Savage Love Mar 16, 2016 at 4:00 am

Safe Wording

Comments

110
Ms Fan - That was an abrupt volte-face. I was tempted after seeing #90 to make a counter case, but after seeing #97 I shan't go to the trouble. Instead, I think I'll just agree with you that this is likely to be a high point of LW's life. I suspect, though, that Mr Savage will live in infamy, as I imagine that the anti-Savage feminists are carrying the day in the battle for the soul of the movement over the pro-Savage feminists. A shame, really, when he's trying so hard.
112
Dr Sean - It could just be pragmatic positioning. And get used to it. What do you think will happen if Mrs C isn't elected? Will any reason other than MISOGYNY be able to get a hearing? With even a moderate degree of skill, Democratic women can parlay a Clinton loss into feminist control of the party for at least three generations.

Note to the assembled company - this is prediction, not commentary. I say nothing either way about whether women SHOULD have total control of the Democratic party.
113
@ciods & nocutename -- I know many dominant men. But they are rarely single, and even the poly ones are rarely looking for new partners. Dominant men have figured out what they have to offer women. They find the women who are into what they have, and build long-term relationships that can go deeper than just a little bondage and spanking. If you want to find one, OKCupid has a lot of questions related to kink. And, no, they're not often hanging out in bars (except when there's a good band).
114
@sanguisuga, seandr, Quincunx and auntie griz -- thanks!!
115
@Hunter, I can't speak for all women, but I prefer Good Guys Who Are Bad in the Bedroom, not full-out Bad Boys. Bad Boys don't make Good Boyfriends.

@seandr: I should also qualify by saying that I haven't found kinky men who are available to be in a monogamish relationship with me that I like. I have found lots and lots of kinky men who trip my trigger sexually and intellectually, have lots of similar interests and a shared sense of humor; they just usually happen to be married to or otherwise committed to someone else. Quite frequently the Kinky People are also the Poly People, and I'm not really all that poly. Also I hate jargon and people who identify in a one-dimensional way tend to be people I don't run across.

I think we have a tendency to try to find the source of a problem, with the thought that if we can identify the problem and its roots, we can solve it. So it's easy to say "it's this one thing that's keeping you from finding the relationship you like," or "have you tried doing this one thing?" The reality, I suspect, is that most relationships are, as Michael Bublé would say, "half timing and the other half's luck."
116
@EricaP: Our posts crossed. But I think the fact that you've kindly offered the advice you have illustrates the point I was trying to make @115. That is, if only I (didn't try to meet men in bars/ went on OkCupid/answered enough OkCupid questions/was looking for a man to build a more solid thing with/ whatever). For what it's worth, I've been on OkCupid for 5 years and have answered close to 2000 questions. I don't hang out in bars. I am not looking for the one-night stand equivalent of being tied up and spanked; I'm looking for a relationship with a guy who is nice, smart, kind, funny, and attractive to me who thinks I am all those things. It would help if he can at least pull my hair and smack me on the ass once in a while and talk dirty. Oh, and be employed and not allergic to cats. That's really it.

I don't know what it is that the lw is looking for or how she's going about it. Perhaps she has a longer list of demands.
118
@117: Maybe it's the conflation of men who think women are inferior with men who fear women that make it look to some people that men hate women.

I think feeling simultaneously fearful of strength and superior would look a lot like hatred.

There are plenty or women who sure appear to hate men. I remember a line from (I think it was) Seinfeld: Elaine met a woman who assumed she was a lesbian. Elaine tried to correct that assumption: "Oh, I'm not a lesbian; i just hate men."
119
I'm engrossed in this great novel
How to be Single, by Liz Tuccillo. I think they have done a dumb down version for a movie. She is an intelligent woman. And funny.
Yes, I see women hate/ dislike/ are disconnected from men. Their trajectory is different. They dealt with the distant, cold or absent father. Or the kind hearted, loving one.
120
@117, 118: I think fearing someone you think is inferior to you is the emotional basis for a lot of hatreds, including not only men-who-hate-women, but race-x-who-hates-race-y, straights-who-hate-gays, Hilary-supporters-who-hate-Trump-supporters, etc.
121
ciods @ 120
And what about the Trump supporters who hate everyone else?
I'd hate to return that "little black bikini" you sent me.
122
@121 CMD: Yes, there's Trumps-supporters-who-hate-immigrants-and-Muslims as well...same category, I think, yes?

Although I admit to confusion as to the relevance of Trump supporters to your little black bikini--presumably they're not connected!
123
@117/118 I agree with nocutename, you may be telling us what's behind what the LW is experiencing as men hating women.

I can't remember the whole convoluted fear, anger, hatred tree from the Star Wars prequels, but it seems as reasonable an explanation of why men rejected (even politely) or ignored on dating sites, as BDF cites, go nuclear. Or to come at it from the other, in-person direction: I've had a strange man yell WHORE in my face with clear, horrifying anger in his eyes for the crime of walking down the street in a short skirt and a tanktop on a sunny day. I've also had men yell 'bitch' and 'whore' after me when I didn't respond to their initially 'nice' catcalls, or smile on command. That instant turn to anger, in the second case, or just out of nowhere at a complete stranger in the first case, feels a lot like hate on the receiving end, whatever is causing it on the giving end.
124
nocutename @116, sorry for the OKC advice (though here I'll add to it: women sometimes have better luck starting fresh and making a very kinky profile, with a focus on D/s questions, and fewer answers to unimportant questions (which can mess up your match numbers to no purpose))

Mostly I was just noting my view that decent, intelligent male doms aren't generally available because they know how to get into relationships in which they can be happy -- which is why one tends not to meet them when looking for dating partners.
125
In other words, "all the good ones are taken".
126
@123. Cat in Fez, Yes. The rejection of the male reduces him back to his infantile rage. To how the bad mother humiliated him.
Not to mention we live in a Patriarchy, women are climbing out of the second class citizen hole, not completely above ground yet. In so many countries, men dominate women. Women are not allowed their own agency.
What is that attitude? Is it any different to the attitudes to slaves. A class that does what it's told so not to upset the ruling class.
127
@100 CMD, you lied to me?
Hope the trip goes well.
128
Our resident Dom hasn't jumped on with any tips. We had therapists comment on the therapy ques.. Perfect time for some Doms to offer guidance in navigating their world.
129
CMD @99: "While commenter #1 should be reprimanded for starting the POWER-personality guessing game"
That was Monkey @20, wasn't it?

