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Of Rape graders and Hero worship.

Richard Dawkins ill-informed attempt to grade rape triggered discussions and heated debates on the issue of rape. Sure enough, rape apologists and victim blamers used the opportunity to proudly show off their self-inflicted ignorance and bigotry on the issue of Rape. It was also another avenue for hero worship. I did get some very worrisome responses on my Facebook wall to my blogpost RichardDawkins@Confused.Com: No one said you endorsed rape, what you did was grade rape and that is appalling. It also exposes the fact that many are actually happy to blame victims but won’t admit that they are rape apologists.

I plan on making some of these discussions into a blogpost but first I need to get this very misguided, unconscionable comment made by a proudly ignorant person out of the way.

Trigger alert- Contains Trivialisation of Rape.

Rape apologist 1Rape apologist

Can’t one point out the varying degrees in issues anymore without being labelled as supportive? Richard Dawkins is a respectable humanist and will not in anyway support rape of any sort to the best of my knowledge. I have followed his work well enough to confidently arrive at that conclusion.

All the man did was reasonably say that one type of rape was to a much more lesser degree, negatively impactful than the other. Claiming this to mean he meant rape is acceptable is illogical. Must people be totally abecedarian in their writing before we understand what they mean? I will expect people to be rational enough to understand what he was trying to say. It’s like saying getting shot in the head is a better way to die than being drowned. Does that mean one is advocating murder?

If asked a rhetorical question as thus: if you were to experience rape, would you rather it be a total armed stranger whose mental state you are unaware of or would you rather it be a friend that slips a sleeping pill in your drink? Which would you choose without going off a tangent?”

Rape is a very dicey situation and at times, the accused sometimes is the real victim as there are no witnesses. In the case of obesere, sentiments have played a huge role in what side of the divide most people are casted into.

Yeah, this was from a guy who is clearly in the orgasmic throes of hero worship and who although identify as an atheist and humanist, has clearly created for himself, a God  Delusion.

He wrote:

 All the man did was reasonably say that one type of rape was to a much more lesser degree, negatively impactful than the other.

Once again, there is nothing reasonable about grading rape. And no, you cannot objectively generalise on the impact of rape. People are affected by trauma in different ways. We handle and cope with trauma differently.

He went on to ask:

Must people be totally abecedarian in their writing before we understand what they mean?

Seriously, what the heck does that even mean? It is probably a misguided reference to the phrase “As simple as ABC”. Yuk, what is with the “abecedarian” thing? It sounds like an alien slang an arsehole developed to make himself feel superior? You know, a sort of elitist language formulated with the thought process that goes somewhat like this:  “I don’t need to speak your ABC language, I live on a planet above you, where words as simple as ABC are considered  pedestrian and you lot who speak it are called “abecedarian”!  

Yeah, this guy surely has issues. He obviously LOOKS UP to his hero, and has placed him on such a high pedestal that he practically views him as an alien who hovers above us mere mortals. His hero is clearly above speaking our “abecedarian” language. His hero probably speaks in tongues. you know, like when the mythical holy spirits possess believers and make them speak in tongues, but in this case, this guy’s hero becomes so intelligent that he bursts out in some abracadabra language (mostly on twitter) which only those who are chosen can understand.

I guess what this starry-eyed worshipper of Richard Dawkins wants us to understand is that his idol does not have to demean himself by speaking “abecedarian”. And to think this self-identified atheist is fond of going off on a ranting spree at believers who hero worship their pastors and Imams. If only he would learn to take out the log in his own eyes before trying to remove the speck in other people’s eyes.

He went on to say:

I will expect people to be rational enough to understand what he was trying to say. It’s like saying getting shot in the head is a better way to die than being drowned. Does that mean one is advocating murder?

This guy really does not get it. Why would anyone think their preferred method of being murdered should be the objective default for everyone else? Some people just don’t get it and they are insufferable when they fancy themselves as intelligent beings who are merely trying to educate us mere mortals whose ability to reason is impeded by that ‘awful’ thing called emotions.

He went on to ask us rhetorically how we would choose to be raped:

If asked a rhetorical question as thus: if you were to experience rape, would you rather it be a total armed stranger whose mental state you are unaware of or would you rather it be a friend that slips a sleeping pill in your drink? Which would you choose without going off a tangent?

Yeah, just another guy who most likely would never experience the horror of date rape or stranger rape, asking us “rhetorically” how we would preferred to be raped. Nay, he is actually telling women that they should ‘rationally’ prefer to have a pill slipped in their drink and raped to being raped by an armed stranger whose mental state they don’t know. Seriously, how much more stupid can this guy be? Very stupid actually but this, this, this is just beyond stupid.

