Feminist Philosophers

News feminist philosophers can use

Preventing sexual assault: Tips guaranteed to work! September 22, 2009

Filed under: academia,human rights,rape,sex — annejjacobson @ 3:41 am

Please distribute this list.  Put it up in your place of work, in your university’s library or wherever you think theymight be read:

1. Don’t put drugs in people’s drinks in order to control their behavior.

2. When you see someone walking by themselves, leave them alone!

3. If you pull over to help someone with car problems, remember not to assault them!

4. NEVER open an unlocked door or window uninvited.

5. If you are in an elevator and someone else gets in, DON’T ASSAULT THEM!

6. Remember, people go to laundry to do their laundry, do not attempt to molest someone who is alone in a laundry room.

7. USE THE BUDDY SYSTEM! If you are not able to stop yourself from assaulting people, ask a friend to stay with you while you are in public.

8. Always be honest with people! Don’t pretend to be a caring friend in order to gain the trust of someone you want to assault. Consider telling them you plan to assault them. If you don’t communicate your intentions, the other person may take that as a sign that you do not plan to rape them.

9. Don’t forget: you can’t have sex with someone unless they are awake!

10. Carry a whistle! If you are worried you might assault someone “on accident” you can hand it to the person you are with, so they can blow it if you do.

Thanks to Feminist Law Professors!

 

50 Responses to “Preventing sexual assault: Tips guaranteed to work!”

  1. TheLady Says:

    Love it! This will go up on my blog lickety-spit.

  2. Jender Says:

    Fantastic. Many thanks.

  3. elp Says:

    *so* good! i get the non-piss-take version of this via email about once a year. it’s always really bothered me! nice.

  4. Hilde Lindemann Says:

    FABULOUS! My students and I were wondering just yesterday why the campus safety people at Michigan State University didn’t have large signs with tips like these.

  5. Moira Says:

    Good.
    There’s also the Scottish website This Is Not An Invitation To Rape Me.
    http://www.thisisnotaninvitationtorapeme.co.uk/
    And my favourite – cobbled from some-one else and adapted slightly.

    What men need to do to solve the problem of rape

    •If a woman is drunk, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is walking alone at night, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is drugged and unconscious, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is wearing a short skirt, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is jogging in a park at 5 am, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman looks like your ex-girlfriend you’re still hung up on, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is asleep in her bed, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is asleep in your bed, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is doing her laundry, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is in a coma, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman changes her mind in the middle of or about a particular activity, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman has repeatedly refused a certain activity, don’t rape her.
    •If a woman is not yet a woman, but a child, don’t rape her.
    •If your girlfriend or wife is not in the mood, don’t rape her.
    •If your step-daughter is watching TV, don’t rape her.
    •If you break into a house and find a woman there, don’t rape her.
    •If your friend thinks it’s okay to rape someone, tell him it’s not, and that he’s not your friend.
    •If your “friend” tells you he raped someone, report him to the police.
    •If your friend at a party tells you there’s an unconscious woman upstairs and it’s your turn, don’t rape her, tell your friend he’s a rapist and call the police.
    •Tell your father, brothers, sons, god-sons, nephews, grandsons, sons of friends rape is about power, domination and hate, not sex.
    •Don’t tell your women friends how they need to behave / dress to be safe and avoid rape.
    •Don’t imply that a woman could have avoided it if she’d only done / not done something.
    •Don’t imply that it’s in any way her fault.
    •Don’t let your silence imply agreement when someone tells you he “got some” with a drunk girl.
    •Don’t perpetuate a culture that lets you believe that you have no control over or responsibility for rape. You can be responsible and control yourself. You can set an example for other men.

  6. Duckrabbit Says:

    I might print this out and start posting it places.

    Moira: I just want to flag the fact that women and men of all sexual orientations will have to follow those instructions in order to solve the problem of rape. Unfortunately, straight men are not the only people who rape.

  7. Monkey Says:

    RFLMAO! Brilliant!

