Reblogged from feministcurrent: “The Steubenville rape case: This is masculinity”

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“I don’t pity these boys. For once, men are being held accountable for their behaviour. It’s abnormal, for sure. No wonder people are shocked. After all, we’re used to dicks reigning with impunity. We’re used to hearing stories, whether in the media or in our own lives, about rapes going unpunished. What’s shocking is not that this happened in the first place, but that these young men were found delinquent (the juvenile court equivalent of being found guilty).

But I’m also not interested in vilifying these individuals. What I think we need to understand is that, yes, this behaviour was absolutely disgusting and horrific and that absolutely this must be treated as a crime, these young men are not monsters. They are just regular guys. Regular guys who play football, go to high school, and go to parties with their friends and who have learned, growing up male in a rape and porn culture, that women aren’t real, full, human beings. They’ve learned, as many boys and men learn, that women exist for the entertainment of men; whether on stage at a strip club, on screen in porn, or blackout drunk at a party.

…These boys aren’t monsters. These are men I’ve known. Men I went to high school with. Men I went to parties with. Men who raped my friends. These young men are no anomaly. This is masculinity. This is male culture. Regular, “normal,” every day male culture.

By no means do I intend to say that all individual men and boys behave in this way. They don’t. All men are not rapists. All individual men don’t literally see and treat women as fuck-toys. I know many men, in my life, who I love deeply and who are men who treat women like human beings. But these young men from Steubenville are also not abnormal men. There’s nothing “wrong” with them. They aren’t mentally ill. This is the culture we live in. Where life is a porn movie. Where rape is punishment for getting too drunk. Where sex acts are filmed and posted online so the world can see what women are really for. So women can be mocked and blamed and assaulted simply for existing in a rape culture.”

4 thoughts on “Reblogged from feministcurrent: “The Steubenville rape case: This is masculinity”

  1. It was chilling to read the tweets of the boys involved in this crime; their plots to hide the crime, their indifference to what they had done. And these boys are like all the boys out there. They are ordinary football players in high school, and they now have technology to broadcast the rape everywhere, thus humiliating the girl all the more. And then the media has the nerve to be sympathetic to the boys, how their lives were ruined, no they ruined their own lives, the girl needs to be the center of compasion now!

  2. I would despair utterly if I didn’t know many teenage boys — football players included — who would have done something to help a girl in this situation — boys who would have been horrified and put an immediate stop to it.

    Technology here is a double-edged sword, yes? It was used to record and broadcast the rape, but it also served as a tool to convict the rapists; to expose the contempt and callousness with which they committed the crime and the extent to which humiliation was the greater point. I found this piece today:

  3. Yes, technology helped put those stupid boys away. And yes, boys do step up when things are going wrong. I had a few boys step up for me in high school, and I’ll never forget them for it. But I honestly don’t see girls commiting so many horrific crimes like this compared to boys, the FBI statistics and all, and I think we are making a big radfem mistake expecting men and boys to change, because they like the system as it is. We should question the fact that scantily clad girls are performing femininity in cheerleading, and say perhaps boys should cheer on the team. We need to really look at all attempts at reform over the last 50 years as failed in terms of protecting girls; failed. And failure on the part of CNN and FOX news for telling how ruined the boys lives would be, and not mentioning the victim. I think we have gone over the edge, and the idea that we should be having boys in the first place would be a good way to start. We need a more radical women’s movement, and cutting off the supply of future rapists would be a shocking in your face way to deal with patriarchy. Shocking, but it just might turn the tide, because as it is, this is not working women. The boys will be out of jail, they will get good jobs, the world will forget, and some woman is going to marry them when they grow up, possibly not knowing his crime at all. Now that freaks me out!!!

  4. I do hope that they go after those who knew and tried to cover up. Apparently the adults and coaches knew and tried to “avoid scandal” for their team. The scandal was the rape and the collusion.

    What happened to the young girl was a travesty, a tragedy, not a scandal.

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