The R Word

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Hu I admit I understand the view of the feminist haters. Having to be around Amazons most of my teenage years.

That said I don't get grouping rape victims with them. You can chose to be a feminst or a chauvinist. Rape victims never had a choice in the matter. I also get the on line culture. One starts it then the herd instink kicks in. Want to see it head to a play. ground and watch one stronger kick pick on a weaker one then a groups picking on them. I hate to say it but people are monster.

Kudo tho on talking about it. I have to admit I'm glad I have no idea how hard that must have been.

Damn good article sir. Thank you for sharing your own experiences, it must of been really hard to write it.

This article is simply... stunning, I should say. In that reading it, I had to sit back and just be in awe that someone could survive and cope with something so horrible. It's just a shame that I feel like a lot of people will read it, but feel like "well, when *I* use the word, I'm not being hurtful" and just not get what this brave guy is saying.

The word is never okay to use when you don't mean what it really means; sexual assault. Using it as a placeholder for "lose" or "defeat" not only trivializes the brutality of the crime the word represents, but ladies and gentlemen who have survived rape who overhear (and there are many of these individuals, and you never know who they are) are forced to then deal with those memories all over again.

Therumancer:

The thing with rape discussions is that it usually comes down to demands for dual standards that favor women. We see this in the court system where it's basically argued that in a case where rape is the accusation that the defendant (the accused) should have to prove a negative (nearly impossible) and their own innocence, as opposed to the burden of proof being placed on the accuser and prosecution.

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.

Therumancer:

Politics in these cases have created some massive travesties of justice, as rape is one of the few crimes where people have been convicted (sometimes regularly) on what amounts to purely circumstantial evidence

I would like to point out something: circumstantial evidence is not bad evidence and in fact, is often all the evidence that exists in criminal cases. The big difference between direct evidence and circumstantial evidence is that circumstantial evidence requires an inference between itself and the fact it attempts to prove. For example, If you look outside the window and see that it is raining outside, you have direct evidence that it is raining. If instead however, you are inside and you hear the door open and shut, and your mother comes walking into the house, wearing a raincoat, boots and with a wet umbrella, that is circumstantial evidence that it is raining outside.

Usually, with circumstantial evidence, the goal is to introduce multiple pieces of evidence, that taken together marginalize all inferences except the one that the prosecutor is trying to prove. For example, if Bob has gunpowder residue on his hands the night of the murder, that does not by itself prove that he killed anyone. He could have been at the gun range. But if Bob was scene in the vicinity of the murder shortly after it happened. And he was running. And the caliber of the gun used to kill the victim matches the gun Bob owns. And Bob knew the victim. And Bob had recently been fired from his job by the victim. Now take all this evidence (All of which is circumstantial) and look at it together, and suddenly we have a pretty strong case that Bob murdered the victim.

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.

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.

Mr. Omega:

Darkmantle:

Mr. Omega:
When I read this article, I was moved. I went to go see who wrote it, and noticed it was billed as "Anonymous". I took just two seconds to think of the various things the gaming community has done recently on anything involving women in general, let alone rape, and I thought "Yeah, that's probably for the best..."

The fact that the gaming community has become so hostile towards women, especially in matters of sexuality, that even a well-written, well-thought out piece about a very serious topic is still likely to be labeled as the "work of the enemy" and trolled to hell and back, and is sure to bring out the "Misandry is just as bad as misogyny!" crowd makes me sick to my stomach.

Thank you for sharing such a difficult experience with us, and thank you for giving us a much-needed perspective on this matter. Maybe, just maybe, gamers can actually act like adults on this matter. But I really doubt it.

You are aware that the author is male right?

Well shoot, now i look like an idiot. I do still think there will be an ugly response or two here, but yes, that was a mistake I made, and I apologize.

I think that's part of the tragedy of this whole scenario honestly. It's not just a "woman's issue" and should not be treated as such. It's a people issue. I see a lot of people suggesting laws that are woman specific, and I disagree with them because of people such as the author here. It should apply to both male and female victims. I see a lot of the same tragedy in cases of Domestic Violence.