  8. D Says:

    Help Make the World a Better Place: Prevent Wrongful Convictions on Sexual Assualt Charges!

    1. If at night you get drunk to the point when you can’t remember where you were, with whom, or what you were doing, don’t call the police the next morning telling them you were raped by one of the guys you were with.

    2. Remember: there is nothing remotely erotic or inviting in being immersed in reading a book on a parc bench wearing a summer dress, in wearing revealing attire, in exchanging email or sms messages or in any form of body language. These actions and speech-acts mean nothing other than their stated explicit meaning. The idea that they somehow convey anything else is a myth, and it is a scientific mystery how such conceptions could ever creep into the collective mind.

    3. If you are staying in a country illegaly, do not succumb to the temptation of accusing a man of sexually assaulting you simply because you cannot be deported as long as the trial proceeds. In the long term it’s not gonna help, and if you choose to abstain you may save a man’s career or family life from being ruined.

    4. Always be honest with people. Don’t pretend to like them just because you want someone to pay attention to you or help you out with your life. Before flirting ask yourself: do I really like this person, or am I likely to complain to the police about him tomorrow? Try remaining rational even through difficult times.

    5. Don’t forget: if you cannot provide detailed minutae of every single thing that goes on between you and a man something very wrong is probably in the making. Chances are you may want to register a complaint against that man in the future. If you care about him, break the relationship now, before it’s too late.

    6. Count to ten before reporting a man to the police. Take a few deep breaths and think of something pleasant the man you want to report has done towards you in the past or may do in the future.

  9. moira Says:

    Hi Duckrabbit.
    I know men rape boys and men too. I’m on an advisory group to the local Police. Last year 42 male rapes were reported, almost all chilren. Over ten times as many female rapes were reported.
    Interestingly, it has been my experience that any time women focus purely on girls’/women’s equality and human rights issues we can expect to be reminded that the issue affects boys/men too. As if it is socially unacceptable for women ever to exclusively discuss/be active around girls’/women’s rights and inequalities. I do not experienced the reverse of this, and can only think it is a consequence of the still universal male = ‘norm’ mindset.
    Will we reach the day when people can publically talk solely of women’s human rights and discrimination/oppression without a prompt reminder being flung up that women ‘belong’ to Mankind and women should acknowledge some men have the same problems?

  10. Monkey Says:

    Hi D,

    Let’s take stock for a minute, shall we? What is involved in reporting a rape? –
    a. First of all, you have to phone the police.
    b. Next, you have to get the police to believe you, bother turning up to interview you, and do all that evidence-gathering, inquiry stuff. Tricky that.
    c. Then you might (if you’re lucky) have to undergo a vaginal examination. We all know how much us gals enjoy our cervical smears.
    d. At some point your friends will find out. If any of them know the person you are accusing, they will most certainly take his/her word that there was consent, over your claim that you were raped.
    e. If it gets to court, people will automatically suspect you are lying. Especially if the person you are accusing seems like a nice young man/woman, has a job, knows about personal hygiene, has friends, and is in short, like most people, rather normal, and not a wild-eyed freak in a dirty trenchcoat with drool dribbling down his/her chin.
    f. You will be cross-examined by the defence, who will ask you lots of intimate questions about your personal life. It will not be like on Oprah Winfrey.
    g. The defence will have tracked down your past partners and other people who know you. They will have provided lots of information about your sexual practices and fantasies. If you had a sex life previous to the rape – or fantasised about having one – the judge and jury will think you are a slut, and assume that you consented to sex.
    h. If you were drunk, on drugs, wearing a short skirt, agreed to go home with the accused, or in a gay club, the judge and jury will think you are a slut and assume you consented to sex.

    Now, given the above, is there anyone in their right mind who would accuse someone of rape just because s/he regretted having sex with them in the morning? Yes, it no doubt happens occasionally. But it’s a rare occurrence. Far, far rarer than being raped.

