Tag Archives: civil rights

Why feminists should drop their “rape culture” rhetoric

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In recent weeks, a lengthy (and entirely uncorroborated) story in Rolling Stone about a particularly horrendous alleged rape at UVA has brought the concept of “rape culture” to the forefront of public consciousness. While awareness of the problem of rape is an eminently good thing, the feminist contention that the culture as a whole is supportive of rape in any real sense is absolutely devoid of merit. To make matters worse, most feminists are still clinging stubbornly to the notion that rape is always – or at least, usually –  a crime committed against women by men. They demonstrate no desire whatsoever to prevent men from being raped, despite recent studies indicating that men are the victims of this crime nearly as frequently as women, and that those who rape men are often women. Even those feminists who admit that men can be raped almost never admit that it’s women who often rape them. Not only are feminists ignoring almost half of the victims of rape (the same ones who are ignored far too often already), there is precious little reason to think that all their talk of “rape culture” has done anything to make anyone safer. There is, however, mounting evidence that the insistence that rape culture has been institutionalized far and wide has rendered many people utterly terrified to think critically about any particular claim of rape, no matter how far fetched said claim is in the light of day. Anyone who questions any detail of an alleged victim’s version of events is told that they are part of rape culture, which is really the same thing as saying they are personally responsible for rape.

For the average person, this isn’t that burdensome in and of itself, beyond the outrage of being guilted about things we have nothing at all to do with. Most of us wouldn’t dream of injecting ourselves into an alleged trauma that we’re not involved in. Even if we secretly suspect someone claiming to have been raped is exaggerating or lying outright, we’re not going to consider it our place to tell them so, unless we’re in possession of actual evidence that we feel a moral obligation to present, or their story fails to add up in such obvious ways that pretending to believe it is basically the same as pretending to be stupid. However, when fear of contradicting feminist ideology gets to the point that even journalists are disregarding their sacred obligation to the truth and reporting rape claims as absolute fact without bothering to confirm important details like whether or not the alleged rapists even exist, it becomes important to note that rape culture rhetoric is largely to blame for that. When universities across the country are responding to the spectre of rape culture by putting young men accused of heinous crimes on trial in campus kangaroo courts instead of courts of law, civil rights are undeniably being trampled as a direct result of misguided feminist activism. These men may not go to jail due to being found guilty of rape or sexual misconduct by campus tribunal, but they have still publicly been branded a sex criminal, ruining their reputations and annihilating their future career prospects. Sentencing someone to a lifetime of ridicule and potential poverty because they can’t find a decent job is not preferable to sending them to the slammer, and there isn’t nearly enough oversight on how these campus tribunals conduct their investigations.

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When a rape claim is handled in a court of law, rather than by a university which has repeatedly demonstrated a pro-feminist bias, belief in rape culture requires one to believe that a conviction is automatically the “correct” result every time out. There has never been a man cleared of rape charges who feminists didn’t immediately state should have been found guilty, no matter how compelling the case for his innocence may have been, and despite the fact that many prominent rape claims have been proven to be hoaxes in recent years. The woman who falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of rape even went on to murder her boyfriend, yet neither that, nor the fact that the young men she accused were exonerated was given nearly as much attention by the media as the initial lie that she’d been raped. Making a false rape claim isn’t something most women would do, but it does seem probable that growing hysteria over rape culture is being exploited by those women who are willing to lie about serious crimes that destroy lives.

Man_wrongly_accused_of_rape_speaks_out_o_2300070002_10001779_ver1.0_320_240   It also seems (so far, at least) that lying about being raped is an exclusively female phenomenon. I’m not aware of any case where a man has lied about being raped by a woman. Contrarily, even if we don’t count Rolling Stone‘s thoroughly criticized recent article, more details of which are still likely to be brought to light, there remain dozens of known instances where women have lied about being raped by men. Defense of or support for rape is nowhere near as epidemic as feminists like to pretend, but the very idea of rape culture is victimizing people in tangible and irreversible ways. Many of those victims are men who are falsely accused and not given a fair chance to defend themselves, but we mustn’t discount the women who are convinced by feminists that they have to live in constant terror of being raped. These women often end up suffering from mental anguish similar to what actual rape victims go through. They spend so much time thinking about terrible things they’ve been warned are probably about to happen to them that it’s almost like they’ve already been raped by feminists. As far as I’m concerned, telling someone that roughly half of the human beings they’ll meet in life will rape them if given the opportunity is a form of mental abuse.

