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So you’re tired of hearing about “rape culture”? | Rant Against the Random The following includes descriptions, photos, and video that may serve as a trigger for victims of sexual violence. Please be advised. Someone asked me today, “What is ‘rape culture’ anyway? Yeah, I hear ya. Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and though there are dozens of witnesses, no one says, “Stop.” Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and though there are dozens of witnesses, they can’t get anyone to come forward. Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and adults are informed of it, but no consequences are doled out because the boys “said nothing happened.” Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and we later find out that their coaches were “joking about it” and “took care of it.” Rape culture is when a group of athletes rape a young girl, and even though there is documentation of the coaching staff sweeping it under the rug, they get to keep their jobs. Click to zoom. and this: Like this:

I Am Not Your Wife, Sister or Daughter. I Am A Person. I don’t have to tell you that Steubenville is all over the news. I don’t have to tell you that it’s a fucking joke that Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond, the two teenagers convicted of raping a sixteen year old girl, were only sentenced to a combined three years in juvenile prison. Each will serve a year for the rape itself; Mays will serve an additional year for “illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material.” I probably don’t even have to tell you that the media treatment of this trial has been a perfect, if utterly sickening, example of rape culture, with its focus on how difficult and painful this event has been for the rapists who raped a sixteen year old girl then bragged about it on social media. And I almost certainly don’t have to tell you that the world is full of seemingly nice, normal people who want to go to bat for the convicted rapists. I’m quite sure that you already know about the victim-blaming that’s been happening since this case first came to light. Like this:

Responses to the Steubenville Verdict Reveal Rape Culture Yesterday two juvenile men were convicted of rape, one was convicted of distributing a nude photo of a minor (NPR). The response by a segment of society reflects rape culture: ”an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture” (source). Below are a series of concrete examples. CNN coverage of the verdict spends six minutes on how sad the conviction is for the rapists: It was incredibly emotional… to watch what happened as these two young men that had such promising futures, star football players, very good students, literally watched as, as they believed their life fell apart. MsCongeniality: A selection of tweets collected by Public Shaming: A selection of tweets collected by Mommyish: A selection of tweets collected by Persephone Magazine: Tweets collected by The Inquisitr: Ms. Great coverage from around the web:

Steubenville and the misplaced sympathy for Jane Doe's rapists | Megan Carpentier The victim in the Steubenville rape case, known in most (but not all) of the media coverage of the case as "Jane Doe", was taught by her rapists, her then-friends and much of her hometown that she doesn't matter. She didn't matter to the boys who made use of her unconscious body to satisfy their own sexual urges and desire for power; she didn't matter to her friends who sided with those boys; and she didn't matter to the football boosters in her hometown, who were unwilling to see their pride in the team tarnished by the actions of two of its players. She learned that a lot of people around her, including some in positions of power, thought that the futures of her rapists were more important than what they'd done to her and what she'd have to learn to live with. It wasn't enough that ABC aired a rosy profile of one of the now-convicted rapists before the trial, emphasizing his happy mood the night of the rape and his football career.

Steubenville teens are found guilty but rape culture remains alive and well *Trigger warning* Yesterday, the verdict was handed down in the Steubenville rape case. The defendants, Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond, were found guilty. Mays will serve at least two years in the state juvenile system; Richmond was sentenced to at least one year. And the attorney general may also bring charges against others who turned a blind eye to the assault. I feel great relief that I’m not writing about a “not guilt” verdict today. But it’s hard to hold on to that sense of relief–to realize that this ending was the best one possible in this particular case–when the problem is so much bigger. I don’t want to live in a world in which a mainstream media outlet reporting on the verdict barely mentions the victim in their rush to lament the fact that the “promising lives” of the defendants have been ruined and that this “will haunt them for the rest of their lives.” I don’t want to live in a world in which the victim’s former best friends testify against her. Image via

