Oh boy, was this fun to research. -__-
This last one in my special favorite. See what they did there, they are mocking rape prevention posters. Because that seems like a totally reasonable, emotionally sensitive thing to do.
If you looked only at Anti-feminists facebook fan pages you would come to believe that there is no rape, there are only fake rape accusations. They use the subject of rape to attack feminism in two ways. The first is to spread around the myth that women frequently make false rape accusations because they do not want to admit to having consensual sex that they now regret.
As in: a woman wakes up next to a man after drunkenly having sex with him. She remembers the sex, she remembers saying yes, but now she regrets it. She feels so embarrassed. She resolves right then and there to claim that she was raped instead. That way no one will see her as a slut, and she will receive sympathetic attention instead. The second way feminism is attacked via the subject of rape is to suggest that the Feminist movement identifies all men as rapists.
1.To anti-feminists, false rape accusations are a HUGE epidemic. (but not to anyone else)
More on that second attack strategy in a minute, but first, about these false rape accusations: they happen very rarely. Let me be clear here, it is not ok to falsely accuse men of crimes that they did not commit, and all people accused of crimes deserve a fair trial, but Anti-feminists talk about false accusations like they happen all the time. They do not. Or that they represent the majority of all rape cases. They do not.
This meme actually overestimates the number of men falsely accused, as pointed out in this excellent article.
Most women do not lie about sexual assault, and it’s easy to tell apart the ones that do(Same article, quote under paragraph 5.). The big reason that women don’t lie about rape is that admitting to sexual assault is an extremely shaming experience.
Contrary to what anti-feminists would have you believe, rape and assault victims do not receive universal sympathy. As illustrated by the recent Maryville incident, victims of rape are the ones targeted and blamed by their communities, not the perpetrators. This happens especially if the assault happens in relation to alcohol. It is assumed that the accuser is either lying about consensual sex that she now regrets, or worse, that the assault may have happened, but she was asking for it by behaving in the way she did. Another good example of victim blaming is the Rihanna/Chris Brown assault case, where fans were falling all over themselves to claim that Rhianna must have done something to “deserve it”
These memes also subtly shame women for participating in provocative activities. They don’t come right out and say, “Well, if you got that drunk what did you expect to happen?” but they might as well. Almost all of the rape memes I came across presented a context in which the woman had been drinking. Because it’s not ok to force a sober, chaste woman to have sex, but if she was drunk then she MUST have been ready for lovin’. For your information, alcohol does not turn all women into sex maniacs, ready to screw every man from their boyfriend to the bar bouncer.
These memes are wrong because they present false data, do a lot of victim blaming, and deny that victim blaming and shunning even happen at all.
2.Feminism believes that all men are rapists
Let’s say you are feminist, and you are having an argument with an “anti”. This is how it’s gonna go down: First, after you point out that false rape accusations are very rare the anti-feminist will accuse you with, “It does happen SOMETIMES, but I guess you don’t care about men who are abused by the system!” Of course feminists care. Every person deserves a fair trial, including accused rapists. The Scottsboro Boys case is an example of a false rape accusation that led to an unfair trail and ruined lives. I would never want that to happen again. But statistically speaking, a man has a much lower chance of being falsely accused of rape than a woman has of actually being raped. Most rapes go unreported, and very few rapists actually end up convicted and in prison where they belong. So yes, I am spending more time and energy on making sure that women receive justice, since statistically speaking, they don’t.
In connection with the previous conversation, an anti-feminist might throw memes like this one at you:
This double standard is unfair. But as I’ve pointed out on this blog before, most gender stereotypes affect both sexes very negatively. Feminism does not support these stereotypes. In this case the stereotype is that women are chaste beings, to whom sex is only an act of love. When they end up in a situation like this, they are viewed as a disgrace and a slut. Whereas men are viewed as horndogs, ready for sex at all times. They should be thankful every single time a booty call presents itself. So when men are abused it isn’t taken seriously, which is horrible, because men definitely are victims sometimes.
After this discussion the next thing an anti feminist will shout at you is, “Oh so most women don’t fake rape, so I guess you’re saying most men are rapists! Feminists hate men!” Oh boy, this is a big one. The thing about anti- feminist arguments is that most of the time they contort feminist views to make the gender equality movement look like a radical witch hunt. “So, you want women to gain a better foothold in the workforce? You must want to fire all the men. So, you praise women who succeed in their career? You must hate all the stay at home mothers. You want an anti-gender discrimination law passed in congress? Women are equal already, you must want men to be subjugated .” And on and on it goes until we get to, “So, you are very concerned with rape in this country? You must think all the men are rapists.”
This argument is meant to discredit feminism, to make the movement seem radical and angry. No, actually, most men are not rapists. About six percent are. And they are repeat offenders, about 6 women per rapist. But besides that small percentage, most men are totally awesome. The “feminists hate men” tactic is one that has been used to reinforce gender inequality for decades.
It was untrue during the suffrage movement, and it’s untrue now.
In reality, I do not believe that the people making these memes respect women. They believe that women who drink too much at a party are sluts. They don’t really care what the rape statistics are because they don’t really care about protecting the rights of women who they think deserve to have bad things happen to them. Mostly I believe this because along with the memes I already showed you, I also found this one:
This is gross. There is no excuse, no argument that I want hear to try and validate it. I don’t care about people who believe this about women, they are not worth the energy, and I do not wish to have any kind of discourse with them.
Who I do care about are the average people who see these memes and who wonder, “Wait, do feminists today believe that all men are potential racists? That is so crazy! Rape is terrible ,but most men would never rape!” “Wait, do they believe that if a man and a woman have sex together while drunk that the woman was automatically raped? Whoa, feminism has gotten really extreme these days. I believe in equal rights for women, but I’m not a feminist.”
All of the feminists reading this are thinking to themselves, “Well duh, this is feminism 101.” And I would believe that if I didn’t meet so many people who said these stupid, nonsensical words:
“I believe in equal rights for women, but I’m not a feminist.”
This post is for the people who say that accursed phrase. For people who are good at heart, but who are afraid of the feminist label because they fear it will make them seem radical. This is for them.
89,000 women in the united states are raped each year. Most of these rapes go unreported. Of those that are, very few lead to convictions. Along the way, these victims are shamed and humiliated. I am interested in stopping this from happening, and despite what these disgusting memes would have you believe, there is nothing radical about that.