The R Word

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TAdamson:

Darkmantle:

TAdamson:
Snip

My point was that people don't go on XBox live and tell their opponents that they are "going to murder them" or that they have "murdered them".

yes they do.... All the time... Do you even play on live? It sounds like you are going on hear say.

Well it's appropriate in the context, you are going to kill them in the game. But I have never heard anybody refer to it as "murder". It's more of a "I'm gonna getchu" "Imma gunna kill u" thing.

You also wouldn't say "I'm going to murder/kill you" while playing Madden or FIFA. But people do say I'm going to rape you in that context.

People say "rape" when it's inappropriate. They are trying to demean their opponent further than the point of actually killing them. Or they are referring to a punishing long-lasting task. ie. "The restaurant staff got raped last night. They're exhusted."

If you actually compare "rape" to a similar act like "torture"; apart from the occasional use of the adjective "torturous" torture isn't really used as a word out of context.

Man, I hear people say murder all the time in reference to sports, like watching hockey with my buddies.

"wow, the leafs are getting murdered out there tonight, just, totally destroyed..... damn"
Or about work
"man, these 12 hour shifts are murder" (friend who works the kitchen at pizza place)
about school
"these test are killing me!" or "those exams are going to be the end of you"

I find the two words are used almost interchangeably in those contexts, with some sentence restructuring of course.

Three congratulations are in order, first to the bravery and skill of the writer. Thank you, whoever you are, for sending this in. This has enlightened me to no end.

2nd, to The Escapist for publishing this, and putting it at the top of the website so that I, and everyone else found it. Thank you, you guys are doing your jobs very well, and this is a perfect indicator of it.

And last, I just scrolled through 3 pages of comments and didn't find anyone trolling or saying terrible things, only lots and lots of discussion. Wow. Good job Escapist community, I like you. More than I thought I did.

Darkmantle:

TAdamson:

Darkmantle:

yes they do.... All the time... Do you even play on live? It sounds like you are going on hear say.

Well it's appropriate in the context, you are going to kill them in the game. But I have never heard anybody refer to it as "murder". It's more of a "I'm gonna getchu" "Imma gunna kill u" thing.

You also wouldn't say "I'm going to murder/kill you" while playing Madden or FIFA. But people do say I'm going to rape you in that context.

People say "rape" when it's inappropriate. They are trying to demean their opponent further than the point of actually killing them. Or they are referring to a punishing long-lasting task. ie. "The restaurant staff got raped last night. They're exhusted."

If you actually compare "rape" to a similar act like "torture"; apart from the occasional use of the adjective "torturous" torture isn't really used as a word out of context.

Man, I hear people say murder all the time in reference to sports, like watching hockey with my buddies.

"wow, the leafs are getting murdered out there tonight, just, totally destroyed..... damn"
Or about work
"man, these 12 hour shifts are murder" (friend who works the kitchen at pizza place)
about school
"these test are killing me!" or "those exams are going to be the end of you"

I find the two words are used almost interchangeably in those contexts, with some sentence restructuring of course.

Maybe it's that the term "rape" is to infer that something is supposed to leave you broken, weeping and degraded while "kill/murder" refers to things that leave you lifeless and insensible.

The threat "I'm going to kill/murder you." in games is just a statement of intent where as the threat "I'm going to rape you." is designed to degrade and provoke a feeling of shame and self disgust.

A real world distinction should also be noted, though it is a slight digression, is that there is such a thing as justifiable homicide. There is no such thing as justifiable rape.

TAdamson:

Darkmantle:
Snip

Maybe it's that the term "rape" is to infer that something is supposed to leave you broken, weeping and degraded while "kill/murder" refers to things that leave you lifeless and insensible.

The threat "I'm going to kill/murder you." in games is just a statement of intent where as the threat "I'm going to rape you." is designed to degrade and provoke a feeling of shame and self disgust.

A real world distinction should also be noted, though it is a slight digression, is that there is such a thing as justifiable homicide. There is no such thing as justifiable rape.

part of that comes down to which you find is worse, alive and "damaged", or dead and "whole". And other things like the concept of an honourable death, you can die fighting/doing the right thing, it's hard to imagine rape used in the same context, I don't think it can be.

but the no such thing as justifiable rape thing is true, which is probably why rape isn't used as much as killing in stories.

You know, I admit to using rape humor a lot and never really thinking about the consequences. I figure the odds of anyone I encounter actually having been raped are pretty low. But reading this reminds me of the way I feel when someone calls me a nigger on Xbox live. It doesn't ruin my day, odds are I'll have forgotten the incident by the next morning. But it brings you down, if only for a moment, from something that is meant to be a really good and purely fun time. It takes a form of escapism and brings you back to the real world in an ugly, angry, saddening way. I imagine it can only be ten times worse when you have real emotional damage tied to a word or phrase. Thank you for sharing your experience with us and, if only for my own behavior in the future, your story won't be wasted.

Anonymous, thank you. Reading this the realisation hit me like a train. It's a great article, which provokes some very deep thoughts.

