Another Day, Another Mansplainer
A friend of mine posted something about catcalling and street harassment. To the absolute shock of … well, pretty much nobody, the very first comment on her post was a guy explaining why women shouldn’t be afraid of catcalling, and isn’t it funny how the women complaining aren’t the ones experiencing the “privilege” of being catcalled in the first place? Also, women wouldn’t be afraid if they carried guns, and the real threat are guys “in a dark van with no windows parked next to your car in the Walmart parking lot.”
His suggestion? “Now what would happen if a woman who’s the center of the cat call took the power back, walked up to the offending rake and asked for his number and told him to show a little respect and maybe if he was lucky she’d let him earn the opportunity to do some real cat calling?”
This is the point where I facepalmed so hard I gave myself a concussion.
Guys, is it really that hard to shut the hell up and listen instead of immediately trying to tell women why they’re wrong about their own lives and experiences?
It’s pathetically predictable.
- Woman complains about harassment.
- Dudebro feels uncomfortable.
- Dudebro tells woman why she’s wrong to feel that way.
Because Dudebro’s discomfort at women complaining about harassment is somehow more important and valid than women’s discomfort about actually being harassed.
The CDC put out a report this year about sexual violence, after completing more than 12,000 interviews. They found that one in five women have been raped in their lifetimes, and 99% of those rapes were committed by men. (The report states that about two percent of men were raped as well, which I strongly suspect is an underestimate. They also found that approximately 80% of those rapes were also committed by men.)
“But I’m not like those other men,” says Dudebro, waving the “Not All Men” flag with righteous pride.
Then stop acting like them.
- When a woman says she’s uncomfortable with something and wants you to knock it off, stop arguing. Stop telling her she’s wrong, and stop making excuses to keep doing it.
- Stop pretending it’s about complimenting women. (Here’s a tip: Compliments don’t go from, “Hey baby” to “Fuck you, you stuck-up bitch” in the blink of an eye.)
- Stop treating women as objects you’re entitled to instead of people.
You seriously want women to believe you’re not an asshole and a potential threat? Start by shutting up for a minute and actually listening to what women are saying.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:09 am
> if he was lucky she’d let him earn the opportunity
Grrr. Right, because the woman herself should see herself as an object which men “earn” the right to use. AAAGH.
D. D. Webb
September 30, 2014 @ 9:10 am
Dang, it’s too early to be reminded what the world is like…
You know what I think we need? Mandatory ethics courses in public schools, right alongside financial planning, computer programming and other vital survival skills for the modern world that we are not teaching the next generation. It seems nobody tells children anything about empathy and basic respect for other people except for a few readings of touchy-feely picture books when they’re in the lower elementary grades and once in a while a Very Special Episode of their favorite cartoons.
It might not address the issue of sexism in culture directly, but I’m of the opinion that a LOT of those problems would dry up pretty quickly if folks were trained from childhood to just be decent to their fellow beings.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:10 am
I don’t suppose you could as a third or fourth career run for senate? No? ok.
D. D. Webb
September 30, 2014 @ 9:15 am
Eesh…I wouldn’t wish that job on my worst enemy.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:19 am
To all the dudebros out there who think catcalling isn’t a big deal. There is documented video evidence of men behaving violently towards women AND men when women attempt to brush off a guy’s advances. Catcalling might seem like just a ‘thing’ a guy does to most guys but for women, we don’t know that if just walking by and ignoring him is going to lead him to stalking us down the street, constantly harassing us or even make an attempt to physically grab us to make us stop and “appreciate” him. We don’t know if this is a guy who knows how to take rejection or who’s only way to take rejection is to behave violently.
There are even videos, caught on street cameras, of men getting beaten up and/or stabbed for trying to get another guy to stop hassling a woman after she’s rebuffed him.
So yeah, maybe you won’t do that but someone else might. To put it another way, you know the stereotypical giggling girl you find at bars? It’s a survival mechanism to make girls seem more friendly and thus make guys less likely to behave violently towards them.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:19 am
I love his little fantasy about the harassed woman asking for the harasser’s phone number. Guess we know what he does when he sees a good-looking woman walk by. While calling himself a rake instead of a loser.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:32 am
You know what bugs me the most about this? Women are told EVERY SINGLE DAY to be afraid. I mean, what else do you think all the precautionary measures women are supposed to take do? Don’t walk down a dark street alone. Remember to take your pepper spray (you do have pepper spray, right?). Take self-defense classes. Those are all instructions that women should be afraid because they could get attacked if they don’t take those precautions. But when women actually act afraid, IE are bothered by men who catcall in the street, or follow them in cars, or approach them at 2 am in an elevator the immediate response by men is, OMG, why are you so afraid? He’s not doing anything to hurt you. Jeese, don’t be such a scaredy cat. It’s just a little harmless thing.
This is why women are so frustrated sometimes. Culture tells us to be afraid, because if we’re not we’ll get raped and it will be our fault. But OMG WHY ARE YOU SO AFRAID OF NICE GUYS WHO JUST WANT TO SAY HELLO.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:42 am
> This is why women are so frustrated sometimes. Culture tells us to be afraid, because if we’re not we’ll get raped and it will be our fault. But OMG WHY ARE YOU SO AFRAID OF NICE GUYS WHO JUST WANT TO SAY HELLO.
Thank you! This is so well-put. I’m nodding very vigorously here.
Kathryn A. Ryan
September 30, 2014 @ 9:55 am
I agree with this post. It shouldn’t be a woman’s lot that she’s perpetually seen as some sort of sexual object that is to be cat-called at every opportunity. That’s kinda why I got a bit iffy with that Snickers advert which showed “positive” cat-calling, i.e. male builders targeting women and shouting intended compliments at them. How about not shouting stuff at random people?
Anyway. I have one tiny bugbear, and it’s a pedantic point. Jim, you said “Stop telling her why she’s wrong” in your bullet points at the end, and I think this needs a little adjustment. It would be better, in my opinion, as “Stop telling her why *you think* she’s wrong”. In the original it still sounds as if it’s implicit that she’s wrong, though I don’t believe for a second this is your meaning.
Jim C. Hines
September 30, 2014 @ 10:04 am
I think I see what you mean. What about just, “Stop telling her she’s wrong”?
September 30, 2014 @ 10:11 am
Oh I would ha e given him A number, but not mine. I would give him the number to a gay bar and tell him to go in during rush hour and ask for Amanda Sukoff.
September 30, 2014 @ 10:18 am
Thank you for writing things like this and being an advocate.
September 30, 2014 @ 10:45 am
Here’s the thing. It’s frustrating for men to hear that sexual harassment is a problem that ‘men’ have. The implication being that all men are a part of it, whether by engaging in it or allowing it to happen. By telling us to shut up and listen, and then laying the burden of stopping this epidemic on all of us, how is that not blatant generalization? You’re blaming an entire gender for the actions of a few jerks. In one breath you’re asking us to understand you and what you’ve been through and in the next breathe you’re telling us that because were men we’ll never understand you or what you’ve been through. How is that helpful in anyway? Getting defensive about being unjustly stereotyped doesn’t mean we’re incapable of listening.
September 30, 2014 @ 10:47 am
I’ve said this before (on Tumblr) but the thing which annoys me most about the whole “take it as a compliment” thing is the attitude that goes with it. This whole presumption that women should be unbelievably grateful for these incredibly generic and banal comments.
Do they want me to curtsey while I’m saying “thank you sir”, or should I just kowtow and kiss their feet?
I find myself wondering what these sorts of nincompoops think would be an appropriate reaction to an actual compliment with some thought put behind it. (Spontaneous orgasm? Servitude for life? I mean, what is the escalation path when you start with the presumption a “thank you” is an appropriate response to something as banal and impersonal as “show us yer tits!”)
Jim C. Hines
September 30, 2014 @ 10:55 am
“You’re blaming an entire gender for the actions of a few jerks.”
And if you’d been listening to the conversations, listening to the stories and experiences of women who have been talking about this stuff for ages, you’d know it’s more than just a few jerks.
“It’s frustrating for men to hear that sexual harassment is a problem that ‘men’ have.”
Is that what you heard from this blog post? Because it isn’t what I wrote.
Traditionally, we’ve been “laying the burden of stopping this epidemic” of rape and harassment and domestic violence almost entirely on women. Considering that men are the ones committing the vast majority of these crimes, and that men are the ones turning a blind eye or encouraging the attitudes that facilitate the crimes, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to say hey, maybe we as men ought to get involved in stopping this stuff too.
September 30, 2014 @ 10:59 am
OK here’s where my brain just starts sputtering and failing:
Because if a woman is taking the power BACK, that means it was taken from her in the first place. He’s ACKNOWLEDGING that cat-calling takes power from women and puts it in the hands of the man who’s doing the cat-calling. And then he’s trying to say that it’s totes a good thing because she can win it back if she plays his game right.
Howzabout you just give women the right to walk down the street without making it a goddamn power struggle.
Jim C. Hines
September 30, 2014 @ 11:00 am
I received a really good comment I wanted to share, but the individual preferred that it be anonymous, since it involved their child.
I think there’s culturally something deeper going on than just dudebros being idiots, and I don’t think that should be dismissed.
My daughter (who is 4) and I went to the DMV over the summer, and we parked where we had to walk by two young men — late teens, early twenties — to get to the door. I remember one of them was African American (I can’t remember the ethnicity of the other young man), and both were wearing urban-wear for lack of a better descriptor, implying a lower socio-economic bracket than our own. I mention these things because, as one of your blog commenters mentioned, women are trained to fear, and these guys were a checklist of the type of men women are supposed to be wary of (which is wrong in all sorts of other racist/classist ways).
My daughter is gregarious, and not yet trained to fear (at least when she’s with me), so of course she said hi. The young African-American man smiled back at her and said, “Hey, pretty girl.” I think he meant it totally respectfully and non-threateningly, and he nodded at me, so the whole interaction was fine. My daughter waved goodbye to him when we left (he was still there), and he said, “Bye, pretty girl.”
Clearly, this is not catcalling, but what it makes me suspect is that some men are trained to address a woman by her appearance as a default. The cheerful, gregarious kid who waves at a man with that sort of training isn’t “little one” or anything else he could call a kid that doesn’t default to their appearance (and even *I’m* having trouble thinking of normal things people say that aren’t diminutives like “cutie”). He doesn’t just say good morning. He automatically labels her in a “complimentary” way, defining her by her looks.
While part of getting rid of that training is by calling out dudebros, I think it’s harder to get at the folks who really do believe that they’re offering compliments. I think it’s easy to say, “You’re wrong, just listen” — and they won’t, because it’s ingrained. It’s harder to get at “What you’ve been taught about the response this creates in women? The people raising you lied to you about that. The movies you watched as a kid lied to you. Your culture is continuing to lie to you. You’re not a jerk, but you believe in a lie.”
(Or maybe they are jerks, but no one responds well to that accusation.)
September 30, 2014 @ 11:00 am
Why, you’d almost think rapists looked just like ordinary blokes.
September 30, 2014 @ 11:02 am
‘the real threat are guys “in a dark van with no windows parked next to your car in the Walmart parking lot.”’
Dudebros need to stop the whole of what you mentioned above, but this in particular. A ridiculously high number of assaults in general, regardless of the victim, aren’t by strangers in dark vans, they’re by people the victim knows. Framing assailants as easily recognizable -the creepy guy in the hoodie, the guy in a dark van – is beyond not helpful. It assumes a.) she’s not clever enough to be careful in obviously dangerous environments like dark, remote parking lots, and b.) any level of wariness in places other than dark parking lots or blind alleys is unreasonable. Both assumptions are insulting and wrong, and completely uncalled for.
Kathryn A. Ryan
September 30, 2014 @ 11:07 am
Oh, yes! That’s even more economical.
D. D. Webb
September 30, 2014 @ 11:12 am
This is a really excellent point.
September 30, 2014 @ 11:44 am
” It’s frustrating for men to hear that sexual harassment is a problem that ‘men’ have. The implication being that all men are a part of it, whether by engaging in it or allowing it to happen.”
Well….yeah. Not every guy catcalls, but by the same token, not every guy would think to tell the catcaller, “dude….don’t be a dick.”
” You’re blaming an entire gender for the actions of a few jerks.”
Because most of the rest of the gender MAKES EXCUSES FOR the few jerks. Or at least they don’t STOP the few jerks.
You don’t want us to lump you in with those jerks? Don’t blame us, blame the jerks who are making the rest of you look bad. Go do something about THEM.
September 30, 2014 @ 12:05 pm
There was no mention of the entire gender being the problem, this was about the dudebro mansplainer. Thanks for giving us the shortcut of lumping you in with that group.
September 30, 2014 @ 12:07 pm
Oh, absolutely, it would be a simply MARVELOUS (and respectful!) idea to go up to the dude in the white van who drove past while I was jogging and invited me, in so many words, to suck his dick, and OFFER HIM MY PHONE NUMBER.