I know that's only tangentially related to your mistake, but it reminded me of my point. Many people seem to forget that it happens to both genders, and it's equally as vile no matter who it happens to.

Really odd that I made a forum thread about the word rape today and this article pops up and Jim's thing on rape.
I don't know, I just can't wrap my head around what rape victims feel no matter how many different accounts I hear. While I haven't been raped in my life, I did have someone try to kill me. I got stabbed in the back, which left a 2x2x2inch gash in my back, I spent like 12 hours in the hospital and got well over 100 stitches in my back. The scan showed that my the wound had almost reached my kidney and a few more millimeters would've meant death. But I don't cringe at the word stabbed. Nor when I see killing animations in halo like the back stab does it bring fleeting memories of fear, coming in an out of consciousness, feeling the coldest I've ever felt in my life.
While I personally won't use the word insulting someone and what not, I just can't really get behind a issue I don't get.

Very good and informative article. I'm so sorry all that happened to you and how it has affected your life.

Yureina:
*claps*

A very good article, and one that I can only imagine how difficult it was to write. While I, thankfully, have not had to face this particular type of traumatic experience, it disgusts me whenever I hear that word being thrown around casually. I may not be one, but I've known more than a few rape victims throughout my life, and I have seen how it changes people. It's not a joke or something to laugh about. People who think something like this is actually funny should be thankful that they have no idea what real mental trauma is.

*hugs* I wish you well, anonymous person. Take care of yourself. :3

- Rei

P.S Whoever made it so my captcha for this post be "get over it" needs to be thrown into a portable toilet and set on fire. :o

I don't agree with this however. I absolutely understand that rape used in any comedic circumstance will be traumatic and insulting for any rape victim and plenty of other people besides. But do you honestly think it is any different whenever a person closely touched by murder, torture or brutal assault (say a father of a murdered child) see a bunch of innocent people get brutally killed or tortured in a comedic manner? No, it isn't. Do you think any disabled people are laughing whenever people make disability jokes (ala Joe from Family Guy)? Nope. They all would find it disgusting, but people are still allowed to make these jokes and people still find them funny. The very first joke on the very first episode of the critically acclaimed series Archer, makes a mockery out of torture and I laughed, but I bet any real world torture victim would be vomiting at the sight of it. I have laughed at some jokes involving rape, not many (I have been offended far more times than I have laughed) but there have been some and I don't feel any worse about that than whenever I laugh when an innocent person is killed in some funny, silly way.

I know many people will never find rape funny, luckily there are classification notifications in almost all media, so the people who find these things offensive can know beforehand and not watch.

Making public rape jokes when you have no idea of how the person you are telling it to will react, or the horrible way rape is being used as a slang term in video game circles is a very different argument than 'Rape can never, under any circumstances, be made light of'.

Helmholtz Watson:

OP:Sorry to hear about your experience but why is this an article on a video game site?

Culture is reflected in video games. Sometimes to the good, sometimes to the bad, but it is there, as much as it is in books, movies, or other media. Why should the Escapist feel as if they should not post articles that are strong, or reflect ideas that not everyone will agree with, or help to make people think? There is nothing wrong with posting such an article here, just as there is nothing wrong with posting an article about different types of marketing for guns used in society, or for the effects that the SCOTUS ruling on Arizona's SB1070 will have in terms of federal vs state precedence. This site is visited by people from all walks of life and, judging by the comments on this and other articles, there is no consensus on either the issue of rape or violence, either in video games or real life, and thus a healthy, thoughtful debate is not something to avoid, but rather engage in.

Thank you for this article. I have worked with victims of torture (read: non-military and military both). It is this central tenet that people who don't get the whole objection to 'rape' fail to understand. Rape is a specific kind of torture, one that works its way into someone's psyche as much as some of the horrible things I've had described to me do, regardless of whether or not the nature is sexual. Rape is a common aspect of the torture, but not the only part of it. Sometimes they remember it more than the rest, sometimes it is subsumed into the rest of the event. It is all horrible, and no-one should ever say it is 'okay' or 'acceptable'.