Roxane Gay is Spelled With One "N" : What Empathy Is The Careless Language Of Sexual Violence There are crimes and then there are crimes and then there are atrocities. These are, I suppose, matters of scale. I read an article in the New York Times about an eleven-year old girl who was gang raped by eighteen men in Cleveland, Texas. The levels of horror to this story are many, from the victim’s age to what is known about what happened to her, to the number of attackers, to the public response in that town, to how it is being reported. The Times article was entitled, “Vicious Assault Shakes Texas Town,” as if the victim in question was the town itself. The overall tone of the article was what a shame it all was, how so many lives were affected by this one terrible event. We live in a culture that is very permissive where rape is concerned. The casual way in which we deal with rape may begin and end with television and movies where we are inundated with images of sexual and domestic violence. I am trying to connect my ideas here. We live in a strange and terrible time for women.

'Help! False Rape' This is a guest post by Jennifer James, who can be found on Twitter @msjenniferjames Two people a month are killed by animals in the UK. Which is a horrible thing to happen - but it's rare. Similarly, two people in the UK are falsely accused of rape each month. Which makes me question why the two writers of a @bbcnewsbeat piece, Declan Harvey and Anisa Subedar splashed with 'False Rape Claims 'Devastating' Say Wrongly Accused'. Mr Starmer QC, the Director of Public Prosecutions has directed police and the CPS to be more robust when seeking rape convictions. BBC Newsbeat is the news outlet for Radio 1. By raising the issue of false allegations, @NewsDeclan and @OnlyAnisa have taken the finger of blame and forced it painfully the other way. Noone is forgetting the humanity of men and I really don't think we need reminding of it when reporting on sex crime policy. False allegation is rare enough to be classified as a rape myth: 'She's lying' or, 'She's making it up to get back at me'.

Framing the Occidental Fight for a Better Sexual Assault Policy by Lisa Wade, PhD, Mar 10, 2013, at 12:00 pm Cross-posted at The Huffington Post. Last week I posted about our college President’s suggestion that he is disinclined to believe students who report sexual assault. In response to this, and a series of other problems with our sexual assault policy, the Occidental Sexual Assault Coalition is filing a federal complaint with the Office for Civil Rights and a Clery Act complaint. These seem like extraordinary measures, but I want to be clear that there is nothing extraordinary about the number of sexual assaults or the mishandling of reports by the Occidental administration. Instead of a sign that Occidental has a uniquely broken system, the activities on campus reflect a commitment to making the college a nationwide model. Photo credit: Chris Ellis and the Occidental Weekly.

Three Ways Straight Dudes Can Help End Street Harassment Almost every woman knows why strangers hooting and hollering at people on the street is a problem. More than 80 percent of women experience gender-based street harassment: unwanted sexual comments, demands for a smile, leering, whistling, following, and groping. Many men do, too, especially in the queer community. This week is International Anti-Street Harassment Week—a perfect opportunity to engage people who may not otherwise be aware that this is a widespread problem, especially straight men. 1. Most guys who aren't perceived as gay or feminine have no idea how often gender-based street harassment occurs. Guys and straight folks, it's your job to ask people you care about what they've experienced. When I first became an activist on this issue, I made a point of telling my male partner each time I was harassed and how it made me feel. 2. Most people ignore street harassment when they witness it. There is lots of advice out there for how to interrupt street harassment. 3.

Toula Foscolos: Rehtaeh Parsons: Yet Another Rape Victim to Blame? When I recently wrote a column about the two young men in Steubenville who were found guilty of raping an unconscious 16-year-old girl, I received a number of thank-you emails from readers - both male and female. I also received a 1000-word diatribe from a reader, about how the girl in question was inebriated, drank way too much to handle herself, and shouldn't have been there at all. To make a long reply short, the reader basically felt the need to explain that she deserved what was coming. He felt so justified, and so unapologetic about his explanation, that, not only did he sign the letter, he also left his professional credentials as a... life coach, should I feel the need to contact him again. After all, the way that girl drank herself into a stupor, what choice did those two boys have BUT to rape her? I stared at that letter for a solid ten minutes. These boys dragged her around like a rag doll, violated her repeatedly, and urinated on her as others watched on. Loading Slideshow