DED Space discusses what it means when rapists have culture on their side.
Echidne of the Snakes takes apart Steve Gilliard’s prescriptive etiquette for women, in other words, his essay on How Not To Get Raped (Echidne later provides an astute update stemming from the comments in her previous post). Pseudo-Adrienne takes on this Gilliard essay as well. Shorter Steve Gilliard: “Yes, some guys are assholes, but it’s still your fault if you get raped.”
After surveying her class during the Kobe Bryant trial, Alley Rat finds that rape myths are alive and well among well-educated, middle-class boys and girls. Some of these comments are incredibly disappointing.
Amanda states the obvious: “Women cannot stop rape. And I’m sick of being told women don’t do enough to stop assault on us.”
Pinko Feminist Hellcat can’t win for losing. She discusses how others negatively perceive her precautionary tactics.
Both Amanda and PFH write on something I was criticized for just a few months ago, taking precautions out of what the author described as a “sad” fear. When I walk to and on campus at night, I turn my headphones low, make sure I’m wearing shoes I can run in, and loop my house keys through my fingers. I listen for footsteps around me and maintain a confident walk as though my confidence can somehow protect me. Sometimes I justify my late night solo walks with a statistical likelihood: if it happened to me once what are the chances of it happening again?
I have my wits, my strength, and my logic in my favor, but if a man decides he wants to do something to me, there is little I can do about it short of turning myself into a warrior.
These are my precautions to ensure my safety, I will not apologize for them. Safety does not mean indoors after eight.
The author who criticized these things as sadly fearful didn’t understand why I would take these precautions unless I had been raped or something. I left a comment replying that my first introduction to sex was rape and that after eleven years this summer I still live with the legacy. What he didn’t understand is that fear of assault does not result from having been raped, but from living in a culture in which, as PFH says, trust can mean peril.