He feels obliged to tell us that having our drink spiked and raped by someone we know shouldn’t cause us as much distress as being raped by an armed stranger whose mental state we do not know. Part of what he is saying is that the unknown mental state of this stranger-rapist could lead to murder. Another asshole blaming mental health for murder. He is basically saying only people who have mental health problems commit murder. I am not surprised that he is also an Ableist asshole.

Why can’t rape graders understand that we don’t need anyone grading rape, hypothetically or asking us stupid unconscionable questions like how we preferred to be raped?

We don’t need rape graders telling us that having our drink spiked and raped by someone known to us is better than being raped by an armed stranger.

We don’ need to tell rape victim Y that X had it worse than them because X was raped by a stranger while Y was only raped by her much beloved uncle. This is factually wrong and morally reprehensible.

Truly, keep your rape grading to yourself.

This particular rape grader proceeds to inform us that

Rape is a very dicey situation and at times, the accused sometimes is the real victim as there are no witnesses. In the case of obesere, sentiments have played a huge role in what side of the divide most people are casted into.

Another throw back to the “when it comes to rape, feminists let emotions cloud their judgement” chastisement.

Really, rape is a dicey situation? Seriously?

Dicey indeed! Rape victims did not choose to be raped. Being raped is not a risky venture victims embark thinking “Yeah, this could be dicey”.

A rapist does not ask his victim, “Hmm this could be dicey but do you wanna be raped or should we just have sex?”

Saying rape is a dicey situation is really unconscionable, reprehensible and so thoughtless.

Stop trying to excuse rape.

Stop trying to make it sound complicated.

Stop trying to make it out as if rape victims have a choice not to be raped.

Stop painting this picture of rape victims as if they have a say on or power over the Rape.

Dicey is when we can’t decide whether to use our benefits money to buy a new laptop to make applying for jobs easier or use the money to pay for rent and food.

Dicey is quitting one’s job to pursue a higher degree in the hope of getting a better job in future.

Dicey is leaving a well-paying job, loved ones and family behind to move to a new country with the hope of securing a better life.

Dicey is going out without the umbrella in the unpredictable British weather294379_176053899149448_1835148129_n

Dicey is paying upfront for a six month gym membership

Being rape is not dicey

Being a rapist is not dicey

Rape is not dicey.

Stop being a rape grader, Stop being a rape apologists.

There are no WORDS for Rape, just SENTENCES!

 

Comments

  1. Jackie says

    Excellent post! Thank you for taking the time to deconstruct the bad arguments of the Dawkins fans.

  2. hoary puccoon says

    He just couldn’t resist adding, “sometimes the accused is the real victim,” could he?

  3. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Rape is a very dicey situation and at times, the accused sometimes is the real victim as there are no witnesses. In the case of obesere, sentiments have played a huge role in what side of the divide most people are casted into.

    This is exactly what I knew would happen the minute I saw Dawkins’ tweets: a parade of creeps trying to tease out exactly where the line is between sex and rape. Also interesting: apparently a lack of witnesses makes the accused the “real victim” by default. WTF?

  4. smhll says

    I realize that my ability to translate from emotional man rant into emotional woman (me) understanding is imperfect, but I’m getting the ugly implication that at times people (date rape minimizers) are saying — some men who try to force their dates to have sex with them don’t actually feel like they are rapists. (Grinding my teeth at that thought.)

    (Yes, women can also commit rape. I just see relatively few women on the internet expressing a lot of angst that they might become rapists by accident. So, everybody, stay fairly sober and remember to ask.)

  5. Pen says

    Maybe we should ask him rhetorically which he would prefer: ‘friends’ who put sleeping pills in his drink and rape him or ‘friends’ who merely hit him over the head with a cosh and help themselves to his wallet.

    Except that I wouldn’t do a thing like that. I feel a bit ashamed of having written it really.

  6. Meggamat says

    @Alex- He is saying that people would have to sort everything alphabetically, so as to be completely neutral and not claim that one thing is worse than another.

  7. Steersman says

    You really, really, really might want to consider the views of women who have actually been raped, particularly those whose experiences don’t fit within the dogma you’re promoting. For instance, you may wish to peruse this comment and post by Maggie McNeill, The Honest Courtesan, which rather clearly proves the point that not all cases of rape are equally bad:

    Feminists are fond of equating all rape with aggravated rape, but as one who has experienced both I can tell you that simply isn’t true; aggravated rape is terrifying because of the possibility of death or disfigurement, but “date rape” – in other words, unwanted sex which occurs in the context of a voluntarily-entered sexual situation – isn’t nearly as bad. It’s highly unpleasant and may even be painful, but it’s not the worst thing that can happen to a woman.