Having said that, there are two components in discussion here: the act (which is generally considered reprehensible) and the use of the word that describes the act. "I'm going to kill you" or "I killed you, bro" is certainly used in a joking fashion in lot of more situations than "I'm going to rape you" or "I just raped you, bro". Guess which one is more likely to have been experienced by the person you're talking to? I would venture to guess that a lot more rape victims are wandering around than dead people (CDC Zombie apocalypse preparation notwithstanding). When you use the word casually, you might be around a person who has suffered through the actual act, often without knowing it (especially if they were an altar boy). Could the same be said for the family of a murder victim and the use of "kill/murder"? Of course, but they are not the actual victim. Rape generally leaves a victim that is still walking around out there; murder does not.

So, why is the use of the word coming under fire? Awareness raising. In a society where "Save the tatas" is controversial (rolls eyes) as a slogan for Breast Cancer Awareness, sometimes it's good to for the subject to be raised. If you disagree with the discussion, please, let it happen for the sake of those that truly don't have another outlet. Just as I don't jump into every thread of a game I hate and talk it down every single time, I encourage those of you who don't 'get' this article to let those of us who understand at least discuss the matter... and hopefully, you'll learn something along the way.

Helmholtz Watson:
I think people need to get over it. Rape is a word just like killed, murdered, starving, beaten, and genocide are words. There is no reason why the word rape should be treated like something special while the words I mentioned get an ok.

OP:Sorry to hear about your experience but why is this an article on a video game site?

I can't really respond to this as eloquently as I'd like to, but they're not just words, they're never just words. They're cruelty and suffering and some of the most despicable things humanity as a collective can do.

Best of luck to the writer of this in their future life, I was very glad to read that things are looking up for them at the moment.

I agree with your point that everyone's online experience would be much better if people treated each other with basic respect online. In fact I believe most people know it is "not OK" to say this stuff to others, it is just that when cloaked by anonymity some percentage of people will want to act out their frustrations and baser instincts in what they perceive as a safe arena.

Most of those people are not going to change no matter how many moving articles you write. Effective moderation is the only way this stuff will be dealt with but I don't think the major gaming services have either the ability or the will to do this job. Most people will eventually age out of this behavior. Some of the best options I've seen are public shaming sites, like FatUglyorSlutty:
http://fatuglyorslutty.com/

I have heard some people take this argument and try to apply it to the medium as well. There I draw the line. There have been a lot of different media that has dealt with the serious issue of rape and sexual abuse, which as your story indicates happens to both men and women. If the next Laura Croft game is going to feature an attempted sexual assault (it is my understanding that it is stopped before she is assaulted) lets wait and see how it fits into the overall narrative. Our First Amendment right to free speech is critical to our society. In fact books like "A Child Called It" have done a lot to educate people about the kind of abuse that happens, believe it or not people have called for that book to be banned and censored.

Do we need to find ways to moderate the severity of language in public online games? Most definitely. Should the subject of rape be off limits too all games? Certainly not.

itsthesheppy:

you should have read the entire article. you'd know why, if you had. If you did, you should maybe read it again, because you missed it.

Ok I just read the whole thing and if the point was to discourage people from saying the word rape loosely, I go back to what I said about genocide, murder, starving, and beating. Why are those words ok to say but rape is not?

subtlefuge:

Helmholtz Watson:
Rape is a word just like killed, murdered, starving, beaten, and genocide are words. There is no reason why the word rape should be treated like something special while the words I mentioned get an ok.

The grand majority of the Western World has trivialized starving. Violent video games by their very nature have trivialized murder, kill, and beaten. Why does sexual violence need to be brought into the picture for completely unrelated reasons? It doesn't. You don't need to make the word 'rape' mean nothing, because it fucking means something to the people who have been raped, and have to live with that for the rest of their lives. If you make a joke out of it, who's going to come forward to be laughed at?

I didn't say that the word rape meant nothing, just that it shouldn't be treated with more care than words like murder, genocide, starved or beaten.

As for jokes, why should rape be forbidden when jokes about racism, sexism, war, poverty and religion are ok? Why should the subject of rape be treated with such care, yet there are jokes about gay men, jokes about IRA bombings, or ethnic/racial stereotype jokes.

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.

AmrasCalmacil:

I can't really respond to this as eloquently as I'd like to, but they're not just words, they're never just words. They're cruelty and suffering and some of the most despicable things humanity as a collective can do.

They are words, they are words just like murder, genocide or starving are words. They are sounds that come out of our mouths that we associate with certain things.

Commenting as Anon for the same reasons your friends don't know.

I have four main emotions reading this. I want to hug you. I want to go back in time and hurt them. More than that, I want to thank you for being so strong to open up about your experiences. Strength in character is the quality I most admire about people, and you have it in spades.

Finally, I want to thank you for speaking out on certain parts of your experience, namely the self worth and the feelings of inadequacy. Those words made me look in a mirror.

Re: Gaming. the funsuckers who insist on their right to use such language are the reason I don't play WoW anymore. they are the reason several friends don't play hardcore games. The reason some friends refuse to use voice services so that their secret of being a girl/boy presenting as girl isn't used against them. We still have a lot of growing up to do, us spoiled gamers.

And for me, this has never been part of a feminist agenda. It's a human agenda.

On the one hand I sympathize with people who point out that all sorts of other things like genocide are considered open season but rape is not. On the other hand, I sympathize with the author and understand that using rape as a synonym for dominance via skill is insensitive and crass.

I'm a DotA (actually HoN) player and that should let you know something about the "quality" of my own communication in game. I'm not above trash talking - in fact I refer to the entire game as the Trollympics and actually think the trash talk is good fun. However, I don't use any homophobic slurs because I have gay friends who have pointed out at length how hurtful those words can be.

Up until now I've included rape and violation in said trashtalk. Starting today I won't anymore, but I'm not going to demonize my friends/allies/enemies/whatever if they choose to. I don't think the issue is that clear-cut.

Therumancer:
The thing with rape discussions is that it usually comes down to demands for dual standards that favor women. We see this in the court system where it's basically argued that in a case where rape is the accusation that the defendant (the accused) should have to prove a negative (nearly impossible) and their own innocence, as opposed to the burden of proof being placed on the accuser and prosecution.

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.

If I say anything else here I may end up getting myself suspended again, so I will merely conclude by saying that despite the utter disgust I feel for you right now, I sincerely hope you never, ever have to find out how wrong you are.

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.

The problem with using "rape" as slang is that it's a technical term with a fairly specific meaning, whereas something like "fag" has always been slang. While technical terms occasionally cross into slang and are abandoned by professionals (e.g., mental retardation), it's much more difficult and much rarer than with a word that's already slang.

That being said, you probably still shouldn't casually call people "fags" (5:00 to skip to the rant).

Anyway, we don't really have another word for "rape" (unless you want to go with the ultra-politically correct "non-consensual sex") and rape is still something that happens and has to be technically and legally described, so "rape" still has to mean, well, rape, and will always have to mean rape until we come up with a new word for rape; this is not a word whose meaning can change in the same way that slang can change to mean different slang.

Doom972:
Second, allow me to quote Mel Brooks: "Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die."
A thing could be considered funny or cruel depending on your point of view.
As a rape victim your friends at that Game of Thrones party seem cruel, but for a non-rape victim('s close friends and family) they seem funny.
The thing is, people can't always be sensitive to every possible baggage a person might have, even if it's as serious as rape. There can be no exceptions.

I am not a rape victim. I know no one who has been raped (at least, no one I know has told me they've been raped).

Rape is never funny. Don't quote Carlin at me, that was the least funny bit he ever did.

Never. Funny.

And if you find rape funny, I'd like to politely ask you to stay away from me and everyone I know, and seek counseling.

The only time in Song of Ice and Fire where rape was "played for laughs" was a soldier describing the Mountain raping a girl which he thought was hilarious, and you, the reader, weren't supposed to be laughing, you were supposed to be thinking, "What monsters these guys are."

