Who is at fault here?
Women’s right have made real progress over the past hundred years or so, especially in the west and in first world nations, but not all is well, and I keep reading articles like this one: “The Religious Right Defends The Rapist’s Right To Rape“. It outlines another article by one Dan Rottenberg, who says that while rape is wrong, the blame can be pointed back at the women for being provocatively dressed, in the wrong place at the wrong time, or by working as masseuses. The article opens thus:
“Earth to liberated women: When you display legs, thighs or cleavage, some liberated men will see it as a sign that you feel good about yourself and your sexuality. But most men will see it as a sign that you want to get laid. Forewarned is forearmed.”
While an epic facepalm works its way around the world at those opening remarks, I do agree that some men will “see it as a sign that you want to get laid”. And some men are idiots too. And Dan Rottenberg is one example of an idiot. This is the advice he gives to women so they can avoid rape:
“Don’t trust your male friends. Don’t go to a man’s home at night unless you’re prepared to have sex with him. Don’t disrobe in front of a male masseur. If you take a job as a masseuse, don’t be shocked if your male customers think you’re a prostitute. And if you want to be taken seriously as a journalist, don’t pose for pictures that emphasize your cleavage.”
So there we have it in a nutshell. Women are responsible for their own rape because they show off they cleavages, and therefore should be blamed for their own actions. Okay, let’s look at this further.
The ignorant words above refer specifically to the journalist Lara Logan who was savagely assaulted by ” a group of well over 200 men” during the recent protests in Egypt which led to the downfall of the Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.
Rottenberg links this event specifically to the fact that one can google search for a picture of Lara Logan and see her cleavage in some pictures. Rottenberg also has said that Logan can’t be taken seriously because she has shown her cleavage in that photo. Well Mr Rottenberg, it would seem that your name is befitting your ideas; “Rotten” to the core.
But what is the real problem here?
On one hand we have the rape and assault by 200 Muslim men in public, and on the other hand we have Rottenberg writing it all off as if it was Lara Logan’s fault. What they both have in common is this notion that women are nothing but sexual beasts, here on earth to satisfy the uncontrollable reproductive urges of the males of the species.
Rottenberg says, as do many Muslims, that women need to cover up to be safe. From men. Who is at fault here?
Sure, people could jump to his defence and say that Logan should have covered up to avoid being in this situation. But why should she have to?
I say any man who commits violent rape or assault needs to be held responsible for their actions. Every person has the right to live in this world in some semblance of safety, and any man who decides that their own gratification deserves special treatment above this is at fault. People like Rottenberg who dismisses the fault of the 200+ men in the Logan case are equally at fault. People who perpetuate the idea that men can’t control their urges are at fault. Any man that uses their historical culture or religion to defend their actions is at fault. Any man who says that in order for a woman to not be seen as an invitation for copulation that she must cover herself from head to toe, is at fault.
And anyone who defends rape or assault because of what someone was wearing, or where they were at the time, is at fault.
Time to grow the hell up humanity.