    But maybe you would like to try repudiating her “lived experience” ….

  8. gog says

    @10. Steersman

    Bodily violations, regardless of whatever classification you want to apply are still violence. Referring to a partner that refused to stop when told as “unwanted sex” doesn’t make it not rape.

    Oh it’s not the worst thing that could happen to a woman. It’s just a violation of her autonomy and security. Not as big of a deal as legitimate rape, right?

    You are sounding awfully like a rape apologist. I think you should consider the implications of the phrase “unwanted sex” more completely.

  9. Aardpig says

    @11 Gog

    Apologies, but I can’t see anywhere in Steersman’s post — either in his text, or in the text he quoted — where it is stated that unwanted sex is not rape. Perhaps you can clarify…?

  10. Steersman says

    Gog (#11):

    Bodily violations, regardless of whatever classification you want to apply are still violence.

    And, pray tell, where have either I or Dawkins denied that? But his point seems to be that it is rather important to be differentiating between the levels or degrees of violence employed in any given crime as otherwise it seems to make a mockery of the very concept of justice, a civilized one in any case. Or maybe you think that the appropriate punishment for theft is amputation of the arm ….

    You may wish to peruse my response to Ophelia Benson, who seems to have abandoned the field on the question, on the analogy that Daniel Dennett used between various graduations of the crimes of, and punishments for, both murder and rape.

  11. gog says

    I’ll clarify: calling an act of rape “unwanted sex” looks like minimization.

    I object to that and think it should be clarified or denounced.

  12. gog says

    @13 Steersman

    I didn’t make any statement about the way justice systems work. Naturally, systems of criminal justice incorporate harm and statutory limitations on punishment in order to determine the sentence that one should receive. This is right and proper. What I object to is the attempt to make a scale of acceptable levels of outrage to varying degrees of violence by using the fact that more violent things happen to women. In short, I think we should sweat the small stuff, the “unwanted sex” is a symptom of larger social problems. Dismissing this assertion by saying “well, worse things do happen” does nothing to address or solve the underlying problem: trivialization and minimization.

  13. Aardpig says

    @14 Gog

    So Maggie McNeil should clarify or denounce the phrase “unwanted sex”, when describing one of her own rape experiences? Nicely ‘splained!

  14. Steersman says

    Gog (#15):

    I didn’t make any statement about the way justice systems work.

    No, but Yemisi alluded to or suggested it with her “There are no WORDS for Rape, just SENTENCES!” – 20 years to life at hard labour, presumably. And one might wonder at the point of the whole discussion if the crime isn’t going to have consequences, i.e., that there are going to be some different punishments that correspond to the different graduations in the crimes. Relative to which, you might note the following from “… the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs Division for the Advancement of Women”:

    Legislation should:

    2) Replace existing offences of rape and “indecent” assault with a broad offence of sexual assault graded based on harm;

    3) Provide for aggravating circumstances including, but not limited to, the age of the survivor, the relationship of the perpetrator and survivor, the use or threat of violence, the presence of multiple perpetrators, and grave physical or mental consequences of the attack on the victim;

    You, and Yemisi, might want to pay close attention to both the source and to the “graded based on harm” which, I would say, rather clearly contradicts Yemisi’s insistence that “you cannot objectively generalize on the impact of rape”; you both may wish to take that up with that UN Department “for the Advancement of Women”.

    Gog: This is right and proper. What I object to is the attempt to make a scale of acceptable levels of outrage to varying degrees of violence by using the fact that more violent things happen to women.

    Looks to me like you’re trying to have your cake and eat it too: you can’t, reasonably in any case and as far as I can see, accept the premise that “systems of criminal justice incorporate harm and statutory limitations” and not be “guilty” of being a “rape grader” – first class, with oak clusters. In addition, one might argue that the whole system of a spectrum of judicial punishments is predicated on an acknowledgement of different “levels of outrage”. Or maybe you’re equally outraged at speeding tickets and at the rape and murder of a child.

    But that “more violent things happen to women” looks like an egregious red herring. You might note that some 650 women die in childbirth in the US every year, but that there were some 4500 workplace deaths in the US in 2010, of whom some 97% were men. And that’s even before considering the 4486 US deaths in the Iraqi war [2003-2012], and the 58,000-odd US deaths in the Vietnamese one.

  15. gog says

    Steersman

    I’m making this short because I don’t really have the energy to try to discuss this with you in a way that you find totally satisfying. Whatever.