Sean @102: "I would have thought a majority of men could pull off basic domming and enjoy doing so."
That's because you're projecting your preferences onto the majority. Similarly to how, until this column, I would have thought there would be roughly as many dominant women as submissive ones. Whoops! We're not as "normal" as we thought.

ciods @107: I bookmarked that stat: http://www.feministcritics.org/blog/2010…
I concur with your theory that different subcultures draw different dom/sub mixes. We definitely need more research into this department, I believe.

Hunter @117: Perhaps hatred of women is a side of themselves that men don't show to other men? FWIW, there is a difference between POWER's "there are a lot of men who hate women" -- for which there is abundant supporting evidence -- and "men hate women," which is an inaccurate, sexist statement. For the subset of men who hate women, see Return of Kings and various other menosphere (is that the right word? I've been corrected that it's not MRA) communities.
130
Lava @128: Good point. EricaP posted a link with advice on how to land the female dominant of your dreams. How about a guide to finding and impressing a male Dom?
131
CMD @100: Black bikinis in the natural hot springs of Iceland, sounds idyllic. Where is my passport? I shall book a flight straightaway! :)
132
And where are Sean and NoCute going for their first date? Sean, you're not allergic to cats, I hope? :)
135
@BiDanFan: That's because you're projecting your preferences onto the majority.

But most people are like me. Well, at least the normal ones are.
136
No, maybe this book is too depressing.
It was published in '08, a view of NY and other places around the world, re how single women survive! How the men in different countries behave. Generalized out from a couple of voices. Not enough men. No, not enough good men. All put together in a novel.
And the protagonists are 38ish, single and seem in panic mode.


137
LavaGirl @108 Yes, of course it was a kind gesture on Dan's part. I wasn't suggesting it wasn't. Just was curious about the actual numbers involved and am something of a stickler for precision.
138
@venn @109: To be fair, Mr. Palmer wasn't trying to get 320 million people to like him. Certainly that's a harder trick. I am sure she knows this is a failing of hers--unlike Marianne, I suspect she's aware it's problematic, rather than thinking it a virtue. But I'm not sure there is a fix. (I could also spend some time bemoaning the fact that media in general, and television in particular, have turned the election into a popularity contest; as if charisma and competence are the same.)
139
BDF @ 129 Unfortunately I’m the one @1 who first made some unsubstantiated and mostly irrelevant assumptions as to POWER’s personality. They were very much in her favo(u)r for no apparent reason.
Venn rightfully called me on it @ 3.

ciods @122
Relevance-wise: I was worried that some of your stated positions might make me feel somewhat guilty when wearing your wonderful gift.
After your latest assurance I can gladly say that it fits me perfectly. Thanks again.
May I reciprocate in the future?

Cat in fez@ 123
I’m with Hunter @ 133. Looked like that guy felt attracted yet conflicted.
Not to minimize your experience, yet this is something I always have to keep in the back of my mind while out in my female persona.
140
@133 The first guy didn't interact with me at all before yelling at me: just yelled as we passed on the sidewalk. Not invalidating anything else -- your interpretation hits the second group of experiences, obviously. But some guys head straight to anger without the stopover of making advances.

I think BDF at 129 might have the right of it: with the exception of sites and groups more or less assembled for that purpose (manosphere sites for example), maybe men are unlikely to talk about 'women' as a class to each other? And of course, the expectation of our society is that there are very few women in men's lives. Maybe they are hating their wife/girlfriend/whoever and consider all other women to share the same traits they hate in her. (Not the first time projection has come up on this thread.)

@139: Don't know why that would be invalidating to my experiences, unless you were suggesting I DON'T keep it in the back of my mind and thus brought it on through carelessness? I promise, I'm very much aware of this danger. Most women are (those that aren't tend to brag about it, so to head that off: I said most, NOT ALL.). The physical threat is worse for you, since conflicted desire --> trans-bashing is a well-known phenomenon. But I promise I've been aware of the threat of male desire/resentment/anger since I was a teenager. The fact it's only been that long is partly local culture and partly white privilege, from what I can figure out from reading other women's accounts of catcalling and street harassment. Black (and Latina) girls get street-harassed worse and earlier.
141
@Hunter: Don't be silly. Men aren't going to come out and directly say "I hate women." In fact, I'm willing to bet that most woman-haters don't consider themselves woman-haters at all, similar to the way that most racists don't consider themselves racists.

However, a simple comment such as "I'm not gonna respect a bitch who doesn't respect herself. If she's walking around with her ass and tits hanging out, how does she expect to be treated? I'll give respect to women who act like ladies" (a comment I have heard uttered by countless, countless men in my 30+ years on the planet) is absolutely rife with misogyny. It's an extremely dangerous mentality because it implies that women who wear clothing that shows off their bodies (i.e., women who don't "respect themselves") DESERVE bad things to happen to them because they clearly don't value themselves. This is a huge aspect of rape culture, and absolutely exemplifies hatred of women.

Yet how many men have you known who have voiced that exact sentiment above, yet would never consider themselves misogynists?
142
@137. ManxsomeFoe, fair enough.

These men who behave as Fez and Marcelina( hi, you're back) and others have noted,towards women in the street with aggression,makes one shudder as to how they treat the females at home. As if the clothes one wears is an indication to someone else that one does or does not respect oneself. This usually coming from people who throw any old tshirt over a pair of jeans.
What is that? Where does that assumption come from.
Is it a biological thing.. and therefore, males have no real control over it. See a female, want her to accept him, she doesn't.. So he rages at her. Does his street peacock
dance( hey babe or whatever), and she spurs him..
Or is this cultural. Learnt attitudes. Internal rage unresolved from infancy. To say it doesn't exist, some males deep ambivalence towards women, comes from those who have never been at the receiving end of this.

Marcelina, you coming on board makes me think of Chairman. The baby must be due soon. Hi Chairman, hope all are going well in your family.
144
Catinfez @ 140
No criticism whatsoever, just wanted to highlight a fact that not everyone may be aware of.
Most people here, like you, are very supportive. Apparently many others think we only dress up in order to get a free pass to the women’s bathroom. Though admittedly they are indeed cleaner…

Few weeks ago a commenter here pointed out that one of the reasons cis women are often more supportive of “people like myself” than cis men is because we face similar vulnerabilities and attitudes.
145
@Hunter: Not trying to offend you, but, to borrow a line from The Big Lebowski, you're out of your element, Donny.

In reading your comments weekly, one thing is clear. You're completely out of touch with women's real, lived, everyday experiences with regards to men. I'm not saying this makes you a bad person, only that you should really open your eyes and educate yourself a bit before jumping into discussions such as this one. Misogyny is a very real, very everyday thing that women face, it is much much more prevalent than you think it is, and if you aren't a woman, you quite simply cannot grasp its ubiquity because it doesn't really affect you.