    Oh yes, and here’s an important point: if someone found you irresistible in your white T-shirt and jeans, would you think it was fair enough if they followed you home, pushed their way into your house, held you down face first on your own sofa and rammed their cock up your arse? No? Here’s the message: ‘LOOKING EROTIC’ IS NOT AN INVITATION TO BE RAPED.

  11. Monkey Says:

    And another thing, if you’re in a country illegally, you generally tend to stay clear of the law. Even if someone has committed a crime against you, you tend to just put up with it, rather than go to the police and draw attention to yourself. If you’re one of those unfortunates who has had their case for asylum rejected, then you have a pretty hard time getting the law to take anything you say seriously. I’ve worked with refugees, and it’s an all too common scenario.

  12. Jender Says:

    Monkey: Well said. Very.

  13. D Says:

    Monkey,
    The first thing you did was substitute rape for sexual assault, making your dialectical life much easier.

    The second thing you did was argue that reporting someone for rape puts one through a very unpleasant procedure, implying that no one in their right mind will do so without good reason. Whether first-time complainants are fully aware of the extent of the unpleasantness, or whether all, or most, people are in fact in their “right mind” when they register a complaint of the nature in question are two questions left not discussed.

    Thirdly, you tossed in, as if on a tangent, the least morally ambiguous rape scenario to make your argument stronger.

    As for your last point (in the second comment), I admit to have drawn on personal experience there, and I do not know if, and indeed agree with you in that it is unlikely that, what I described was a common practice.

  14. Monkey Says:

    D – the substitution was unintended, and reading back through what you write, probably caused by your mention of rape in your point 1. But parallel points can be made in the case of sexual assault.

    First-time complainants may not be aware of the unpleasantness in advance. But one finds out pretty sharpish when one gets to (b). The police generally don’t have a good track record of dealing sensitively with people who report sexual assault. Although no doubt some individuals are doing a good job.

    Right minds and so on… what’s needed are some hard statistics of the number of people who dishonestly accuse someone of sexual assault. Pointing to the high number of rape/sexual assault cases that don’t lead to prosecution (as some people do) won’t suffice, as there are competing reasons for what I consider to be a spectacular failure in the justice system. Until some numbers come along, there’s not much more to say on that one, I guess.

    The point of my last comment was to pick up on the implication of your point 2: if someone turns you on, they’ve invited your sexual attention, and so are asking for it. I chose an example where that is unambiguously false. I take it you accept my claim about the example I used. If so, the next question is why you think it’s true that if someone turns you on, they’ve invited your sexual attention and so are asking for it, in less extreme cases.

    Well, there’s a lot of research and studies knocking around to support the point I made in my last comment. Of course, that doesn’t show it never happens – and you have one incident from personal experience to show that it sometimes does. But what the studies show is that it isn’t a common occurrence.

  15. D Says:

    Monkey,

    Consider what just happened.

    1. I saw a post which implied that the guilt for all events that are typically interpreted by the judiciary system as rape lies exclusively with men’s aggressive behaviour, and which represented the motives that lead them to commit such acts as a laughing matter.

    2. I took the two features above, and preserved them while describing the setting of reporting sexual assault, rather than to the act of raping, as done in the original post.

    3. You took my words to imply that women’s motives in such cases are indeed a laughing matter, and went on to explain to me that they weren’t.

    4. We exchanged a few methodological remarks.

    So, I ask you: if you, seeing my original remark, felt the need to defend women and argue that very strong motives must underlie the accusing of a man of rape, what could have been the message I intended to convey by making my original remark?

  16. jj Says:

    As the author of the post, I want to step in here on a matter of interpretation. D, you say:

    I saw a post which implied that the guilt for all events that are typically interpreted by the judiciary system as rape lies exclusively with men’s aggressive behaviour.

    The post is about actual assault, and it has nothing to do with accusations of assault. Not at all.

    I assume many of us know of a case where, for example, a woman has called the police charging assault against her partner, and we remain unsure he deserved it. THAT IS A DIFFERENT PROBLEM.

