This article on fixing rape culture is really good. I love her idea on how to shift responsibility.
As one of the men who already does/says stuff like “j’adoube” (I adjust) before moving into a position that a woman might feel uncomfortable, this is not even a change for my everyday behavior.
I hate hearing about rape culture. Not because I don’t think it exists. But because I think that the majority of men are good (or neutral, so not bad) and the offenders are hurting us too.
I wrote something about this topic already, but I needed to address Amna’s post too.
She mentions Brock Turner and Donald Trump. Are they some of the bad guys? Sure. And yes I’m pushing an agenda when I pick certain ones to call attention to, but so is everyone.
How about: Ben Roethlisberger. Jameis Winston. Baylor football. Vanderbilt football. Stubenville, OH football. I could go on. And yes they’re football players. How many do you think go unreported? Watch “The Hunting Ground” – it’ll shed some light.
Could there be a correlation between how much we worship football and how much we let the players get away with? Maybe we should attack the roots of the issues.
Now to the one problem I had with Amna’s article. “Rapists are innocent until proven guilty and even then rarely punished.”
Based on the context, it seems like she is suggesting a need to stop assuming the accused of rape are innocent until proven guilty. That would be awful. We must always assume innocence when trying someone for a crime. If the facts prove guilt, then we punish.
It’s terrible that many rapists get away with it, but we cannot go assuming guilt and requiring proof of innocence. Let’s raise the stakes – increase punishment if proven guilty. And stop allowing a slap on the wrist (Turner case) for assault.
And let’s raise the stakes for a false claim. I don’t think it’s a large percentage, but probably about 10% are false rape accusations. We shouldn’t be ruining the lives of the innocent just to make sure we catch all the guilty. And the court of public opinion can often do that (Duke lacrosse players – who were innocent).
We must start taking women seriously when they mention experiences of sexual assault. We must pursue an appropriate course of action. That course of action must not include victim shaming.
If we end victim shaming, girls and women will feel more comfortable coming forward when they’ve been assaulted. And that will help greatly.
We obviously still need to shift society to “don’t rape” instead of “don’t get raped.” Consent education is important – something we should introduce early in children’s education.
If we do this, we can make a safer and better world for women. And that’s what we should be working towards.