Thursday, August 31, 2006

'Lenient' sex offence sentences appealed

A young woman exhausted with fighting the system that is there to protect us. I am pleased this survivor has the courage and strength to write a book about her ordeal so that other rape victims “have something to relate to”. One brave and gutsy young woman.

Read more...An 18-year-old rape victim attended an appeal court hearing Monday as prosecutors claimed the jail sentences handed to her attackers were too lenient.

Tegan Wagner said that while she was "exhausted" by the length of time the case had taken, she wanted to see justice.

"I'm still waiting for everything to be over, so it's still taking a bit of strain on my own personal life," Ms Wagner, who has waived her right to anonymity to encourage other rape victims to speak out, said outside court.

Prosecutors have appealed against the jail terms given to three Sydney brothers for sexual offences, arguing that they do not reflect the seriousness of their crimes.

The men were already serving lengthy jail terms for gang rape when they were sentenced in April for assaulting Ms Wagner and another teenage girl at their Ashfield home, in Sydney's inner-west.

The crown on Monday challenged the latest sentences given to the Pakistani trio, who can only be identified as MSK, MAK and MMK.

MSK, 27, and MAK, 26, were convicted of sexually assaulting Ms Wagner on June 14, 2002, when she was aged 14.

MSK was also convicted of raping a 13-year-old girl known as CH on July 14, 2002.

Earlier that night, the girl had had consensual sex with MMK, who was convicted of having sexual intercourse with a minor.

When the brothers were sentenced for the offences, their jail terms were made partly cumulative with sentences they were already serving for the 2002 rape of two other girls, aged 16 and 17.

In 2004, NSW Supreme Court Justice Brian Sully had sentenced MSK and MMK to 22 years each behind bars for those rapes, while MAK was jailed for up to 16 years.

Last April, Justice Peter Hidden effectively ordered MSK to serve at least another five-and-a-half years for raping Ms Wagner and CH, while MAK was sentenced to a minimum two years on top of his earlier sentence.

MMK, now 19, will spend no extra time in jail, serving his 12-month term at the same time as his other sentence.

In the Court of Criminal Appeal, Crown Advocate Richard Cogswell, SC, argued that MMK's sentence was inadequate and "failed to recognise the harm done to the victim".

He was convicted under a law designed to protect young women from sexual violation, he said, and the sentence "fails to deliver any punitive response at all".

Mr Cogswell said MAK's sentence did not reflect the gravity of his criminal behaviour and the offender was simply not adequately punished, he said.

The sentence handed to the ringleader and oldest brother, MSK, was "manifestly inadequate", he said.

MSK had encouraged MAK to assault Ms Wagner and threatened CH with violence as he raped her, telling her he had strangled a girlfriend and hung her from a balcony.

Chief Justice Jim Spigelman, and Justices Anthony Whealy and Roderick Howie reserved judgment on the appeal.

But Chief Justice Spigelman indicated they would increase MSK's maximum term by at least two years, to take into account a miscalculation in his sentence.
Outside court, Ms Wagner said she was "exhausted" by the legal proceedings, which have dragged on for four years.

"I'm not happy that justice hasn't been served yet," she told reporters.
Ms Wagner is writing a book about her ordeal so other rape victims "have something to relate to".

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Defense say Kissing means Consent to Sex

A woman was raped by two men in a camper van in Penrith, Cumbria. The way in which the local paper is reporting this trial, indicates how unfair rape trials are still.

In the article, the defense say that because the woman kissed one of the men, this means she was 'a willing participant'.
So, kissing a guy means you are saying yes to sex..?
No it doesn't.

The article also states that the men admitted the woman said 'NO' a few times, but after she said 'NO' she was happy to have sex with them...
To me this means, she stopped resisting once they ignored her pleas of 'NO' and began raping her...

Did the defense not consider that she was most likely scared..?