    I think it’s a bit trollish to take a concern about actual assaults against women and try to turn the discussion into one about problematic accusations against men. Such accusations can cause a lot of unnecessary harm to whole families, but nothing in the post is about that.

  17. D Says:

    hi jj,

    You say two things:

    1. The post is about rape, and your comment isn’t.

    2. Your comment is therefore trollish.

    Point 2 of my comment above states transparently that I understand that in my comment I changed the “setting”. Regarding “the subject”, I suppose there are two things I could say. Assuming that the subject is actually what you claim it to be – which I’ll contradict in a moment – I never changed it. It is still well within the territory of sexual assault. It isn’t even possible to define what sexual assault is without referring to criteria supplied by the law, and the entire body of social practices, some of which I described, is therefore relevant. Anyway, any but the most rudimentary and naive textual analysis of your entry will show that the post isn’t so much about sexual assault as such, but precisely about what I mention in my comment above. It is about the idea that assault, as it occurs in society, is properly thought of in terms of the predator-prey model. It is about the concept that men should just stop, without making the least bit of effort to understand basic psychology. And it is about the notion that everything that fits the definition of assault is to be automatically assumed evil, and that men are the only ones responsible for it.

    As far as trolling is concerned, I suggest that before accusing me you take a look at yourself. Do you believe that men who sexually assault women would find it easy to apply the advice you gave them in your post? Are we the readers to view your entry as a crucial and long awaited contribution to the presently deficient body of knowledge on the subject of sexual violence?

    In short, if you have nothing to offer on the dreadfully painful subject of sexual violence other than a few snarky remarks, then why don’t you remain silent?

  18. Buddha Says:

    D,

    First of all, why are you being a troll? Were you simply bored or is writing garbage something that you do for fun?

    The entry that you’re mocking regarding the prevention of sexual assault actually makes sense. Your bullet points are painful. First of all, you assume that all people who falsify rape reports are women. Second of all, it’s incoherent, but I will attempt to address them regardless.

    1. If you are at a party and too drunk to remember where you are, it is still possible that you have been raped. Just because you were drunk, this doesn’t mean that you were not raped. One ought to call the police at his or her own discretion.

    2. I’m not sure what you’re talking about here, as I’m not entirely sure what you mean by a collective mind. Regardless, the attire of an individual ought to be irrelevant. You may be saying that, but it’s a little unclear.

    3. Who actually stays in a country illegally and then decides to falsly report rape to the authorities. I believe that in most cases, people do not report cases of sexual assault, abuse, rape, or any other crime that has occurred in order to prevent deportation. This point is a waste of time.

    4. Are you serious about this, too? “Do I really like this person or will I call the police on him tomorrow?” As in, an individual will just call the police on someone on a whim? How often does someone have a relationship like this? Do you think that people often call the police for fun?

    I’ve decided that the rest of this isn’t worth analyzing. It became less and less coherent as you went on. You began talking about counting to ten and other meaningless details. The bottom line is that the article presented simply mocked sexual assault prevention tips that focus the responsibility of preventing sexual assault on victims of sexual assault. No one was talking about false police reports because that is an entirely different issue altogether. What you are talking about is irrelevant, ignorant, and contrary to fact.

    Happy trolling,
    Buddha

  19. D Says:

    Buddha,

    Read #16 more carefully (I know it needs some editing, which I cannot do, but I think the message is understandable).

  20. jj Says:

    The last thread in this discussion is close to violating our policies. It is also not productive. Please do not continue it. In fact, I declare it closed.

  21. wolfshowl Says:

    This is a great post! It’s time the victims stop being blamed for crimes committed against them. I sometimes wonder how much of the blame the victim mentality comes from “innocent until proven guilty” and how much from prejudice against women and children.

    PS Sorry the comments went all down-hill and screwy on you. That sucks!

  22. jj Says:

    wolfshowl,

    thanks! maybe you’ve opened up comments again.