At one point or another, most people have probably encountered the much publicized statistic that 1 in 5 college women are sexually assaulted. There is much debate about the accuracy of this statistic, with some claiming that’s it’s too high and others contending that it’s too low. It’s true that sexual assault is underreported and under-prosecuted. However, false rape claims are underreported as well, and women who make these false claims are prosecuted even less often than rapists. And again, it’s worth mentioning that sexual assault that happens to men (like all forms of abuse of men) is the most underreported of all, and the most likely to be ignored when it is reported. In light of all these facts, it’s extraordinarily difficult to get a handle on exactly how many sexual assaults are occurring. What is certain is that there is no “acceptable amount” of sexual assault, and as long as any assaults are occurring, it’s only right that activists should take up the mantle of wiping them out. Even in this noble pursuit, though, feminists are unfortunately striking out. It doesn’t do anything to minimize actual rape when feminists display a blatant lack of concern for whether individual claims of rape by specific women are true or false. People who lie about rape should be the natural enemies of any activist who truly cares about making sure legitimate victims are supported, because every time a woman is caught lying about such a disgusting crime, she makes it less likely that the next woman who makes a similar claim will be seen as credible. Feminists often state that believing every woman who claims she’s been raped should be the default setting, but that is simply not how our justice system works. When we say that justice is “blind”, what we mean is that it’s impartial. Justice is not supposed to care about superficial things like gender and is not permitted to automatically punish any man who a woman claims has injured her without a proper trial. Justice demands that defendants are innocent until proven guilty, even when those defendants are men. This doesn’t mean that we assume women who charge men with rape are lying, but it does mean we’re required to examine that possibility. That isn’t patriarchy, or rape culture, or oppression of women. It’s simply what every single man or woman accused of a crime is entitled to.

We only have one justice system and no other institution, body, or entity is qualified to take its place. We should no more expect universities to prosecute rapes that happen on their grounds, or to their students, than we should expect Wal-Mart to prosecute rapes that occur in its stores or parking lots. Why not? Because it’s a serious violation of civil rights. We don’t have to choose between caring about rape victims or the rights of the accused. We can multi-task, as Emily Yoffe demonstrates with this well-reasoned piece about a young man who has filed a lawsuit against the university that trampled his right to due process. This is just one suit in an avalanche of similar litigation being brought to bear on universities all over the country.

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It may well be that certain college campuses don’t take sexual assault as seriously as they should. Feminists attribute this to rape culture, because that’s their personal pet theory, but ironically, it may actually be due, in large part, to the efforts of feminists themselves. They’ve emboldened dishonest women to lie about rape, secure in the conviction that they will receive unquestioning support, and that anyone who fails to give them that will be labeled a rape enabler. Perhaps universities are sometimes reluctant to take rape claims seriously because so many such claims in recent years have turned out to be bogus. For many women who are willing to lie about rape, young men in college are apparently prime targets, and any college administrator who hasn’t noticed that by now isn’t paying very close attention. Sadly, for a lot of people out there, any terrible thing you tell them about frat boys will instantly be swallowed hook, line and sinker. There is typically a kernel of truth in stereotypes, and many frats have certainly earned the negative views some have of them. But fraternities do a lot in the way of community outreach and raising money for charity, too, and the vast majority of men who have been in fraternities have never raped a single, solitary soul. Beyond that, feminists are still crying “rape culture!” on campuses of universities that now regularly expel male students accused of rape without a shred of compelling evidence that would prove guilt. What more do they want? It seems that even allowing a young man to have a hollow mockery of a legitimate trial is too much for feminists, even though these cases are often decided by Women’s Studies majors and feminist professors. And yes, I’m aware that a handful of schools, like UVA, have never expelled anyone for rape. Most people would at least consider the possibility that this is a good thing, in that it could mean no rape has ever been proven to have taken place. Not so for feminists, who all too often seem to think that if a man isn’t hauled away for rape every five minutes, it goes without saying that five rapes have gone unpunished. Another thing: that UVA has never expelled anyone for rape doesn’t mean no UVA student has ever been tried for rape by the court system and dropped his classes voluntarily upon conviction, which would negate any need to expel him.

Feminists need to drop their “rape culture” rhetoric, for too many reasons to detail all of them here. In a rape culture, there wouldn’t be laws against sexual assault on the books to argue about the correct enforcement of. The media wouldn’t cheer universities on as they violate the civil rights of men who have been denied their day in court, nor would journalists eagerly wrap their arms around even the most spurious claims of rape. In a rape culture, we would salute men that we knew had committed rape as heroes instead of branding them as criminals and pariahs. The more feminists talk about rape culture, the more clear it becomes that it simply isn’t there. The only ones who believe in it are those who feminists have managed to indoctrinate with terror, guilt and other forms of psychological trauma. That’s not making women safer, it’s making them weaker, while simultaneously destroying due process. Just as importantly, by advocating for rape cases to be taken away from the justice system which feminists claim is failing victims, they are preventing reform of that same system. Where’s the need for any real change in the way the system works if we can just delegate the jobs of police and prosecutors to a third party? Feminists have forgotten to be concerned about any rape victims who are not in college. What will become of all the other victims if they’re left to deal with a corrupt legal system which will likely only get worse as feminists work to divert public attention away from it? If feminists truly cared about justice, they would work to address systemic problems in our legal system (many of which disadvantage men.) It’s rather telling that most feminists seem to prefer creating a host of new problems instead, which a more competent and benevolent movement will no doubt have to clean up for them down the road.

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Toss out your rape culture garbage, feminists. Stop shaming the vast majority of men who would never rape anyone just because you feel it’s the job of all men to constantly protect all women, even as you ignore the men being victimized right alongside them. All you’re doing is preventing needed reforms and creating a rape accusation culture. Your efforts have set victims of sexual assault back years, if not decades, and dealt a potentially crippling blow to the justice system which protects women and men alike.

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