Posted in Rape Awareness
October 14, 2018

Why teaching girls how not to get raped is like teaching goldfish to love cats

The figures make the case explicitly; in cases where a woman is raped, a man is the perpetrator 98% of the time. In the cases where the victim was male, the perpetrator was a man 93% of the time.

What we do not need to do anymore is teach people, predominantly girls, how not to get raped. We need to teach people, predominantly boys, how not to rape.

This is a reversal of thousands of years of thinking

It is fine to teach the vulnerable how to be less so. It makes sense to teach young children not to get into cars with strangers. Why would we not tell children about a buddy system? We teach children not to drink poisons, and how to cross the road. We teach defensive driving to lessen the chances of us being hit and hitting someone else. We teach very little children about sharing even when they would rather not. We insist they say please or thank you.

But we also teach them boys will be boys. We build on the idea by telling our daughters that a boy who hits them likes them. We have movies where the (anti)hero wins the girl by persistence, whereas in reality, this is something more akin to stalking. We teach girls that to be whole human beings they must attract a man. It does not matter if he loves, protects, beats, bullies, constrains, cheats on, adores or idolizes her, he just needs to be there to make her a full person.

But a reversal is what we need

Teaching boys and children about consent is the first stop. Consent is a nebulous concept. Some states are so sensitive to defining what consent is, they are happier defining what it is not and hoping we can fill in the blanks.

Hopefully, the days where children are forced to kiss great grand uncles have gone. But still, societal norms mean we are often forced into physical contact with people we’d rather not touch. Even air kissing of cheeks at social gatherings can be a source of unwanted touching for some people.

We also need to teach young adults about risk. Drink exacerbates situations, so does drugs even the ones which are supposed to make a person mellow and laid back.

Everyone needs to understand no means no. Even if last time was a yes, a no now is still no. This one is a tricky situation. There used to be a concept of marital rights. The idea encompasses the thought that having a spouse sex meant was available on demand.

This was an entrenched view. It was enshrined in the vows of marriage… the obey word had more than one connotation. Changing the view to be one of no one has a right to sex and no one should be guilted into it is a fundamental change.

The sexual tropes of the past are redundant in an equal world. The trick is to get everyone on board.

Tagged with: , ,