Archive for rape culture

Rant on Men Who Bring Up the Subject of Rape to Strange Women When They Are Angry

Posted in crazy people, misogyny, psychopathy, Rape, Rapists, sexism, Sexual Assault, sociopathy, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2013 by The Solution
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Anger

This rant is on a phenomenon I have experienced both in real life and online in the past three  years. I don’t remember it ever happening before that time, so I’m wondering if it is some kind of new trend.  At first I thought it was just men bringing up the subject of rape to women they don’t know out of the blue. But, after more consideration, I realize this is something they do when they are angry about something – it may not be anything related to you, but they are feeling frustrated so they automatically think of grabbing their dicks and doing some violent thing to a woman – otherwise, why are they talking about it?

It seems to me that more and more men are obsessed with rape and they feel free to bring the subject up with women they just met or have never met (as is the case online).  Why do some men automatically think of their crotches and rape when they get angry about something? And, why do they direct their aggression at whatever woman is handy at the moment? I don’t have answers, just questions and some incidents to share with you as I try to sort out the reasons for this bizarre behavior for myself.

In a previous rant, I’ve talked about huge and tall men I’ve never met before instantaneously becoming angry with me, such as the case when I was in Germany and several men had to hold another man back who wanted to attack me while I was quietly sitting in a chair. After becoming increasingly agitated and telling me, in English, that I should be gang raped by black men, he had to be held down to prevent him from attacking me. A strong element in these face-to-face instances is that the men are very large compared to me. It may not be a factor, but it goes with my big and tall men hating short, small women (and men) theory, which is discussed in the Rant on Height Discrimination Against Women and Men.

What I just described was a very direct threat of assault and possibly rape, but other instances are less direct, but still seem like threats to me.

People talk about the things that revolve in their minds. This is a fact. If you’re not thinking about it first, you’re not going to say it. The thought must precede the words. So, it’s clear to me that a lot of men walk around thinking about rape quite a lot.

I no longer deal with the public much and I like it that way because of the disturbing encounters I have with people when I do talk to them – not the little old ladies at the grocery store, but men – usually huge men.

The last time I had to deal with the public was when I was helping out a friend with his store by taking his place one night a week while he was recovering from surgery.  A lot of my customers were geriatric and I can’t tell you how disgusted I am at the behavior of these men, old enough to be my father or grandfather, right in front of their wives. Apparently, when they see you as a clerk standing behind a desk, they feel you are some sort of captive or you are of some lower status than them and, therefore, have to put up with their perverted behavior. I coped with that – barely – one night a week for a few weeks.

Then, the very last evening I worked in this place, a man came in and I don’t know how he got on this topic, but he began a long racist tirade, which went on and on and to which I was held a polite captive. At one point, he began repeating over and over again about how I would be raped by black men if I tried to walk across town. He didn’t just say it once, but repeatedly. Finally closing time came. There was, also, another man there who was doing some shopping, for which I was grateful and the rape fanatic finally left. But, I was pretty shaken up by the long racist tirade in which the man repeatedly talked about me being raped.

I don’t understand the racist component that some people want to throw into the problem of rape. (Race is irrelevant to a rape survivor – all rapists are inhuman monsters to us.) I’ve been told more than once that I should be gang raped by black men or Mexicans. Why do men I don’t know express to me these fantasies of me being gang raped by anyone? Clearly, it’s because  they have rape on their minds.

Furthermore, I realized that they think of rape when they’re angry and much like actual rapists, they will target any woman who is handy.

I’ve had similar experiences online. I had it once with someone from YouTube, which is overrun with MRAs (Men’s Rights Advocates). There I was told by a stranger that I should be gang raped by Mexicans because I expressed an opinion that differed from someone else’s.

But, I had the subject of rape brought up to me in anger, at least, four times by strange men in the short time I participated at the Kindleboards (now Kboards) Writer’s Cafe forum. And, when I objected to the last two people who brought it up, the moderators protected the perpetrators and enabled (if not encouraged)  them to continue with their bullying behavior – which I was told (by one of the male moderators there) to just forget, since I was the real problem. In my experience and observation, this particular discussion board has a culture of misogyny. By contrast, I’ve been a life-time, member of another popular forum for over three years and I’ve never had a problem with anyone doing something like this.

In every case in the online forum when this happened, it was a man who was angry with me for my opinion or something innocent thing I said. Whenever they’re angry they automatically think of their crotches and rape.

I think about these instances every so often, but what made me think of them, again, today was running across this article at Salon.com about an Indie author who is very active over at the Kboard Writer’s Cafe.  He has a bizarre sycophantic following at this misogynistic forum, so it really was no surprise to me that he wrote an article called “The Bitch from WorldCon,” which he later deleted. See part or all of the original article here and here. This is another case of indie authors behaving badly (see my Rant on Indie Authors Behaving Badly) and an example of another type of behavior some of the Writer’s Cafe at Kboards members are known for, which is trying to bully authors and publishers associated with traditional publishing houses.

According to the original blogpost, the author in question (His name is Hugh Howey) disagreed with something a woman, who was a publishing agent, said and he wrote that in his anger he thought of grabbing his crotch and ends his online tirade by telling her to “Suck it, bitch!” There’s a lot more to his misogynistic ranting, but this seemed to me to be the highlight. And, again, it begs the question:  Why do men immediately think of their crotches and the commission of acts of sexual violence against women when they become angry?

A woman rides with the devil on horseback.

A woman with her consort, the devil. Somebody, please, wake me up when the 21st century finally arrives – I’m still waiting.

This author is supposedly known for writing strong, fictional, female characters (although a couple of his books are on a “Misogyny Books” list at Goodreads.com), so his misogynistic tirade was a disappointment, especially to some women.  And, this is why authors – at least, some authors – really need professional help (for example, an agent or a traditional publisher). Ironically, as it turns out the woman, whom he referred to repeatedly as a “bitch,” a “she-devil” and a “demon” and whose appearance he hatefully ridiculed while he talks about slapping her and fantasizes about grabbing his crotch while calling her a bad name and to whom he finally makes the demand that she perform fellatio on him – all  because she expressed a differing opinion about something – was correct, after all.  Lest you think any of this is hyperbole, see this article with screen captures of the original post before it was deleted at this link right here. And, there’s more, including the original comments before those were deleted here: http://cuddlebuggery.com/blog/2013/04/15/buzz-worthy-news-15th-april-2013/

Note the commentary on page 2 of the comments at the Salon.com article,  wherein one of the author’s  legion of sycophantic defenders says that he wants a woman, who is bothered by Hugh Howey’s misogynistic rant, to be raped because it might do her “a world of good” – in other words, to teach her a lesson for expressing a differing opinion about something:

Commenter: Dylar
Date: Monday, Apr 15, 2013 04:02 PM EST

I thought long and hard about how best to respond to your posts, and I realized that what I’d really like—and what would be best for you under the circumstances—is for you to be raped.

Now, please understand that I don’t say this because of any sexual feeling or desire to exercise power on my part. Nor do I want to see you silenced, disempowered or devalued as a person or a woman. It’s just clear to me that you struggle with parsing and interpreting the words of others, and rather than standing by and watching you writhe in anguished futility, hamstrung by your own linguistic handicaps and tortured by internet trolls, I submit to you that a hands on demonstration of the difference between deed and word might do you a world of good.

Besides, it’ll give you a good story to tell at the survivors meetings, and provide you with a little more authenticity and street cred when you share your experiences and opinions with others. Really and truly, I have nothing but your best interests at heart.

Here’s hoping you have a truly wonderful day, lady!

What’s the deal with this?

I don’t have any answers for why this is happening now – or why it is happening, at all, for that matter. It seems like something that didn’t happen before a few years ago (apart from direct threats of rape). To me these instances, in which strange men bring up the subject of rape to a woman, seem like a subtle (indirect) threat of rape when they feel that a more direct one cannot be made.  It’s, also, disturbing that so many men are running around fantasizing about me or other women being gang raped or engaging in rape fantasies whenever they become angry with us (sometimes because we express an opinion about something that differs from theirs) or just angry, in general.