(click on article, then click on icon that should appear in bottom right corner)

Friday, August 25, 2006

The scars that don't heal

Over at the Den of the Biting Beaver, read BB's account of the soul-destroying reality of survivors of childhood rape, in her post Firewalking.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Pornography and the Fear of Men

Welcome to new "Agent" WLNow, who has written this moving piece:

As I sit in the library now, I’m watching a group of men huddle around a computer, clearly looking at pornographic pics. Remarks alternate between “she’s so young!” and “she’s an ugly bitch—could be my grandmother.” I have also heard them say “look at that fucking bitch,” and rate how much they could ejaculate with each girl. Some wouldn’t do much for them, but some would make them go “straight up” (illustrated with hands).

Now they left. The group plans to come back with another library card to get more computer time, as well as “pick up some girls.” (Apparently, they’re into the booky type).

My mom is a librarian, and ever since my early childhood days I have considered the library a place of relaxation and freedom—but the Internet changed all that. Or rather, the people viewing the Internet did.

* * *

After I typed this message, I went back over to the computers, only to find the guy next to me looking at (you’ll never guess). Porn. Hard-core porn. Anal shots and then videos: a woman sucking a dildo and another woman tied up in a harness being penetrated by a penis while she screamed. And the guy next to me knew I was looking, knew I could see, but didn’t care. He would minimize the screen when a man or child walked by, but not when I, an adult female, could clearly see what he was getting off to.

What wonderful “speech” he was hearing.

Smells like teen spirit...

"Agent Witchy-Woo's" recent submission about the two teenage boys assaulting the 21yo woman got me thinking. There seem to be more and more teenage boys committing rape and sexual assault, although most of the time, it is on young(er) girls. Of course these teen rapes have happened in the past, but they seem to becoming far more commonplace. So what are the causes?

Certainly we can't do-a-Freud and blame it on the mothers, as die Kinder are far more likely to emulate the behaviour of same-sex role models (so that would be fathers, uncles, older male siblings then!). Any sexist/objectifying behaviour is speedily absorbed by children.

What of pornography and Lad's Mags? Whilst there are unverified reports of boys under 16 buying LMs, the fact is, they don't need to. Children are curiosity-seeking missiles, and will find any stash of porn in the house (even the oh-so-carefully-hidden-in-the-wardrobe ones). And the sexist role models above, are the ones most likely to have this stash of porn – so these two points go hand-in-hand. But your average teen or pre-teen doesn't even need to exert that much energy to seek out porn – just a computer – as even some of the most innocent of searches can yield porn results (try Googling feed my pussy with the default setting moderate-safe search).

If we were to assume that these teens didn't have sexist role models, didn't see porn/LMs, and didn't Google their fingers off, what else would influence their hormone-fuelled little minds? The following list I consider to be the biggies in shaping the attitudes of the youngsters:

Music videos, TV and film, video games and advertising.

Music videos (aka 'music-porn'). The majority of kids are drawn to pop-music as an expression of their generation. Not only are there more music programmes showing clips, but there are numerous channels dedicated to it (several available on Freeview). In the world of music-porn, ALL the young women are scantily clad, pout and gyrate as if they've just gotten back from a strip club. The men are almost without exception, fully clothed. The males have two types of role models, either a pimp or a drug dealer (especially if black) promoting hyper-masculinity, or; the 'white-power' model, either dressed in a suit and/or has scantily clad females fawning over him – but (he) always has more clothing. So the message promoted by music-porn is: Men are powerful and/or 'tuff' and have (many) women making themselves sexually available to them. Women ARE sex. The influence of music-porn is equally bad for both boys and girls. There is no regulation, as long as intercourse or full/partial nudity is not shown, it can be screened at any time of the day or night.

TV and film. Sexual violence and rape are common themes – call it a 'how-to' manual if you will. Just last night I happened to see (some of) the start of the film "The General's Daughter". In this film, the female lead, an investigator of some sort, was attacked and threatened at the same location as the rape and murder of the title character occurred. This message was – she was a woman, she was vulnerable, she could also have easily been raped and murdered. Sure, there was other male-on-male violence, but these were testosterone contests of (relative) equals, and didn't carry the same message as when the woman was attacked. It is a crap film. Slasher films are another breeding ground for sexual violence. Women scantily clad, women attacked, women screaming…women's pain and suffering at the hands of the almost-always, male boogie-man. Sure there are many other examples in mainstream TV and film, but when sex, sexual titillation and violence are mixed, women in the real world will suffer.

Video games are getting more realistic by the minute. Certainly the main theme is violence, and most of it is male-on-male violence (guns, fists, whatever), but when women appear, there is always a sexual element. Lara Croft could easily share clothes with Barbie. In a TV ad I saw for the last Tomb Raider, there were many sexualised shots of Lara, notably from behind in those tight-tight shorts. Grand Theft Auto San Andreas used to have a 'cheat' that allowed the player to kick a prostitute to death without paying, complete with screams. A prostitute is of course, a woman whose 'purpose' is for sex. The cheat was apparently replaced after lobbying, with – a 'lesbian' porn scene. So in the land of video games, it is violence-sex-violence. And if you want to see something equally as disturbing online, check out Boneless Girl, which looks like a body dump to me (see also Biting Beaver's post on this one).

Advertising - primarily TV advertising as it has the widest audience. Briefly (as this is a massive subject) it is a land where 'gender' roles are heavily enforced. Women are frequently scantily clad or naked. The majority of women are associated with sex (Herbal Essence is my pet hate). Magazine (and billboard) advertisements, in utilising the 'best shot', usually pick… the naked woman. Sex sells my arse; as I refuse to buy any product that relies on this sexist crap. The ASA does nothing, mainly they only uphold complaints that breech financial and misleading advertising. I'm in the process of making a blog to voice my disgust at the advertising industry: Grrrlcott.

So with all of these cultural influences on the young, (including porn when they find it), it is not surprising that these teens view girls and women merely as sex objects. The younger they are exposed to these attitudes, the more influential they become in shaping the adult.

On a final note, I would like to see two radfem blogs, one on music videos, the other on video games. Any takers?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Deputy head jailed after sex with pupils

Article from The Guardian:
"A deputy headteacher who had sex with two vulnerable teenage pupils after posing as their mentor was yesterday jailed for five years and three months. Stephen Brenchley, "targeted and groomed" the girls, the youngest of whom was 13, during a time when both were having problems at home, Norwich crown court heard.

The teacher had sex with a 15-year-old at a Suffolk school in the 1980s but escaped detection until he had a relationship with the second girl after moving to Costessey high school near Norwich between 2002 and 2005 while he was a deputy headteacher.

Brenchley, 48, a father of three, was described in court as a "dangerous and corrupting influence". He offered to show the 13-year-old "how to have sex properly" after she told him she was thinking of sleeping with a boy, the court heard.

A police investigation only began when the pair split, the court heard.

Katharine Moore, prosecuting, said the girl had described herself as "troublesome and attention seeking" and that Brenchley had become her mentor. Ms Moore said the girl was 13 when the pair first attempted to have sexual intercourse. They did not have sex on that occasion, but went on to have sex once or twice a week. Ms Moore said the girl had ended the relationship when she was in the sixth form.

The girl and Brenchley initially denied their relationship. But he was rearrested when the girl's father found a letter from him to his daughter. The letter implored the girl not to cooperate with the police.

Brenchley admitted five sex offences against the girls during an earlier hearing. He admitted having sex with a girl between 2002 and 2005 and indecently assaulting a girl between 1984 and 1986."
Article from The Guardian Tuesday 15 August, 2006

What comes first the teacher or the paedophile? Does tutoring nubile pre-pubescent girls turn an adult male’s sexual preference from grown consenting women to easily manipulated vulnerable young girls. Girls who are growing up in a pornography-saturated environment, who are identifying from an alarmingly early age that to be born female equals pleasuring men by the male standard. Alternatively, do tutoring nubile pre-pubescent girls attract these men to be given a sanctioned opportunity to abuse vulnerable “Barely legal teens” or maybe even these “Teen Sluts” which seem to be fair fodder for the ever-worshiped male sexual privilege?

