Tags: gang rape

11 Apr 2007, Comments Off on I blame the Patriarch

I blame the Patriarch

Author: Helen

Werribee, Sydney, Byron Bay. Is gang rape on the increase or is it just being reported more?

I’m throwing that question out, because I don’t know. Any criminologists in the house? Anyway, there’s something old and something new here. What’s new: the practice of filming the rape using your mobile and then sending the video to all your mates at school.

What’s old: the practice of (1) holding the victim responsible for the boys’ behaviour– being in the “wrong place”, for being drunk, for wearing supposedly provocative clothes, and so on, while, on the other hand, boys are simply animal creatures at the mercy of their lustful nature who can’t possibly be expected to restrain themselves; and (2) that the solution is to constrain women further, so that we’re de facto restricted in where we go, what time we go there, and what we wear.

And then we’re supposed to believe it’s only Muslims who have a problem with the status of women.

These views are embedded deep, deep in mainstream thinking. And there’s a correlating world view among older people that the youth are a savage breed, possibly much more so than ever before, and it’s the dangerous youth which create this dangerous environment. But wait a minute. Where do these teenagers get their sense of male entitlement and misogynistic culture from?

There were angry scenes outside the courthouse yesterday, and the grandfather of one of the accused boys questioned whether the incident was a case of rape.

“Stupid, yeah, but they do it, [film] everything, they bash people, they’re used to stupid things. Was she drunk? Prove it,” the man told Channel Seven.

This dickhead is an extreme example, of course, but it illustrates how older people enable and excuse this kind of behaviour, because it feeds into the extremely primitive and caricatured “evo-psych” interpretation of gender that pervades society. And it’s not just the men. The grandmother and mother of these shits will be whispering, “well, she asked for it, didn’t she.”

Because, while all the teenagers were underage drinking – which isn’t good — only the female teenager was deemed, somehow,by that fact, to have put her hand up for gang rape. We need to start pushing this amazing new concept: The boys are responsible. Teach them to be responsible.

It’s pointless to just complain about kids out of control, unless we can put some kind of education in place to counter this kind of stupidity. The Australia Says No campaign is a sign that policy makers are starting to realise this (although these mouth-breathers don’t seem to have internalised the message). But it’s not just the kids. We have to do something about their enabling, excusing, toxic older people.

8 Mar 2007, Comments Off on IWD: Blog against Sexism

IWD: Blog against Sexism

Author: Helen

As you probably already know, it’s Blog against Sexism dayThanks for the reminder, Tigtog – which is also International Womens Day. Naturally, I set about thinking about what I would hang my Blog Against Sexism post on.
Image from http://vegankid.solidaritydesign.net/2007/02/24/blog-against-sexism-day-2007/My workload this week doesn’t augur well for a long and complex post, so I was just going to do a bit of a linkfest, when- goodness me!– Mr Dolce and Mr Gabbana, purveyors of overpriced leather crap to the vacuous, dropped this stinking great pantload. [Warning, probably not work safe].

The photo features a blank looking young woman in a bathing suit and high heels being pinned down by a glossy shirtless man while four other men look on.

I can see I’m not alone in being unimpressed (and unlikely to purchase handbags from this emporium, or respect those who do). Pavlov asks, “if they think this image conveys a ‘game’ about ‘seduction’ and ‘beauty’, what sort of image would they have come up with to illustrate an actual gang rape?”

Of course, Hansel and Zoolander Dazza & Gazza reckoned it was a nice, playful, artistic gang rape fantasy, and not at all about creating a faux scandal and getting themselves in the news, thereby making more money from the women they claim to “love” while allowing themselves a quick vent of the woman-hatred buildup at the same time. And I’m sure there will be plenty of people bending over backward to excuse them. Don’t hold your breath for a sensible criticism of D&G from Janice Breen “I don’t know what all the fuss is about skeletal models, it’s just like Hussein Chalayan’s smashable perspex frocks and convertible coffee table/timber skirts and Tsubi’s swarming rats; merely shock value, just because people are actually dying from it is completely irrelevant” Burns, either.

And as for trying to portray your opponents as “old fashioned”, nice try guys, but no cigar. (And yes, that cigar was just a cigar.)

Note that these guys probably have this problem partly because they inhabit a rather hermetic and separate and elite world, that is, the fashion industry. (Huh, timber skirts indeed). Note how “conservative” commentators dump on academics supposedly for the same thing, although most lecturers are working stiffs who go home to the suburbs like everyone else. It’s good to see that, with the skinny-model issue and offensive advertising, the media are starting to call the fashion industry on their stupidity and poor social boundaries, which probably springs from the fact that they are more truly in an ivory tower than any intellectual – but they have vastly more influence on how people actually behave. And how they view and treat women.

Diversion: The IWD rally at the GPO in Melbourne was small, but a goodun. Never mind the width, feel the quality. There was some strange moisture falling out of the sky at intervals which might have disconcerted potential rioters. I missed most of Julia Gillard’s speech because I was a bit late.
For the benefit of US lefty academics, I should point out that I was jostling shoulders amicably with the ASU (some of whom are janitors, in their lingo).

Crossposted at Road to Surfdom