It seems to me that something in the culture has changed for the worse that this is now acceptable.  Unfortunately, I have no solution. I try to avoid places online where there is a culture of misogyny, although, sometimes you can get a nasty surprise in what, at first, looks like a safe place. For the sake of my health, sense of well-being and physical safety, I have just stopped talking to all but a couple of men who – so far – haven’t done this kind of thing to me.

 

Rant on Contemporary Romance Novels

Posted in misogyny, popular culture, Rape, Rapists, sexism, Sexual Assault, society, writing with tags , , , , on April 15, 2013 by The Solution

33-01-06/54This is a rant on contemporary romance novels and the many reasons why I hate them. It is, also, about this disgusting new trend of mainstreaming rape and abuse of women and trying to make it appear like it’s a normal – even healthy – thing.

I’m including a vast swath of romantic fiction here, but first let’s discuss the difference between two things that are often confused: The Romantic Period of English Literature and contemporary Romantic fiction.

The Romantic Period of English Literature grew out of the earlier Gothic period. Romance, at that time, was a word used to describe adventures that took place in a fanciful, sometimes even paranormal settings – often a forest and often in a foreign country (not England).  In these stories, there might be some interest between a man and a woman interwoven as a single thread in the story, but it was not the purpose of the entire story.

Now, we have contemporary Romance, in which the relationship or possible relationship between a couple (the kind I’m familiar with is a man and a woman, however, there are many variations) is the main focus of the story.

So, now we have established that contemporary Romance is not Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights, (the former was a woman’s adventure and the second was a ghost story – although, the movies are different) but the kind of mind-numbing, pointless and usually very badly written prose that describes a relationship between a man and a woman. First she hates him, then he wins her over by behaving like some kind of asshole – sometimes even a violent asshole – and then, they fall in love and live happily ever after.

Who reads these things?

Well, if you listen to the people peddling it, they say they have a broad audience that includes affluent and well-educated women. But, if you go sample some of the books on the current best seller list, they immediately belie this claim.  It’s hard to understand how anyone with a brain larger than a mustard seed could stand to read more than a few paragraphs.

Of course, there exceptions to every rule and it may well be that a few educated women read such books. In fact, I find it entirely plausible that there are a relative few such readers. But, I have seen the kind of people who buy, read and request romance novels and they do, in fact, fit a certain stereotype.  (I used to own a brick and mortar bookstore.) Most look like the stereotypical housewife. A lot of them are older women, sometimes much older women! And, most probably don’t have more than a high school education. Some older women did not get to graduate from high school because not long ago it was considered that women didn’t really need an education since they were just going to marry and spawn, anyway.

This is why romance novels are written on a very non-challenging level. It may, also, be why they are so predictable. They were written for semi-literates.

Dame_Barbara_Cartland_Allan_Warren

Description
English: Dame Barbara Cartland
Date 1987
Source Own work
Author Allan warren
From Wikipedia Commons

Back in the days when Barbra Cartland was writing, her contemporary romances stopped at the bedroom door. But, this changed by, at least, the 1980s. It was in the 1980s that I first picked up a Harlequin romance novel. I remember that it had a couple of dirty scenes in it, but they weren’t overly graphic in any way. I tried to read a second one of these and that’s when I discovered that they were practically identical except for the change in scenery and names of the characters.  Interestingly, some publishers like Siren have a very specific number of dirty scenes and other specific actions that must take place in their novels. So, anyone who says there isn’t a formula to these things is full of it – there is.

I always considered those earlier contemporary Romance novels, at least into the 1980s,  to be trashy and I’ve long thought that people who read them are a little on the trashy side.  Mostly, those books used to be silly, but not really too smutty or disturbing – but lately that has changed.