Yet another "Sex Text Pest"

This story just goes from bad to worse!

Tony Ardener, 26, from Orton Goldhay, Cambridgeshire, sent around 132 text messages, many of a sexual/suggestive nature, to a local schoolgirl (unnamed).

He was a primary school teacher, and the schoolgirl was 12 years old. She was bombarded with the text messages over the Christmas-New Year period of 2004.

Earlier this year, Ardener was found guilty and sentenced to four years and three years on two charges, to be served concurrently. Read more here. Hugh Vass (aka Jackass Vass?), Ardener's defence counsel, gives such pearls of wisdom as "(Ardener)...paying the price for one week of madness" and "...was a fool, but not a paedophile".

Last week, Ardener's sentence was reduced down to two years. Read more here. Where Lord Justice Gage says "The sentence ... longer than it ought to have been for this appellant, a young man of good character, in which the activity was carried out over a limited period of time."

So, Justice Gage, a crime is ok if it is a quickie? I'll remember to look you up if I ever go into bank robbery.

At least, according to other reports, Ardener will not be able to teach again. It's a pity they didn't ban him from owning a mobile as well.

That'll teach him!

How should the justice system deal with sex offenders? Longer sentences perhaps?

Nah, Old Bailey Judge Jeremy Roberts seems to have come up with the ultimate deterrent to sexual assault - have the perpetrator write a letter of apology to the victim!! Certainly, all rapists will look at this ruling as a ... FUCKING GREEN LIGHT TO RAPE. Judge Roberts, you sir, are a complete moron.

Related links worth checking out:
Miss Robyn wrote her "Imagined rapist letter of apology".
Feministe have some great comments on their blog about this story.

(If the link to the Guardian moves, please let me know.)

21yo woman assaulted by teens

From "Agent Witchy-Woo" this report of a 21yo woman sexually assaulted by two teenage boys whilst she was waiting to meet a friend.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

'Police Disbelieve Women On Rape'

A poll has found one third of people think a woman is at least partly to blame for being raped if she is flirtatious, and a quarter if she is drunk or wears revealing clothing.

This is not a new article as it was published on the BBC website in November of last year. Lets face it, nothing much is going to have changed in eight months - is it? So I thought it was well worthy of another airing, just to remind ourselves just what we are up against.

One woman, raped at the age of 20, told the BBC News website she never reported it for fear it would not be taken seriously. She agrees that it was a shocking stastic but that she was not surprised; as public perception of rape is affected, by the way rape is treated by the justice system.

"I didn't hold much hope that it would be taken seriously"

She felt it would have been too much of an ordeal to go through, as she did not have any faith that the Police would take her seriously, coupled with the low conviction rate she did not hold up much hope that her rape would be given the gravity of seriousness that it deserved.
She knew her attacker, she had had a drink with him, he was a friend, she had been drinking and she had kissed him. That was as far as she had wanted it to go. She was raped by him, but did not report it to the Police.

"It wasn't what I would have thought rape was. I know now that most people are raped by someone they know. It's not the 'stranger danger' that people think happens, bushes and knives. I didn't know that - it's not something that was ever covered at any stage of my life, there's no education at school. I didn't know the statistics."

The sexism, and yes the misogyny in the justice system needs to be challenged and turned on its patriarchal head. Women seem to be of little value, their safety and integrity appears to be an after thought. As long as the police and the judiciary are getting away with not taking rape seriously, things are not going to improve. Women continue to be questioned regarding their previous sexual history, although this was addressed and disallowed a couple of years ago. Many Judges don’t even realise that questioning of the victims sexual past is not permissible. They need to be held accountable, for the way they treat women when they report rape, and do their job properly, gather evidence and make sure the resources are going into that area.

