Rape Culture and Sex Education **TRIGGER WARNING**
“I’m so sorry if I’m alienating some of you, your whole fucking culture alienates me”
More videos on rape and rape culture: http://bit.ly/PqQ0dv
This Dame -
[Image shows a little blonde white boy in an orange life jacket, holding a oar on a jetty over some some water.
Text reads, “We should ban life jackets & other floatation devices.
They only encourage risky behaviour. The only 100% effective way to prevent drowning is total abstinence from going in the water.
And if you do, by chance, find yourself struggling with drowning, then no life-saving or otherwise procedure or act should be allowed to be administered. You got yourself into this mess, you have to live with the consequences.
You should see drowning as a gift.
Also, if you were forcibly pushed into the water, don’t worry, it it was a legitimate pushing, your body will find a way to shut out all the water and survive the drowning.]
As back-to-school season approaches, here’s some real assault-prevention advice for schools and students - by Jill Filipovic:• Instead of fear-based sex education, emphasise healthy sexuality
A culture where sex is understood as enthusiastically consensual and pleasurable for all people involved is a culture in which the “misunderstanding” narrative of date rape will be killed dead. Instead of requiring don’t-get-raped lectures, colleges should emphasise healthy and safe sexual behaviour, and challenge stereotypes about what “real” rape looks like. Scholars such as Jaclyn Friedman offer exactly these kinds of workshops – more campuses should be calling her.
• Colleges should treat sexual assault like a crime
This sounds like a no-brainer, but a disturbing number of campuses have policies that require student-on-student sexual assault to be mediated through the school, as if assault were a personal dispute instead of a crime. Of course colleges shouldn’t force students to report their assaults to the police, but they should give students the option – and provide counselling and social support for students who choose to report the crime. Too often, colleges are concerned about their own reputations at the expense of justice and student safety. Realistically, though, it’s in the colleges’ interest to remove predators from campus.
• Focus on men
Rape prevention advice largely focuses on women, who are disproportionately sexually victimised (although it’s important to know that men on campus are also often victims of sexual assault, and experience similar shame and stigma). Working with men to break down stereotypes about rape victims – that women regularly lie about being raped, that acquaintance rape is simply a “she didn’t say no and he misunderstood” situation, that a woman’s behaviour is partially to blame – is a good first step.
More important, though, is giving men the tools to intervene when they see other men exhibiting predatory behaviour. We know that men who rape on campus are often serial rapists, and intentionally target women who either seem vulnerable or can be easily incapacitated through alcohol, force or some combination of the two. The best way to stop a potential rapist? Intercept him. And men can do just that if they see a friend or acquaintance pushing women’s boundaries or clearly seeking out women who seem vulnerable.
• Stigmatise men who assault
Again, it seems like a no-brainer – who likes rapists? – but men who commit assaults on college campuses are often protected by their friends, teammates, fraternity brothers and their school, who write off the assaults as misunderstandings or drunken bad behaviour. Simple advice: stop doing that. If you know a guy has been behaving badly, it’s time for a good old-fashioned shunning. Jessica Valenti has other pieces of advice for outing rapists, and emphasises that speaking out about rape and information-sharing about rapists is nothing short of heroic. So if a number of women at your school are all saying that one particular guy assaulted them, or if you witness a man disrespecting women on campus, perhaps it’s time to cut him out of the friend circle.
College should be a time for intellectual, personal and, yes, sexual exploration. And all students deserve a safe campus. The way to truly deliver on that ideal is to address sexual assault holistically and purge rapists from schools – not to again lecture young women on what not to do.
“One thing I am going to do differently as a parent is go easy on the “save sex for someone special” rhetoric with my kids – both with my daughter and my son. I noticed some unintended consequences happened among my friends and I when we were growing up with this. The “save yourself for when you really love someone” thing comes from a good place – being nice to yourself and only choosing people who are also nice to you – but it pairs up too easily with the general culture of slut-shaming that’s out there. The “precious vagina” can easily become the “shameful vagina”. “Saving yourself” can obviously also lend itself to an exploitative situation where male sexual pleasure is centred in sexual activity. Here’s how that works. You’re a girl and you’re having sexual encounters with boys (is it different for girls only hooking up with other girls?), and they’re very nice and you’re very attracted to them but they are not “the special one” so for as long as possible you end up choosing sexual activities that don’t involve your precious, precious virginity. The safest activities for this are those aimed solely at his sexual pleasure. With some friends I think this established a pattern that took them years to overcome in their sex lives.”
Andrea O’Reilly, “Why I will go easy on the “save yourself” rhetoric with my daughter” (via morecoffee)
Another issue with this whole “save yourself for when you really love someone” thing is that it makes sex obligatory and specifically about the relationship instead of about how the partners involved feel about it. So, for instance, if a girl is meant to “only have sex with people she loves” then if she loves someone she could easily feel obligated to have sex with that person regardless of whether or not she wants to and the sex becomes, essentially, something people in relationships are supposed to do. This means all asexual people are automatically erased and othered which is completely fucked up. It also means that people who might have loving feelings for their partners and/or who want and enjoy the relationships they share with their partners but don’t want to have sex with them for some reason are shamed and vilified and can and do end up doing it anyway just to avoid that shaming and vilification (especially when it’s internalized). This can end up with actual rapes where people simply allow the sex to happen even though they don’t actually consent to it because they’re afraid to say no or don’t feel like they’re allowed to say no since they love their partners.
Sex Education - A Letter To The British Government
TRIGGER WARNING: Discussion of rape & consent.
Jenn tells you what she thinks should be on a compulsory sex ed curriculum.
Transcript to this video: http://bit.ly/wRxP6R
Info about UK emergency contraception & abortion: http://bitemebeautiful.tumblr.com/post/10696250650/uk-contraception-morning-a…
Find this Dame online:
Sex Education: Not just a johnnie on a banana, kids.
*OK I think in attempting to make the squeak go away I appear to have made it louder. Please bear with me, new camera should make all better and less annoying/shaky too*
Thursday has been taken over by Emily today; Jenn will be up tomorrow, and we’ll return to normal next week, sorry to mess with yr heads!
Discussing: Sex and Relationship Education, or lack thereof, in British schools. Whoo
Brook’s Sex Positive Petition
Brook’s normal site: