- Abusers can do nice things for people they are not abusing.
- Abusers can do nice things for people that they are abusing.
- Abusers can otherwise seem like nice, caring, supportive people when they are not actively abusing someone.
- It does not mean they’re not fucking abusers.
Because that’s my thought process every time I meet someone who doesn’t understand consent.
While the article concedes that, “sexual assault is undoubtedly a real problem,” it bemoans the fact that average Joes will now have to live in constant fear of either accidentally assaulting someone or being falsely accused of an assault. Because that’s totally how it works.
This sort of argument might be hilarious misguided, but it’s also scarily uninformed. For starters, sexual assault is a violent crime. It’s a crime of power and control—not some freak accident that occurs when a confused boy falls on top of an incapacitated woman and is too drunk to get up. The Bloomberg article perpetuates the myth of this rampant alcohol-related confusion, relying on a “blurred line” argument because Robin Thicke is cool and why wouldn’t a reputable news source just parrot erroneous assumptions instead of actually trying to shed light upon issues of assault and consent? The piece cites a fear of being “mistaken” for a sexual offender as one cause of increased caution, as well as a desire not “to cross the line.”
I’m appreciative that young men [like the ones who created the “anti-rape” nail polish] want to curb sexual assault, but anything that puts the onus on women to “discreetly” keep from being raped misses the point. We should be trying to stop rape, not just individually avoid it.
If it were truly that simple, previous iterations of this same concept would have worked. Remember “anti-rape underwear”? Or the truly terrifying “Rapex” – a female condom that would insert tiny hooks into an assailant’s penis? You can’t really expect women to wear modern chastity belts or a real-life vagina dentata in order to be safe. That’s not trying to stop rape - it’s essentially arguing that some people getting raped is inevitable.
Even if a woman were to wear special nail polish or anti-rape underwear, or if she listens to common – but misplaced – advice about not getting drunk and always walking home in a group, all she’s supposedly ensuring is that she won’t be attacked. (And even then it’s not real security, because women who do all the “right” things get raped too) What about the girl at the same party who decided to have a few drinks that night? “So long as it isn’t me” isn’t an effective strategy to end rape."