Cheering "Rape!" during an attempted rape scene? That's messed up.

Anonymous, get new friends, ones who aren't psychopaths1.

1 "Psychopath" is also a technical term that's been appropriated by the general public to mean something it wasn't intended to mean. I'm using the correct technical definition (which approximates the related term "callous unemotional").

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.

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.

Whoever you are, you are beautiful and magnificent for writing this.

Fine.... I'll be the asshole at the party. I usually am anyways.

While I think what happened to you is terrible, and you are going to have issues to deal with for the rest of your life, I do not agree that people shouldn't use the term just because of a fear of insulting/offending/hurting someone that has negative connotations to a word or phrase. I tend to agree with Therumancer that it is used as a vulgar and impactful way of telling someone else that they were dominated.

While the word rape doesn't have the same impact with me as it would with you, there are things people say that hurt me or others. I find some things said to me painful that others would just shrug off. And that is what you will have to do. You're going to have to shrug off the comments.

You yourself have decided to not only remain anonymous within the realm of this article/discussion but also within your circle of friends (as you have mentioned the Game of Thrones incident). When people use the term online during a game, watching a show, or on the courts they are not doing it with any malice more than any other form of trash talk or vulgar humour. You may have played basketball that had nicer trash talk but that doesn't mean that harsher, more crass trash talk isn't around on the court.

Personally I don't use the term online because I'd like to think that I am a bit more clever in my insults than that. In fact, I don't play online too often because I find the majority of humanity to be a waste of time to interact with. But I digress. The concept that people shouldn't say something because they may ruin your fun (without even knowing that they are doing it) is absurd. Its along the lines of me not walking on the soccer pitch because I may kill an ant by stepping on it. I can't be bothered to live my life in fear that I may hurt someone else. I won't go out of my way to do so if I know that I am, but I won't avoid it unless I know it is doing harm in that case. Every one is different and they will be negatively affected by different things.

If you don't want people to say "rape" when talking about videogames, it should be because it's in bad taste, not because it's a trigger. ANY word or phrase could be an emotional trigger to someone, and it's not up to everyone else to anticipate what that might be, because they CAN'T. And why are you willing to tell complete strangers about this anonymously when you don't even tell your friends? I know being a rape victim isn't something to advertise, but the only reason they "couldn't have known" is if YOU made a conscious decision NOT to tell them. If these people are important to you then you really should have told them how you felt. Conforming to the societal norm that rape is something the victim should be ashamed of just makes it stronger.

@OP It was a really well written well thought out article. I have depression and PTSD also and some people don't really understand what is a word to some people can completely break someone else.

I can't even be in the same room when a man is angry and according to my friends I say sorry too much when I mess up in video games. There are reasons for that, as you have your reasons and you are very brave to describe them here.

Therumancer:
snip

Congratulations on completely missing the point of the article.

Rape isn't a feminist issue. It's an everyone issue. No one is trying to get away with double standards. I've never had the displeasure of reading cheap romance novels but I'm pretty sure they don't feature violent non consensual rape.

And frankly I would not want to be around any guy who wants rape as part of his power fantasy, games or otherwise....

Honestly I'm a little annoyed that the only thing you took away from the guy baring his soul was 'No! It's okay because women do it!' and start complaining about feminists....

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.

If I say anything else here I may end up getting myself suspended again, so I will merely conclude by saying that despite the utter disgust I feel for you right now, I sincerely hope you never, ever have to find out how wrong you are.

Well said.

The moment I saw the headline for this article, I got a sinking feeling in my stomach. I knew - I KNEW - that in the comment section there would be hand-wringing, rationalizing, derailing, and all that assorted bullshit we have come to expect whenever internet-troglodytes open their clueless mouths on issues like these.

And I honestly cannot understand why this is necessary. Rape IS different. Rape IS worse. Why can't we just agree that to not toss the word around whenever we feel like it? Considering how much better gaming as hobby would become for A LOT of people, it wouldn't be much of a sacrifice.

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.