    Commenters, please address issues directly about the post and not about who understood what of whom.

  23. [...] a brilliant little list of ten simple ways to prevent sexual assault. I can’t argue with the reasoning, either. If people would follow these ten rules, rape just [...]

  24. CJ Says:

    The blog where this was originally published is: http://feminally.tumblr.com/

  25. Xena Says:

    Now I know why I hated philosophy. Some REAL LIFE pointers from a woman with REAL problems and no ivory tower to hide in are in order here. Extrapolating from statistics based on REAL WORLD evidence: 68% of rape victims are under the age of 18 and a majority of the other 32% are under 5’4″ (Don’t ask me to source that– CBC 1990′s Canada is the best my recall will give me)

    Conclusion: When REAL WORLD poverty at the hands of the Student Loans GESTAPO forces you to hitchhike to class, sleep in public parks and walk for hours through scary places at night–back up the force of the word NO with a large metal tool that the police will not mistake for a concealed weapon (hammers are beautiful) and be grateful to whatever you worship if you’re over 5’6″ and a size 10, because guys like D don’t generally find “that type” attractive.

    Yes I can find REAL WORLD proof of what “guys like D” like, just by daring him to debate me. How about face to face?

  26. hippocampa Says:

    Philosophy is not about the real world? Are we talking about some possible world here? Darn, I am so confused.
    Dunno, is D a philosopher?
    Would the argument
    - D is an X
    - X’s are hateful
    - D is a philosopher
    therefore
    - all philosophers are X’s and thus hateful
    be valid?
    I am not sure how this post confirmed your hatefulness of philosophy, Xena. Surely everyone can respond here, not just philosophers, QED.

  27. moira Says:

    hippocampa’s right Xena,
    I’m an activist, not a philosopher and I find what is debated and discussed on this blog extremely useful and provoking of thought – including your post – and where this blog is most relevant to what our local action group is doing I spread its message to 140+ women and men via our group’s e-bulletin, and each woman/man passes it on to how many more??? So what is said here connects in all directions.
    I think that changing laws and creating new laws isn’t the only or even the best way to end the male-normative social bias and the male-priviledging viewpoint of the media. We also need to be reshaping memes, making new memes, deconstructing myths, replacing damaging stereotypes with neutral ones, connecting like-minded feminism-guided individuals so we develop mutualk strength and support. How else do we change our world except person by person by persuasion and dialog. Your dissing this blog suggests to me that you are very angry that change isn’t happening fast enough. What ideas do you have that would make change quicker?

  28. Xena Says:

    No, I was not saying that all philosophers are X’s like D. I’m just saying that the discipline is so concerned with dividing bodies from minds and splitting hairs over potentialities and bulls**t that people like D think they can get away with trying to validate their misogyny by stating their point as if it were a freaking physics problem.

    I’m not dissing the blog, either. I happen to like the Law Profs’ advice on how to prevent rape, and that women are involved in open discourse to try to bring about change.

    If you must goad me into using words that laypeople can’t understand, I’m a consequentialist. I look at what governments and institutions are doing RIGHT NOW to f**k us (by that I mean we the most expendable class and gender–though I do get involved in the causes of others who have been “Othered” when time permits) and I look for the one set of laws/social policies that would net the best results if somebody managed to convince the “powers that be” that they need tweaking. I did enjoy Bentham, Mill and Rawls’ work, even though my prof was such a dogmatist that he couldn’t even answer my questions about where rule utilitarians and Kantians diverged.

    Anyway, all I was saying is that all the jargon can make it difficult for people in other disciplines to stay interested enough to APPLY the concepts you people are constantly noodling about. Forget about what the effect is on some of the laypeople you’re trying to help.

    So here’s how I’m changing my little corner of the world. The issue’s become a bit of an obsession with me. (Skip down to the last 4 paragraphs if my “proofs” bore you.)