Therumancer:

ReiverCorrupter:

Well, to be perfectly fair you're overgeneralizing feminism. The feminists who fight so that women get paid equal wages for equal work shouldn't be lumped into the same group as those who try to scandalize things in the media by talking about 'objectification'.

...snip...

Well when it comes to things like Romance Novels, the thing there is that both genders are into the same basic thing. If anything the big differance is that it's acceptable for women to read them, but less so for men. Your typical "romance" novel from the romance section and some porno book from the porn section are pretty much the same exact thing, covering the same basic material when you get down to it. Actually I think the actual differance might be is that despite the perceptions the stuff girls read is a bit more "hardcore" than the actual porn, which sounds shocking until you've ever had the (mis)fortune of listening to the locker room chat of both guys and girls and realize who is actually worse. When it comes to some of these things like romance novels that get attacked as enforcing a negative stereotype of feminimity or whatever, I think people tend to overlook them being universal behaviors that don't clearly fit on one side of the gender gap. It's sort of like porn in general, both genders consume it in more or less equal proportions, it's just considered taboo (freaky)
for men. Some girl shows up with a book with Fabio on the cover dressed as an erotic pirate and some girl in a torn up dress tied to the mast of his ship about be be ravished and nobody thinks anything of it, some guy pulls out a book with a dude bound to the mast of a ship and some gorgeous lady dressed as an erotic pirate about to ravish him, and everyone is liable to treat him like a freak, "that's not appropriate reading material for the break room". :)

The thing is that there really isn't an entrenched patriarchy so much as there is human society. Overall the genders aren't really all that differant, other than women bearing the children and being physically less capable than the men on average, which does lead to the more physically capable side of things having more of a prescence in the work force. Likewise the process of bearing children is not exactly quick and easy, and women doing that is another thing that has to be considered, and it DOES very much come up during employment since a woman might very well be out of comission for a number of months and then have to radically re-asses her priorities at nearly any time. In general with a guy you don't have to worry about the possibility he's going to show up tomorrow and say "oh yeah, I'm pregnant" and have his rate of reliability suddenly change. All of this very much influances things like wages which are in part based on perceptions of reliability. Now granted from a certain perspective it's not FAIR, I mean a woman didn't ask to be born a woman, but at the same time it is a reality and saying that an employer shouldn't be allowed to consider the obvious is pretty stupid as well. It's not a conflict I'm going to try and sort through in detail and give solid judgements on, simply laeaving it at "it exists" and that it's a major issue because it's not easily resolved.... and the same applies to a lot of the gender issues that exist. It's not patriachy, or bigotry, or anything else as much as reality.

Feminists are those who by definition push the interests of women, with equality in a societal sense, there is nothing left to push besides trying to get an advantage over men. Those who argue in favor of equality for women are NOT feminists, they are just women. Of course the term does seem to be heavily misused because it carries a degree of power with
it. A feminist is the kind of person who instead of argueing points like the above on one side or the other would argue that men should say be unable to hold any position of authority whatsoever due to their inherant physical abillities meaning there is no other way of women ever having power unless they have it all. A point which goes hand in hand with rants about how with men being stronger, all sex, no matter how seemingly consentual, is effectively rape since true equality is impossible and without equality there cannot be consenting equals... so to avoid rape women have to be given all the societal power to perhaps counterbalance the physical power. Simply put actual feminism borders on the absolutly insane nowadays, because with equality and the state of the actual arguements (which are kind of petty compared to what the issues used to be... you know fighting over wages and biological considerations in the workplace, as opposed to say... the right to own property, or not be considered the property of a husband), there really isn't anything left to crusade for. Feminism achieved every reasonable goal it had set, so now all that's left is for it to set increasingly insane ones.

Meh.

I was saying that you're overgeneralizing feminists, not that I agree with the more radical feminists. I am in favor of a broad civil law that allows people to sue employers if they can prove that they are being paid less for equal amount of work due to some form of discrimination. But that really isn't even tied to feminism,per se. Other than that, I agree that feminists are mostly fighting a cultural battle now, and I don't think you have to be all that cynical to think that more than a few of them are doing it out of ressentiment or in order to get an advantage over men.

I frankly don't disagree with most of your points, especially about both sexes enjoying pornography. 'Objectification' is a basic byproduct of human nature, and it isn't necessarily tied to sexuality. When you use your friend for a ride and tune out their anecdotes, you're essentially objectifying them. Or at least commodifying them, which is just as bad. Ultimately what is important is not whether people view others as objects, but how they treat others. So what if people objectify one another now and again?

But I still think you're overgeneralizing, which was my only point in the first place. The people you seem to be describing are quite radical. It would be like identifying all Republicans with Pat Robertson.

However, I do agree that once you've established the appropriate laws, the movement ceases to be a civil rights movement, and becomes a cultural movement. I also agree that the term 'feminist' itself is rather counter-productive if it is meant to be used in the fight for gender equality: it has the obvious connotation that these people are only fighting for women, not men.

I also agree that there isn't an entrenched patriarchy because a patriarchy is a formal system of governance. There are obviously quite a few ways that men and women aren't equal in outcome, but that doesn't necessarily imply a patriarchy. And all the law is supposed to do is ensure equality of opportunity, not equality of outcome.