Feminism and Men's Rights are often viewed as two diametrically opposed systems, when in reality they're the same thing. The problem of perception comes from the people who claim to advocate for one of the two sides not understanding the issue.

Helmholtz Watson:

itsthesheppy:

you should have read the entire article. you'd know why, if you had. If you did, you should maybe read it again, because you missed it.

Ok I just read the whole thing and if the point was to discourage people from saying the word rape loosely, I go back to what I said about genocide, murder, starving, and beating. Why are those words ok to say but rape is not?

Because nobody in XBOX Live, or anywhere else, has said 'omg i totally just genocided that guy'. It's extremely rare to hear anyone say 'man we beat them so bad it was like genocide.'

The use of the word 'rape' as a substitute for 'beat' or 'lost' or 'defeated', however, is very common. The author of the article does a much better job explaining why it is hurtful and wrong than I ever could.

This is not to say that using the word 'genocide' or other synonyms are necessairy a great deal better, but you're a lot less likely to trigger somebody within earshot, and contribute to a culture that supports that type of language and those detrimental opinions about the severity of the crime.

If you can't appreciate why it might hurt someone and therefor language to be avoided, you should soul-search about your opinion about the feelings of others.

Thank you. Hopefully, people will read this, and think before they shout. I know I don't, not always, but I certainly try to. I know that if I'm in a situation where I may say something stupid, I try to avoid speaking. It usually works.

Great article. It really hit a few emotions with me, which is no small feat. I am certain writing this took a lot of will power and courage.
I thank you for writing this. I feel like I understand a little more than I would have otherwise.

Rednog:
Snip'd

Not trying to make light of this but I think I'm gonna take a shot as to why you feel that way. It was over quickly. Relatively.

I cannot comment on the situation without knowing it but it was probably "impersonal". Mind you, I study self defense seriously and have a different definition of that word.
Instead of him just stabbing you in the back, imagine him really wanting to cause you pain. Imagine him wanting you to suffer.

Instead of quickly stabbing you for whatever reason, imagine he says, ties you up or drugs you so you are motionless but able to feel pain. Imagine his face twisted, showing that he utterly hates you, despises you. Imagine him taunting you, every word dripping with venom, showing you just how much power he holds over you.
Imagine being so helpless, that no matter how hard you struggle, there is no escape and both you and him know that. Then he brings the knife out. Instead of quickly stabbing you and hoping you die quickly, he draws it out as long as possible, just because he can.
So in essence, imagine instead him torturing you.
Can you imagine it? Honestly, I'd think you'd be lying if you said yes without having it happen to you. No one can unless they've survived it . And honestly, my scenario doesn't take into account the mental pain that rape brings. You are literally losing your innocence.

Sorry if it was a little vivid. I cannot say I've suffered this or anything close to this but like I said, I seriously study martial arts and I've heard MANY first and second hand accounts, factor in my natural empathy and paranoia, that's where I got the scenario.

On the article itself, I have to applaud you. It must have taken lots of willpower.
But captcha has something to say, a sentiment I wish to echo; enjoy life.
I truly hope you can.

itsthesheppy:

Helmholtz Watson:

itsthesheppy:

you should have read the entire article. you'd know why, if you had. If you did, you should maybe read it again, because you missed it.

Ok I just read the whole thing and if the point was to discourage people from saying the word rape loosely, I go back to what I said about genocide, murder, starving, and beating. Why are those words ok to say but rape is not?

Because nobody in XBOX Live, or anywhere else, has said 'omg i totally just genocided that guy'. It's extremely rare to hear anyone say 'man we beat them so bad it was like genocide.'

The use of the word 'rape' as a substitute for 'beat' or 'lost' or 'defeated', however, is very common. The author of the article does a much better job explaining why it is hurtful and wrong than I ever could.

This is not to say that using the word 'genocide' or other synonyms are necessairy a great deal better, but you're a lot less likely to trigger somebody within earshot, and contribute to a culture that supports that type of language and those detrimental opinions about the severity of the crime.