I am out of touch…

It’s true. I haven’t seen television in a couple of years. I never watched it much before that. I used to work all the time and I travelled a lot. In other words, I had a life and an education – one I had to work long and hard for. I went through things to get a college education that no one should ever have to.  And, in all of that time, I missed out on a lot of things to do with the popular culture over the course of the past 20 or so years.

I don’t mind that I missed these things, but I realize that it probably makes it hard for me to understand a lot of trends and things that are going on in the big cities or with the youth crowd.

I see some very big problems with the popular culture in fiction and movies right now – which may or may not be tied into this massive upswing in rape culture and the decline in the status of women in this country.

A few years ago, we got Twilight – or really the Twilight series. The first Twilight wasn’t too bad.  It was strange. It was written by a Mormon and that’s why it has some strange things about sexuality in it – Edward’s vampire temptations correlate with Mormon doctrine on pre-marital sex and spiritual death. As an ex-child cult member, I found that really disturbing. But, the series gets worse and it seems to encourage some very bad behaviors and bad decision-making. Edward is a stalker with an anger control problem. The wolf boy and his entire tribe has an anger control problem that they take out on women.  And, then there’s just the Bella character, who acts like a maid to her father and who is obsessed with Edward and finally impregnated by him – only after the wedding, of course, because they’re secretly Mormons. I found the normalization of all of this kind of drama and violence very disturbing.

But, then along came this Fifty Shades of Gray thing.

Back in the 1990s I sometimes went to the old meatpacking district in Manhattan late at night with a few friends – all lesbians, except me – and we used to go get our feet massaged. There were these foot fetish guys who hung out there. You had to beat them down – literally, like dogs – every so often when they started getting carried away, but they gave really great foot massages.  This place was like a dungeon, but not the kind where men go and pay someone to beat on them. At least, if money was being exchanged here, it was done very subtly. But, I saw men dressed as women and men dressed as men, chained up and whipped by men dressed as women. I don’t know if the men knew that the men were actually men or not. Clearly, some of the men there were confused about that, as I recall.

At any rate, it was all very interesting. I went a few times and I was introduced to the basics of the B&D role playing subculture… now, this is an anonymous rant, so I ‘m going to feel free to say what I think about this. Those people are very messed up. Normal people don’t engage in B&D or sexual role playing games in my experience.  And, people who participate in S&M are a whole other level of screwed up in the head. That’s the facts… That’s the truth. I know it’s unpopular – especially right now because I can see how they are trying to normalize this disturbing, aberrant, perverted behavior in the mainstream culture right now.

I am very bothered by it because I believe it leads men to abuse women and it puts women in situations to be abused. This is why I have a problem with Fifty Shades of Gray and all of the other books that try to make this lifestyle seem normal.  There’s nothing normal about it. And, I believe that is its purpose – or, at least, why it is being pushed so hard right now.

There is an effort underway to demean and humiliate women… It is being undertaken by the mainstream media in their news and on television. I don’t often visit mainstream news sites like NBC or CNN, but when I do, invariably I see headlines intended to undermine women and encourage men’s wrath against them.  These filthy books like Fifty Shades of Gray and the Twilight Series, which is intolerably disturbing by the third book… I read the first two out of curiosity, but couldn’t go any further… these books are part of the effort to undermine and destroy women’s status as human beings.

Now, who is writing this garbage?

Well, a lot of independent authors have found success with the Romance genre. But, I have begun to notice something else. Most of the squabbles and jealousy and stalking is directed at these authors. Furthermore, some of these authors seem to be not real bright. I have noticed just recently that a lot of the incidents of authors behaving badly involve Romance authors. This may be because you don’t have to be a Bronte sister to write one of these things – in fact, I think it would help to be slightly mentally defective. Of course, it may, also, be because the contemporary Romance genre is perhaps the largest and most popular one.

At any rate, there is a correlation between idiocy and contemporary Romance.

Below is an interesting video in which a young man explains why his mother reads trashy romance novels. I think it sums up not only the type of person who usually reads these books, buy why. Here it is:

Monkey read, monkey do.  Fifty Shades of Gray implicated in dangerous sex game trends: