Slutwalk -- and PC speech issues...

Discussion in 'The Study' started by jks9199, Apr 2, 2011.

  1. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    Learned about this from a lawyer's blog...

    Apparently, an officer in Toronto was giving a safety speech to students at a university in Toronto and made the shocking suggestion that one way to avoid being a victim of sexual assault was not to dress like a slut... Yeah, he's had to apologize for daring to recognize that if you tempt fate, sometimes fate shows up.

    Don't get me wrong -- women absolutely have the right to dress how they want, and how they dress is not justification for any sexual assault. (Side note: if you're dressed to show off your assets -- don't be surprised and complain when people notice said assets. Notice is not the same as assault or even harassment.) But, at the same time, how you choose to dress and present yourself just may shape how people respond to you. And, since many sexual assaults, especially on college campuses, fall into date rape or acquaintance rape situations where the offender is known to the victim, and often began in a consensual setting (again, not justifying rape -- no means NO and, up to the point of no return, either player can stop), just maybe how you present yourself is something you can control... Maybe it's a good idea to consider that when you go out... But, no, how dare a police officer point that out!
     
  2. Twin Fist

    Twin Fist Grandmaster

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    no one wants to take responsibility for thier actions
     
  3. granfire

    granfire Sr. Grandmaster

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    Ideally the birthday suit should be all that's ever needed (aside from weather and such) but that has not worked since the Garden Eden.

    I think telling college age people anything is difficult. They are still 10 foot tall and bullet proof. Most of them have not yet seen how ugly life can get.

    Yeah, how dare this nasty police officer knocking the rose colored glasses off there noses.

    But I think it is a sign of the times. Barney said we are special. And everybody has told us how great everything is we are doing. There is the OH EM GEE they want us to wear school uniforms (it has proven advantages) because the personal expression is being infringed on.
    And if somebody says something about the inappropriate dress, they are a big mean poopyhead.

    But it is something you can learn from those old gals in the corner office: Clothes can make all the difference.
     
  4. girlbug2

    girlbug2 Master of Arts

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    The way one dresses sends signals to the world about who one is and what one thinks of oneself. People will make a lot of judgements and assumptions based on dress. It may not be fair, but that's how it is. If a female dresses in a way that our culture interprets as "sexually available", some males are going to assume they are entitled. It's absolutely wrong of them, and even more wrong to try to take it by force, but there you have it in a nutshell.

    As a mom, I'm glad that I have boys and won't have to worry about this issue. I do my best to teach my kids about being gentlemen, understanding how to treat women properly and not putting themselves in stupid situations with stupid people. The problem as I see it, is that not all parents are doing that. In fact a lot of the problem is that girls are often just imitating their parents' behavior when it comes to dress and ignoring the three "S's". Poor kids don't really have a chance.
     
  5. shesulsa

    shesulsa Columbia Martial Arts Academy

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    I am reminded of this from last year: my reply is the last one posted.

    Women really piss me off. Some of them, anyway.

    They piss and moan about not being treated with the same consideration as men but then they adopt and employ tactics well-known to cater to male sexual interest and temptation. "I like dressing this way." Really? Why? That's the way you feel "sexy?" like "a woman?" or "beautiful?" For shame!

    Have I dressed naughtily? Sure - and always with a group ... and always in heels I could run in. Would I do it daily or go temp people at a bar and not expect some kind of responsibility for my demeanor?

    Come on.

    Sure, dress like you want to. Your dress alone IS NOT RESPONSIBLE for faulty brains that channel blood flow to the genitalia and away from reason.

    It is IGNORANT to think that just because you walk through life as a good person that something bad won't happen to you because you don't deserve it.

    It's a fine line and I hope I'm understood here - one cannot blame the victim for inviting assault solely on her choice of attire. Any potential assault is the fault of persons who commit it. After all - children, babies, elderly people, wives with fat asses, men wearing plaid quilted shirts and dirty jeans all get raped. Where's the g-string? Where's the tear-away panties? Where's the cleavage, the mini-skirt? the sparkles on the thigh? the fishnet stockings on those victims?

    YOU HAVE TO HAVE THE WHOLE CONVERSATION.
     
  6. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    Let me clarify a few things.

    Dress, or even behavior (up to a point) does not justify or excuse rape. Male or female, you have the right to dress how you want, and to act how you want. Be flirtatious and sexy and have fun... but realize that if you put the menu out there, someone may well try to take you up on it. You absolutely have the right to control your body, to say no.

    But dress and behavior is a very important issue for college kids, I think. Most sexual assaults among college age kids involve people known to the victim, and often in situations that start out consensual -- like making out on a date or at a party. The message sent by dress and conduct certainly can influence the course of events. The girl who shows up wearing a skirt that has less cloth to it than my handkerchief, and is sitting in the guy's lap, being almost a stereotypical sex-kitten, has sent a message. She isn't OBLIGATED to follow up on the signals she's sending -- but she does need to recognize that she's sending signals, and have some sort of plan to control the situation.

    I think that there are two very broad categories of rape. The first category is rape-as-violence; it's not really about sex in the sense of "hawt bods". It's a very twisted pattern of sexual arousal. There are subcategories -- but in the end, this sort of rape is about sex only incidentally; it's kind of like saying armed robbery is about the gun or knife used.

    The other category is rape-as-opportunity/miscommunication. I think a lot of date rape or acquaintance rape (or sexual assault) falls into this category. It might be the two college kids who both get drunk and do something that she regrets in the morning, or the guy who wrong-headedly misunderstands an invitation to someone's apartment or room... or who just pressures a woman and takes silence and acquiescence to be consent. The dynamics here are different, and it's not fair to ignore that contribution that the victim MAY make. Again, I'm not justifying or defending the act anymore than I would say that you deserve to be robbed for carrying cash -- but, just as we advise people to take reasonable precautions at the ATM, I think it's reasonable to advise people to think about what they wear and the message it sends.

    And that's the bigger issue I had with this. The officer was lambasted, made to apologize, and possibly disciplined (the articles I've read were unclear) because he dared to suggest that the actions and choices made might be a factor in an offense. Honestly -- would the reaction have been so extreme had he suggested to avoid ostentatious displays of wealth or flashing large rolls of cash around as a preventative factor in robbery? Maybe. I know that residents where I work have been astounded when we advised them to lock their doors and not to leave valuables visible in unlocked cars...
     
  7. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    When we teach self defence, one of the first things mentioned is situational awareness. This includes avoiding certain places such as parks at night, dark streets, bad neighborhoods etc. We talk about not acting like a victim. Dress has to be included in the same discussion.

    As JKS said, and Shesulsa and Girlbug added to, women can dress as they like and they should be able to go anywhere with safety. In reality, that is not always the case.

    Dressing provocatively, I would suggest, is not a great deal different to acting like a victim. :asian:
     
  8. Jade Tigress

    Jade Tigress RAWR

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    The solution lies deeper than just telling woman not to dress like sluts. We live in a highly sexualized society. Girls are groomed from a young age to "be sexy". It's become the expected norm.

    At age 16, Miley Cyrus (the beloved Hanna Montana to many young girls) gave a lap dance to 44-year-old Adam Shankman at "The Last Song" wrap party, and at age 17 pole danced at the Teen Choice awards. Pole dancing is now a form of exercise not just a stripper act, I'm sorry, "exotic dancer" act. Really, it's all very normal.

    Trendy brand Abercrombie and Fitch has long had controversial soft-porn images in their catalogs. This is a teen/young adult brand. The most recent controversy is over their Abercrombie kids pushup/padded bikini tops for girls 7-14 years of age.

    From The Society Pages:

    And lets not get started on commercials. We all know sex sells. Our children are constantly bombarded with sexual images. Video games exploit woman to our young boys too. I had to monitor the levels played on my son's Tony Hawk game when he was about 10 or 11 years old. He loved the skating game but a couple levels involved the "rewards" of very scantily clad women in the level. The widespread easy access to porn in which all it takes is click agreeing that you are over 18 to confirm to young boys that "all women want it" and Houston, we have a problem.

    Our boys are groomed from a young age to view woman as nothing more than sexual objects just as much as our girls are groomed from a young age to be sexual objects. Then the girls are surprised when they get assaulted and boys are surprised when charges are pressed.

    We take these young girls and teach them sexiness is not only normal but expected, and we take these young boys and teach them girls are there for their sexual pleasure and it takes a whole lot more than "don't dress like a slut" to solve the problem.
     
  9. granfire

    granfire Sr. Grandmaster

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    Yes, we are always talking about the boogy man. the one that lurks in a dark alley, but in reality most assault happen between people you know, you thought you'd be safe with.

    Not sure how dress fits in here.
     
  10. shesulsa

    shesulsa Columbia Martial Arts Academy

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    A-MEN!!!!! ;)

    A change has to be effectuated and that can only be done by societal demand. We have to stop buying from stores who sell sexy clothing in tiny sizes. Stop watching television stations that broadcast commercials that objectify women. Stop buying agazines for men who put sexy women on the cover. Stop buying magazines for women who put sexy women on the cover.

    Stop buying the weapon of sex.

    Talk *FRANKLY* and *honestly* to our children about sex, flirting, urge management, etcetera, beyond "God doesn't want you to do this."

    It would require an entire culture shift ... but you won't totally eliminate rape and the only time it's about what the girl is wearing is in the minds of serial rapists.

    That said ... I agree with JKS ... you gotta take some responsibility for your choices and choices *can* prevent rape.
     
  11. Archangel M

    Archangel M Senior Master

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    Has anybody seen the stuff that ABC broadcasts on the "ABC Family" channel lately? "Family Channel"?? Really??? Im 100% with Jade and Shesulsa. As the father of girls it worries me.
     
  12. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    True. Most sexual assault the perpetrator is known to the victim. I was just trying to make a tenuous link to SD teaching where the alleyway is possibly a more likely location for physical assault and/or robbery. :asian:
     
  13. Bruno@MT

    Bruno@MT Senior Master

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    While I agree with the spirit of what you are saying, I disagree on the details. I think the major, number one issue is talking with your kids and educating them. Over here, seeing a pair of breasts in a commercial is nothing special. It certainly doesn't have to do with lust or enticing the buyers, since it is usually for shampoo for women (usually not the target audience for breasts). In my kid's swimming class, the kids all use a communal changing room with mothers and fathers helping the kids. I realize that the US is different, but for us there is a clear difference between nudity and sex.

    Looking at a scantily clad woman on the cover of a men's magazine is not making me behave (or think) any different than looking at Kate Beckinsale dressed from head to toe in black leather, wearing combat boots. In both cases I am thinking 'hawt body' as well as 'not mine to touch' and 'I am a married spud'. Nudity and hot females in general are not the problem.

    I agree about sexualization of kids though. Imo, that is where the problem lies. Kids not learning that there is a person underneath the skin, and that sex is something not to be rushed into. Recently I learned that someone is making heels, thongs, and even push-up bras for 10 year olds ... :barf:
     
  14. granfire

    granfire Sr. Grandmaster

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    A, Bruno, you hit a box of nails square on the little heads.

    Always a moment to behold when I realize I lived here to long and forget my upbringing.

    There is a strange disconnect between nudity and sex.
    And then again the more you demonize it, the more important it becomes.

    One of the most popular and long lived youth magazines in Germany (and all of it's wannabe's) do have extensive Q&A sections asking 'Dr Sommer' By the time the kids are early teens all kids know how the equipment works and how to not get into trouble. There are some pictures as well. Unthinkable around here.
    But the US media leads the way, TV, movie...

    (heck around here you are weird if you stand naked in the lady's locker room...or the strange phenomenon that it's ok to were a bikini in the pool, but wrap yourself up in the locker room... <facepalm>)
     
  15. RandomPhantom700

    RandomPhantom700 Master of Arts

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    Guess I'll be the odd man out, but I dont think that the cop was right to say that either. I agree, with most everyone who's posted, that young women have to take responsibility for the way they dress and act (as do young men). But a college girl's choice to dress sexy is a valid reason for not taking her seriously as a professional; it's not a valid reason to excuse a male for sexually assaulting her. And no matter how strenuously one prefaces it with "Well I'm not saying it's ok but...", saying "don't dress like a slut" IS blaming the victim.

    Of course college girls should be aware of how their behavior affects others, especially their male counterparts. I'm as annoyed as the next person by a young woman wanting to be taken seriously but acting like a valley girl. But if you think about it, there's a lot of other things a college girl can do to avoid becoming a rape victim besides changing her wardrobe. These include bringing her own drinks/watching her drinks, staying with friends, being more assertive against unwanted advances. Choosing instead to focus solely on "don't dress like a slut" is placing the blame on the victim, even if you're not saying it in so many words.

    All this is, of course, assuming that the officer did not mention any of these other approaches. I only went off what I read in the original post.

    There I'm finished. Flame on!
     
  16. granfire

    granfire Sr. Grandmaster

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    I do believe those measures are usually stressed as well.
    But I guess the 'slut' remark hurt somebody's wittle feewings. And we all know we can't do that.

    Human interaction is complex. and sometimes the signals get mixed up, or an alpha wannabe overstepping boundaries.

    You can't deny the fact that the way you dress influences how people react to you and treat you.
    And the sad fact is, 'sluts' don't get any respect. Does that justify rape? hell no. But it explains transgressions.
     
  17. Blade96

    Blade96 Senior Master

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    The officer was wrong to say what he said. Predators and rapists dont look for dress, they look for vulnerability. They are opportunistic. When i was assaulted by a man at university, it was because i was in the room alone with him. His fault, not mine. But he thought i was vulnerable. (btw i was wearing jeans and a shirt that fully covered me for the record) When a horny old evil prof hit on me every time i went to a history mixer at friday nights and was trying to use me for sex I was wearing jeans and a detroit red wings jersey. I went alone though and he seized the opportunity. I am alone most of the time and I know i'm vulnerable. They were right to make him apologize because what he said is sexist and untrue. I was abused most of my life and I read stats all the time. I never ever wear revealing clothes cause it aint my style. Yet I was always bullied and abused.
     
  18. CoryKS

    CoryKS Senior Master

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    I have this weird shutdown thing I do when I'm asked for advice and then the person who asked for advice argues with me. This happens at work some time:

    Them: "My program is throwing an error and I can't figure out why."
    Me: "Well, here's the problem right here. You need to [some fix]."
    Them: "No, I don't think that's it. It must be something else."
    Me: "Okay." *stops trying to help*

    This story comes up all time. It's not worth the risk of losing your job to tell people something you know they don't want to hear. Just say some nice words and maybe perform a symbolic ritual like a candlelight vigil, and then when someone else gets attacked you can say some more nice words and hold another vigil.

    "One way to prevent sexual assault would be not to dress provocatively."
    "Rape isn't about sex, and how dare you blame the victim?!"
    "Okay." *stops trying to help*
     
  19. Blade96

    Blade96 Senior Master

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    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  20. Empty Hands

    Empty Hands Senior Master

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    Has anyone produced any evidence that how you dress affects your chances of being raped or assaulted? No? Then perhaps we should find out before we make sweeping declarations either way.123
     

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