Is this chucklehead for real?
September 30, 2014 @ 12:10 pm
I got catcalled a LOT when I was younger and living in the DC area (where it’s frickin’ endemic), and people always told me I’d miss it when I got older, started losing my looks, etc.
I’m now forty and it happens a lot less often (more I suspect because of where I live than my age). Still waiting for this “missing it” I’ve been told about.
Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard
September 30, 2014 @ 12:14 pm
I also wonder why so many guys seem to equate “hello, baby” with a polite “hello, nice weather we’re having” is beyond me. The former is unquestionably sexual in tone; the latter is polite person-to-person acknowledgment. Nice guys who want to say hello don’t say “Hello, baby” or any other kind of catcalling. They say “Hello,” or maybe they just smile politely or nod.
September 30, 2014 @ 12:15 pm
“Facepalmed so hard I gave myself a concussion.”
There are so many other excellent comments here that I won’t attempt to add to the discussion except to say that the line above was, sadly, my favorite. Sigh. 🙁
Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard
September 30, 2014 @ 12:19 pm
And shows how early we start training both boys and girls to define female worth mainly by physical appearance.
September 30, 2014 @ 12:22 pm
So much yes to this!! I don’t have kids, and when I’m around my friends’ kids (boys and girls) I do struggle with what to call them that isn’t framing their identity in a way that calls all this up. I’ve landed on “hey kiddo.” I’m also inclined to use “hon,” but that happens with people in general, not just kids. I’ve used “cutie,” too, which I’ve used fairly gender-discrimination free (with boys and girls). I’ll compliment older kids on things they can control (wow! great tee shirt!) rather than “aren’t you pretty/handsome.” There are times and places for that, of course, when kids are dressed up.
But yes, we’re taught as a whole to compliment looks, and especially for girls (boys can be cute, but they can be smart and strong, too.) And it is something that is taught across the board to both genders. I think that men get taught that complimenting women will lead to getting what they want (and deserve?). Coupling that with the fact that some are taught (or decide) that they are owed something by women, and women belong to men, and we get catcalling.
But it is no shock that it starts very, very early, and is framed in a positive way.
September 30, 2014 @ 1:07 pm
Same situation here–just wanted to say that it’s thanks to people like you on the Internet that it even occurs to me to try. Thanks for teaching me how to teach youngsters that they have values beyond those emphasized for their gender.
September 30, 2014 @ 1:18 pm
“Now what would happen if a woman who’s the center of the cat call took the power back, walked up to the offending rake and asked for his number and told him to show a little respect and maybe if he was lucky she’d let him earn the opportunity to do some real cat calling?”
…She’d be ever so lucky that if he took that as encouragement and continued to harass her, or escalated to following her, stalking, rape or murder, she would very conveniently have his phone number so the police could find him! And the police and the courts would be so impressed that she “encouraged” him, too, when all the experts and specialists recommend “walking away” as the response most likely to lead to continued good health. 0_o
(I like how he assumes that the poor lady being catcalled must necessarily be looking for a nice man to complete her life, too, when maybe…she already has one? Or a nice woman? Or maybe isn’t into dating? Or maybe doesn’t consider “treats me with disrespect” a promising sign for a potential relationship? Or is recently widowed with five children to support and the oldest is in full-out-teenage rebellion and she doesn’t know how she’s going to get through the day? Or is actually a serial killer who finds her victims by walking down the street to see who “volunteers” by catcalling her? Doesn’t find talking to people who treat her rudely a good use of her time? Dude, this is why you have normal human conversation with people before asking them out. “Outdoors without a man” does not equate to “totally looking for a good man!”)
September 30, 2014 @ 1:55 pm
“But I’m not like those other men,” says Dudebro, waving the “Not All Men” flag with righteous pride.
Ok look, you just illustrated this point exactly.
September 30, 2014 @ 1:58 pm
I seriously doubt the construction workers catcalling me on my way walking home from middle school were complimenting me. I was nerdy and awkward and wearing unbelievably nonsexual clothing. It was about power, and they were being assholes. It was a horrible, horrible feeling.
I mean, I was thirteen.
September 30, 2014 @ 3:51 pm
I didn’t see anything in the above blaming a whole gender for the actions of a few. I saw it blaming the (not few) men who do it. If you aren’t one of them, then this isn’t directed at you. OTOH, if the shoe fits, wear it.
September 30, 2014 @ 3:53 pm
Thank You! Just yesterday I witnessed a man, mid fifties, lean out of his pale blue minivan window to heckle a lady jogging with her baby stroller. The stereotype exists that it only happens to hot women in bad neighborhoods by frat boys. But in my experience it’s grandpas and truck drivers, firemen and laborers. It’s any guys who wants a cheap thrill at seeing a girl jump in shock at their whoop, whistle, horn, and yell. It happens to little girls and mothers with babies, women jogging and just out walking the dog. It happens in middle class suburban neighborhoods, at bus stops, and from a man in a minivan leavin the Chick-fil-A parking lot.
And most of all it’s done cowardly. There’s no time to calmly collect yourself and come up with a witty reply that will show them how disrespectful they are. By the time you get your bearings back from WTF? they’ve moved along laughing to themselves.
September 30, 2014 @ 3:53 pm
Amen! I’d suppressed the memories of having to walk past a construction site on the way to 9th grade and how awful it was. After school wasn’t as bad, because I’d be walking in a group, but walking by myself on the way there? Awful, creepy, yucky.
September 30, 2014 @ 4:06 pm
You’re my favorite semi-mythological animal today.
(I say “semi” because I’ve seen ’em taxidermied! That proves they existed, right?)
September 30, 2014 @ 4:10 pm
I sometimes use “munchkin”. They came in both genders and were a functional adult society — they were just shorter than Dorothy. Also, it’s a fun word to say.
September 30, 2014 @ 4:13 pm
THIS. And with my build, haircut, and clothes, how did they even know I was a girl? I wonder if they accidentally also catcalled cute shy boys now and again — but of course, that’s just another technique in the Patriarchy Tool Kit.
September 30, 2014 @ 4:15 pm
Oh, lord, yes. This.
September 30, 2014 @ 4:22 pm
On a tangent, the CDC report purposely clouds the definition of rape against men. Basically, per the CDC, men can only be “raped” if they are penetrated. So it does follow that the report would suggest that they are raped by other men. However, if you believe that the definition of rape depends on it being consensual, the “made to penetrate” number should also be defined as rape, which greatly increases the percentage of men “raped” per table 1 in the study.