    20 years to life at hard labour, presumably.

    Where was this stated? In the past on another post? In a comment thread by another commenter not currently represented? I’m confused.

    Looks to me like you’re trying to have your cake and eat it too: you can’t, reasonably in any case and as far as I can see, accept the premise that “systems of criminal justice incorporate harm and statutory limitations” and not be “guilty” of being a “rape grader”

    Again, the justice system has a method for applying sentences, and there are limitations to what can be accomplished to punish an individual without impacting their human rights. The sentiment I’m trying to convey here doesn’t seem to have the nuance that I intended, probably due to my use of strong language condemning cultures of violence.

    So Maggie McNeil should clarify or denounce the phrase “unwanted sex”, when describing one of her own rape experiences? Nicely ‘splained!

    Okay, I can’t speak for Maggie McNeil’s experience. One of the rapes she experienced was brutal and violent, and another she characterized as merely “unwanted sex.” One put her at fear for her safety and security in a more immediate life-and-death sense, and (for her) the other one didn’t. However, without murder or battery or false imprisonment as aggravating factors (which should certainly impact sentencing! I’m not disagreeing! I can’t believe I have to explain my position on this!)

    But that “more violent things happen to women” looks like an egregious red herring. You might note that some 650 women die in childbirth in the US every year, but that there were some 4500 workplace deaths in the US in 2010, of whom some 97% were men

    I did not say anything like you’re imagining it. You’ve really twisted my words around here, so let’s backtrack and I’ll explain it more clearly. Stating that some rapes are more violent than others as an argument about how we should discuss and address the issue of violence against women as a broad social problem is minimization. Moreover, invoking job- and combat- related deaths (certainly, most of which happen to men) is the real red herring here because it’s not connected at all to the culture of violence against women and I have no idea why you’re bringing it up. I’m sincerely hoping that you just misunderstood my statement, because I’m trying to give you the benefit of the doubt here and have a discussion.

    I hope you understand me more clearly this time. I also hope that I left fewer ambiguities to be seized upon and misrepresented.

  16. Steersman says

    Gog (#18):

    You might try learning how to use the HTML tags listed in the “Leave a Reply” section; makes things much easier to parse, and less likely to lead to errors in interpretation.

    Steersman: 20 years to life at hard labour, presumably.

    Gog: Where was this stated?

    It wasn’t; it was a bit of hyperbolic sarcasm based on Yemisi’s “SENTENCE” which looked rather draconian to me and which that “20 years” phrase seemed consistent with. Which should have been obvious as it is a relatively common phrase, and easily found through Google.

    Gog: The sentiment I’m trying to convey here doesn’t seem to have the nuance that I intended ….

    Apparently not so you might try elaborating a little. And you could also actually address my arguments, notably that that UN department accepts “rape grading”, in effect, and that your own acceptance of “harm and statutory limitations” constitutes that as well.

    Gog: Okay, I can’t speak for Maggie McNeil’s experience. …. I’m not disagreeing! I can’t believe I have to explain my position on this!

    Yea, you do kind of have to explain your position. Seems quite clear to me, and apparently to Aardpig, that McNeill has quite clearly graded two cases of rape that were significantly different both subjectively and objectively, and that happened to her personally. Which you apparently accept. Yet don’t when it comes to the general case.

    Gog: I did not say anything like you’re imagining it. …. Stating that some rapes are more violent than others as an argument about how we should discuss and address the issue of violence against women as a broad social problem is minimization.

    You said “more violent things happen to women”, which is manifestly untrue, with diddly squat in the way of evidence or justification or elaboration. Which I pointed out with specific cases and examples. Which you have yet to address or refute.

    But pray tell, where have either I or Dawkins, or anyone else for that matter, actually tried to use the fact “some rapes are more violent than others” – which you accept but Yemisi apparently doesn’t – to somehow minimize “the issue of violence against women”? Seems to me that you and many others somehow think that accepting different “grades” of rape necessarily means minimizing the issue. Whereas I and many others see that attempt to link those two quite different phenomena with some kind of causal connection as an effort to exaggerate the severity of some cases, and as a refusal to address many other factors.

    Maybe you think that that exaggeration is a case of the end justifying the means, but the evidence suggests that that frequently turns out to be counter-productive. Apropos of which and as an illustrative analogy, you might be interested in this interview of Maggie McNeill wherein she decries the tendency of the “anti-trafficking” brigade to exaggerate the extent of that problem as a method of curtailing or limiting prostitution. But what was particularly interesting was the response from the interviewer:

    REASON: So let’s say that these [trafficking] numbers are in fact grossly exaggerated. But would you deny that there are women that are forced into prostitution?

