who don’t know she is seeing me as amusing. But those who do know are doing so only because I am not around to “scare them off”.

People bump into women, grab them and hold them for no reason apart from “women in clubs”. You can do those things. It is just that you should ask permission.

It costs nothing to say (or scream into the ear) “Fancy a Dance”. She is either going to say “yes” or “no” and that’s a damn sight better than simply grabbing a woman and hoping she doesn’t mind.

I don’t question other people’s lives. I have enough problems with my own to waste time judging other people’s victim status. If there even is one. I got stuff to do.

Consider the supposed campus epidemic of rape, a.k.a. “sexual assault.” Herewith, a Philadelphia magazine report about Swarthmore College, where in 2013 a student “was in her room with a guy with whom she’d been hooking up for three months”:

It isn’t a supposed epidemic. It is an epidemic mate. I mean if 1 in 10 people have the flu it is a flu epidemic. If 1 in 10 people are sexual harassed, assaulted or raped in their life then is that not an epidemic too?

“They’d now decided — mutually, she thought — just to be friends. When he ended up falling asleep on her bed, she changed into pajamas and climbed in next to him. Soon, he was putting his arm around her and taking off her clothes. ‘I basically said, “No, I don’t want to have sex with you.” And then he said, “OK, that’s fine” and stopped. . . . And then he started again a few minutes later, taking off my panties, taking off his boxers. I just kind of laid there and didn’t do anything — I had already said no. I was just tired and wanted to go to bed. I let him finish. I pulled my panties back on and went to sleep.’”

Six weeks later, the woman reported that she had been raped. Now the Obama administration is riding to the rescue of “sexual assault” victims. It vows to excavate equities from the ambiguities of the hookup culture, this cocktail of hormones, alcohol and the faux sophistication of today’s prolonged adolescence of especially privileged young adults.

George, you  are much much older than me. I cannot believe I have to explain this to you but consent is transient. Just because you gave consent for 3 months doesn’t mean consent is forever. Hell even WHILE having sex, consent is an ongoing process. Consent can be revoked.

Even in BDSM where there are safe words and cues and the like.

No

Means

No

This is sexual assault even if she had slept with a hundred dudes in hundred minutes. If she says no, number 101 needs to stop. And vice versa. For men the pressure to perform and be on the ball (so to speak) creates unhealthy ideas on performance. Men can say no too.

The woman here had been raped. She had said no. And he did not listen. She did not fight back. That is not a crime. We don’t prosecute robberies and muggings based on how much the victim struggled and we don’t categorise rape based on how much you fought back.

The administration’s crucial and contradictory statistics are validated the usual way, by official repetition; Joe Biden has been heard from. The statistics are: One in five women is sexually assaulted while in college, and only 12 percent of assaults are reported. Simple arithmetic demonstrates that if the 12 percent reporting rate is correct, the 20 percent assault rate is preposterous. Mark Perry of the American Enterprise Institute notes, for example, that in the four years 2009 to 2012 there were 98 reported sexual assaults at Ohio State. That would be 12 percent of 817 total out of a female student population of approximately 28,000, for a sexual assault rate of approximately 2.9 percent — too high but nowhere near 20 percent.

Over 3 years. If a woman lives 60 years as an adult and has a 3% chance of being raped over a 3 year period.. That is roughly 20 instances of a 3% chance. It’s kind of likely that 1 in 5 is a LIFETIME sexual assault rate. Or that 1 in 5 women will be exposed to sexual violence which includes rape, harassment, threats and assault.

Education Department lawyers disregard pesky arithmetic and elementary due process. Threatening to withdraw federal funding, the department mandates adoption of a minimal “preponderance of the evidence” standard when adjudicating sexual assault charges between males and the female “survivors” — note the language of prejudgment. Combine this with capacious definitions of sexual assault that can include not only forcible sexual penetration but also nonconsensual touching. Then add the doctrine that the consent of a female who has been drinking might not protect a male from being found guilty of rape. Then comes costly litigation against institutions that have denied due process to males they accuse of what society considers serious felonies.

Actually? Your fear tends to go the other way.

Our courts work by  reasonable doubt. If you can show reasonable doubt that consent was given then a case cannot go to court. The major reason why so few rape cases are prosecuted is that the evidence is insufficient to get a conviction. That legal fees and the rigmarole of court  to lose is “not worth it economically for the police and for the victims”.

And Will? It is simple. All ponies are horses, not all horses are ponies. All rape is sexual assault, sexual assault is not rape. You can have sexual harassment or verbally saying things that a person finds uncomfortable and inappropriate to the situation. No one’s going to arrest you for saying “kiss me you sexy beast” in your bedroom  but more so in your boardroom. You can have sexual assault which is touching a person inappropriately and unnecessarily. So if I said “loosen her clothing” in light of doing CPR and to get a safe connection  with the defibrillator  no one would bat an eyelid over my actions. If I did the same thing for a job interview for a nanny it would be sexual assault. And indeed there are different legal terms and systems that deal with forcible penetration with an object, a foreign body, a body part or a penis. Some of these come under different classifications for legal purposes but the end definition is the same.