Rape is not taken seriously, approximately 6% of rape cases that get to court are convicted of their crime. When you combine this with the huge percentage of women who don’t even report the crime, it points to a rape culture. We live in a culture, a so-called civilised society that minimises the horrific act of rape, disbelieves the woman if she reports it, and if it does get to court, brings her past previous sexual history as something to be held in 'evidence' - evidence for what? That she may have 'deserved' it?

Virgin - Whore - or Saint... anyone?

Sunday, August 13, 2006

My Fear

Even though I am street-wise, and have had my share of fights, I fear rape.

I have recently begun to think through all the self-regulating and risk-avoidance behaviour I and my female friends do in our everyday lives, to get to the true cause of what we are avoiding...

When I leave a club and my mates say, "are you sure you're alright getting home safely on your own..?" I say, "yeah, I'll be fine"

What I should say is, "Statistically I am unlikely to be raped or attacked on the way home, but I will be shitting myself and looking over my shoulder clinging to my mobile, all the way home."

When my mates say, "text us when you get home"
I text to say, "I'm home now, see you later"

What I should text is, "I wasn't attacked on the way home so I'm safe thanks."

When I'm walking home, I come to a point where I think, I could either walk the quick way, along the cycle path, or the long way along the main road, to be safe from rape. Depending on how dark it is, I usually will walk the long 'safe' way.

What this means is, I will walk along the main road where it is brightly lit with cars driving by, so that a man is less likely to attack me, and if a man does attack me, I can get help easier.

When I'm walking home at night, and a man is walking behind me, I think, 'Shit, a man, walk faster...'

This really means, 'Shit, a man, I hope he won't rape me, walk faster so he doesn't catch up with me.'

All this pisses me off, I want to be able to walk home on my own without fear of attack.

William Parkinson Sexually Harrasses with Texts

Daily Star 21st July 06 pg 35

Why Doesn't She Just Fight Back?

There are many reasons why a rape victim doesn't, or doesn't 'appear to' fight back.

Firstly, the appearance of not fighting back. She may well have fought back against her attacker, but in the men's terms of fighting back, it is 'invisible'. She, like most women, probably lacks actual fighting experience, and therefore uses more spontaneous methods of self defence or attack (not 'recognised' fighting techniques, like punches).

Many women do not fight back against their attacker. She may 'just' struggle as a form of resistance to the attack, or give initial or constant verbal protests against the assault. Or, she may 'appear' to acquiesce.

In this last category, of 'not fighting back', it is a survival strategy. Women are not stupid. They know (whether consciously or subconsciously) that they are 'outgunned' by his weight, muscle mass, and possibly even fight experience. Let's face it, it is the equivalent of putting a heavy-weight boxer in the ring with a feather-weight – hardly a fair contest. In the land of men, they recognise this in their sports, but not in the Law. Because, under the Law, men and women are seen as an adults, and therefore 'equal'. What is never taken into account in the Law is this physical discrepancy. This is well illustrated in cases of self defence (particularly in domestic violence cases) where the woman 'levels the playing field' by using a weapon. Because, in the 'rules' of self defence, you may only use a like-for-like arsenal. If he has a knife, you can use a knife (but not a gun). If he has a gun, you may use a gun. But if he is unarmed, then the use of any form of weaponry by the woman, is regarded as 'not self defence'. The self defence 'rules' are men's rules, designed in resolving deputes between men – those who are more equally matched physically. That is why if a woman kills her abusive spouse, attacks often appear 'pre-meditated', for even though he may have raped and beaten her for last five or twenty years, it is her seizing a moment of opportunity (and possibly weapon) when he is vulnerable, that is not recognised by Man's Law. She knows from years of experience, she is no physical match for him in an altercation.

Which brings me to acquiescence, or apparent acquiescence, as a survival strategy, especially in rape. There are two categories here, stranger rape (less than 20%) and acquaintance rape (over 80%). In stranger rape she may appear to acquiesce because he is an 'unknown quantity', she doesn't know how much (more) he is going to hurt her, or even kill her, if she resists or fights back. In the acquaintance category there are two modes, first victimisation and repeat victimisation. In repeat victimisation she has learnt through experience that she is no physical match for him, and submits. This is not, definitely not, the same as consent, and is still rape. In a first victimisation of acquaintance rape, probably either 'date rape' or someone the victim knows such as a trusted friend, then she may be reluctant to inflict injury on someone she cares about, even though he has, or is about to, hurt her.