    MCNEILL: No.

    REASON: Would you deny that there are children who are forced into it?

    MCNEILL: No.

    REASON: And then if that’s the case, then what is the harm of exaggerating? Because the argument that’s made is that it draws attention to a very important problem.

    MCNEILL: Oh, I’m sure it does. I’m sure it does draw attention. But the problem is that these—these false numbers, these inflated numbers are invariably linked to purported solutions that aren’t solutions. Greater criminalization. The so-called end demand which is the idea of pursuing clients. And the pretense is that sex workers are not being targeted when they still are. ….

    You might wish to reflect on the parable of the little boy who cried “wolf!” once too often.

  17. Steersman says

    Gog (#18):

    You might try learning how to use the HTML tags listed in the “Leave a Reply” section; makes things much easier to parse, and less likely to lead to errors in interpretation.

    Steersman: 20 years to life at hard labour, presumably.

    Gog: Where was this stated?

    It wasn’t; it was a bit of hyperbolic sarcasm based on Yemisi’s “SENTENCE” which looked rather draconian to me and which that “20 years” phrase seemed consistent with. Which should have been obvious as it is a relatively common phrase, and easily found through Google.

    Gog: The sentiment I’m trying to convey here doesn’t seem to have the nuance that I intended ….

    Apparently not so you might try elaborating a little. And you could also actually address my arguments, notably that that UN department accepts “rape grading”, in effect, and that your own acceptance of “harm and statutory limitations” constitutes that as well.

    Gog: Okay, I can’t speak for Maggie McNeil’s experience. …. I’m not disagreeing! I can’t believe I have to explain my position on this!

    Yea, you do kind of have to explain your position. Seems quite clear to me, and apparently to Aardpig, that McNeill has quite clearly graded two cases of rape that were significantly different both subjectively and objectively, and that happened to her personally. Which you apparently accept. Yet don’t when it comes to the general case.

    Gog: I did not say anything like you’re imagining it. …. Stating that some rapes are more violent than others as an argument about how we should discuss and address the issue of violence against women as a broad social problem is minimization.

    You said “more violent things happen to women”, which is manifestly untrue, with diddly squat in the way of evidence or justification or elaboration. Which I pointed out with specific cases and examples. Which you have yet to address or refute.

    But pray tell, where have either I or Dawkins, or anyone else for that matter, actually tried to use the fact “some rapes are more violent than others” – which you accept but Yemisi apparently doesn’t – to somehow minimize “the issue of violence against women”? Seems to me that you and many others somehow think that accepting different “grades” of rape necessarily means minimizing the issue. Whereas I and many others see that attempt to link those two quite different phenomena with some kind of causal connection as an effort to exaggerate the severity of some cases, and as a refusal to address many other factors.

    Maybe you think that that exaggeration is a case of the end justifying the means, but the evidence suggests that that frequently turns out to be counter-productive. Apropos of which and as an illustrative analogy, you might be interested in this interview of Maggie McNeill wherein she decries the tendency of the “anti-trafficking” brigade to exaggerate the extent of that problem as a method of curtailing or limiting prostitution. But what was particularly interesting was the response from the interviewer:

    REASON: So let’s say that these [trafficking] numbers are in fact grossly exaggerated. But would you deny that there are women that are forced into prostitution?

    MCNEILL: No.

    REASON: Would you deny that there are children who are forced into it?

    MCNEILL: No.

    REASON: And then if that’s the case, then what is the harm of exaggerating? Because the argument that’s made is that it draws attention to a very important problem.

    MCNEILL: Oh, I’m sure it does. I’m sure it does draw attention. But the problem is that these—these false numbers, these inflated numbers are invariably linked to purported solutions that aren’t solutions. Greater criminalization. The so-called end demand which is the idea of pursuing clients. And the pretense is that sex workers are not being targeted when they still are. ….

    You might wish to reflect on the parable and fate of the little boy who cried “wolf!” once too often.

  18. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Alex- Wow, thanks for the link!

    Abecedarians were a 16th-century German sect of Anabaptists who affected an absolute disdain for all human knowledge…They rejected every other means of instruction, and claimed that to be saved one must even be ignorant of the first letters of the alphabet; whence their name, A-B-C-darians.”

    Just WOW! And yeah, it doesn’t fit the context in which he used it.

  19. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Meggamat-

    He is saying that people would have to sort everything alphabetically, so as to be completely neutral and not claim that one thing is worse than another.

    Actually that interpretation does not fit the context. He used “abecedarian” to mean ‘simplistic’, derogatorily. It has nothing to do with neutrality or emotions, just “Must i stoop to your simplistic level of ABC before i am understood”?

  20. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Steersman- You quoted from a woman who was also trying to use her personal experience of rape to tell other rape victims how to grade their own rape trauma.

    Feminists are fond of equating all rape with aggravated rape, but as one who has experienced both I can tell you that simply isn’t true; aggravated rape is terrifying because of the possibility of death or disfigurement, but “date rape” – in other words, unwanted sex which occurs in the context of a voluntarily-entered sexual situation – isn’t nearly as bad. It’s highly unpleasant and may even be painful, but it’s not the worst thing that can happen to a woman.

    If you had any understanding of why people condemned Richard Dawkins remarks, you would understand why your reference is such a poor choice. It only tells me that you still don’t get what the argument is about.

    As I said in my post http://freethoughtblogs.com/yemmynisting/2014/07/31/richarddawkinsconfused-com-no-one-said-you-endorsed-rape-what-you-did-was-grade-rape-and-that-is-appalling/

    No matter who you are, you don’t use the perimeters of how you personally dealt with a trauma as a way to grade or tell others just how traumatic their experience is and how they should get over it. And this include Maggie McNeill.

    You also quoted THIS:

    in other words, unwanted sex which occurs in the context of a voluntarily-entered sexual situation – isn’t nearly as bad.

    The mere fact that you highlighted this tells me you are a rape apologist and a victim blamer. What this outrightly says is that Rape becomes mitigated as “unwanted sex” when a rape victim

    voluntarily-entered sexual situation

    and she went further to grade that rape situation as

    – isn’t nearly as bad.”

    This is the typical victim blaming and rape apologists. As I said in the introduction to my post, I intend to write more about the apologetic comments I got from the whole Richard Dawkins Rape ranking debacle.

  21. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Steersman- You asked

    “But maybe you would like to try repudiating her “lived experience”

    My concern is not to try to repudiate the experience of any victim, my concern is to let victims and non-victims know that they cannot use their personal experience to rank rape or any kind of trauma for EVERY OTHER VICTIM. Really, it is that simple, but no doubt rape apologists and victim blamers are hell bent on making it seems complicated. No matter how much you try to twist and turn the words of others, it won’t make rape a complicated issue. Rape is Rape.
    As I said in my post- http://freethoughtblogs.com/yemmynisting/2014/07/31/richarddawkinsconfused-com-no-one-said-you-endorsed-rape-what-you-did-was-grade-rape-and-that-is-appalling/

    “Rape is rape when looked at from every perspective. In court, it is either the rapist is found guilty of rape or not guilty of rape, there is no in-between. There is no Mild rape or half rape, A rapist can also be charged with other crimes like assault, battery or murder however, these are distinct crimes and can stand or fall on their own merits or demerits.These are stand-alone crimes, which does not make rape not rape simply because these were absent. Rape has its own jail term regardless of whether assault, battery or murder were involved. Assault, battery or Murder has its own jail term regardless of whether or not rape was involved. Rape is a crime on its own, it does not need to be graded before it qualifies as rape. And rape victims do not need to be told they could have had it worse!”

  22. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Steersman --

    Gog (#15):
    I didn’t make any statement about the way justice systems work.
    No, but Yemisi alluded to or suggested it with her “There are no WORDS for Rape, just SENTENCES!”

    Actually Steersman, “There are no WORDS for Rape, just SENTENCES” is a campaign slogan that was prominently used in campaign condemning Violence against women (VAW) by many women groups around the time the UN Handbook you are quoting from was being developed. It is a slogan against trivialisation of Rape. I had the sticker on my car bumper as well as my office door.
    And it means exactly what it says:
    -There are no words for Rape
    -- No ‘splaining’ for rape
    -No minimising rape language wise by ‘splaining ‘it as unwanted sex in a “voluntarily entered sexual situation”.
    -No mild rape, no medium rape
    -Rape is rape. And no words can be used to ‘splaine’ it away, just sentences.
    NO storytelling, just the prescribed SENTENCES.

    Again read this- http://freethoughtblogs.com/yemmynisting/2014/07/31/richarddawkinsconfused-com-no-one-said-you-endorsed-rape-what-you-did-was-grade-rape-and-that-is-appalling/

    Rape is rape when looked at from every perspective. In court, it is either the rapist is found guilty of rape or not guilty of rape, there is no in-between. There is no Mild rape or half rape, A rapist can also be charged with other crimes like assault, battery or murder however, these are distinct crimes and can stand or fall on their own merits or demerits. These are stand-alone crimes, which does not make rape not rape simply because these were absent. Rape has its own jail term regardless of whether assault, battery or murder were involved. Assault, battery or Murder has its own jail term regardless of whether or not rape was involved. Rape is a crime on its own, it does not need to be graded before it qualifies as rape. And rape victims do not need to be told they could have had it worse!