To put my message concisely: I'm for equal rights and a cool objective, rational reflection upon societal norms. I don't approve of sensationalism. One can point out tropes or stereotypes, but treating them as some form of epidemic is clearly stupid.

Going on a crusade to rid society of anything offensive or that might have a possible negative influence is a fool's errand when it's done through social pressure alone, and tyrannic censorship when people start trying to legislate it.

We shouldn't be trying to suppress the things that might influence the weak-minded. We should be fostering critical thinking and individualism, so that weak-mindedness itself can be eradicated.

Even if you yourself have never experienced rape or sexual abuse chances are you know someone who has, you may not even realise it because they don't talk about, but they're there. I personally know two people who were brave enough to tell me about being abused as children and another woman who was raped as a teenager.

It's disturbing to think that there are people out there who take it so lightly and jokily when it's a disturbingly prolific crime with real damage done to real people, who you may know. It's time for the vale of anonymity on the internet that gave way to cowardly aggression toward total strangers to be lifted, and for us all to see the living and breathing human being on the other side.

Elamdri:

Rape can be a very difficult crime to prosecute because victims rarely come forward immediately and often have accidentally destroyed very crucial evidence. I have a feeling that shows like CSI have done great harm to the justice system because of the expectations that they create in jurors for every case to be proven by overwhelming forensic evidence. That is not reality.

In many rape cases, it is a question of a woman saying a man raped her vs. a man who says either that they did not have sex or if they did, that said sex was consensual. In those instances, it's often up to the jury to decide what they believe. In that regard, cultural perspectives can play a big role.

It shouldn't. When you are holding a case to a standard of "beyond a reasonable doubt" and the only evidence the prosecution has is the accusation, and the only evidence the defense has is the claim of innocence, it's not exactly an ideal case, but there's certainly "reasonable doubt." More realistically, the accused often gets found guilty unless there's exculpatory evidence.

Elamdri:

I would like to point out that "Feminism" does not represent a dual standard. Or I should say that if someone is advocating a dual standard, it is not "Feminism." Feminism, by definition is about equal rights for men and women. If you are advocating for disparity of rights between men and women, regardless of which side that disparity favors, you are by definition NOT a Feminist, regardless of what you chose to call yourself.

Furrama:

All feminism is, all it means by definition, is that men and women should be equal. To be a feminist is to also be a masculinist. Anyone who says different is wrong.

And that's the same thing the article author said. Women just want to be people guys.

Figured I'd respond to you both together. Put simply, there's precious few who disagree with "the radical notion that women are people too" or "the idea that women should have equal rights and responsibilities as men." It's what gets attached to that when someone goes from there to "Therefore, ..." that people have issues with.

evilthecat:

This is the polar opposite of what happens.

You could not actually be more wrong about the normative conduct of a rape trial, and I'm genuinely disgusted you're taking one of the most awful tragedies of the current legal system, one of the most serious issues in current law and an area in serious need of reform and trying to claim that it's unfair to the people who overwhelmingly walk away from it because the burden of proof is so insanely high that it's actually impossible in most cases.

Right, no one ever gets convicted based on an accusation and little to nothing else, not even say Paul Greig in Ireland, or Brian Banks for a recent US example, and no one only escapes by having a mountain of exculpatory evidence because they happened to be in the right places at the right time like Louis Gonzales (who got off primarily because his location was only unaccounted for for 6 minutes out of the entire day), right?

Your answer to it being difficult to get a conviction against the standard "beyond a reasonable doubt" if there's no evidence that the accused is the perpetrator, or in some cases no evidence that a crime occurred at all beyond the accusation of the victim is to make it virtually impossible to defend yourself instead? Or do you have a different tack than the typical claims of wanting to lower the standard of evidence for rape only and remove various avenues of defense?

Imagine for a moment that Paul Greig is innocent (just Google Paul Greig rape for info). How would you defend yourself?

Imagine for a second you are Brian Banks. How should you have been able to defend yourself from that accusation?

Would your desire for lowered standards apply to "not rape" cases where a woman forces herself sexually on a man? If so, what standard would you use for a "drunken party"-type case where mutually drunk persons engage in intercourse. Who violated whom? If one counterclaims that their accuser is actually the perpetrator and they are actually the victim, how do you sort that out?

Most importantly, what should be the due diligence a man in your world (and presumably not women because they only commit "not rape") should have to go through in order to defend himself if falsely accused? Do you think that it's a reasonable requirement to place on men? If you are a man (and I have no idea) do you currently engage in this?

Moonlight Butterfly:
Rape isn't a feminist issue. It's an everyone issue.

Yes, yes it is. If you use a definition in which forced sexual activity is rape rather than one that specifically counts the varieties that account for most sexual violence against non-convict men as "not rape", it's not even a gendered problem.

Moonlight Butterfly:
No one is trying to get away with double standards.