And yes, more women than men will criticize a scantily clad woman at a party, but this is due to internalized misogyny that women are bombarded with their whole lives. In other words, society teaches women to hate each other and to see each other as competition for men's attention. Again, if you aren't a woman, you won't know much about or understand this.

Most men who hate women will NOT outright say that they hate women, just like most racists will NOT outright say that they hate X group of people. A tiny percentage will. Your average misogynist and racist will not. It isn't socially acceptable to say it out loud.

I would suggest you have a long conversation with a minimum of 25-30 different women about how misogyny manifests itself in their lives before you make such ignorant statements.

@LavaGirl: No baby (yet). Just been extremely busy pursuing professional and educational goals. Nice to see you too.
147
It's deep ambivalence. Not hatred.
You denying women's experience then Hunter? They making these threatening scenarios up?
Rape culture starts with an attitude, or attitudes. That women are just things to be admired, attitudes you yourself have exhibited here, time after time.
No real understanding that women, like men, are whole people.
148
@LavaGirl: Exactly. Any man who throws out bullshit, patronizing phrases like "gender studies exercise" when he is confronted with and invited to check his tremendous privilege as a straight white male, is not worth your time, my time, or really any woman's time.

It's akin to what Black folks call "white tears" when Whites are confronted with realities of racism and immediately become defensive. Matter of fact, scratch that. It's not "akin." It's EXACTLY like that.
150
@Seandr: It seems like you're saying that most men shouldn't have a problem with being dominating/rough during sex (correct me if I'm wrong, but that's what I got from your comment), and you were surprised that so many men wouldn't be ok with it. I guess because.....men are "naturally" supposed to be dominant and rough and degrading, etc? I mean, I'm assuming this is where your shock/surprise comes from?

Your comment, in turn, surprised ME, as I personally am shocked at the number of men who ARE ok with being rough/dominating/degrading toward women during sex.

This is not by any means a judgment on people's consensual sexual activities, mind you. I'm just surprised at the surprise (if that makes sense) that many men would refuse to slap a woman or call her a "cunt" during sex. If men are, in fact, averse to such behaviors and/or find them repugnant, well I must say that I find that MUCH more comforting than the opposite.
151
@150: "many men would refuse to slap a woman or call her a "cunt" during sex."
Marcelina, I know you were addressing seandr, but if that was a response to his response to my lamenting that the men I've dated recently can't utter the word "cunt" in a sexual context, please be assured that I wasn't referring to being called a cunt. I have a cunt; I'm not a cunt. I do not/would not appreciate, or even be with a man who called me a cunt.
152
Marcelina, my understanding of D/s, is not just some men contacting their inner thug, it's got to be more subtle than that.
A developed dynamic where the Dom isn't just imposing on the sub. Most women know that sort of male energy. No empathy. No rich understanding of giving and receiving pleasure.
Hence I was hoping some Doms would comment and explain the dynamic from their side.
153
@151: Fair enough.

However, my original point still stands. I find it comforting when men are UNcomfortable degrading and being rough with women. I realize, of course, that this is completely my own opinion.
154
@153: I agree that I am deeply disturbed by men who, in their non-sexual life, degrade or are rough with women, as well as men who degrade women or are rough with them in a sexual context without knowing that the degradation and roughness would be welcomed. In my case, it's important to know that there is a deep core respect. I'm not a doormat and it's sort of only play degradation. While the roughness is by nature real, it can be stopped on a dime if I want to stop. So in some sense, it isn't "real." It's all a form of play, really.
155
BiDanFan @130: "How about a guide to finding and impressing a male Dom?'"

It's similar to the advice @24.

a prospective submissive/slave [should] be honest and genuine.
...Having good manners and displaying common courtesy are also high on the list of desirable traits.
...A willingness and ability to follow instructions is also a fairly universally desired trait.
...Be as utterly candid as you can about what you hope to get from a relationship.
... Admitting that you don’t know the full extent of your interests and limits, but that you wish to explore these areas under her (or his) guidance, could go a long way.
156
Marcelina @150: We've already uncovered the reasoning behind Sean's assumption that most men would be down with domming @129 / @135. Nothing more sinister than that, in this case. I don't believe dominance in the sheets of necessity correlates with misogyny in the streets. I think (see 153) you get this on an intellectual level; I understand it's hard to grasp on a visceral level if you yourself are not into D/s in either direction. I believe feminism requires us to give the benefit of the doubt to people who are self aware of their own sexual preferences. (In fact, last night I caught up with some friends including a man who is dominant in bed, but who refused to attend a strip club because objectification is unacceptable to him. Yay for the good men.)
157
Having just joined fetlife, I'm startled and somewhat at the overwhelming alignment of D/s roles along gender lines. On this site, women and CDs sub; cis men dom. It's really weird.

I've started to go to parties but decline to play those roles myself.
158
This is off-topic, but I thought others might be interested:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/20/opinio…

(Not about porn, really, so much as the lack of other sex ed.)
159
I find it highly amusing how Hunter completely contradicted himself. He scolds me for believing that rape culture exists, calling it my "ridiculous misunderstanding of society," yet in a previous post he 100% proves my point that rape culture is alive and well by stating that he knows many men who utter the following types of statements: "That stupid bitch, what was she thinking wearing that stuff in that neighborhood?"

Because, of course, what invariably follows such a statement are variations of the following rape myth-esque sentiments: "...It's her own fault if she leads men on like that," or "What did she expect was going to happen if she goes out dressed like a whore?" or "If she acts like a slut, she's going to eventually get into trouble," etc etc etc ad nauseam.

The mentality that some women are at least somewhat responsible for their own rapes (because they were walking here, wearing this, drinking that, smiling at that guy, leading that guy on, etc.) is EXACTLY what people mean when they talk about rape culture.

And you proved my point beautifully. The male friends you've witnessed making such statements are exactly the men who are enabling rape culture.
160
"her encouraging forceful sex and regretting it later" ...
I understand that the "regretting it later" is often used in rape discussions to talk about women who enjoyed & consented to sex but may (edit their memories to?) retroactively take back their consent for other reasons afterwards. That DOES NOT MEAN that this is what someone is saying every time the phrase "regretting it later" comes up.
In THIS context that phrase most likely means that the wife asked for a simulated rape scenario without specifying certain parameters like a safe word due to lack of education/experience around safe sane consensual BDSM play. Then once the scene was underway she regretted it. Later in this case may not mean *after the sex* - i.e. she enjoyed the sex but regretted it later - but *after the ask* - i.e. she *thought* she wanted a rape scene, but *later* once the scene was happening she regretted it but had no unambiguous way to shut it down due to lack of a safe word. Hope that's clear, Dan.
162
Interesting article, ciods. Depressing too. Nearly 2billion dollars spent on abstinence only education, in the US.
So these young people, young females, turn to porn for sex education. Great. Just great.
@160 Robby. I think what is called for here, is to ask the woman. Did you regret it two minutes in or two hours later? When she says she was raped, ask her. Do you mean you were really raped? Or do you mean etc etc.
Some women, they just don't know how to use words correctly, right?
163
@161: No. You are now showing YOUR "ridiculous misunderstanding of society." Rape culture is, among many other things, an attitude and a mentality that helps to, usually indirectly, enable sexual assault in a society. It normalizes certain male behaviors and places the onus of responsibility on women to protect themselves from being raped, rather than on men to not rape. (Yes, yes, men can be raped and many men are victims too. But I'm talking about vast majority here.)