    2007/2008 — Pathologist Charles Smith is investigated for professional misconduct in the cases of 13 people wrongfully convicted for murdering children in their care; most were living below the poverty level.
    –At my last update, Smith’s conduct in 140 MORE cases was about to be investigated.
    –The CBC presented the Smith story immediately after a similar story about a former pediatrician, Roy Meadow, who was stripped of his credentials and erased from British medical texts after he was found guilty of the same type of professional misconduct. British authorities are now in the process of compensating over thirty thousand families who were wronged by child protection agencies in the aftermath.
    –At the Smith trial, cross examiners mentioned a piece of evidence that, in my opinion, was suspicious. However, the CBC did not elaborate, except to say that a check for an undisclosed amount was delivered to the Pathology department at Sick Kids’ Hospital.
    –Smith’s misconduct happened too soon after Meadow’s for me to fully choke down my “conspiracy theory”. Objectivity… Objectivity…

    I was about to bring up a whole pile of Canadian legal and political tedium when I realized that the bloggers on this site probably aren’t all Canadians. Suffice it to say that the right wing fundamentalists in office in this country, some of whom had previously served at the provincial level, launched a post-coldwar, pre-911 straw grasping manoeuvre that targeted single mothers with near McCarthyesque ferocity. The end result: a 500% increase in the homeless rate in the province of Ontario between 1996 &2002 (I can source this stuff if you want, but I’m on a roll right now.) with 40% of the overall number made up of female headed families. According to a 2001 United Way ad, one in 8 Ontario children were in the care of the Children’s Aid at that time, many on the complaints of welfare workers on the charge of “being at risk of emotional harm”.

    My unofficial findings through lending emotional support to the many friends and acquaintances charged in this witch hunt has determined that nearly half of the around sixty or so children that I’ve met personally were physically abused or psychologically tortured in foster care. In a nutshell, it’s an equal opportunity replacement for the old Residential School system, where poverty and lack of some penis creature’s last name are the only criteria for becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. In a word, BACKLASH.

    So I grapple with my own homeless issues while I work on my degree, and I sing Bon Jovi songs to keep the freaks away, and I know that there’s a hammer in my bag and a copy of Foucault’s Discipline&Punish on my chest if anybody tries to get medieval on my ***. Like I said, no ivory towers for me. The issues for me are so real that I have to smell them every day. I stay focused by telling myself that all I need to do is change 13 little subclauses in one little clause in one little piece of provincial legislation to shift the balance back.

    (Kindly don’t disturb my mantra by getting on about the “butterfly effect” or something. It soothes my homicidal urges ;-))

    My advice to you is to narrow your focus down to one cause in your area (and one abroad if your resources allow for it) and study, eat sleep and/or breathe it for just long enough to come to a course of action that will produce MEASURABLE results. By that I mean anything from a thank you from a battered woman whose dinner you just volunteered to cook, to a podcast about a war criminal you just brought to justice. Anything that you yourself could accomplish alone, or with a small group of reliable friends.

    Talk is cheap. We change the world by acting within it.

  29. Xena Says:

    I just got off my soap box long enough to re-read Moira’s last comment. Pardon me if I sound like I’m making assumptions about what people are or are not offering to DO to back up their navel-gazing.
    Moira, what does your action group do?

  30. moira Says:

    Thanks for replying more fully and you’re right, I haven’t a clue what a consequentialist is.
    Talk isn’t cheap; it’s at least as valuable as the cost of ignorance.

    I made an abbreviated attempt to refer you to the way societies replicate themselves through memes, of which the “butterfly effect”, which you incorrectly use in summary of my attempt, is one excellent example. It is a meme with high survival fitness but not what I was trying to convey.

    When the christians’ bible says that in the beginning was the word and the word was god, the writer – and all the subsequent men who preserved what he wrote (yes, he, men – the bible is cover to cover masculine-power-memes) – were re-enforcing their god replicator meme. But they were/still are not wrong about the power of words.

    You write with urgency about murdered children, battered women and you issue a challenge to stop the cheap talk and narrow focus down to one measurable outcome on their behalf. But talking, human speech, or writing, or any human communicative medium is what we all know makes us human, as opposed to anything else.

