Why Reading Comments Can Be Such a Bad Idea

i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people i hate people.

There’s a reason why I think that those who get really up in arms over the idea that we need to teach all men to prevent rape are some of the men most likely to actually be rapists. It’s because of this guy. Who is very, very angry at the suggestion that all rapists are not sociopathic fringe members of society jumping out bushes, who is very, very angry at the fact that it’s insinuated that all men are capable of rape because he’s a man and he’s not a rapist . . . only to say towards what is currently the end of that thread that it’s only rape if you fight the guy off. Or: “No means no for a reason. Anything except no means nothing at all.”

Guess what assholes? If you think that all women are available for all sexual activity all of the time and you can touch and grope and fuck any woman you want to so long as she doesn’t tell you “no” in advance, and that would make you not a rapist . . . chances are really fucking good that you’re a rapist. If you’re not, you probably will be one day. But you probably already are.

Being unable to handle this shit lately, I am now taking the rest of the day off. Let me know if something important happens.

0 thoughts on “Why Reading Comments Can Be Such a Bad Idea

  1. Amelia

    On Reddit, someone linked to that post, and a commenter called it a “joke article.”

    I am sick of people abusing Jen with their ignorance and No-Meisms Thanks for the support and the righteous anger.

    I feel for you. I really do.

    Have a nice day off, and thanks for reading our blog.

  2. rich

    I stopped reading his arguments pretty quickly. The jump from “all rapists are not strangers lurking in the bushes” to “you are accusing me and decent citizens like me of rape” is a scary defense mechanism/justification, and as you say, more indicative of how patriarchy defines and defends rape. What a prick. Hope you’re keeping your sanity.

  3. Ladylike

    A bit of good news for you:

    The California Supreme Court has overturned the ban on gay marriage.

    Score one really big point for equality.

  4. Lindsay

    He was so frustrating to argue with… Switch up his words a bit and get this: “Yes means yes for a reason. Anything except yes means nothing happens at all.”

  5. Jen

    Hey, original author of the linked post here!

    Thank you for your hatred. I mean it. I worked long and hard to steel myself for the inevitable backlash when I confessed that I was raped. I see that my worries were not unfounded. However, I am heartened that there are people out there that have conquered their base urges and social conditioning to blame the victim.

    Anon’s comments are nothing that I have not heard before from a (now fired) therapist, my parents, my brother, the rapist himself, and some of my “friends”. The fact that they only post such disgusting statements under the veil of anonymity gives me some sort of hope that they know that what they say is wrong and hurtful. Perhaps I am being too optimistic?

    Regardless, the outrage of anonymouses reminds me why I must continue to tell my story. It is awe-inspiring and the reason why I bother to get up every day that people like you continue to support those who would otherwise be urged to shut up and excuse the actions of rapists.

    Thank you, sincerely and from the bottom of my heart.

  6. Kacie

    The bruhaha that ensued in the comments was SICKENING. I can’t believe someone had the audacity to say what happened to Jen was “bad sex.” Um, as someone who has both had bad sex AND been raped, I must say that I take offense to the idea that we women are just too stupid to tell the difference and hysterical over “just bad sex.” WHAT THE FUCK?! Women are full people and we KNOW when our body and autonomy has been violated. Fuck all those patronizing assholes who want to baby women so they can feel better about themselves…so they can feel like they have never been a rapist or have never been raped.

  7. Cara Post author

    Thanks for stopping by everyone. Jen, I said so in the comments over there, but thank you for writing what you did and refusing to back down from it. As I also said, I’ve been through similar kinds of internet attacks lately, so I know what you’re going through and what it’s like to go out on a limb and share part of yourself that is traumatic, only to be shit all over by those who wish that rape survivors would just shut the fuck up.

    Your story also hit a chord with me, because there were a lot of similarities between it and my own experience. I’ve thought about going to a therapist, btw, but have avoided it mostly because of a fear of getting a therapist like the one that you had.

    Anyway, no need for thanks. But I imagine that if you ever need someone to get REALLY FUCKING PISSED at rape apologists and openly hate them . . . I’m probably your woman. 🙂

    And thank you Ladylike for the good news! That really did cheer me up.

  8. Jenny Dreadful

    Sheesh, what a huge assmunch that Anonymous dude was. I wish I could train myself to stop reading someone’s comments as soon as they use the word “misandrist.”

    I don’t comment a lot on the blogs that I read because I just don’t have the energy to engage people like Anonymous, and even reading that kind of shit can really depress me. I know that it’s important to use positive spaces on the internet to create a supportive community, and I see that happening in the comments section of lots of my favorite blogs, and I’m trying to participate more, but the trolls make it difficult.

    I don’t understand the mentality of the troll. I sometimes sneak over to Malkin’s site, or Townhall, or World Net Daily, because I think it’s important to know how the other side thinks, but I don’t leave comments. I think that comments can be a great way for an engaged community to discuss something, but this drive-by finger-wagging shit is disrespectful and irritating.

  9. Izzy

    I know what you mean, JD. I’m on the American Family Association’s mailing list. That way, I can be prepared if they ever plan on showing up in my area. It’s also a nice source of anger-fodder when the lack o’ motivation bug bites.