If you can't appreciate why it might hurt someone and therefor language to be avoided, you should soul-search about your opinion about the feelings of others.

First of all genocide simply has too many syllables for that sort of thing

Secondly, my girlfriend had OCD and her trigger words were things like "Hitler", so no, you can't please everyone. The best we can hold to do is provide justice and support.

If we're so worried about trivialising words because its going to make the crime go unpunished or unopposed then we may as well give up on science and logic because the human mind is far too stupid to function.

Helmholtz Watson:

AmrasCalmacil:

I can't really respond to this as eloquently as I'd like to, but they're not just words, they're never just words. They're cruelty and suffering and some of the most despicable things humanity as a collective can do.

They are words, they are words just like murder, genocide or starving are words. They are sounds that come out of our mouths that we associate with certain things.

Louis CK talks about words.

The main thing is that the sounds that come out of our mouths are things that, as you yourself said, we associate with certain things. For instance, we associate the word "rape" with "cruelty and suffering and some of the most despicable things humanity as a collective can do."

Words are not just the sounds our flapping meat makes. They are concepts and ideas, and they have emotional consequences.

About your other words, I've never heard anyone use trash talk like, "You're a starving victim of genocide." Maybe I don't play on the same servers you do. But I have heard, "I just raped you" while the speaker repeatedly crouches their avatar over a downed opponent.

And, "I just murdered you," in most games isn't so much trash talk as representative truth.

Besides, those are different words, different concepts, different meanings, with different emotional consequences that belong in a different conversation about what is--and is not--"acceptable" to use in trash talk.

But here we're talking about rape. Trying to obscure the subject isn't going to change that.

According to Captcha, I "have an inkling." So that's good.

itsthesheppy:

Because nobody in XBOX Live, or anywhere else, has said 'omg i totally just genocided that guy'. It's extremely rare to hear anyone say 'man we beat them so bad it was like genocide.'

Not as rare as you think, but the frequency at which it is used is a red herring from the conversation. Why is that word allowed to be used?

itsthesheppy:
The use of the word 'rape' as a substitute for 'beat' or 'lost' or 'defeated', however, is very common. The author of the article does a much better job explaining why it is hurtful and wrong than I ever could.

Not answering the question I asked about the words I listed.

itsthesheppy:
This is not to say that using the word 'genocide' or other synonyms are necessairy a great deal better, but you're a lot less likely to trigger somebody within earshot, and contribute to a culture that supports that type of language and those detrimental opinions about the severity of the crime.

So I shouldn't say rape because I might offend somebody? That's it?

itsthesheppy:
If you can't appreciate why it might hurt someone and therefor language to be avoided, you should soul-search about your opinion about the feelings of others.

Cute, but not going to work. I realize that people are offended by it, I just disagree that the word rape should be treated with more consideration that words like starving or murder.

Thank you for correctly and sensibly articulating my feelings on this better than i could have. And while i don't intend to diminish you article i would like to add a few things.

The first being over-reaction. No i don't think you're being overdramatic dry-heaving when something visceral sets off flash-backs. I have multiple family members that have been or still are in the military and a more than one of them exhibits PTSD. We can't do fireworks on 4th of july with him because it brings back memories of when he was shot down. Little innocuous things can have bad effects. I don't even think the use of the word setting off something is outside belief. but (and here's the part where i become the asshole) responses unlike this one, the majority, at least what i've seen, are fueled by anger and attention-grabbing than by actual want for understanding.

The problem i've seen with these discussions is people are yelling at the wrong people. There are these paragons of virtue who think they need to stand up for the victims, because the victims can't speak for themselves(a view which is more negative than those of the other groups). and the paragons of freedom who want to say what they want, when they want, not caring if it offends folks. and the victims who feel left out of the discussion because neither side really understands what is happening. It leads to a argument which is neither here nor there on the problem at hand. Should you not be allowed to use the word? no, you should be able to use it if you want. You shouldn't want to use it because it describes something horrible visceral and traumatic. these are things that aren't fun for anyone.

I don't like where this site is headed. I thought it was about gaming. No offence to the writer of course

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