Thursday, October 15, 2015

Don't Teach Girls to Defend Themselves Against Rape: John D. Sutter Edition

   This nonsense is so idiotic that it's vastly, irresistibly angrifying.
   First, no serious person doubts that rape is the fault of the rapist. I am told that there used to be such people...but it was obviously before my time...or in a different place or something...because for all the tales I've heard about that, I've never encountered a real person saying it.
   Second, nobody's saying not to try to inform any guys out there who might possibly not realize it that rape is wrong. Knock yourselves out with that. Personally, I doubt that there's anyone who (a) doesn't realize it, but (b) can nevertheless be reached / persuaded. But if there are any such guys, it'd be good to reach 'em. Do it! And godspeed.
   But the real point here: these morons have got to stop pretending that (i) teaching boys not to rape and (ii) teaching girls how to avoid rape are mutually exclusive.
   Said morons also need to stop letting their crackpot ideologies get in the way of saving actual lives. Perhaps in a strangely perfect-yet-still-obviously-imperfect world, it would always be enough just to teach people not to be bad, and no one would ever have to be taught how to defend himself/herself, nor how to avoid being a victim. But that's not the real world. These ideologues are more interested in clinging tenaciously to the panglossian idea that women as a matter of principle should never, ever have to do anything to avoid rape than they are to actually minimizing rape.
   This crackpot theory--like so many crackpot theories on the left--is actually based on a more fundamental crackpot theory: that it is impossible for any women, anywhere, ever to have any power to lower the probability of being raped. And that crackpot theory, in its turn, is based on another, more fundamental crackpot theory: that any suggestion that someone can defend herself against rape is "victim-blaming"...
   Say what you will about the right...they're nutty as a fruitcake alright...but their wingnuttery just doesn't seem as highly theoretical, nor as utterly divorced from any semblance of reality...
   Blaming a blameless victim is wrong. But, as a simple matter of obvious fact, not all victims are blameless. If I decide to text while driving, and am hit and badly injured by an extremely reckless driver in an accident I might otherwise have avoided, then I bear a certain part of the blame. If I decide to recreationally harass someone known to commit criminal assault, and he beats the crap out of me, then I bear part of the blame. If a woman decides to date a man with violent or misogynistic tendencies, and he rapes her, then she is partially responsible, and no amount of denying this will change that fact.
   The problem with crackpot versions of feminism is that they always want to make women a special case. And rape is certainly no exception. In particular, they want to make it into a crime so horrible that it is incommensurable with any other crime, and they want to make it into a crime that is impossible for women to ever contribute to. It's a terrible crime, and there are certainly many, many cases in which the victim bears no measure of blame whatsoever... But it is not a logical impossibility for her to do so. In actual fact, some women contribute to their own victimization just as some victims of any crime contribute to theirs.
   But we needn't even go into any of that. As an irrefutable matter of fact, women can lower the odds of being raped by learning to defend themselves. And so they should learn to do so. Just as men should learn to defend themselves in fistfights. And pointing those things out in no way blames victims, nor is it inconsistent with recognizing that criminals should not commit crimes.
   Perhaps it's the breathy, brainless, smug, self-satisfied, moralistic tone with which idiocy such as Sutters is delivered that so angers me. But at least part of it is that I have no time for dogmatic morons who are willing to sacrifice the real lives of real people to their idiotic theories.


Anonymous cb said...

All the hate-reading you do of feminists and this gem slipped under your radar?

Key graf (bolded in original): "Make rape legal if done on private property"

7:05 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...


That dude has something to do with *Return of Kings,* right?

I still can't figure out whether that site is satire or not...

7:26 PM  
Blogger The Mystic said...

Yeah, apparently the guy explicitly claims that article was a work of satire...though it wasn't very funny. It was hardly distinguishable as satire, at the very least, since his allegedly actual beliefs (e.g. as put forth in his little list of principles) are just as incoherent, and towards a not-dissimilar end, so...

He might need to work on his satire.

And brain.

And to add an insult of atypical scope to his nonsense, he claims to be reading Aurelius' Meditations.

What an asshat.

12:57 AM  

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