Time had a good article on this at: http://time.com/3393442/cdc-rape-numbers/
September 30, 2014 @ 4:55 pm
This, exactly. It’s crazymaking behavior. No matter how a woman chooses to respond to or deny the existence of threats, she’s doing it wrong 🙁
September 30, 2014 @ 5:04 pm
Yep, and even women often refer to little girls as “cuties” or whatever. Nothing wrong about this in of itself, except it does seem to be directed at girls far more often than it is at boys. Especially once they’re out of diapers. This sends a definite message about the primary source of most of your worth as a human being.
September 30, 2014 @ 5:15 pm
The interesting thing for me is the assumption that all catcalling is complimentary. I used to walk down a busy road on my way to high school and I was frequently moo-ed at, barked at, called a dog, a cow, a pig and other disgusting things. All by men who were driving by – some in suits and ties, some old enough to be my grandfather. I could never understand why someone felt the need to comment on my appearance at all – especially if they found me unattractive. Why would any man bother to shout out of the window of a moving car at a teenager walking to school? What possible benefit did these hecklers get from yelling at me? It’s a puzzle that I’ve never truly solved – but the feelings of shame and pain are still with me, almost 30 years later.
September 30, 2014 @ 5:15 pm
Insulting the masculinity of young boys and men by comparing them to girls is definitely a tool of the patriarchy and a way of reminding boys that if they don’t define themselves as the opposite of women in every way and think of women as the alien other, they’ll be cut off from the world of men. My husband worked in a Fred Meyers store in Eugene/Springfield OR when he was in high school (and his hair was somewhat long at a time when guys from a more rural background typically wore shorter hair). He got lots of “you look like a girl” jokes from a certain type of customer when he helped them load bags of concrete or whatever onto their trucks. Fortunately, he had no interest in being a part of the world these guys occupied, and the experience strengthened his resolve to go to college.
Not that there is a shortage of obnoxious misogynists in academic settings.
September 30, 2014 @ 5:28 pm
Because they’re unfeeling assholes who are looking to feel powerful by hurting or frightening someone else. The best thing that can be said of them is that they feel so removed/insulated from the person they’re insulting that it simply doesn’t occur to them that the cruel things they say will have an impact on her psyche for years to come.
September 30, 2014 @ 6:06 pm
Imagine having a construction-site in the middle of the school-yard and having to walk past it several times a day because one class-room was in another building. Plus having the construction workers staring into the class-room. 🙁 School was fun during that year – not.
September 30, 2014 @ 6:55 pm
Indeed. We exist. (And thanks)
September 30, 2014 @ 6:57 pm
What? Ordinary blokes?! Surely you jest.
September 30, 2014 @ 7:00 pm
And yet the number of guys who ask, “but how do I just say hello?” is staggering. I mean how more obvious do they want the answer to their question to be?
September 30, 2014 @ 7:07 pm
So when i reposted this on facebook I expanded a bit on my comment above. And what I added was that with this horrible dichotomy that women are expected to live in (stay safe but also be friendly to the right guys) the only time men notice how awful it is, is when that situation adversely affects them. I.e. they get lumped in with the assholes who cat call. Good on you for proving my point.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:01 pm
Oh, I’m a fat chick, so I suspect I’m expected to be cringingly grateful for just being noticed at all. Never really found this to be the case – possibly because the other thing I am is a long-term bullying survivor, which means people noticing me is not exactly something I crave and associate with universally positive consequences.
September 30, 2014 @ 9:39 pm
(1) Thank you for posting this.
(2) My sympathies, FWIW, to your friend.
September 30, 2014 @ 10:52 pm
Granted, few of the times I had it happen did the guy get belligerent and I generally laughed off the guys, b/c really, do you SERIOUSLY think a woman finds that hot? Still, depending on the location, I have had a series of self-defense moves running through my head–just in case. I don’t normally do that when someone says “Hi” or offers a sincere compliment.
I’ve had the Dudebro convo too. My “fave” argument is that other guys do it b/c women like assholes and nice guys don’t get women.
I love my man, and he is on the whole a very good man, but every once in awhile he comes up with gems like that which I must blast to bits.
Which I did like this:
“You got me, right?”
“Well, before you….when I was a teen.”
“No, you didn’t get women then b/c you were too busy playing videogames.”
This basically sums up the issue. Just as some women don’t wish to fess up that the problem lies in them, men are guilty of the same thing. Then, even if they don’t participate in the catcall type of thing, they rationalize the other guys’ behavior b/c a tiny part of them– the same part obsessed with dick size, feels better if they blame the women. This is what happens when we do not teach our boys what it means to be a man.
I have a 13 year old son. Most days, little more than me dropping my tone and giving him the stare of death can keep him in line. When he did a dumbass stunt a couple of weeks back, he cried and confessed to said dumbass thing and admitted he was ashamed for disappointing me. Same child got into a scuffle with 2 long-time neighbor friends down the street. One boy is passive around adults, but tries to act a thug around his friends in hopes of appearing manly. One boy has potential, but is a bully, lies, and when he cried his mother berated him for doing so. I got after mine for giving in to his temper and throwing the first punch, but not for the tears. Well, I got on the other two for acting like fools—don’t start stuff you can’t handle AND friends watch each others’ backs.
3 young boys all trying to understand this thing called manhood and biology says slugging each other seems like a fine idea. I’m betting neither of the other families admonish their son if he does not speak of a girl with respect. Seeing as how the bully curses out his mom (I’m told) yeah—no.
Thanks for the mansplainin 🙂 It’s about all that can be done with the current lot. LOL As for the next generation, well, it’s on us parents.
September 30, 2014 @ 11:46 pm
Do you even hear what you’re saying? Because I happen to share a penis with these assholes, it’s up to me to put a stop to what they’re doing, for the sake of my own reputation. How is that not EXACTLY the attitude you are fighting against right now?
September 30, 2014 @ 11:53 pm
I know it’s “more than just a few jerks.” Maybe it was a poor choice of phrasing, but I think ‘not all men’ has been overstated a bit much lately. And of course it’s not unreasonable to suggest that men get more involved when they see this stuff happening. What IS over the line is the idea of expecting all men to do something about it, at the risk of being labeled just another part of the problem. It is the same kind of broad-brush crap that I thought we were trying to get rid of.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:01 am
I’m actually curious about this “being friendly to the right guys” thing. Who says that? Who in your world expects you to act that way? Is it anyone worth listening to or even giving the time of day to?