Except the people who have no interest in changing definitions because otherwise it makes the problem look less gendered, and who want to place rape under a lesser standard of evidence than every other crime (while leaving "not rape" [you know, such as sexual activity performed through force, the threat of force, or while unconscious, intoxicated, or otherwise incapable of consent but where the perpetrator is not penetrating her victim -- for example, a woman having intercourse with a non-consenting man] at the higher standard), and/or place additional restrictions that create an environment in which one can be accused, have their life ruined before it even considers going to court, and even if innocent be held to the standard of "if you can't prove it was impossible for you to commit the crime, then you are guilty."

"Except "ruining fun" is exactly why I dislike it when people use that word. It ruins my fun."

Except you're not the only person in the world. Hate to break it to everyone who has suffered trauma but you're not the only people in the world. You are not special from any other person. I understand what happened was horrible but this is life; It's hard and more often then not things aren't going to go your way.

And to quote South Park "Either everything's okay, or nothing's okay."

Thank you for writing this article, it really has been eye opening

And the moral of the story is: Xbox Live is shit.

Wow. That was beautiful. That article was one of the most emotionally stirring things I've ever read. Props to you, man. I think it's safe to say that you have the support of the escapist community behind you.

Schadrach:
snip

The FBI have recently changed the definition to be more inclusive of male assault so that has been covered in the states at least.

I don't think that any feminist believes that it's a women only issue. That would be ridiculous.

God this thread has been going on for way too long.

It boils down to this, some people use the term in jest. Some people find that offensive.

No one's right and no ones wrong here. People are entitled to be offended by something someone has said, just as that person has the right to say it.

Getting in a huff and trying to force people not to say something that you find distasteful is like trying to empty an ocean with a bucket. It aint gonna happen and more importantly it shouldn't.

Especially if there is no actual malice behind what the people are saying. Which there isn't most of the time.

Abandon4093:
God this thread has been going on for way too long.

It boils down to this, some people use the term in jest. Some people find that offensive.

No one's right and no ones wrong here. People are entitled to be offended by something someone has said, just as that person has the right to say it.

Getting in a huff and trying to force people not to say something that you find distasteful is like trying to empty an ocean with a bucket. It aint gonna happen and more importantly it shouldn't.

Especially if there is no actual malice behind what the people are saying. Which there isn't most of the time.

You are missing the point. Nobody is saying that you don't have the right to say rape in jest. Its just that doing so is insensitive and makes you a douchebag.

CaptainKarma:

Abandon4093:
God this thread has been going on for way too long.

It boils down to this, some people use the term in jest. Some people find that offensive.

No one's right and no ones wrong here. People are entitled to be offended by something someone has said, just as that person has the right to say it.

Getting in a huff and trying to force people not to say something that you find distasteful is like trying to empty an ocean with a bucket. It aint gonna happen and more importantly it shouldn't.

Especially if there is no actual malice behind what the people are saying. Which there isn't most of the time.

You are missing the point. Nobody is saying that you don't have the right to say rape in jest. Its just that doing so is insensitive and makes you a douchebag.

Hardly.

If no one was allowed to say something that could potentially upset someone, there'd be very little ever said.

Fantastic article. I will think more carefully about what comes out of my mouth. I hope you find a way to heal (or deal with) the 'limp' as you already seem to be doing. All the best, and good luck!

Abandon4093:
God this thread has been going on for way too long.

It boils down to this, some people use the term in jest. Some people find that offensive.

No one's right and no ones wrong here. People are entitled to be offended by something someone has said, just as that person has the right to say it.

Getting in a huff and trying to force people not to say something that you find distasteful is like trying to empty an ocean with a bucket. It aint gonna happen and more importantly it shouldn't.

Especially if there is no actual malice behind what the people are saying. Which there isn't most of the time.

Perhaps some things shouldn't be joked about? You don't go about on the street calling your friends 'N***ers' now do you? Just because you're anonymous you think it's fine, well guess what: IT'S NOT FINE. NOT EVEN CLOSE.

This is not about 'taking offence' - offence may be taken with pointless inanities. Rape is invoked specifically to wound or goad in online play - to say "I just farted" is distasteful. To say "I raped you" is sick. The light-hearted form is a simple devolution from the basic, hideous origin.

Abandon4093:

CaptainKarma:

Abandon4093:
God this thread has been going on for way too long.

It boils down to this, some people use the term in jest. Some people find that offensive.

No one's right and no ones wrong here. People are entitled to be offended by something someone has said, just as that person has the right to say it.

Getting in a huff and trying to force people not to say something that you find distasteful is like trying to empty an ocean with a bucket. It aint gonna happen and more importantly it shouldn't.

Especially if there is no actual malice behind what the people are saying. Which there isn't most of the time.

You are missing the point. Nobody is saying that you don't have the right to say rape in jest. Its just that doing so is insensitive and makes you a douchebag.

Hardly.

If no one was allowed to say something that could potentially upset someone, there'd be very little ever said.

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

CaptainKarma:

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

Pedantry.

I'll rephrase to suit you.

rephrased because pedant:
Hardly.

If no one should say something that could potentially upset someone, there'd be very little that should ever be said.

House_Vet:

Perhaps some things shouldn't be joked about? You don't go about on the street calling your friends 'N***ers' now do you? Just because you're anonymous you think it's fine, well guess what: IT'S NOT FINE. NOT EVEN CLOSE.

