7 December 2015
Rape culture: a complex set of beliefs that encourage male sexual aggression and supports violence against women. It is a society where sexual violence is normalized. In a rape culture, women perceive a continuum of threatened violence that ranges from sexual remarks to sexual touching to rape itself. A rape culture condones physical and emotional terrorism against women as the norm. In a rape culture both men and women assume that sexual violence is a fact of life, inevitable (“What is rape culture?”). Rape culture includes “jokes”, music, TV, advertising, words and imagery against women and sexual coercion seem normal that people don’t notice and think rape is a part of life. Robin Thicke’s Blurred lines is a great example of the normalization of rape and how society tries to normalize it. “I know you want it…..I hate these blurred lines.” Someone doesn’t know if their projected sexual partner wants to have intercourse with them unless there is clear consent. This song mocks consent and sends a message that “no matter what you say or do, I have decided that you want to have sex with me.” Bill Cosbey was accused of raping 44 women, later he admits to drugging and sexually assaulting them. His fans were outraged at these allegations and victim blamed these women. Damon Wayans made a “joke”, saying this scandal was a money hustle and claimed some of the victims were “unrapeable” then went on to question their decision to come forward years later. “How big is his penis that it gives you amnesia for 40 years?’ “If you listen to them talk, they go, ‘Well, the first time …’ the first time? B*tch, how many times did it happen? Just listen to what they’re saying and some of them really is un-rape-able. You just look at them and go, ‘You don’t want that. Get out of here.'” By him saying this makes it seem like unattractive women can’t be raped and if they were, they should be okay with it because they aren’t beautiful by Eurocentric beauty standards and someone wanted them. Rape is about power and control, not attractiveness. Many victims don’t come forward because fear of slut shaming and victim blaming which Mr. Wayans contributed to.
There is a common myth that many victims often lie about rape so let’s look at the statistics. 1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime. Among all victims, about nine out of ten are female (“Get the facts”). The majority of sexual assault are not reported to the police, an average of 68% of assaults in the last five years were not reported. Those rapists, of course, will never spend a day in prison. But even when the crime is reported, it is unlikely to lead to an arrest and prosecution. Factoring in unreported rapes, only about 2% of rapists will ever serve a day in prison (“Reporting Rapes”). Approximately 4/5 of rapes were committed by someone known to the victim. 82% of sexual...