It is damned frustrating trying to have a dialogue about this with anyone, because any sign of a dissenting opinion is automatically viewed as some kind of defense of sexual harassment. It’s not. It’s usually just a different perspective from someone who doesn’t understand but is trying to. Listening works better when both sides do it.
Men who engage in sexual harassment will eventually end up all alone in their own little world of self-loathing and despair, surrounded only by men who act and talk exactly like them. They deserve it. But expecting better men to do something about their behavior, as if they somehow had the power to change these jerks, is dangerously close to expecting women to bear the burden of not being harassed. Do you really not see the parallel?
October 1, 2014 @ 12:10 am
The biggest shame is that we are relying on schools to teach children what the parents obviously do not. It *used* to be that we were taught “keep your hands to yourselves.” Unfortunately, what we were *also* taught was that when little boys hit girls, girls were supposed to be happy because “Oh, he *like* you & just doesn’t know how to express himself! (Seriously, we were told this).” Boy are excused along the lines of “boys will be boys” & girls were taught to “not hurt anyone’s feelings.” Maybe you’re right; parents have done a horrendous job, let’s let the schools try it! Sigh…!
October 1, 2014 @ 12:18 am
It’s not just “culture” that tells us this by “osmosis”, but people who tell us flat out how to “avoid being raped”, to the point of blaming us when we do. And yet turns around & tells us to *welcome* catcallers. And who will bristle at any suggestion that they are in any way contradictory, or, even better, *part of the problem*…
October 1, 2014 @ 12:20 am
Except that it’s true. If (for example), a white person stands by when people are making racist remarks about a minority, and doesn’t speak up, then said white person IS part of the problem. Same here. It’s not “over the line”, it’s a fact.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:24 am
But you *do* have the power to do something. These men do *not* “live in their own little world.” They live in *our* world. They are our co-workers, our neighbors, our drinking buddies, in our bowling leagues, hanging out at the local bar. And they are not hiding what they are doing. & they keep on doing what they’re doing because they have gotten the message that it’s okay, either by active condoning, or, at the very least, lack of condensation.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:25 am
How ya’ doing?
Nice day, huh?
See! Perfectly acceptable greetings to “people” are also perfectly acceptable to women too.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:36 am
If I’m standing in a roomful of people screaming racist epithets at me and you’re witnessing it and saying and doing nothing to help me at all, how the Hell do I know you aren’t my problem as much as the people who are cursing at me? After all, you’re there. You’re doing nothing to actually help.
There are many ways such a situation could be handled without you coming to harm or being considered part of the problem. (This applies to everything from assault to bullying and catcalling.) But standing by and doing and saying nothing is not one of those ways.
“Choosing” to be silent is most certainly a way to be considered part of the problem.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:47 am
Oh thank you for saying this, Kim. I’ve been saying this for years.
Women cannot tell the difference between nice guys and jerks unless the nice guy does or says something to differentiate himself from the jerk. We certainly aren’t going to be able to tell the difference in the midst of our fear that someone might be a jerk.
I think it’s time to spring the analogy about the bowl of M&Ms, some of which are laced with cyanide, but you can’t tell bc all the candies look alike. Do you grab a nice handful and eat some anyway? (One good question is having been told some of them were poison, who gets blamed if you die? You or the poisoner? )
October 1, 2014 @ 12:54 am
Actually, your reputation has nothing to do with it at all. They were talking about women, remember? The problems women face because of the actions of (SOME GODDAMIT YOU OVERSENSITIVE SO-AND-SO) men? Remember that? Because you have a penis, you have more social power, more ability, more chances to take action to actually stop the harassers in their tracks than women do. The point is not your reputation but creating a world in which women get to exist in public spaces without molestation. AKA, equality.
Think about that one for a minute. How is calling on people with social power to use their social power to diminish social inequalities, different from perpetuating social inequalities. My, that sure is a real head-scratcher. Let us know if you ever figure it out!
October 1, 2014 @ 12:56 am
Adam, you say: “I’m actually curious about this “being friendly to the right guys” thing. Who says that?”
Um… just every guy who gets angry, abusive, or resentful, because we’re not friendly to him — either because he’s behaving badly, or because he’s approached us and we’re just not interested. THEN we get to hear, “It’s not fair, you women only like the mean, abusive guys, and you won’t be friendly to us REALLY NICE GUYS, even though WE are the “right guys”?
See, here’s the thing, Adam: 999 times out of 1000 (actually, the percentage is probably even smaller), when you see a guy bitching on the Internet that women clearly only like bad men, because he’s a NICE GUY and he can’t get a response? He only just *thinks* he’s a nice guy. He’s not. If he actually were a nice guy, he’d be thinking “Oh, I guess she’s just not interested in me, for whatever reason. Well, that’s life”. THAT is what true nice guys say.
Assholes, who have an unjustified sense of entitlement that they have a right to a positive response from a woman, say “It’s not fair, you only want a mean, abusive guy, so you won’t be friendly to me, who’s a REALLY NICE GUY”.
Here’s the other thing: Since when does being a nice guy mean a guy is entitled to expect something? Anything? from a woman? “Nice” is the default. Everybody should be nice. “Nice” does not mean a guy should get the woman he wants as a reward for the way he should be behaving all the time, anyway.
October 1, 2014 @ 1:05 am
Yeah, I remember being 12 when this first happened to me. I do not recall feeling empowered or complimented by being told (loudly), ” You sure gotta nice a**!” By men old enough to be my father.
What grown man says that to a little girl on the street?
October 1, 2014 @ 1:13 am
Also, they’re just doing their part in policing women’s bodies.
If they don’t let women know when their looks are disappointing to them, how will women ever learn they NEED to beautiful when they are being seen by anyone. After all, that’s what women are for and you need to be told, in no uncertain terms, when you’re doing it wrong.
October 1, 2014 @ 3:24 am
Sometimes I “take back the power” by asking them why they felt the need to talk to me. They get all awkward though they don’t back down. Whether it’s a deterrent or encouragement in the long run I don’t know, I just do it for me.
But mostly I don’t, either because a) it was a drive-by by a snivelling coward who’s catcalling to feel big about himself; b) some instinct says yeah-nah, let’s just walk away from this one, with one hand on the keys and the other on the cellphone; or c) ffs I don’t want to waste any more of my attention on this toerag, I’m trying to work out some dialogue without forgetting my shopping list.