Difference being that 'Nigger' is derogatory term carrying hundreds of years worth of weight in oppression behind it whilst rape in this context is neither used a derogatory term nor has it the cultural taboo to reinforce that.

It's used as an exclamation of victory or probably more aptly, dominance because of it's connotations.

And there are plenty of people who do use the word 'Nigger' as a jestful insult or ironic term of affection. So bad choice for your point really.

tl;dr

Rape isn't an insult, Nigger is.

This is not about 'taking offence' - offence may be taken with pointless inanities. Rape is invoked specifically to wound or goad in online play - to say "I just farted" is distasteful. To say "I raped you" is sick. The light-hearted form is a simple devolution from the basic, hideous origin.

Spoken as someone who completely misunderstands the phrases usage in common culture and so puts their own spin on it.

When someone says 'Im going to rape you' whilst playing a competitive game, they're not hoping to wound any potential real world rape victims within earshot. They're saying 'Im going to annihilate/destroy/murder/pulverise/cripple/dominate' or quite 'simply, beat you.'

Stop attributing your own understanding to other peoples intentions.

Abandon4093:

CaptainKarma:

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

Pedantry.

I'll rephrase to suit you.

rephrased because pedant:
Hardly.

If no one should say something that could potentially upset someone, there'd be very little that should ever be said.

House_Vet:

Perhaps some things shouldn't be joked about? You don't go about on the street calling your friends 'N***ers' now do you? Just because you're anonymous you think it's fine, well guess what: IT'S NOT FINE. NOT EVEN CLOSE.

Difference being that 'Nigger' is derogatory term carrying hundreds of years worth of weight in oppression behind it whilst rape in this context is neither used a derogatory term nor has it the cultural taboo to reinforce that.

It's used as an exclamation of victory or probably more aptly, dominance because of it's connotations.

And there are plenty of people who do use the word 'Nigger' as a jestful insult or ironic term of affection. So bad choice for your point really.

tl;dr

Rape isn't an insult, Nigger is.

This is not about 'taking offence' - offence may be taken with pointless inanities. Rape is invoked specifically to wound or goad in online play - to say "I just farted" is distasteful. To say "I raped you" is sick. The light-hearted form is a simple devolution from the basic, hideous origin.

Spoken as someone who completely misunderstands the phrases usage in common culture and so puts their own spin on it.

When someone says 'Im going to rape you' whilst playing a competitive game, they're not hoping to wound any potential real world rape victims within earshot. They're saying 'Im going to annihilate/destroy/murder/pulverise/cripple/dominate' or quite 'simply, beat you.'

Stop attributing your own understanding to other peoples intentions.

There's a world of difference between saying such-and-such should be illegal and saying such-and-such is a bad thing to do.

And the whole point of this arguement, heck, the whole point of the article is that rape carries negative and hurtful connotations even if you do not intend it to and that in light of the hurt it can cause it would be really very nice of people to stop using it.

wizzy555:

Furrama:

Therumancer:

Feminism sucks because it by and large represents a dual standard, and the arguement that girls should be able to do things that get guys branded freaks or wierdos.

All feminism is, all it means by definition, is that men and women should be equal. To be a feminist is to also be a masculinist. Anyone who says different is wrong.

And that's the same thing the article author said. Women just want to be people guys.

So how dare you bring an anti feminism rant to this discussion, especially when the main point of him bringing it up was to point out how sickening the whole anti feminism argument is, just like the pro "r" word argument can be. There is a disconnect between people, misunderstandings, and plain inconsideration. You not getting the parallel?

As for the article, all the feels man. I'm glad you wrote this, it must have been nauseating.

There are plenty of feminist activists who are consider themselves the enemies of "Men's rights activists" and vice versa. It's all rather pathetic really.

Right, but it really shouldn't be. Equality is the fundamental value both are preaching, that is the core argument, but it often degrades into a pissing contest.

Darkmantle:
look man, this is where the cognitive dissonance begins. Suffice to say, you are engaging in a "no true Scotsman" fallacy. How is the person you responded to supposed to view feminism, if reputable feminist organizations do sexist things, and no "true" feminists are there to denounce them.

Maybe you should be less worried about protecting your label and more worried about the issues. It's the same problem many people have, defend the label at all costs.

See, I'm not even trying to do that. I don't have to defend a label, the label is what it is. There are people who call themselves one thing or another, but if they are not abiding by that label they cannot be under that label without being a hypocrite or worse. You cannot devalue an idea, you can only devalue people and perceptions. One cannot judge a label by its worst common denominator. And I mean any label, feminist, Christian, Muslim, gamer, doesn't matter. All one can do when the perception of a label goes south because of bad eggs is return one's mind to the original meaning, and remind people of its true definition, so that everyone can hopefully be on the same page about what we should be focusing on.

And again, I must stress, that FEMINISM IS NOT THE POINT OF THE ARTICLE. If one truly understood the article and the parallels brought up with the brief mentioning of the topic we wouldn't be talking about this now.

