Date Rape: Breaking it Down [Infographic]

27 Aug

 

I found the above picture shared on my Facebook feed, and there are a few important points I’d like to share and discuss.

I don’t think that the goal of this nail polish is to end date rape or in its entirety – I think it is just one more tool to keep yourself safe. But, even if it was, this graphic has a good point: there are more important things to focus on about preventing rape.

The first thing that actually caught my eye as interesting was the first bullet point on how to “End Rape”.

1) Address those at risk of committing sexual assault.

Is this common knowledge? Are there people who are predisposed to commit sexual assault? I guess I know the answer is “yes”, but how do we recognize that well in advance of them actually committing sexual assault?

We talk about teaching our boys about consent, just as we teach our girls about protecting themselves, but this statement goes further than that. And if we assume that it refers to males i general, than 4) is hypocritical of itself and this graphic is quite flawed.

As I read further, I found that all of the points under the “End Rape” section are quite interesting.

2) Address the culture that condones and teaches predatory sexual behavior.

This one slightly boggles me. I feel as predatory sexual behavior is not a cultural norm, so I’m at a loss for what it is actually referencing. My personal views on rape are slightly skewed compared to the populous, so there I have an inkling that the predatory behavior she is referring to is simply pursuing someone you are interested in. Of course, if she is referring to what most people consider stalking, then it absolutely needs to be addressed. I do still firmly hold the belief that just because you are a victim, doesn’t mean you don’t hold some responsibility (on a case by case basis, of course). I know…unpopular opinion.

3) Teach sexual consent and respect for women’s bodies from a young age.

This statement should not be in the same set of statements as 4). It should not be centered on women’s bodies, and respect for men’s bodies is equally as important. Men, I feel, can be coerced into having sex just as easily if not moreso than women and its absurd to ignore this. Coercion is not consent. I was never taught that “no means no” except if I’m saying no. Giving the benefit of the doubt, I think the author wasn’t meaning to be biased, and is giving a good message, just in the wrong words.

And the final point caught my eye immediately after 1) did.

4) Address the sexist myth that men are naturally predatory and women are responsible for stopping them.

This actually illustrates a point rooted much deeper in sexism: women are responsible for men. We aren’t. We aren’t responsible for your laundry, or cleaning the bathroom, or keeping you in line. Men are responsible for men, and women need to stop feeling like we should be. Not terribly long ago, I heard a beautiful explanation for Muslim women covering their bodies. The reason they cover their bodies is so that they do not tempt men because being tempted is shameful, and they wish to save them from that shame.

While I like this, and I often feel this way about certain relationships I have, it is not my responsibility.

But on the flip-side, men are not naturally predatory. They have self-control. They have the ability to choose their actions, and I think it is very sexist to assume otherwise. I can’t tell you how frustrated it makes me when we discriminate men solely because they are men.

I’ve already mentioned that my views are slightly skewed, but it’s important to acknowledge that men need help too. For me to deny someone a ride simply because they are a man and not a woman is just as bad as me denying someone a ride simply because they are not white. For me to drive by a person on the side of the road having car problems because they are a man and not a woman is just as discriminatory.

Maybe I don’t feel discriminated against for my sex as much as some women do, but I often feel like we go on about sexism in the wrong way.

I should mention how much I love Laci Green and I highly recommend her videos. We don’t always see eye to eye, but that is okay…I still recommend her videos. I don’t always agree with decisions on how women should be proactive about preventing rape, but the guys who created this nail polish did have a pretty good idea. We already use nail polish, and this type of preventative doesn’t change our routine really at all (which is my pet peeve). I think, especially, if you live in a high crime area or know if you are going to be in an area that monitoring your drink might be difficult, that this is a good idea.

Any interesting stories you’d like to share about date rape or fingernail polish or role-reversal? How do you feel about this new fancy nail polish? Are you a Laci Green fan? What do you think about this infographic?

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2 Responses to “Date Rape: Breaking it Down [Infographic]”

  1. fadingsunlight August 28, 2014 at 7:37 am #

    (2) is a tricky one. There’s something between merely pursuing someone and stalking someone… “Cat calls” and lewd comments made to women in passing seem to be common points as far as “rape culture” is usually concerned. In my experience, it happens, but not as frequently as some would have us believe and probably not often enough that I would consider it to be part of collective “culture.” I’m also not willing to label every socially awkward guy that puts his foot in his mouth while trying to “compliment” met a “sexual predator” either and, sometimes, I believe that’s genuinely the case.

    As someone who was dosed with something (years ago) and raped, while I’m not sure that the nail polish would have done anything for me because of the situation – I never in a million years would have thought I’d be at risk in that environment, I certainly don’t think it’s a bad idea, especially for college girls that are going to parties where there would be a higher risk. Comparing it to iron underwear is a stretch…

    • mishie1 August 28, 2014 at 11:12 pm #

      All very well put. And yes…comparing it to iron underwear IS a stretch. :S

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