Compliance is a valid survival strategy, but will definitely work against the rape victim in Court. This is perhaps why so many rapes, mainly acquaintance rapes, do not even get reported.

I mentioned domestic violence because I regard DV and rape as part of the same continuum of violence against women. There are many parallels, most notably in the conviction rates for both – under 6% (closer to 5% actually). In Court, it is 'her word against his' (HWAH), and in men's Courts, it is HIS that will be taken over HERS, unless there is other physical evidence to the contrary.

For women, it is, and always has been, a case of survival first, justice second (if at all).

Further reading on the women who do fight back in cases of domestic violence.

Craig Sweeney abducted and sexually abused a three year old

Metro 7th Aug 06 pg 21

Saturday, August 12, 2006

The Devil You Know – Acquaintance Rape

Charliegrrl asked if she could use my rape experience story posted on her other blog within the thread of rape fantasies. I said yes. I think I was prompted to write about the experience after seeing the programme "30 Minutes" on Channel 4 (11 Aug) and presented by Nina Hobson (Nina also did an exposé on institutionalised sexism in the police force for "Dispatches" back in April – what a sister!). I think I've decided to share my story, not for sympathy (as I've never told anyone), nor for 'therapy', but possibly because it may help someone else avoid a similar or understand their own situation a bit more. I have certainly now forgotten his name, and even forgotten which former workplace I knew him from.

Specifically, the following story is about acquaintance rape – the most common type – as the victim knows her attacker in just over 80% of rapes reported/surveyed. (Truth About Rape, see sidebar). The following incident is typical, and has probably been repeated many times before and many times since.

He was an ex-work colleague and had known him for quite a while. We went out (this was well after I left the old work), had a really great time, yep, a few drinks as well (but certainly not over-intoxicated). He insisted on seeing me home 'to be sure I was safe'. I trusted him, had no reason not to. Once I had the front door open (converted Victorian terrace into flats) he then made his 'move'. Despite a constant barrage of 'no no no, stop, stop, stop, don't, don't, don't' (etc), he got me on the floor. I was a size 10, 5'5" (and an office worker, who didn't 'do' gym). He was approximately 50% more bodyweight, and used it against me (despite constant physical struggling on my part). He completed his rape of me. As he left I think I said stuff to the effect of 'fuck off and never see me again' along those lines anyway. And certainly, the only thing complying with my wishes (consent) was the last part. (oh, goody)

If he thought it truly wasn't a rape, then he would have resumed contact, or tried to 'clear up any misunderstanding'. He didn't. At the time I knew it was rape. Afterward I knew it was rape. And I'm pretty damn fucking sure that HE knew it was rape. There blows the other great patriarchy rape myth, that HE doesn't KNOW, or MISUNDERSTOOD. Fucking utter bullshit. He knew.

I didn't report it mainly because of (and this was my view of the successfulness of legal redress at the time):
1) I knew him and had 'been out with him' that night even though it was only as friends, not a date
2) alcohol consumption (but not overly intoxicated, just 'merry')
3) no proof (except my word against his) that the 'sex' wasn't consensual

What I didn't know at the time was that over 80% of rapes ARE by someone the victim knows. I think that most victims won't report acquaintance rape because it doesn't fit the 'nasty stranger in dark alley scenario' because I am sure that featured in my thinking as well. Anyway, all the decisions were based on information that I had at the time - this (acquaintance-as-most-likely rapist) information wasn't readily available at the time, indeed in the spirit of all good conspiracy theories, possibly repressed by the mainstream media of Patriarchy.