Schadrach:
Right, no one ever gets convicted based on an accusation and little to nothing else, not even say Paul Greig in Ireland, or Brian Banks for a recent US example, and no one only escapes by having a mountain of exculpatory evidence because they happened to be in the right places at the right time like Louis Gonzales (who got off primarily because his location was only unaccounted for for 6 minutes out of the entire day), right?

Juries make mistakes, which is why it's not always a good idea to ask for trial by jury. In the Grieg case, it seems pretty likely that they didn't make a mistake. There are dodgy elements, but there was a stronger case against him than you're making out. Maybe don't get your information from MRA sites.

Brian Banks pleaded guilty. He wasn't found guilty, he wasn't convicted on the basis of evidence. He was accused, and he pleaded guilty. The justice system cannot find you innocent if you plead guilty.

There's no evidence that Louis Gonzales' case would have been found either way. It's empty speculation to claim otherwise. If you're saying it's bad because he shouldn't have been arrested, perhaps bear in mind that a woman was actually raped and tortured in that case. Yeah, I don't think she's doing as well as he is.

Schadrach:
Your answer to it being difficult to get a conviction against the standard "beyond a reasonable doubt" if there's no evidence that the accused is the perpetrator, or in some cases no evidence that a crime occurred at all beyond the accusation of the victim is to make it virtually impossible to defend yourself instead?

No.

It would be nice if we could stop punishing women for coming forward with rape cases. It would be nice if we could stop convicting them for perverting the course of justice as soon as they fail to act like a robot. It would be nice if we didn't just dump them back on the street or, more likely, ask them to move back in with the person who they allege has raped them when they inevitably failed to secure a conviction.

Basically, I have no problem with the standards as long as we accept them for what they actually are, an assessment of whether there is enough evidence to convict someone of rape, rather than as a genuine assessment of whether an actual rape has occurred. The tragedy is how many people are going through the awful meat grinder that is a rape trial and are either coming away with nothing or actually being punished for coming forward.

I will never understand why you people are so obsessed with shutting down any kind of legal reform. I can only assume it's some misguided "boys versus girls" bullshit.

Imagine for a moment that Paul Greig is innocent (just Google Paul Greig rape for info). How would you defend yourself?

I wouldn't have asked for a trial by jury.

Imagine for a second you are Brian Banks. How should you have been able to defend yourself from that accusation?

I would have actually defended myself and not accepted a plea bargain.

Schadrach:
Would your desire for lowered standards apply to "not rape" cases where a woman forces herself sexually on a man?

Firstly, I'm not advocating lowered standards. Would you stop assuming that.

I don't know what the fuck is wrong with straight men that you honestly think penetrating someone and being penetrated are remotely the same thing. All I'm going to say is try it. Seriously, fucking try it.

What you're describing is a crime, in the UK it would be called "causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent" and can result in a prison term longer than the average rape sentence if it is felt that the crime is serious or malicious enough, but it is not rape. Rape is not just whatever you arbitrarily think qualifies as "sex", it is the act of forcibly penetrating someone, which is entirely different.

This applies to women as much as men. Forcible cunnilingus is not rape either, it's a different crime, while penetrating someone anally with an object is either rape or the functionally identical crime of "assault by penetration", depending on your precise legal framework.

Schadrach:
Most importantly, what should be the due diligence a man in your world (and presumably not women because they only commit "not rape") should have to go through in order to defend himself if falsely accused?

To have not committed the crime, obviously.

Under the definition of rape, if you don't believe that you have committed rape and your belief is reasonable, then you have not committed rape (unless you're having sex with a child, so don't do that either). This means that as long as you take basic measures to establish consent, you will never be at risk of being a rapist.

That is not much to ask.

Schadrach:
Do you think that it's a reasonable requirement to place on men? If you are a man (and I have no idea) do you currently engage in this?

Do you not?

Fucking hell.

Wow... This was truly an amazing article. A journey... So many insights which I now regret having learned, in such a manner. I wish noone should have to be able to describe something so dreadful, in such an insightful and detailed way.

Rape has always been a touchy subject for me, exactly because I never understood much about it (thankfully). But it got me thinking, should there really be certain themes, expression, premises, etc. that mediums shouldn't touch upon for the greater good of the affected audience they might offend? Up until this point I was an all-out free speech defender, and as much as I believe in freedom of expression and everything that comes with it - should there not be some constraints? are my most recent thoughts after reading this article. I know that that was not the point of the article, but it really got me thinking. And of course, the old-as-hell counter-argument of 'where do we draw the line' pops up once again to block any further development. Where DO we cross the line? Hypothetically, I mean. Should we not acknowledge the fact that people are no longer being merely offended by something, but also hurt (as you, yourself say in your article, which I though was a brilliant way of puting it). Turth is, however, that people will always be people. There will always be the obnoxious 'tl;dr' kind that are about as deep and considerate as a dried-up well (on a geological scale, that is.) However, at least in media we could try to exercise artistic statement with a bit of tact in the future, I think. Adding actual meaning to a social phenomenon, rather than just adding it as a mere set-piece.