It is rape if you don’t have consent to do these things. You may enjoy getting penetrated and being whipped by your lover but it doesn’t mean “Random Stranger” can do it irrespective of how drunk you are.

Now academia is unhappy about the Education Department’s plan forgovernment to rate every institution’s educational product. But the professors need not worry. A department official says this assessment will be easy: “It’s like rating a blender.” Education, gadgets — what’s the difference?

Because it is being used for performance guidelines like the “no child left behind policy” which harmed schools by cutting funding to schools that needed it so encouraging failing schools to cheat and bend the rules to survive. Teacher Feedback is vital to improve teaching, just not as a system to make cuts.

Meanwhile, the newest campus idea for preventing victimizations — an idea certain to multiply claims of them — is “trigger warnings.” They would be placed on assigned readings or announced before lectures. Otherwise, traumas could be triggered in students whose tender sensibilities would be lacerated by unexpected encounters with racism, sexism, violence (dammit, Hamlet, put down that sword!) or any other facet of reality that might violate a student’s entitlement to serenity. This entitlement has already bred campus speech codes that punish unpopular speech. Now the codes are begetting the soft censorship of trigger warnings to swaddle students in a “safe,” “supportive,” “unthreatening” environment, intellectual comfort for the intellectually dormant.

I sort of agree.

Look? I am a robust dude. I grew up around horrific sights and am inured to it. Just this morning I got to see the press release from ISIS of them shooting and beheading young men in Iraq. But I understand that not everyone has my stomach. I am sure George Will may think himself tough but plenty of “tough guys” have fainted working in our unrefrigerated morgue where bodies can get “ripe”. I have seen “rotting” corpses and worked with them. I have seen soldiers who are the epitome of big strong and manly and stoic balk at touching them. To me it was just like being 5 again and nothing really different.

Guess what? Most people cannot hack it. And I know people who have had far more crazy lives than me. I know people who have survived rape gangs in the DRC and gone on to be doctors. I know people who protected victims of genocides and rapes. We don’t live in a world with trigger warnings.

But these kids do. These kids CAN live in a world with trigger warnings Mr. Will. And that is not a bad thing. Much as I wish I had their lives of Yolo and stupid hats and parties but I choose to do this instead because I lived a life bereft of trigger warnings and learnt to deal with it. But we shouldn’t have to deal with it.

Some people genuinely cannot handle the work I do. I have had to go to suicides of children who failed exams. I even worked at a hospital where someone jumped into the foyer.

Life doesn’t have trigger warnings, but it should. We try and steel people for content. I do try and write trigger warnings on my work and it is so that people can steel themselves to witness the  content rather than to avoid it. You aren’t more manly simply because you guffaw in the face of gore.

The thing is Will here has a serene life. Many of us do not. Many of us have had to live lives sans serenity. Imagine if a book made an exploding noise on page 72. Now imagine that book distributed in a VA or Legion Hospital. Bet George Will won’t be whinging about trigger warnings.

As for Campus Speech codes? Come now. You only don’t like them because they deny you the right to bring hate speech into campuses to tell those no good dirty gays about how they are going to burn in hell because the biggest issue that your god is worried about is what two gay guys do. Can’t sort world hunger out until Adam and Steve stop doing it?

You seem to not understand how trigger warnings work. It is simple. Trigger Warnings indicate uncomfortable content. You are now aware of what is inside your Deal or No Deal Box and can choose to open it or not. If you are part of a course then you HAVE to open it still and you do so knowing what to expect so it isn’t a shock.

A simple difference? A Trigger warning is like going into a Morgue. You know there are dead bodies in there and fully expect to see one rather than in your bed when you wake up. Even the coroner would find the second one infinitely more disturbing. A trigger warning is basic courtesy. Sometimes it is in the title (aka – Everyone knows we are discussing rape here) and sometimes it is mentioned.

I know life doesn’t come with trigger warnings for serious events. No one warns you about a car accident after all. But the point is that there are people who have trauma and who are made uncomfortable by certain topics who would just like a little heads up.

It isn’t censorship. Good grief! Do you think sex and death doesn’t sell TV and Movies and Games and Music? The boxes contain trigger warnings too and no one calls that censorship.

Academia has never been antagonistic towards cultural common sense. It may contain highly educated people who oppose cultural norms that are harmful such as sexism and racism and homophobia but in general it stands by cultural norms that are not harmful.

What government is inflicting on colleges and universities, and what they are inflicting on themselves, diminishes their autonomy, resources, prestige and comity. Which serves them right. They have asked for this by asking for progressivism.

Interesting.

I disagree with George Will. The “Supposed Campus Epidemic of Rape a.k.a Sexual Assault” vibe is a downplaying of rape and sexual assault by an appeal to ignorance. After all? Who knows if it is rape or not! You are trying to create a modern day portrayal that rape accusations are like a witch hunt. That places of education that are improving their handling of rape cases somehow will destroy education.

Poppy Cock and Balderdash.

I live in a place where rape has revolutionised the way people think. Where the big driver in feminism and equality of gender right now was the rape of just one woman. A rape so horrific it made the world speak.

I have not been raped or sexually assaulted. I have had the pleasure of being a man and so unlikely to face those fears. I do not have to fear rape as much as women do. But I have heard the stories of people I work with and my patients. Most people are raped by someone they know and someone they couldn’t fight against. I know women who were raped by their husbands and just shrug it off saying “that’s life”. Boys will be boys.

And I think it is bullshit that boys will be boys is an excuse to allow people to get away with a crime. The fact of the matter is that it is easier to say that you weren’t raped. There is no honour in admitting you were raped. Even in the west. All it gets you is questions about whether it was legitimate rape or not.

You are much stronger than most women. Hera’s done Karate. She’s done it for years. I can still hold both hands together in one of mine and have her struggle to break out of it if we are playing. The power difference is absolute when it comes to physical strength. I am responsible  with it (or I endeavour to be). Others are not. A man can easily force a woman down and rape her no matter what she does and how much she struggles.

Many women say yes because they fear violence. That coercion is still rape. Implied violence or the fear of potential violence makes people do crazy things. A gang of yobs doesn’t have to hit you to make you hand over your wallet during a mugging. The implied threat of a beating is all it takes.

Then there is the fear and the shame and the denial. You have to fight the fear of the rapist. Society portrays you are broken and soiled. And finally you have to deal with the police. In India? The police are sometimes as bad as the rapists themselves. Then there is the medical check up.

You are made to stand on white paper while your clothing is carefully removed to collect evidence. Your body and pubic hair is searched for evidence of DNA and vaginal swabs are taken in the hope of finding the DNA of your rapist. If your rapist is someone known to you? Then good luck prosecuting if he was your boyfriend or your husband. It is nigh on impossible bar physical evidence of assault to substantiate rape in a relationship that involves consensual sex that has lead to rape. There are no empirical markers.

All this proves is that you had sex and who the man is. If there is insufficient evidence then even that becomes shaky. You may have been raped by a foreign object or the person may have used a condom leaving little evidence. You may have had a shower destroying the evidence. There simply may not be enough evidence to convict someone of the crime of rape.

Rape confers no privilege. It scars and torments its victims male, female and indeed trans. If you have ever spoken to the victims of rape or worked with them you would see that it confers no privileges unless you think a long and laborious process of healing is fun.

The women I have treated often don’t wish to know that they were raped because no one would marry them. They are “spoilt” for other men. I have to try and encourage them to come and have regular health check ups. STDs are a major worry. Many women have gotten HIV this way but cannot admit to having it because it would doom them to pariah status. Their lives are defined by their rapes. As are many western women whose lives are defined by their rapes.

The trust is gone. Men are no longer sexy beings but things that can cause incalculable harm. You may joke about “Not All Men” but the victim of the rape has to fear all men to be safe. PTSD, Trauma, Depression and Hiding away from the world. It may not just be physical injuries but those on your psyche.

And this is a view from a bystander. An observer looking in. Imagine how much worse it is if you actually experienced it. I urge you Mr. Will to speak to the victims of rapes you so denigrate.

Comments

  1. Pierce R. Butler says

    I urge you Mr. Will to speak to the victims of rapes you so denigrate.

    If only there were some way that could happen without subjecting said victims to the ordeal of speaking to Mr. Will.

  2. qwints says

    “All rape is sexual assault, sexual assault is not rape.”

    Different legal systems use different terms. RAINN is a good source on this for the US. There really isn’t currently an accepted set of definitions in the US, mostly because the Federal statistical definitions lagged so behind (using a 1927 definition until 2012).

  3. smrnda says

    George Will, privileged white jackass clutching his pearls over the supposed *perks* that rape victims are unjustly getting. Makes him a pretty typical US conservative, they all seem to be outdoing each other over finding more people to be shitty towards in their punching downward pissing contest.

    And yeah, what is so hard to get about consent? If I had a car, and I let someone drive my car any number of times, and I told them *no you cannot drive the car tonight* and they hotwired it and drove off, it is still auto theft. Same deal with sex.

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