  10. Jen

    Therapists are totally touch-and-go. I met my current therapist through my local rape hotline, so I figured that she knew what she was doing, unlike the last one. Just a heads-up, if you would like to get professional help. I found that it was worth it after a found one that was not full of shit.

    Although, the internet is great for therapy, oddly enough.

  11. SunlessNick

    very, very angry at the fact that it’s insinuated that all men are capable of rape because he’s a man and he’s not a rapist

    The anger at the “all men are potential rapists” falls apart in the face of “potential how?” If it means want to, and will do given the chance, then no, not all men are potential rapists. However, given that most feminists don’t live their lives in a state of aggravated paranoia, and are willing to be within twenty feet of men, it can be assumed they don’t think so either.

    It’s not something I’d do or want. I know that – but how many people in my life really know me well enough that they know it too? Not many. And the random woman I pass on the street with no one else around certainly isn’t one of them. So in that sense, I am a potential rapist, and so is every other man.

    And the argument can be made that by that logic, everyone is a potential criminal. And that’s true, but no other crime is so backed up by societal excuse. No other crime has so many pre-made exceptions allowing this instance to “not really rape” or this perpetrator to be “not really like that.”

    To use an example this guy cites, women are more likely than men to kill their children – statistically true – but the difference is that women who kill their children are condemned from all quarters, and will receive harsh punishment if caught. While men – who are overwhelmingly the most common perpetrators of rape – are more likely to be defended, excused, forgiven, and even lionised.

    And when that attitude is so ubiquitous, women can be forgiven if they sometimes come off as a bit paranoid about men.

  12. Cara Post author

    Precisely, Nick.

    I also think that there’s a very strong socialization aspect with regards to rape. Because of all of the excuses made, men are also socialized to believe that in some cases, rape is acceptable. Of course, not all men undergo the same socialization, and not all men react to the socialization in the same way — which is how some men become rapists, some men become rape apologists (and therefore, in my book, potential rapists), and other men are not rapists. It’s more or less the “blank slate” theory — not all men will become rapists (in fact, most will not), but because of the social conditions under which they live, at some point it is possible that things could have taken a different turn (just like at some point my life could have taken a different turn and I’d have ended up a thief). The point of wide-spread anti-rape education is to ensure that more men take the right turn. And we have no way of knowing who the men will be that will take the wrong turn. The idea that this kind of education is insulting to men does more or less rely on the theory that rapists are born that way — and by extension, that rape is and always will be an inevitability. That’s dangerous for so many reasons.

  13. Astraea

    Delurking to jump in and add that the very people who get angry at the (misunderstood) “all men are potential rapists” idea are typically the first to blame a woman who hasn’t acted as if the man she’s with is a potential rapist when it turns out he IS one.

    Somehow women are supposed to take a million precautions that imply that every man she meets is a potential rapist without actually communicating this attitude.

    It’s the height of male privilege to expect women to take the entire burden onto ourselves to prevent violence without ever hurting the precious feelings of men who do nothing to prevent rape by suggesting that we can’t trust them.

  14. SunlessNick

    That’s ok, you aren’t really meant to take precautions. After the last few months, I’m largely of the opinion that the unspoken purpose of most “rape-prevention advice” is to fail, but provde excuses for the rapist.

  15. Jen

    Sunless Nick-
    I was totally sober the two instances of completed penetrative rape. I knew the guy, he was my boyfriend and a friend I knew in passing for over five years. I was not alone in a darkened alley, I was in my dorm room, walking around the dorm complex, or in the study room.

    There is nothing I could have done, myself, to prevent rape. In every other crime, the onus is always on the criminal. Nobody would ever argue that a victim of a hijacking, a robbery, or a murder was at fault (unless she’s a prostitute, but that’s another disgusting phenomenon entirely) for the action of the kidnapper, robber, or hijacker.

    In the case of rape, it’s always the rape victim’s fault. If she was drunk, it was her fault for being drunk. If she was sober, it was her fault for not fighting. If she fought, it was her fault for not having a witness. If she had a witness, it was her fault for having DNA evidence. If she has DNA evidence, it is her fault for leaving the house with a vagina.

    There are very very few people that don’t apologize for rapists and demonize rape victims. Which leads me to believe that every man is a potential rapist until proven otherwise and that every woman is someone who will apologize for them.

    People may call this paranoia. I call it obvious.

  16. Pingback: Daughter of the Ring of Fire » Blog Archive » Monsters Are Just Exaggerations

  17. Pingback: On binaries and rape apologists « I am the Lizard Queen!

  18. brenna

    I don’t think it’s fair that we leave women out of the “potential rapist” subgroup. It is more difficult, but the risk is the same. We need to actively teach people to respect each other’s space and needs and desires ahead of our own.

    I study genocide, and, what I have learned in my studies is that if I am capable of killing in self-defense–and I am–then I am capable of genocide, because that is how it is always framed; that is how it develops. Genocide is the organized killing through the guise of artificialized self-defense under a calculating force such as a government. What we need to realize is that rape, as terrifying as it is, is nothing more than selfishly failing to consider the needs of others first, and that is something that we’re all capable of. That is, unfortunately, all too easily learned. Mine happened when I said “I’m not (physically) ready yet” and was told that I was. All I needed was some extra stimulation. What I got was beyond the inconvenience of waiting a couple more minutes.


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