Jim C. Hines
October 1, 2014 @ 7:57 am
I did think the numbers of male rape victims were far lower than what most other research had suggested. That said, having read some of Cathy Young’s other articles, I have a very hard time accepting her reporting as good or objective. Reading this one did little to change that.
October 1, 2014 @ 8:57 am
You know how you would be able to tell if it was really a compliment?
When it frightened the intended complimentee, the complementer would be appalled and apologize all over himself for what he had accidentally done.
You’ll never see it happen–because it isn’t a compliment and wasn’t intended as one.
October 1, 2014 @ 12:45 pm
The historic culture of catcalling women is now intersecting with the entitlement culture in which parents are raising kids to believe that their needs at the moment are more important that anyone else’s (many people are now so self-involved that they never consider than anyone else even has needs, rights, or feelings). Consider that these days, in concert auditoriums, the majority of the audience stands up through the entire show, often illegally videotaping the concert, while blocking the view of everyone behind them (including the disabled). This is not just younger people — this includes people in their 40s who not only stand but encourage their pre-teen children to stand on the concert hall seats to get a better view. I was curious at a recent concert where this occurred if people would sit down if we asked them. They not only ignored low-key requests, they refused to even make eye contact. Of course, in a social environment that’s “evolved” to this point, self-involved men feel entitled to greet passing women with the same language they’d use to greet a porn clip. The big difference I notice from the 1960s is that catcalling women used to be a working-class thing (the stereotype of the construction worker). Now I see it from men of all social classes. My reluctant conclusion is that a lot of men truly resent women (for have the gall to go out and about on their own, for having the nerve to be less-than-attractive to men, etc.) and that these days they feel no social pressure to disguise their resentment. A frightening situation.
October 1, 2014 @ 1:21 pm
If you’re bundled up in unisex clothing riding an unisex bike in cold weather, the frustrated catcallers will resort to yelling “Are you a guy or a girl?” as they drive by.
The poor dear must have really wanted to ‘compliment’ a woman. I just hoped they didn’t circle back and try to run me over for frustrating them. But I probably just need some mansplaining to set me right…
October 1, 2014 @ 1:22 pm
Actually I’d go backward one step and say in response to the question of why is it the responsibility of all men to deal with the behaviour of some men:
You’re part of this culture you bear a responsibility for it. If not, then you have no place to voice an opinion on who gets taxed, how that money is spent, what happens in government, community standards, any part – in other words – of being part of society.
Our place as people is to bear responsibility for ourselves and for what we feel is acceptable or not behaviour. We as men don’t get passes because well we’re the good guys and not the bad ones. We have as much responsibility in this situation as anyone else. It’s not BLAME. It’s responsibility. There is a difference.
October 1, 2014 @ 4:10 pm
Good god, guys can be dense.
Thank you, Jim, for the open letter to the dudebros and dudebro-adjacents. I’m saddened that some guys need to be told, “Stop pretending it’s about complimenting women” but I’m glad you said that. In the debate about cat-calling, this point is too often lost or unsaid. Guys are trying to figure out how to talk in public spaces to women they don’t know while never questioning the assumption that they should or should have the right to address said women in the first place. If you’re at a party or other social situation/safe space, you can say hello – politely! as an equal! like a grown-up human being! – to a woman with a reasonable assumption that she is there to talk to people. But why,why, why would you assume this of a random woman walking on the street?? A “compliment” in this situation does not highlight whatever aspect of her looks you think you are trying to speak to – it only highlights and emphasizes her vulnerability. This is not a compliment, it is a threat.
I’m tired of explaining this to men, but I do so because (Adam) it IS my responsibility and it’s also who I am. I am not a man who stays quiet when a woman is being abused. I have the power to do something about it. It’s not about the notorious and mythical “cookies” nor is it about my reputation. It’s about doing what’s right.
But if you are the kind of guy who must make everything about you, then use that Male Ego for good. You can’t say cry “not all men” and follow it with “why is this my responsibility?” so keep speaking up to other men and trying to change their minds until it is really is “not all men.”
October 1, 2014 @ 6:33 pm
This is terrible, and it happens all the time.
Sorry you are harrassed, that all your friends are harassed. Thanks for posting that link from the CDCC. Very enlightening!
Now, see if you hear this bullshit from a woman if it’s not a hundred times worse than from any man. I heard this type of bullshit from my own mother, so…
October 1, 2014 @ 9:32 pm
I don’t think it’s over the line to expect all men to stop making it worse. It’s possible to express sympathy in person, or to say nothing in an online discussion, if you aren’t up to doing more than that. If telling a friend “I’m sorry that happened to you” feels onerous, it’s probably a good time to spend a while by yourself.
Ideally, all men would step up to help some of the time, but the basic request here is to not tell women that they’re wrong about their experiences. If you find that onerous, think about why.
October 2, 2014 @ 12:17 am
Yeesh, really? I mean, how would they say hello to a guy in the street? (Tho’ it might be good to remind them of comparative anatomy– a woman’s eyes are in the same place a guy’s are. 😉 )
October 2, 2014 @ 12:38 am
Also worth pointing out– women got the vote because MEN voted for them. They didn’t have a voice in getting that. (Kinda the whole point, really.)
Dealing with the problem guys is the same thing– they already decided a long time ago that women aren’t worth listening to. We’re objects. We’re rewards. We’re targets. We’re a conspiracy to keep them from getting what they’re entitled to. We’re “baby” or “b*tch.”
That’s our current status quo, the state in which we currently exist. If you don’t have any desire to see the status quo change– you know, the state in which 1 in 5 women are raped and Problem Guys feel free to harass women the street unhindered– all you have to do is not say anything. Easy. Keep silent, things stay the same.
But if you DO want this to change, and men are the only people these yahoos will listen to… then yes, ALL men have the responsibility to SPEAK THE HELL UP, or this WILL NOT change.
October 2, 2014 @ 12:45 am
For the last time, I am not apologizing for or defending the actions of men who harass women. I actually agree with pretty much everything that has been said here by all involved. But once again, the frustrating part for me is the way in which many people approach this issue, whether with a finger pointed directly at all of male-kind or with a subtle implication that not being fully involved in stopping this is the equivalent of encouraging it. Simply stating that is NOT in any way an attempt to frame the debate around my supposed narcissistic self.