Which is exactly what your friends' comments do. The minute that a person even begins uttering the phrase "What was she thinking wearing that in [such and such circumstance]...", he/she is promoting rape culture.

Because deeply entrenched in that statement, however subtly, is the implication that HAD THE WOMAN NOT MADE THAT "STUPID" DECISION (to wear that/to drink that/to walk there/to talk to that guy/to lead that guy on), she wouldn't have been raped. Again, placing the responsibility on women to always police their own behavior to prevent their own assaults.

If you'll care to notice, we as a society have what we deem "acceptable" and "unacceptable" rape victims.

An 80 year-old woman (best if White) beaten and raped by a thug (best if Black) who broke into her apartment?

Acceptable rape victim and worthy of our time.

A street prostitute, porn star, or stripper beaten and raped?

Unacceptable rape victim. What did the stupid whore expect choosing this line of work?

A "good girl" (best if tiny, pretty, White, Christian virgin wearing modest clothing) is attacked on a street in broad daylight, dragged into an alley and raped?

Acceptable rape victim and worthy of our time.

A young, drunk female college student leaves a party and goes with a horny male college student to his room where he rapes her?

Unacceptable rape victim. What did the stupid whore expect, going up to a guy's room and then denying him sex when he obviously expected it?

THIS is just one of the aspects of what rape culture looks like. And yes, your friends help to perpetuate it with their comments.

164
Alison @157, the essays and pictures flagged as "Kinky and Popular" tend to be male dom / female sub. But there are a million specialized discussion groups, for every demographic, sexuality, gender, and kink.

And if the party scene seems like a bad fit, talk about that in one of the Fetlife groups for your city, and you'll probably hear of ones you might like better.
165
@164 parties you might like better, not cities.
166
@EricaP: intelligent male doms aren't generally available because they know how to get into relationships in which they can be happy

As for where to find the dumb ones, hit me off list, I might have a few ideas.
167
@Marcelina: It seems like you're saying that most men shouldn't have a problem with being dominating/rough during sex

I'm just saddened to think of all the wonderful, intelligent, sexy submissive women struggling (with their hands held behind their back and skirt hiked up) to find an interesting man who's not afraid to play rough. I'm moved by their cause. I think they deserve better.
168
@83 BiDanFan: Dr. Ruth was indeed kindlier than Dr. Laura---but I don't remember Dr. Phil being as nice. Dr. Ruth had me on "Communicate, communicate, communicate!"

@85 vennominon: I'll bet you do a kickass impersonation of Dr. Ruth!
Oh, whoa----don't get me started on impersonations, though--- people
tell me I can do a spot on (respectfully, of course!) of comedian Buddy Hackett.

@115 nocutename: Rock ON, sister! Agreed: I, too, am for Good Boys Who are Bad in the Bedroom (NOT in public). Bad Boys do not make Good Boyfriends. SO true.
169
Hunter at @161: "The guy concerned about the provocatively dress woman does not promote rape. Rape is a serious crime in our society. Women should not be raped regardless their dress. Pass the legislation to end that."

We have legislation to end that: the laws on the books don't care what you're wearing, they care what's done to you. However, if you look at how those laws are enforced: what a rape victim faces from the moment she tries to report through the end of a trial (assuming it's brought to one), that's the single best example of what academics call 'rape culture'. The cops try to impeach the victim's story, morals, emotions, everything, and a huge portion of the time tell them they can't press charges. Even if those individual cops are doing what they're doing because 'it'll just happen in court anyway' or 'to make sure the case is legit', the systemic way they do it is 'rape culture'. The way the man or woman in the street says 'but I love the way he plays football/music/whatever, she must be lying' when they hear a new allegation, that's rape culture. It's a weird term, admittedly, but it's the culture that ENABLES rape (not 'promotes' as you say, admittedly) and at bare minimum, we have that.
170
@Cat in fez: Yes, exactly. Thank you for getting it.

Btw, your username always reminds me of one of my favorite Steely Dan songs.
171
@Cat in fez: Yes, exactly. Thanks for getting it.

Btw, your username always reminds me of one of my favorite Steely Dan songs.
172
Oops, sorry for double post!
173
Hunter @161: "Pass the legislation to end that." What legislation? Rape is already against the law. The legislation is already there, but it is failing rape victims because of rape culture. Because when someone (I'm being gender neutral here) reports they have been raped, the first questions that are asked are about what THEY did to bring it on themselves. What were they wearing, how much had they had to drink, how many people had they had sex with before, how forcefully did they say no. Because of rape culture, many people are more concerned with the effect on the rapist if they are convicted than the psychological and physical effects on the victim. Rape is illegal but only 4-5% of rapists are convicted; why is that?

This IS a culture in which rape flourishes. It IS a culture which denies rape, excuses rape. Sometimes even promotes rape. (Ever listened to hip-hop or played Grand Theft Auto?) Are you suggesting we need laws making excusing rape illegal? There aren't enough prisons.
174
Alison @157: Interesting. Maybe female dominants and male submissives are so rare and in demand that they have less need for profiles on Fetlife?
175
Robby @160: A good alternate explanation for "she regretted it later."
176
@BiDanFan: Exactly. Anyone who thinks we don't live in a rape culture has his/her head firmly up their ass. Hunter is so ignorant that it really makes the head hurt. I'm actually surprised that any Dan fan could be that misogynistic and sexist.

But what do we know, right? We're just the "weaker sex," according to Hunter, who display a "ridiculous misunderstanding of society."

177
@152 LavaGirl, It's a pretty complicated topic. As a male dom who's actually teaching a D/s class tonight, I've got some pretty well formed thoughts on the topic and they would be tough to elucidate on here.

You are correct that it is far more subtle than just contacting your inner thug. Any D/s interaction is a partnership which works best with willing and enthusiastic participation from both parties.
Add in the extra factor that the male dom/female sub kink world is an exaggeration of the vanilla world where women are valued for youth and beauty and men are valued for power and accomplishment and you get a dynamic where submissive women have greater challenges as they reach their 30s and male doms become much more desirable as they reach their 40s. (Personal experience here and there are always plenty of outliers to the stereotypes.)