And I also see some little geniuses out there, trying to stretch their huge genius brains into thinking, and relaying arguments such as 'it's just aword'. That is not true, and I'll tell you why. I'm studying and working as an actor. My profession intales rigorous work with all sorts of different texts of plays, scripts etc. but mainly with words and all their different deffinitions. Most of you probably have no clue, of how a scene changes when you add/substract one mesely word, and how that changes the entire context. Or when you decide to shift emphasis on a different line. WORDS HAVE MEANINGS. There's something called sub-text. And you can always find multiple layers of said sub-text under all the different possible adaptations and interpratations of one mesely line. I also happen to study English Studies, and I can tell you straight away that for language to evolve, and for there to be a change in the meaning/pronunciation/spelling of a certain word or phrase, a considerable amount of time is required. You can't change words just like that, as much as you would like to. Especially not with English, because since it's a somewhat of a universal language, words that change in the place they originated and where are most frequently used, will only change within that region (usually). Of course, with global media the evolution of words has become more common than it used to be, but that's a whole other topic which I don't have time to get into now (unless you have a couple of weeks time of lectures free...)

And to those that equate rape to being beaten, killed, etc. all I can say is that I see it like this:

From what I can gather from this article, rape is also a great psychological trauma, as well as being a physical one. More so, perhaps, judging by the long-term psychological effects it usually has. You can argue that getting beaten up carries almost the same psychological trauma; however you would be very wrong. I've been beaten up before in my life, and the main aspect I can remember from that expirience is my unrelenting rage. Rage. Not helplessnes, as seems to be the case with rape. Anything going hand-in-hand with rage could be classified as an urge to fight-back , and maybe even a chance to do so (unless you're being dog-piled by a myriad of bullies, or something). In rape, the main feeling seems to be fear. Because you're not being just physically insulted, but also psychologically insulted as well. You're inabillity to fight back is what causes permanent damage, where as fighting is almost alwys a two-way street - you fight because you want to/need to fight, and so does the other party. rape, however, is a one way street. You're being assaulted, and if your assailiant is succesful, than that means you've not had the chance to defend yourself. Something else, that is a one-way street is death. Yeah, how about that? There are no long-term consequences here, because there's only one (albeit major) consequence - you die. You don't have to live with the pain, while rape victims do. They are killed, yet they continue to live, unlike with being actually killed. So, as you can see, it is not the same. With this I conclude, because I feel the onset of carpal tunnel syndrome kicking-in...

Well written indeed. Halfway through the text I've stopped reading and realized with interest that I never actually use word "rape" or even mention such themes when I swear or even generally. And dear god I swear a lot and it most unpleasant manner.
I guess it all depends on person. I've never felt that this theme is like... Appropriate for swearing. Ones who use it just come around as psychos of sort...

I can't even think of anything to say. You are nothing short of brave for digging up the strength to write such an article.

CaptainKarma:

Abandon4093:

CaptainKarma:

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

Pedantry.

I'll rephrase to suit you.

rephrased because pedant:
Hardly.

If no one should say something that could potentially upset someone, there'd be very little that should ever be said.

[...snip...]

When someone says 'Im going to rape you' whilst playing a competitive game, they're not hoping to wound any potential real world rape victims within earshot. They're saying 'Im going to annihilate/destroy/murder/pulverise/cripple/dominate' or quite 'simply, beat you.'

Stop attributing your own understanding to other peoples intentions.

There's a world of difference between saying such-and-such should be illegal and saying such-and-such is a bad thing to do.

And the whole point of this arguement, heck, the whole point of the article is that rape carries negative and hurtful connotations even if you do not intend it to and that in light of the hurt it can cause it would be really very nice of people to stop using it.

This conversation is pretty much the entire thread in microcosm.

Anti-'rape' side: "we're just saying that it's offensive and that you're a d-bag if you throw the term around casually."

Free-speechers: "stop trying to tell people what they can and can't say."

Here's the truth: yes, you're probably a bit of an insensitive jerk if you use the term 'rape' casually, even if your intentions are just to talk trash and joke around. But so what? The author is saying that 'rape' is worse than other terms because it can actually hurt traumatized people. But traumatized people need to change their communication options if they want to go onto Xbox live, or, you know, mute people who say offensive things.

What people need to realize is that online gaming is really a hybrid: it isn't fully public or fully private, and you can't always be sure who's listening. Saying rude things in the game chat without the intention of hurting someone is about the moral equivalent of not holding the door open for someone, or not flushing the toilet. It makes you a dick, but there are far worse things that you can be doing.

A person who is actually psychologically harmed by a certain term needs to take responsibility for their own well being. If you have a peanut allergy, you can't really ask a ballpark to ban peanuts: it might not be fair, but you probably just shouldn't go to the ballpark. And yes, I realize that this is an imperfect analogy because using the term 'rape' is far more morally dubious than eating peanuts. However, it is still appropriate because it draws out the fact that traumatized people are a special case.

What I'm saying is this: yes the term 'rape' shouldn't be thrown around casually, and you're a d-bag if you do so... so what? All you can do is point out that these people are being insensitive to the possibility that someone who had been raped might hear them. Their likely response is simply that they aren't responsible for other people's mental well being, and that they don't care if something that brings them amusement makes them dicks.