Real men (I’m not even sure that’s a term that’s okay to use anymore, because who gets to decide what a “real man” is these days?) should obviously (1 not harass women and (2 do their best to put a stop to it when they witness it. I don’t think that’s too much to ask and I haven’t in any of my responses suggested otherwise. I’m not asking women to change the way they view strangers for the sake of my own social well-being. And I can’t empathize with what women endure; I can only attempt to sympathize. But requiring good men to act on the behalf of all women and other good men, and then denigrating them should they fail to meet this standard for any reason big or small…that’s what I find so frustrating.
“If you’re at a party or other social situation/safe space, you can say hello – politely! as an equal! like a grown-up human being! – to a woman with a reasonable assumption that she is there to talk to people. But why,why, why would you assume this of a random woman walking on the street??”
Are you suggesting that simply saying ‘Hello’ to a woman you don’t know on the street is grounds for sexual harassment? My father met my mother this way and they are still happily sharing a life together. I suppose I’m extremely fortunate she didn’t agree with your definition of harassment.
October 2, 2014 @ 12:47 am
I thought this a bit relevant, especially in light of the whole “not all men!” comments.
“The standard you walk past, is the standard you accept”
October 2, 2014 @ 1:24 am
@Adam said, “Men who engage in sexual harassment will eventually end up all alone in their own little world of self-loathing and despair, surrounded only by men who act and talk exactly like them.”
Which won’t magically happen by itself; it requires that the ‘better men’ you speak of take action – whether by calling the harassers on their bad behavior, or by refusing to associate with them. (Or both.)
When you feel like you’re being expected – by dint of sharing a physiology similar to that of the asshats – to ‘do something’ about the problem? *That* would be the something. If you’re arguing that you don’t have the power to do that, your prediction that I quoted above isn’t predictive at all, it’s just wishful thinking.
October 2, 2014 @ 2:39 am
Thomas isn’t claiming “that simply saying ‘Hello’ to a woman you don’t know on the street is grounds for sexual harassment”.
He’s saying “Why in the world would a man assume that his attentions are welcome to a random woman in the street?”
We don’t know your parents’ story. Maybe this happened 40 years ago, in a small town, where everyone knew who everyone else was. Maybe not. Regardless, your one story about how this worked out for them does NOT make it acceptable for men to “try it on” with women they don’t know who are passing on the street.
For a guy to approach me on the street in ANY manner (other than to simply smile and say “hi” as he walks past, and keeps on walking) is just not acceptable. I will not be interested. He might be the nicest guy in the world, but women have learned from long experience that the chances are FAR greater that he’s not — and any sort of response on our part, be it a smile, a “hi”, or a even ignoring and looking the other way, is likely to get us subjected to further harassment.
Guys will say, “But *I’m* not one of the bad guys! It’s okay for them to respond to me!” … as if we can tell just by looking at a guy whether he’s actually nice, or another Rodgers who is going to pull out a gun and shoot us simply because we’re not interested. We can’t tell. Bad guys don’t come with a warning label. We DO know that it’s probably not safe to respond, because it may very well get us followed or harassed or worse.
And this is the crux of it: that these men are SO self-absorbed and myopic, that all they can think about in this equation is themselves and what THEY want. What the woman might want (i.e., to be left alone and unharassed) is never even a consideration for them. He believes he’s SO wonderful, she should be GLAD to get his attention!
You say “but requiring good men to act on the behalf of all women and other good men, and then denigrating them should they fail to meet this standard for any reason big or small” — well, when men stand by and say or do nothing when another guy behaves boorishly, they are offering tacit approval to that man for his behavior. They are condoning what he is doing as okay. So, yeah, I guess if you’re afraid you’ll get beaten up if you stand up for what is right, I can understand not saying anything. But if that’s not the case, then why AREN’T you speaking up, unless you agree with what he’s doing?
I read somewhere the comment “Not all men are harassers or rapists. But all harassers/rapists believe that all other men are harassers/rapists — and when other men just stand by and tolerate their bad behavior without saying anything, they see this as proof that all men are just like them.”
In other words, if you’re not being part of the solution, you’re giving a stamp of approval to the problem.
October 2, 2014 @ 7:28 am
“If telling a friend “I’m sorry that happened to you” feels onerous, it’s probably a good time to spend a while by yourself.” – very well said!
I get street harassment a couple of times a week, usually as I walk to the station. It’s usually a scream of “CUNT” or “WHORE” in my ear just as a car is passing me. It’s enough to make me jump and have a massive adrenaline spike but the car is going too fast for me to run them down and yell back. It is not a compliment. I am fairly sure it is not the same men who do it every time, either.
October 2, 2014 @ 9:36 am
Adam, I don’t know if you’re being deliberately obtuse, or if you genuinely don’t understand where we’re coming from. But this statement :
“I’m not asking women to change the way they view strangers for the sake of my own social well-being.”
Is directly countered by this:
“Are you suggesting that simply saying ‘Hello’ to a woman you don’t know on the street is grounds for sexual harassment? ”
In the second you’re implying that women are being ridiculous for their annoyance at a man saying hello in the street, but you’re claiming in the first that you’re not asking women to change their views on strangers. Hello contradiction. Implying that a woman’s reaction to strangers in the street is ridiculous is in fact asking them to change that reaction.
And I think the problem is that you’re not seeing it from a woman’s perspective. I have NO IDEA who you are, and if you say hello to me in the street my reaction is going to be negative. And that negative reaction is only going to increase relative to the loudness and obnoxiousness of that hello. Because Schrodinger’s Rapist is a real thing. And I’m sorry you find it uncomfortable to be lumped into the potential rapist category, but until society stops telling me that everyone is a potential rapists (and the actual rape numbers go down-because honestly the threat is real) and I have to be careful everywhere I go, that’s what’s going to happen.
And yes, if you don’t want to be lumped in with the harassers and rapists and general misogynists, you’re going to have to actively do something. That’s your part, as a man, of the ugly patriarchy side-effects.
October 2, 2014 @ 10:16 am
Just want t opoint out this site for those who need support or want t obe allies:
October 2, 2014 @ 1:15 pm
What exactly are you disagreeing with? Because the in the last 12 months, 1.6% of women have been raped by men and 1.7% of men have been made to penetrate by women (hint: also raped). It’s literally right there in the statistics you yourself are citing.
Lifetime numbers are considerably lower, but unless you accept that women have started raping men at 3x the previous rate in recent years then that’s likely down to bad methodology in the earlier studies.
I’m not suggesting rape is gender neutral, but throwing out ridiculous numbers like “about 2% of men are raped, 80% by other men” is tremendously offensive and refuted by your own source.