That's part of why, even though there are more male dominators than female submitters (I love using those words), there is a shortage of male doms that said female subs would WANT to submit to.

When you're trying to get the vanilla partner to be dominant in bed, it's possible that it just doesn't get his dick hard or he can't get past the things screaming in his head that THIS IS WRONG.

The only thing that got me past the THIS IS WRONG thing was that kink is a core identity for me. I didn't really have the choice to just accept a vanilla sex life so years of personal development went into getting where I am now. This monkey at 45 is far, far more desirable than this monkey at 35 was and it's all because of internal brain stuff. The older me definitely isn't more physically attractive but I'm more able to inhabit that dominant space which is the biggest part of it.

To sum all of that up into one sentence, being a good dominant is not the same as being a jerk.
178
MonkeyFetish, I remember trying to get my very vanilla ex-husband to try and be just a little bit Dom-like. When he tried, he confused it with being mean. I don't want someone to be "mean" to me; that's not how D/s works for me. I want someone to take his pleasure from me, and part of that pleasure might include humiliating me or punishing me, or restraining me or hurting me or combing some of those things, either as ends in themselves, or so that he or someone else can do whatever he likes to me sexually. He might be harsh (until the scene is over, when he is generally tender), but is not mean. His treatment of me doesn't originate from contempt.

Once when I went to a personal trainer, it came out that my ex assumed the trainer would be like Lou Gossett Jr. as the drill sergeant in An Officer and a Gentleman. He couldn't understand any other model for being told what to do or how to do it than one that comes from being screamed at and emotionally and psychologically abused in a non-consensual way.
180
Hunter @179: "How the victim was dressed is important for understanding the crime."

Do the police ask how you were dressed when you report a break-in?
How about a mugging?
Why on earth is "how the victim was dressed" relevant, unless it's asked in order to assess the victim's own level of culpability?
Do victims of any other crime get asked about whether they were intoxicated at the time? The victims, not the perpetrators. Does drunkenness on the part of any other type of victim exonerate the perpetrator?

An effective way to oppose the rape culture would be to campaign for all women to report all rapes.
Because it's so much fun going through a cross-examination when you've already been victimised, and when you know the odds that reporting the rape will lead to conviction are minuscule. Because some lawyer is going to put you on the stand and victimise you a third time by grilling you, and shaming you, about your consensual sexual choices. Also because, as someone noted, often the attacker is known to you and you don't actually want them to go to prison. What they did was bad, but what you really want is for them to learn their lesson and not do it again. Particularly if you're married to them and reliant on their income... or so many other possible reasons why this is not such a black-and-white decision as you think it is.

"The world is continuing to get brighter."
That's only because of Daylight Savings Time, silly. Actually, I googled and found that rape rates (which, you're correct, are notoriously difficult to quantify) have indeed fallen since 1993: https://rainn.org/get-information/statis…
And why is that? Because of public information campaigns against rape culture. Because the message is being put out there that it doesn't matter how a woman is dressed, whether she's drinking or what route she's taken home at night -- that no means no.

But your belief that rapes are isolated incidents is, alas, overly optimistic. According to the same statistics, one in six women has been the victim of rape. Think of six women you know. One of them has been raped. That's one too many, and there is still widespread belief -- among both men and women -- that women who get raped are at least partly to blame. You even admit you've heard men saying things like "That stupid bitch, what was she thinking wearing that stuff in that neighborhood?" Did you step in and tell them that women have the right to wear whatever they want without being raped, or did you let their misogynist comment pass by?
181
@170 Huh, I don't know any Steely Dan songs!

____

Everything BDF said at 180 I second. With the added factors that victims of color will be treated even worse by the police; that sex workers who are the victims of sexual assault would be arrested if they even thought about reporting (probably would be laughed out the door) or worse: please note there's a significant history of members of the police sexually abusing sex workers -- Holtzclaw isn't an anamoly.

Victims who know their attackers are far more likely to get harassed or threatened if they are 'trying to ruin their lives' by reporting than if they just deal with their own emotions and don't take action. See the American university system. And in general, in terms of 'found only in the undersides of society' -- does that mean colleges are the undersides of society?
183
Monkey, thanks for that. And I was cross with you before, yet you still answered. Nice.
Gee, that's a bit depressing, hearing it's just a young woman's game. Let's hope it's not so youth directed in Australia, as I venture into it.

184
Ms Grizelda - Buddy Hackett makes sense.

*****

On a general note, I am almost recovered from the fatigues of running a 90th birthday bridge party yesterday. It normally would not have been quite so draining, but a threat of snow meant that I'd had to plan for various possible numbers of players, and couldn't do as much preparation in advance as I'd have liked. But I suspect it was mainly that I wore a new pair of evening shoes that looked as if they'd have fit right in at the Netherfield ball or attending the pump room in Bath. (I'd seen them on 80% markdown two weeks before and thought them worth the small expence even if I never wore them again. As I no longer really socialize, there's a real chance of that, but at least I'm prepared.)
186
Marcelina; yes. I do sometimes wonder if Hunter is a stooge from the men's rights group, sent in here to disturb women.
Hunter, no it's not a difference of semantics. You are not in any way a victim of this rape culture, so how about you, for once, show respect towards those who experience this dynamic and allow them to define how it is. You
188
Hunter is just an MRA troll. Don't waste any more time on him. He took a wrong turn on his way to the Return of Kings rally to help exonerate their demigod Roosh V. from yet another rape charge, and now no one can get rid of him.

Hunter, get your troll ass over to ROK. Dan definitely doesn't want your kind around here.
189
LavaGirl,

It's hard to communicate on an internet forum like this. For all you know I'm some MRA douchenozzle... All I can do is try to clarify what I'm trying to say and hope I make some form of rational sense.

I'm speaking in generalities. It so much depends on individual personalities and even regions. It isn't that there's no hope as submissive women age just that there are some additional challenges.

Setting aside any appearance issues, the biggest factor is that as women get more experience, they are less likely to put up with things they don't want. I've seen this manifest itself in a few common ways:

-Reluctance to suspend disbelief when entering a dialogue with someone new. It's hard to feel dominant if you don't feel that your prospective partner is interested in drinking your kool-aid.
-Standards that are hard or impossible to meet. Perhaps they're used to playing with rock stars and are unwilling to give the less experienced a chance.
-An air of unapproachability. Possibly from having seen one too many dick pics on FetLife or having been aggressively approached once too often in real life.

This dramatically reduces the pool of available partners.