    Read it again, again and again until it sinks in.

  23. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Steersman --

    “You, and Yemisi, might want to pay close attention to both the source and to the “graded based on harm” which, I would say, rather clearly contradicts Yemisi’s insistence that “you cannot objectively generalize on the impact of rape”; you both may wish to take that up with that UN Department “for the Advancement of Women”.

    Oh thanks, discussions are still very much open on the recommended handbook you quoted from. We keep improving our laws via recommendations and we keep improving our recommendations too based on new evidence and enlightenment. The UN recommendation you quoted from is not law. Considering that I actively participated in the discussions of a few of the frontline women rights groups that helped with the recommendations , I can clearly inform you that issues of concern are being looked into and wordings are being improved upon to provide for the best clarification possible so as not to leave room for rape apologists or victim blaming.

  24. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    Steersman, In the course of this Richard Dawkins’ illogical as well as inappropriate remarks about Rape, I have encountered people especially rape apologists saying the exact same things you are saying in this comment thread. And one other thing I have noticed is, no matter how hard people try to show them exactly where they are getting it wrong in their arguments, they don’t ever seem to be ready to reason along. If anything, they attempt to ‘splained’, ‘splained’ and ‘splained’ away until they ‘sprain’ their brains but even that does not stop them from ‘splaining’ away. And your comments fall into that category.

    Also, the fact that you have no qualms about highlighting the part of the article you quoted from to make your point tells me you have no understanding of the issues concerning Rape, and what is under discussion. Your subsequent comments also tells me that no matter how clearly people show you where you are getting it all wrong, you won’t bother to reconsider your position. This can be deduced from the posts you linked to, where you have made similar arguments and on which many have tried to make you see reason, but all to no avail.

    You aren’t interested in a logical discussion, you are merely interested in justifying your rape apologist position. Maybe you are just afraid to think outside your comfort zone concerning rape, violence , feminist, women and your perceived men’s rights? Whatever the case, I must state clearly that you must not use my wall to continue your rape apologist stance. And stop with all the vituperations. Your arguments have been more than demolished not just on this thread but on so many other threads where you have made it. Don’t ‘splained’ away rape on my space. Don’t twist peoples arguments just so you could wear them down with your baseless vituperations. You won’t be given the platform to continue to ‘splain’ away Rape on my blog. Not on my watch.

  25. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @Aardpig-

    @11 Gog
    Apologies, but I can’t see anywhere in Steersman’s post — either in his text, or in the text he quoted — where it is stated that unwanted sex is not rape. Perhaps you can clarify…?

    Calling rape unwanted sex does not just look like minimisation, it is minimisation and trivialisation. Why would anyone want to downgrade it? Why not call it what it is; RAPE? Is it that by downgrading, minimalizing and trivialising it with your choice of words, you hope to make the victim not appear as a RAPIST but as one who merely had sex with someone who put themselves in a sexual situation but did not want sex? Why the ‘splaining’? Rape is Rape. A Rapist is a Rapist. Stop trying so hard to explain rape away.

  26. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    Maggie McNeil was quoted as saying:

    the Feminists are fond of equating all rape with aggravated rape, but as one who has experienced both I can tell you that simply isn’t true; aggravated rape is terrifying because of the possibility of death or disfigurement, but “date rape” – in other words, unwanted sex which occurs in the context of a voluntarily-entered sexual situation – isn’t nearly as bad. It’s highly unpleasant and may even be painful, but it’s not the worst thing that can happen to a woman.

    @Aardpig --

    @14 Gog
    So Maggie McNeil should clarify or denounce the phrase “unwanted sex”, when describing one of her own rape experiences? Nicely ‘splained!

    Yes she should clarify and state clearly that IT IS HER PERSONAL EXPERIENCE and SUBJECTIVE INTERPRETATION which does not necessarily hold true for every rape victim. She not only described it as such for herself BUT FOR ALL RAPE VICTIMS. This is wrong . If a domestic abuse victim says it is not domestic abuse, it still does not stop it from being domestic abuse. If a rape victim says it is just unwanted sex, it still does not stop it from being RAPE.

    Rape is rape. It is defined in criminal law. And rape victims don’t stop being rape victims because they are dealing with it in a different way or seeing it in a different light.