Jim C. Hines
October 2, 2014 @ 1:27 pm
I’m not suggesting rape is gender neutral, but throwing out ridiculous numbers like “about 2% of men are raped, 80% by other men” is tremendously offensive and refuted by your own source.
Gosh, what was I thinking. Obviously, the source meant something completely different by things like:
“In the United States, an estimated 19.3% of women and 1.7% of men have been raped during their lifetimes” and “The majority of male rape victims (an estimated 79.3%) had only male perpetrators.”
And if you re-read your comment, you’ll see that one of the things I’m disagreeing with is that I believe the study underreports the number of male rape victims.
October 2, 2014 @ 1:48 pm
Yes, yes it did mean something completely different. It meant 1.7% of men were *forcibly penetrated*. Do you really think that’s a sane and consistent definition of rape? To you think it’s okay to use it just because the study does?
The study clearly cites that 1.7% of men were ‘made to penetrate’ (raped) in the last 12 months (6.7% lifetime). Those men were raped.
“The majority of male rape victims (an estimated 79.3%) had only male perpetrators.”
Only applies to men who were penetrated, not men who were forced to penetrate.
October 2, 2014 @ 2:01 pm
1. “…the frustrating part for me is the way in which many people approach this issue, whether with a finger pointed directly at all of male-kind or with a subtle implication that not being fully involved in stopping this is the equivalent of encouraging it.”
I didn’t subtly imply that, I stated it outright. If you don’t stop it, you are encouraging it. I don’t know what your definition of “fully involved” is, but I’m not asking you to mount a nationally televised campaign to end street harassment (although if you do want to do that, I’d really appreciate it), I’m simply saying that if you see it happen, speak up and get involved because you’re watching a woman get abused.
2. “Are you suggesting that simply saying ‘Hello’ to a woman you don’t know on the street is grounds for sexual harassment?”
No. As JJ pointed out, I was talking about the assumption men make that women in public spaces are open and welcoming of their attention. Too many men forget/don’t know/don’t care that social mores and rules do not apply to public spaces. A woman walking on the street isn’t waiting for unknown men to talk to her, she’s going to work or going home or doing any number of things that don’t involve said men. When men make this conversation about the definition of harassment, we miss the point of the debate and dismiss the value of women’s everyday experience.
Jim C. Hines
October 2, 2014 @ 2:04 pm
Dude, I don’t disagree with you that the definition the study uses for male rape is problematic.
Please feel free to substitute any of the other hundreds of studies that also find that women are raped far more often than men, and that men make up the vast majority of perpetrators.
October 2, 2014 @ 2:17 pm
I never questioned that. But your quote “2% of men are raped, 80% by men” isn’t just an underestimate, it’s objectively wrong by the data in the study itself. If you’re going to cite it outside the study’s context, you should make clear that by raped they only mean penetrated or you’re being extremely misleading.
October 2, 2014 @ 5:56 pm
There are several big problems with your logic here, D506. For one, the claim about the high percentage of males raped by females is one widely published by a bunch of MRA sites (including one purported anti-domestic violence site which is actually a front for a mail-order bride business) — and the twisting of those statistics has been debunked (by a man, no less) in a video on YouTube.
In addition, the statistics for “made to penetrate” do not specify which oriface or which gender. When you say “ ‘2% of men are raped, 80% by men’ isn’t just an underestimate, it’s objectively wrong”, you’re assuming that all instances of “made to penetrate” are by females.
October 2, 2014 @ 6:39 pm
Also, one assumes your father wasn’t an adult male yelling ‘show me your tits!’ to a thirteen year old who became your mom, Adam. The problem us that most men who engage in cat calling are not doing it to compliment a woman, they want to make her uncomfortable as that makes them feel more powerful.
Some assorted links, because I’m too beat for thought | Fraser Sherman's Blog
October 2, 2014 @ 7:29 pm
[…] miscarriage suspicious (it would have been thirty if she hadn’t had support). •Jim Hines dissects one guy’s solution to “taking the power back” from men who cat-call women: Ask […]
October 2, 2014 @ 7:30 pm
Yes, MRA sites publishing bogus statistics are a problem, but it has absolutely nothing to do with my logic. This is the CDC stats, which you are currently using a source, that I’m quoting not some MRA website. They’re saying 6.7% of men have been made to penetrate (1.7% in the last 12 months) – a total reasonable number.
And no, I’m not assuming all made to penetrate instances are by females. I’m assuming about 80% are because that’s what the study says:
“For three of the other forms of sexual violence, a majority of male victims had only female perpetrators: being made to penetrate (an estimated 82.6%), sexual coercion (an estimated 80.0%)”
October 2, 2014 @ 9:43 pm
And the vast majority of sexual assaults occur between acquaintances, people the victim knows and or trusts. It’s how the predators are able to get close enough to the victim to do that in the first place. (It’s almost like “bad guys” know how to imitate “good guy” behavior.)
October 2, 2014 @ 10:23 pm
And once again, you have (perhaps deliberately) missed my main point:
Your claim “in the last 12 months, 1.6% of women have been raped by men and 1.7% of men have been made to penetrate by women” is not an accurate representation of rape statistics, it has been published repeatedly on MRA websites and debunked on other websites.
Men are NOT raped by women in an amount anywhere close to the number of women who are raped by men. Your persistence in trying to propagate this false information gives me a very strong indication that you are a regular denizen of those MRA sites.
October 3, 2014 @ 8:01 am
It is LITERALLY the exact statistic for the number of rapes in the last 12 months that in the study that YOU are citing. I do not care that MRA sites have repeated it or misinterpreted it. It does not mean that men and women are raped at the same rate or in the same way. What it means is that “2% of men are raped, 80% by men” is absolutely bullshit. Unless the study your citing is wrong, in which case why are you using it?
October 3, 2014 @ 12:06 pm
@JJ – If you are going to site that the statistics “has been debunked (by a man, no less) in a video on YouTube” please link so that we can judge for ourselves.
That being said, just because MRA websites publish the data doesn’t mean that it is bad data. Implying that the data they present isn’t worthy because of what they are, and not responding to the data itself, is just an appeal to authority (or lack of perceived authority).
It does seem like a lot of the studies are very shadowy about how they define rape. As it took digging to find that the CDC definition. It seems like the case where we think we all are on the same page as far as the definition, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. It appears that the definition depends on the context, such as the legal definition depends on the location and it also varies from person to person. If your agreement is that the stats are different, are you saying that being made to penetrate (sexual contact/actions without consent) isn’t rape? If not, what is your definition of rape and can males be raped by non-males?