My advice to a female submissive who seems to be unable to attract partners is the same as it is to a male dom in the same situation.

- Go out and meet people in real life. Munches are good for this. There will be jerks there but there will also be awesome people to engage with.
- Be open to experiences, even if it isn't immediately obvious that the other party has something to offer.
- Be approachable and personable. hiding in the corner does no good.
- Don't go out with the intention of finding a life partner. Go out with the intention of finding like minded friends. You'll be surprised at what crops up. Seriously, a 40 something, somewhat autistic geek boy like myself should be "forever alone" and I have no problem finding partners for play and I have the single most awesome life-partner ever.

On that life partner: When started seeing each other, she was right in the early 30s period where it would be very easy for her to be closed off as I described above. Instead, we were able to connect and it is pretty amazing doing this D/s thing with someone who has the maturity to know the directions she wants to explore and the understanding of how to make it a D/s partnership rather than a a power inversion. I am a very, very lucky monkey.
191
It seems that the system is eating comments...
---
LavaGirl,

It's hard to communicate on an internet forum like this. For all you know I'm some MRA douchenozzle... All I can do is try to clarify what I'm trying to say and hope I make some form of rational sense.

I'm speaking in generalities. It so much depends on individual personalities and even regions. It isn't that there's no hope as submissive women age just that there are some additional challenges.

Setting aside any appearance issues, the biggest factor is that as women get more experience, they are less likely to put up with things they don't want. I've seen this manifest itself in a few common ways:

-Reluctance to suspend disbelief when entering a dialogue with someone new. It's hard to feel dominant if you don't feel that your prospective partner is interested in drinking your kool-aid.
-Standards that are hard or impossible to meet. Perhaps they're used to playing with rock stars and are unwilling to give the less experienced a chance.
-An air of unapproachability. Possibly from having seen one too many dick pics on FetLife or having been aggressively approached once too often in real life.

This dramatically reduces the pool of available partners.

My advice to a female submissive who seems to be unable to attract partners is the same as it is to a male dom in the same situation.

- Go out and meet people in real life. Munches are good for this. There will be jerks there but there will also be awesome people to engage with.
- Be open to experiences, even if it isn't immediately obvious that the other party has something to offer.
- Be approachable and personable. hiding in the corner does no good.
- Don't go out with the intention of finding a life partner. Go out with the intention of finding like minded friends. You'll be surprised at what crops up. Seriously, a 40 something, somewhat autistic geek boy like myself should be "forever alone" and I have no problem finding partners for play and I have the single most awesome life-partner ever.

On that life partner: When started seeing each other, she was right in the early 30s period where it would be very easy for her to be closed off as I described above. Instead, we were able to connect and it is pretty amazing doing this D/s thing with someone who has the maturity to know the directions she wants to explore and the understanding of how to make it a D/s partnership rather than a a power inversion. I am a very, very lucky monkey.
192
Hunter,

You don't see a rape culture because you aren't threatened with being raped, and are too nearsighted to see the threat of or actual rape of others. If you can't see anything that doesn't happen directly to you, shut the fuck up.
193
Yes, Monkey. I posted my above comment and it got up hours later. wtf.
Thanks for your comments, and suggestions. Glad you have found an awesome life partner.. I'm not looking for a LP. I just want to play, so maybe I'll get lucky.
194
@Marcelina: Your last comment was nothing but a personal attack. That makes you the troll.

Dan definitely doesn't want your kind around here.

Speak for yourself.
196
Ms Fan - How far are you willing to compromise the presumption of innocence in search of a cure? Some things can be changed without going that far, but it does seem that, sooner or later, one hits the wall.
197
Hunter @182: The cis white man doesn't see a rape culture. (Not even when he personally hears victim-blamey comments.) That means it doesn't exist. Thank you for that mansplanation.
Seriously? Maybe you want to listen to people who daily experience the real possibility that they may be raped. Maybe you want to listen to people who HAVE been raped. It might be a learning experience for you.
198
wtf is wrong with these threads? I wrote a comment several hours ago which showed up and another comment above mine; now both gone.
Thanks Monkey.
199
Yeah, these disappearing comments are doing my head in too! No doubt it's an "upgrade" on the Stranger site, which was completely unnecessary. Sigh.
200
@sean: It wasn't an ad hominem attack. I was staying a fact, which is that Dan doesn't like entitled, misogynist MRA rape apologists who bask in their male privilege. Do I know Dan Savage personally? No, but having read every single SL column for the last 18+ years, I kinda can assume that.

Predictably, instead of joining the women here to speak out against Hunter's blasphemous manosphere bullshit, your first instinct was to defend him against "trolls" and "personal attacks." How disappointingly typical.
201
MonkeyFetish@191, could you explain a bit more about the distinction you see between a D/s partnership and a power inversion? (If it feels too off topic here, I'm at EricaPSavage@gmail.)
203
Hunter, you already showed yourself. See @143: "I hear your sexy clothing trope almost always differently, much more along the lines of "That stupid bitch, what was she thinking wearing that stuff in that neighborhood?""
That is rape culture.
It is all around you, and yet you aren't even aware of it.
I asked you if you ever listened to hip hop or played Grand Theft Auto. It is there too.
This is rape culture. A woman can't even walk down the street without being repeatedly harassed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b1XGPvbW…
This is rape culture. Media in uproar about how a victim ruined her rapists' chances at promising sports careers. http://thinkprogress.org/health/2013/03/…
This is rape culture. the_ghost_of_mrj's comment @50 that a woman who says "no" multiple times can expect a guy to keep on pushing, keep on asking, that this is completely normal. https://www.thestranger.com/slog/2016/03…
This is rape culture. Roosh V.
This is rape culture. Anytime you hear someone say "she was asking for it." Anytime you hear guys praising a fellow guy who was raped by a woman, saying he was "lucky." Anytime you hear the phrase, "boys will be boys," in relation to "taking liberties" with women, aka not taking no for an answer.
If you claim you cannot see these things, you are wilfully not seeing them.
204
Marcelina, you're really not doing our side any favours here by hurling invectives. Do you want them to actually learn something? Then you've got to address them in such a way that they will be willing to listen.
206
@BiDanFan: It is all around you, and yet you aren't even aware of it.

Without doubt "rape culture" exists, especially in certain police departments, where it (along with racist culture) can have a devastating impact on people. @Hunter, if you're wondering where it is, read "Missoula" by Jon Krakauer, which paints a very different picture of law enforcement than "Law and Order".

But all around me? If by "rape culture" you mean a general acceptance of or indifference towards rape, than I'd say emphatically "no", it is certainly not all around me.