    The right of expression and the status to be gained by being listened to and understood, are cruel jokes on those who are children and battered women – because they haven’t, on their own, been able to exercise their human rights. They are powerless because they cannot, on their own, speak up for themselves in a way that will make those in power listen. You may count talk as cheap, but the inability to make yourself understood can be lethal. Do you count as cheap the talking you do on their behalf?

    To me, the women and men who communicate with each other on this blog are focused – on speaking truth to power. That’s why what they discuss is important to me. I want to hear what they say, because as an activist it improves the power of what I say.

  31. moira Says:

    Whoops, cross-over of responses.
    You may have heard of the Fawcett Society? http://www.fawcettsociety.org.uk

    Our local action group is affiliated to that society.
    Concisely, we say that to achieve gender equality women must have the same access as men to money, power and justice. And we lobby, campaign and push for change to make this happen.

    We publicise through events and talks what feminism is (as opposed to the stereotypes) and how women still lack fundamental rights. Women, and especially young women are kept in the dark about this, as you will know. We expose male privilege and power and dominance.

    We interfere with govt.
    The UK Govt created a Gender Equality Duty (GED) which applies to all public authorities and to those private bodies that deliver public services. We use the GED as leverage to challenge the public authorities in ‘our’ area and make them prove that they are doing what they claim they do in their GED Action Plans. You’d be amazed (or probably not) by how often we find they’re just carrying on as ‘normal’. They don’t like being exposed. It took us eight months and we had to resort to a lawyer at the UK’s Equality and Human Rights Commission to make one public authority even recognise that the GED needed to be acknowledged in its work.
    I don’t know what perjorative term you use in Canada to describe the defense mechanism that public authorities have developed to sideline equality issues – here it’s “the equality industry” and it’s large. It’s like the pearl grown by an oyster round an irrtant. We apply the vinegar that dissolves the pearl and re-exposes the authority to the irritant.
    One of our current demands is for (legally required) equality impact assessments to be done on transport development plans for our area – because we have the researched stats (by one of our members) that show women and children are very unequal compared with men in terms of access to transport. We’ve been resisted and fobbed off since last February, but aren’t going away.
    We’re not a hands-on charity, but we link with women’s charities that are and we’re currently acting as a catylist to bring into being a women-run, women-only rape crisis centre in our area because there isn’t one. And it’s taking time because our so-far unofficial discusions with local authorities have made it clear that any funding they put into the rape crisis centre would be funding taken from their existing budgets for domestic violence services, because rape and sexual assault is a feature in a lot of domestic violence. But in the UK, unlike most places elsewhere, services for victims of rape and sexual assault have never been run or funded in parallel with services for victims of domestic abuse. And we know from our work with the local police that over 1,000 sexual assaults (including over 340 rapes) were reported in our wider area last year. And that many do not get reported.

    I could go on. You sound more hands-on one-to-one than we are, but women need to deal with the forest as well as the trees and we do what we know best how to do.

    liberty, equality, Sorority, fraternity
    Moira

  32. jj Says:

    moira and xena, I think you all have drawn this exchange to a close. Let me recommend you not pick it up again. Thanks!

  33. Xena Says:

    jj,
    Did that get too far off topic? I thought we were just discussing attitudes toward rape and how governments and individuals think and behave in order to maintain or change the status quo where a woman’s right to say no is concerned.

    Is it ok if I answer Moira’s question about Canadian vs. British approaches to funding rape crisis centres, or would you like to leave that up to the law profs on this site? (You might save me some serious research time if you do let the experts step in–not to mention the possibility that my colourful frosh interpretations might be–ahem–misleading)

  34. [...] if reluctant playe… 2 Likes Viva la Feminista: Fat Bitch 2 Likes Preventing sexual assault: Tips guaranteed to work! « Feminist Philosophers 2 Likes Letter – Abortion, Insurance and Health Care Reform – NYTimes.com To [...]