I'm not just saying that they should have the right to say what they want: I'm saying that unless they intentionally harass someone they aren't doing anything nearly as bad as some people are making them out to be doing. I'm also saying that the responsibility over one's psychological well being primarily rests upon the individual in question, and they need to take steps to ensure it and not just plod blindly into situations that will likely cause them harm and then complain about it afterwards. Am I blaming the victim? Not really. I hate to say it but you aren't really a victim if you get traumatized by what you overhear in another person's conversation. If they go out of their way to harass you, then sure. But that isn't what's happening most of the time.

I have a personal code of conduct that I abide by, which includes the common courtesy of not saying rude, offensive things in public. However, I do not consider Xbox live the same thing as a crowded shopping center... because it isn't. In a shopping center you can see who's around and who's listening to you. I do enjoy saying all sorts of offensive things, but I generally only do so only amongst my friends in my Xbox Live party. If I said something in game chat that offended someone I would apologize and then mute them so they don't have to hear my filth.

This is the best thing I have ever read on The Escapist. Thanks.

IankBailey:
"Except "ruining fun" is exactly why I dislike it when people use that word. It ruins my fun."

Except you're not the only person in the world. Hate to break it to everyone who has suffered trauma but you're not the only people in the world. You are not special from any other person. I understand what happened was horrible but this is life; It's hard and more often then not things aren't going to go your way.

And to quote South Park "Either everything's okay, or nothing's okay."

You know I've started to reply to you three different times in the last two minutes and I realized that I have no idea what you're trying to say. You mention that Anon isn't the only person in the world as if he should be considerate of other people yet you sound as if your advocating the use of the word rape which you, if you've read the article, know is massively inconsiderate because it can completely destroy a rape victims day. If you're measuring one person's good time against another let's be honest, unless you are literally having an orgasm every time you talk about raping someone online there is no way that the joy you're getting from the word is even close to the despair that the Anon has described from someone using it.

Not using certain language when in public or at all isn't about somebody being special, it's about you using the basic human ability of empathy. If you're over 13 and have no mental illness or disorder than there is no reason that you can look at this article, read the feelings of a victim, and decide that they need to get over it, other than the fact that you just don't want to care.

And for the love of God will people stop using South Park as an excuse to be a jackass? I love the show as much as the next guy, but ignoring the fact that South Park contradicts it's morals all the time anyone who is using Comedy Central as a source of wisdom needs to turn off their TV and go talk to actual human beings.

CaptainKarma:

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

It has to do with you advocating that we shouldn't say something that might hurt somebodies feelings. As was pointed out, if we used this kind of thinking with other words there would be few things that people could say given how being offended is subjective.

Helmholtz Watson:

CaptainKarma:

What's that got to do with anything? I'm not saying that you shouldn't be allowed to say it, i'm just saying you SHOULDNT SAY IT.

It has to do with you advocating that we shouldn't say something that might hurt somebodies feelings. As was pointed out, if we used this kind of thinking with other words there would be few things that people could say given how being offended is subjective.

This isn't about other words, this is about rape. And how that in particular has such massive trauma and physiological effects on those who've experienced it.

Using the word casually even when not intending anything offensive or bad spirited at all still has heavy repercussions on those carrying that trauma. Not might, DOES.

That's why it makes someone an insensitive excuse for a human being if they ignore how it can effect others.

TAdamson:

My point was that people don't go on XBox live and tell their opponents that they are "going to murder them" or that they have "murdered them".

Have you ever played COD or Halo on Xbox live?

Awexsome:
This isn't about other words, this is about rape. And how that in particular has such massive trauma and physiological effects on those who've experienced it.

Using the word casually even when not intending anything offensive or bad spirited at all still has heavy repercussions on those carrying that trauma. Not might, DOES.

That's why it makes someone an insensitive excuse for a human being if they ignore how it can effect others.

This is exactly about words. Saying something isn't the same thing as doing it.
If a person is easily offended by a subject, like rape, then they should avoid environments where the subject might come up. Everybody else shouldn't have to watch every word that they say on xbox live so that they don't offend the feelings of others. If the word rape is treated this way, what about other words or phrases that might offend people? There would be little to say if every possible phrase that might offend people was not spoken.

Helmholtz Watson:

Awexsome:
This isn't about other words, this is about rape. And how that in particular has such massive trauma and physiological effects on those who've experienced it.

Using the word casually even when not intending anything offensive or bad spirited at all still has heavy repercussions on those carrying that trauma. Not might, DOES.

That's why it makes someone an insensitive excuse for a human being if they ignore how it can effect others.

This is exactly about words. Saying something isn't the same thing as doing it.
If a person is easily offended by a subject, like rape, then they should avoid environments where the subject might come up. Everybody else shouldn't have to watch every word that they say on xbox live so that they don't offend the feelings of others. If the word rape is treattle to say if every possible phrase that might offend people was not spoken.

Those victims shouldn't have to live with that to satisfy others' preference to use whatever words casually they want.

In my opinion one person's freedom to speak what they want regardless of effects of others is not as important as another's freedom to go about their life without that trauma resurfacing and causing major damage.

I think very poorly of those who think that freedom of speech is more important than others well-being.

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