I've played football, wrestled, joined a frat, worked blue collar jobs, worked male-dominated corporate STEM jobs, so I've had an insider's candid look at stereotypically "rapey" male institutions, and I can't recall a single instance in which a pro-rape sentiment was expressed, nor any environment where it would have been welcome. In fact, there was an alumnus of my frat who was said to have raped a woman in the house, and the sentiment around that incident was that he was a scumbag who'd be severely beaten if he was every stupid enough to come back to campus for a visit (and I have no doubt he'd have been severely beaten).

And just to be extra super duper clear, I'm certainly not saying rape doesn't happen. For all I know, some of the men I've encountered are rapists - a few of them seemed sufficiently psychopathic to be capable of it. My point is only that I've not directly experienced a culture in which they'd be seen as anything other than scumbags, so either I'm living in a bubble or rape culture isn't quite as prevalent as you're suggesting.

Of course, if you're the sort who sees any rape prevention effort that focuses on what victims can do to protect themselves to be a form a victim blaming, then you're going to see "rape culture" everywhere you go. As the father of a 14 year old girl, I personally think that view is insane.
208
"And what is your point about clothing? Are you saying provocative dress (or undress) should not or does not promote rape. If the former, I support you; if the latter, you have a poor understanding of the male psyche."

It is actually you who has a terrible understanding of rape and rapists. Rapists do NOT select victims based on what they are wearing. Rapists select victims who are vulnerable targets.

If you really believe that the average "male psyche" predisposes men to rape ON THE BASIS of clothing choices, then you are painting your gender in a most horrendous light.

You obviously know very, very little about rape in the real world. Stop watching SVU and speak to some real-life rape victims.

209
You arrogant men. Can't you hear? Ears.. You got them, use them.
Women, the people this environment is effecting, are telling you their experiences. Their perceptions. And what, both of you, Hunter and Sean.. You just poo poo it.
Well of course, if the men can't see it, it doesn't exist right?
210
@BiDanFan: That's been tried already. Several women, myself included, attempted to school Hunter in a non-confrontational, respectful manner. As you can see, he doesn't get it.

I see your point, but I'm tired of constantly having to walk on eggshells to protect the glass-spun delicate white male ego. If someone's gonna be a rape apologist who denies that a rape culture exists because he watched a few episodes of that BS show Law & Order (life spoiler: rape is not dealt with as kindly in the real-life criminal justice system as it is on TV crime shows), then he deserves to be called out. Hard.
211
@LavaGirl: exactly. This is precisely what feminists mean when they talk about "male privilege."

"Well, I've never known someone who was raped, and I've never been raped, and I've never known someone who was a rapist, and on TV they always get the perp and the victim is never blamed and the victim is always believed, so therefore rape culture doesn't exist."

Meanwhile, hordes of women are telling their LIVED experiences and their female friends' and female family members' and female coworkers' and female acquaintances' LIVED experiences with rape and with the CJ system. But, hey, it never happened to you or anyone you know, so it doesn't exist.

Hunter and Sean need to get over to ROK with Roosh and his ilk.
212
I assume when man see other men on the street in tight tops, and tight pants.. Showing their nicely formed arms and highlighting their cock, the first thought you guys have is; that stupid man, dressing like that in this neighbour hood.
Yes Hunter, in your country I think there is a murder culture. It's what comes when people, ordinary everyday people, carry guns. Everyone is ready to kill.
213
Don't think the thread is fixed Fan. Now we're all on zero.
214
@seandr, the two times I was sexually assaulted were by nice guys who thought (incorrectly) they were giving me what I wanted or needed. Neither looked "psychopathic" to their buddies or their families.

The first one (when we were 18) just ignored me saying "no no no no no stop no" as he went down on me against my will, just as he had ignored my protests when he was tickling me right before, also against my will, as I expressed loudly. He just didn't think my "no" mattered, since his heart was in the right place. I continued to hang out with him socially, because I didn't realize I'd been traumatized until many years later when Mr. P. wanted me to talk about why I didn't enjoy receiving oral sex.

The second was a second date with someone I'd met on OKCupid. The first date he had been domly in all the right ways and accepted my stated hard limit: no rough anal. The second date, he put me on the bed, told me he was going to violate my hard limit, and then he did. I froze up, couldn't speak until it was over, and felt very violated. He thought that was what I wanted, or claimed to have thought that.

Believing that rapists are different from other people -- that's part of rape culture.

Realizing that people in our culture are punished in many ways for asserting their right to determine what happens to their bodies, starting as children -- that's how you start undermining rape culture.
215
@Sean: I'd be curious to know how you'd feel about rape culture the first time that your 14 year-old daughter wears an outfit that Hunter's friends deem inappropriate and they call her a stupid bitch and ask her what she was thinking wearing that outfit.
216
Fan, very generous of you to believe some men want to learn from women. From so many of the comments posted here over the time I've been reading Dan's threads, I don't see an attitude by some men that they want to learn much at all, from women.
The conditioning is too deep. They are too old. The Patriarchy serves them too well.
217
@EricaP: "Believing that rapists are different from other people -- that's part of rape culture."

Yes. Exactly. And believing that a "good guy" couldn't be a rapist. That's rape culture.
218
@86, On Jeopardy, spelling is judged based on pronunciation. So "Centre" would be deemed correct, as would "superiour." However, "Emanciptation," because it would be pronounced incorrectly, would be judged as a wrong answer. I assume the verbal answers work similarly (if conversely); if you can "hear" the misspelling, then it too is judged to be incorrect.
219
Despair...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynenGHFJ…

["No" means "yes!" "Yes" means "anal!"]

There IS a culture that makes these young men feel like this is OK behavior. For me, it usually manifests as street harassment. But unlike the commenters above, I usually get told that I should dress better and "smile more." I am conventionally attractive, but I dress quite "unattractively" (lots of baggy masculine clothes) hoping to avoid attention. That just seems to anger and provoke a subset of men. Another subset see me as shy and quiet, and therefore vulnerable. I have lost count of how many times I have been groped and rubbed-against on public transportation. You really cannot win in this culture. I promise you, it's a real thing. (BTW, why would I lie about it?).
I count myself very lucky to have never been sexually assaulted. And yet *I* can see the rape culture quite clearly. Is it possible you could just take our word for it?

220
@EricaP: Sorry to hear about those experiences, they sound awful, and they couldn't have happened to a more awesome woman as far as I'm concerned. At the same time, I thank you for sharing them, as I've learned something from them.