  35. Powercycle Says:

    As a Canadian living in Britain I can tell you funding is a serious problem here for anything worthwhile because the politicians keep us squabbling with each other for crusts.

    @ Moira; part of the problem of reporting assaults is that many crisis centers here don’t even have a phone line open 24 hours. That is as absurd as it can get and in that respect, Xena is right, you could use a hands-on approach in parallel to your activism. You could save lives.

    @ Xena; it’s great that you know your shit and do something about it, and I can see that you didn’t mean to call anyone down on what they were doing. But people don’t like being given advise about what to do that would be better than the things they do with passion. It’s important that we don’t buy into the squabbling over crusts paradigm or fuckers like D will take over the conversation.

  36. Xena Says:

    Powercycle, I’m risking JJ’s wrath by reopening this discussion when she told me not to, but I just came back to let you know that I’m not about blasting the women on this site. I kinda like it here. They’re good people. At the time I wrote those other comments, I was just SO furious with the systemic issues that keep us down.

    For me, before last fall, they were the usual: unintentional androcentric bs, implicit hiring biases, you know, annoying but not terrifying. The backlash that hit me last summer after my decision to return to school as a single mom was BRUTAL. Losing everything, having to send my kids to live with relatives, sleeping in my storage locker and other places that are not fit for human beings to sleep, being at constant risk of rape and assault–living like that changes a person. I hope none of you ever have to go through it.

    I didn’t mean to sound pushy. I’m doing better now. Keep doing what you do with passion. As long as we all do SOMETHING to keep our sisters a little safer, a little wiser, a little happier, change will come.

  37. [...] been hanging out in the feminist blogosphere for long enough, you’ve probably seen this quite a number of times. What’s scary is that the general public, including men who rape, [...]

  38. [...] was a brilliant link that was posted on a forum today in a thread on this topic. Entitled “Preventing Sexual Assault: Tips Guaranteed to Work“, it contains ten sure-fire ways to avoid sexual assault.  This really needs to be shared [...]

  39. [...] freely from this website) Image from [...]

  40. Sarah Says:

    This is fantastic! Truer words have never been spoken!

  41. Ben "S" Says:

    It is a big ask with a small re-adjustment, but I believe if men (not naming any names) stopped attacking people, it would increase our capacity no end.
    OK I will name names – Carry on Cameron!

  42. [...] linket til denne bloggposten med følgende [...]

  43. There are various kinds of crimes being committed every day – not only in streets but in the corporate world as well. Knowing your right as an individual and as an employee will strengthen your understanding of what is acceptable and what has already crossed the line into harassment.

  44. [...] or we become part of the problem by acting as bystanders. So, these are a few things, courtesy of Feminist Law Professors, that we as students can do to help protect ourselves and others: 1. Don’t put drugs in [...]

  45. Kristina Says:

    could someone post the ‘not-taking-a-piss’ version of this list? My intro to ethics class and I are talking about the original ‘tips guaranteed to work’ sign. Many of them find it insulting to men, as if there’s a rapist lurking behind the eyes of every 18 year old college boy. I’d like to give them the straight version for comparison.

  46. Moira Says:

    Before publicising I would change this line – “Don’t forget: you can’t have sex with someone unless they are awake!”
    to read “unless they consent.”
    And ideally that should be enthusiastically consent.

    And can I be a bit picky? When you say the “straight version” I’d much rather you used the description “gender-neutral”, because that is more accurate about the intention.

  47. annejjacobson Says:

    I’m not sure what problem people are seeing here. One might well expect advice about avoiding assault to be about how victims can change, with the implication that the victim is the one with the responsibility. The guidelines are meant to be a humorous reminder that the perpetration is the central agent.

  48. [...] to the Idle No More movement, how racism is bad for your health, The One Billion Rising march, tips to prevent sexual assault (focussed on the perpetrators rather than the victims), and rape culture in the West – including [...]


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