Rapes are crimes of opportunity. Most rapes happen in private or secluded locations. That would certainly discount the rapists' usual (lame-arse) defence of "I lost control". Certainly true in the above example. The rapist in this instance did not 'lose control' at the pub/restaurant. The rapist did not 'lose control' escorting me 'safely' home. Ah, but as soon as we were off the street, bingo-bango-bongo, magically he 'loses control'. Cue the piggies flying.

I wasn't really 'traumatised' as such after this rape, but I did lose my sense of trust (of men) for a very long time, and gained a real sense of betrayal. I regarded him as a 'mate', one I had known for quite a while. I am fairly certain that male buddies don't do this to each other, and yet this risk exists in the female-male buddy relationship. The other things that concerned me at the time were that he didn't use a condom, so he obviously didn't care about getting me pregnant or giving me an STD, or in fact, him getting an STD from me. Nor did he care that a friendship no longer exists between us.

I've gotta ask - what makes me so fucking special? To be raped. The answer is nothing, nothing because I am a woman. A moment of opportunity that presents 'itself'. I am not (nor ever have been) meek and mild (just the opposite), not a 'sexually inviting bimbo', nor 'leading him on' or any other such crap from the patriarchy propaganda machine. There was also no 'flirting' from either party during the evening.

There is no 'vibe the victim gives off', it is a matter of motive and opportunity on the part of the rapist. Yes, that's right, it is the rapist's fault that the rape occurs, not the victim's. I certainly don't give off any 'victim vibe', as I carry myself with confidence (I even used to walk home at midnight after work from the City through Aldgate, not exactly a picture postcard district).

Besides, the 'victim vibe' accusation is irrelevant in this case, we were 'mates'. It is far more likely that a fantasy of "I want her, must have her" and "I know she wants me just as much" was playing in HIS head as the cause of this episode. My struggles and objections are the same as in the rehashed 'plot lines' as seen in porn, mainstream porn. Pornland enables the act of rape to be done in real life, because in Pornland, she may 'resist' at first, but after she has been successfully 'convinced' (forced), she 'enjoys' it, and either 'wanted it all along' or 'needed' a man to 'show her want she wanted'. BFL (big fat lies)

Nope, I didn't do ANYTHING to encourage (but always actively discouraged/protested) rape - in my account above, my (constant) verbal protests and physical struggling certainly couldn't be clearer. Yet it happened. I as a woman, an average women, am far less physically strong than the average man. Men's (self-defence) laws are against me (I cannot use a weapon against him to 'even the playing field'). Men's courtrooms are against me obtaining true and fair justice (any justice that women get in men's courtrooms is purely 'collateral'). And we have in the name of freedom of speech/expression/commerce, pornography that glorifies rape (or 'forced/coerced sex').

And if I'm truly honest, I'll admit I have some guilt. Not guilt (or shame) about what I did to 'cause' the rape (as there was nothing I could do to predict it nor prevent it), but guilt that, by my silence, I have been unwittingly complicit in enabling the rape culture to thrive and flourish.

Boy finds his Mum after a Brutal Sex Attack

Metro 1st Aug 06 pg 14

Friday, August 11, 2006

Women's Fear of Men

Fear of male sexual violence is deeply ingrained in the psyche of women. Women partake in rape-avoidance strategy behaviour, in their everyday lives. We get taxis to avoid walking home on our own, we walk the long route home, we walk home in groups, we get men to escort us home, we are chaperoned from place to place by our parents, we get the women's bus, we keep an eye on our drinks to avoid spiking, we are told to cover up, we carry a personal alarm, we never go out without our mobiles...

The way we relate to space and time is informed by our fear of men. We associate certain spaces, such as parks and shortcuts, with the risk of being attacked. When it comes to night and gets dark, certain spaces become risk-associated spaces we avoid, to avoid being attacked by a man.

This risk-minimization behaviour has become a part of our lives without much questioning of what we are avoiding - that is male sexual violence. In a civil society, women should be able to walk home, on their own, without fear and risk of being attacked by a man. This fear is constricting our mobility and we need to make a stand.