    As i said in the blogpost: RichardDawkins@Confused.Com: No one said you endorsed rape, what you did was grade rape and that is appalling!

    “Yes, Richard Dawkins is entitled to his personal opinion. If Richard Dawkins said his personal experience of child abuse is less traumatic than the experience of another person, THAT WOULD BE HIS OPINION and he is very well entitled to that. However what the professor did was to use his own SUBJECTIVE EXPERIENCE to grade RAPE and PAEDOPHILIA for ALL VICTIMS and he tried to pass this blunder off as fact and termed people who don’t get it as illogical. THIS is what we are against.

    Feel free to insert Maggie McNeil wherever Richard Dawkins appears in that quote.

  27. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    @gog --

    I’ll clarify: calling an act of rape “unwanted sex” looks like minimization.
    I object to that and think it should be clarified or denounced.

    Thanks for calling out rape apologists and victims blamers on this thread.

  28. Steersman says

    Yemisi said (#29):

    As I said in the blogpost: RichardDawkins@Confused.Com: No one said you endorsed rape, what you did was grade rape and that is appalling!:

    “Yes, Richard Dawkins is entitled to his personal opinion. …. However what the professor did was to use his own SUBJECTIVE EXPERIENCE to grade RAPE and PAEDOPHILIA for ALL VICTIMS and he tried to pass this blunder off as fact and termed people who don’t get it as illogical. THIS is what we are against.

    As I’m not such a fan boy of Dawkins as to insist that he walks on water, I’ll concede that he may have gone too far in insisting that his grading scale was applicable to all victims and all cases. However, I might point out two things: first, it wasn’t just his subjective experience as he rather clearly, for honest interlocutors at least, pointed out different degrees of violence in different cases of rape; and, second, he conceded in later tweets, though I don’t have the links handy, that many other individuals might have different responses to the same objectively defined events.

    So while I think it important to emphasize that rape is still rape regardless of the circumstances, I think you and many others in your cohort are rather too quick to discount the fact that a rather large number of people argue – based on their own personal experiences – that some rapes or sexual assaults are worse than others. Seems to me that you’re mistaking the process of grading severities of crimes with an insistence that someone is trying to deny that a crime has been committed. Maybe some people do, and for which they should be castigated. But to deny those facts, that the law accepts different “grades” of other crimes (manslaughter versus first degree murder), that the concept of joint liability and responsibility has a substantial degree of credibility within jurisprudence, seems rather anti-intellectual at best, and decidedly pigheaded and agenda-or-dogma driven at worst.

  29. Steersman says

    And, in passing, don’t you think it inordinately vain that the background of your blog consists of nothing but multiple copies of you in a coyly winsome pose?

  30. says

    @ Steersman
    Rape experience cannot be graded in the single dimension mode suggested by Dawkins. It is simply idiotic even as an oversimplified theoretical example. It’s also a lie that some subjects are “forbidden” to begin with. It’s just that offensive foolish thinking garners offended responses.

    Inter alia, you’re a bit of a douchebag, aren’t you?

  31. Steersman says

    F (#33):

    Rape experience cannot be graded in the single dimension mode suggested by Dawkins. It is simply idiotic even as an oversimplified theoretical example.

    Probably not, although I think it’s fairly obvious that he conceded implicitly even if it wasn’t stated explicitly that there were at least two dimensions, i.e., the fairly objective one of the degree of violence present in the commission of the crime, and the largely subjective one of the amount of psychological trauma experienced by the victim – betrayal of trust for example. Presumably there are others but one would think that those two would cover most of the ground.

    It’s also a lie that some subjects are “forbidden” to begin with. It’s just that offensive foolish thinking garners offended responses.

    Not at all sure what you’re getting at there. Who’s talked of or suggested there were “forbidden” subjects? Although a quote of Hitchens that Dawkins tweeted may be of relevance:

    ‘I’m very depressed how in this country you can be told “That’s offensive” as though those two words constitute an argument.’ C. Hitchens.

    That someone comes up with an “offended response” is no guarantee that it holds any water. And my experience is that the “heat” of response frequently correlates negatively with the strength of the claim.

    Inter alia, you’re a bit of a douchebag, aren’t you?

    Anything in particular that “chaps your hide”? Or is that just a general objection to the cut of my jib?

Trackbacks

  1. […] Of Rape graders and Hero worship.--”Once again, there is nothing reasonable about grading rape. And no, you cannot objectively generalise on the impact of rape. People are affected by trauma in different ways. We handle and cope with trauma differently.” […]

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