As for rape culture, your comments seem to be directed at something I said, but I don't know what. Yes, most rape occurs with someone you know, and there are places in America that deny this, e.g., the Missoula police. In my corner of the world, I initiated a conversation about date rape with my daughter and she cut me off because she's heard it before, a couple of times, in her victim blaming self defense class, and in a presentation at school, and she trusts the boys she hangs out with so please dad shut up, they're my friends, not rapists and I'm only 14. There's more I'd like to say to her, but she seems to have reached a saturation point with the topic, so I'll hold off until she's older.

That's the culture I live in. And yet somehow rape still happens.

We seem to be discussing a phrase that is impossibly vague, and I'm starting to suspect that's why it's become so popular. I've tried to define it as a general acceptance of or indifference to rape. If there's another more accurate definition please fill me in. You seem to be suggesting it's about ignorance about sex and skepticism that women know/say what they really want, whereas Sandai seems to think it's something that must exist because how else can we account for all the raping and groping and unwanted attention that happens.

@Sandiai: Is it possible you could just take our word for it?

Yes, it's possible, but I must apologize for being the sort of honest midwestern socially impaired dumbshit who actually needs to understand what you mean before I can solemnly nod my head and thank you for educating me. And to be clear, I understand everything you've said and described in your post. Except for the connection with rape culture. Which suggests to me, maybe it's not all that useful of a tool for communicating about sexual assault. Maybe we could save ourselves a lot of pointless back and forth by avoiding buzzwords and just saying what we mean.
221
@184 vennominon: Whenever the world gets a little overwhelming, Buddy and friends offer me a temporary distraction back into a comfort zone from my earlier days: The Music Man (1962), It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (Stanley Kramer, 1963) and Disney's The Love Bug (1968) in particular. This, of course, does not mean I'm still the child like I was way back when as this is 2016 (I wasn't even around in '62 or '63, anyway)---but it's comforting to have some parts of yesteryear still enriching my life, in further continued connection to my parents' generation. Give me sentimentality any day.
222
Fine Sean. Because you can't get your Midwestern dumbshit brain around a phrase, the phrase should just be changed. Clear on the rules then.
Because it's Not sexual assault people are talking about. It's attitudes.
The phrase Rape Culture relates to attitudes some men carry all the bloody time about women. How they think of women. How they talk to women. How they behave towards women. What they assume women are put on this earth for.
224
@Sean: You're being so obtuse that I think you're trolling at this point. I already explained in a previous post what the term "rape culture" means, but I'll repeat it again:
"Rape culture is, among many other things, an attitude and a mentality that helps to, usually indirectly, enable sexual assault in a society. It normalizes certain male behaviors and places the onus of responsibility on women to protect themselves from being raped, rather than on men to not rape.

There were also a good 5(!) women here who have patiently explained to you about 20 other aspects of rape culture.

Yet you continue to troll, asking over and over for women to keep explaining to you what rape culture is.

Hint: Your own daughter took a "victim-blaming self-defense class." THAT is fuckin' rape culture.

I'm done explaining. LavaGirl is right in saying that some of you males are too blind, sexist, set in your outdated beliefs, and well-served by the patriarchy to understand our side at all. Get along.
225
Is the lack of a new SL means we're stuck with this argument for another week?
226
Ok, say Sandiai is on the metro and someone is pressing his erection into her parka.

Rape culture is where it's up to her to do something about it. Where she feels like it's not worth raising a fuss to yell at him. Where she can't easily ask the person in front of her to use the intercom to ask to have the offending passenger evicted from the car, or just tiredly say, "Get your dick off me" and be able to count on everyone staring at the offender until he leaves on his own, and then get back to her Angry Birds or whatever she was doing.

Not only is it up to her to do something about it - and will be creating an unusual and unladylike stir if she does - if it happens and she doesn't do anything about it, she has forfeited the right to complain... and what did she expect, there are all kinds of weirdos on the metro. Don't take the metro if you don't want men to rub your dicks on you. Duh.

So now Sandiai has to choose between forfeiting her right to the public transit her taxes pay for, forfeiting her right to bodily autonomy, and being the crazy lady who can be counted on to start screaming at other passengers at least once a month. And Hunter can simultaneously assert that since if you ask them directly everyone will agree that strangers pressing their erections into unconsenting people's parkas is gross, there is no rape culture and no problem.

And gross erection-pressers try it once, discover there are no consequences and do it again, and again, and again.

That's rape culture.
227
I don't think seandr is trolling. I'm not even sure I think Hunter is trolling. They are explaining their experiences living as a male in this culture, just as several posters here are explaining their experiences living as a female in this culture. The fact that those experiences don't overlap 100% isn't all that surprising. And I think it's possible to say "I don't see this thing you're talking about" without it automatically meaning "I don't believe in this thing you're talking about." (Maybe Hunter went more for the latter.)

Personally, I do believe there's a rape culture in certain specific subsets of American life--frat houses being probably the best example (and yes, there are good frats, too). I don't think it's omnipresent, but I do think it's there. However, I think it's worth pointing out that many many other cultures have a much more serious rape culture than we do. That doesn't mean ours is okay, or anything like that, but let's acknowledge that we've at least moved to a point in society where rape is considered bad; we recognize the existence of marital rape, for instance, which lots of places don't even think is possible. I think Marcelina's comparisons to racism are pretty spot-on. Like racism, the rape culture is still there, but at least we've all agreed it's not *supposed* to be, so it's mostly under the surface and disguised; that's the first step in eradication.

seandr: but I must apologize for being the sort of honest midwestern socially impaired dumbshit who actually needs to understand what you mean before I can solemnly nod my head and thank you for educating me.

Fair enough.

I sort of hate conversations like this, and I was tempted to just not join in. But I think there may actually be something important to communicate here, so I'll give it one try. Here goes.

I don't really know what I think "rape culture" means, although Marcelina's definition is probably fine. I completely believe your description at @206 of not encountering any pro-rape attitudes, and I honestly think that's more common than not. So I'm not sure where the disconnect is. But I do think there is one, somewhere, because when I think about my circle of female friends, the ones who I would know well enough to know about things that have happened to them--it's not a huge group, since I also work in STEM fields and mostly accumulated male friends, but maybe six girls, counting myself--four have had an experience like EricaP described, or (if you'll excuse the "rating" of traumas, Erica!) worse.

So how does that happen? We're mostly bright girls, I think we don't do any more stupid things than average--fewer, probably--and I think we mostly hang out with good guys. I'm not sure I even think all the guys involved were bad guys. A couple definitely were, a couple I think really weren't. But there was some sort of major disconnect along the way that caused bad things to happen. And I think the fact that good guys can do bad things, almost unintentionally--maybe even thinking they are doing a good thing, like EricaP described--I think that might be what the people here mean by rape culture.

Or hell, maybe not. It's complicated. But that's my two cents.

    Please wait...

    and remember to be decent to everyone
    all of the time.

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