A “Rape Culture” Tutorial for the Naysayers

Extract from a Huffington Post article by Toula Drimonis:

Every time I post a link to a cringe-inducing incident (sexist jokes, sexist comments, allegations of violence or rape), it inevitably happens. A well-meaning, yet somewhat unaware, (usually) male friend will comment or contact me in private, attempting to “understand” what’s going on, all the while trying to explain, justify, minimize, and reduce the severity of what was just discussed.

There’s a term for it. It’s called “mansplaining” and it’s slowly becoming an epidemic.

“I don’t mean to downplay it, but…” [Of course you do.]
“All we know about this guy was this one horrible sexist event!” [So I should base my opinion of him on the behaviour I’m not aware of?]
“I get that this incident (like the one before it, and the one before it, and the one before it…) is horrible, but does this really justify the use of ‘rape culture’ as a term to be used so loosely?” [Yes.]
“Boys will be boys… It doesn’t mean they’ll act on their comments.” [Oh, ok. That makes me feel much safer.]

Even men who consider themselves feminists don’t often get it, because they too come from a place of unconscious privilege. They’re inevitably standing on the top, looking down. From the place everything is compared to, measured against, the controlled group that serves as a standard; you know… the status quo.

First off, and since International Women’s Day is around the corner, can we take a minute to define ‘rape culture’ for those who seem to think it’s an irrational and highly charged blanket statement that seeks to vilify all men for all sins? …

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