On rape, cages, and the Steubenville verdict - Mia McKenzie

CNN laments the verdict, without a word about the victim

Mia McKenzie from Black Girl Dangerous on the Steubenville rape verdict, and CNN news lamenting the "ruined lives" of the rapists, with no mention of the survivor at all. Trigger warning for discussion of sexual violence.

Quote:
Today, the two 16-year-old football players who were accused of raping a 16-year-old girl in Steubenville, Ohio were found guilty. The boys' emotional reactions to the verdict, including crying in court, led several different CNN personalities to lament that their young lives have been ruined. That's right. With no mention of the rape victim and how her life has been affected by being raped (and having the assault photographed and videotaped and tweeted about by the people who watched it all happening and did nothing), CNN went all boo-hoo for the boys who did it.

Now, I'm no fan of CNN, and I wouldn't have expected much. But this is beyond the pale, even for them. And it's a continuation of the rape culture that exists in this country and in this world that has been so highlighted by the Steubenville case, a case which "polarized" Steubenville because, while many folks seem to know that rape is bad, many people there, and elsewhere, seem to think that football is more important than 16-year-old girls not getting sexually assaulted. Rape culture has us always blaming women for rape, whether it's because of how we're dressed or how much we drink or whatever. Somehow, underneath it all, it's always kinda the woman's fault. After all, men and boys have penises and those things are just so hard to control, it can't possibly be their fault. So, women and girls have to take on the responsibility of not getting raped. Because, you know, boys will be boys and stuff.

Full article here: http://blackgirldangerous.org/new-blog/2013/3/17/1g5wckiks8gpa0iahe4zc46...

Posted By

Steven.
Mar 18 2013 14:39

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laborbund
Mar 18 2013 18:22
Quote:
But, you know what is okay? Also feeling sorry for these boys.

Don't know about that one. I can see trying to empathize with them in order that we might learn something to prevent this shit in the future but I don't think we should get into the habit of sympathizing with rapists, even in the way the author has suggested in this article. By that I mean its probably a good idea to try to understand people like this, but I don't see why we should feel sorry for them. Similarly, I understand that many of the more active and violent white supremacists come from broken homes and the like, and I think that this is an important thing to understand, but that knowledge shouldn't make anybody feel the least bit sorry for them when they get beat up by anti-fascists or the cops throw them in the pen.

I'm also not salt that they are going to a juvy jail for a while. I agree that prison is a dumb idea, and that the racist nature of law enforcement and the prison industrial complex in our country are especially dangerous. But I think if we want to have a conversation about that it would be better to try to elicit sympathy for nearly anybody else facing a prison sentence.

wojtek
Mar 18 2013 22:43

Indian men on the other hand...

Steven.
Mar 18 2013 22:59
wojtek wrote:
Indian men on the other hand...

sorry, what do you mean here?

wojtek
Mar 18 2013 23:18

That the contrast in tone, degree of sympathy towards the rapists and willingness to discuss rape culture in the respective societies smells of colonialism.

bastarx
Mar 19 2013 00:01
Steven.
Mar 19 2013 13:17
wojtek wrote:
That the contrast in tone, degree of sympathy towards the rapists and willingness to discuss rape culture in the respective societies smells of colonialism.

right, I'm starting to see what you mean. Do you mean by the media, or by libcoms, or both?

I was going to post this link as well: an important thing to note is that they made it two years ago!

wojtek
Mar 19 2013 13:36

The media.

laborbund
Mar 19 2013 20:23

On another reflection I also feel like this article kind of chastises survivors who choose to use police intervention without ever actually coming out and saying it. The author writes at length about the injustice of the prison industrial complex and links to some groups which I guess are supposed to act as some sort of parallel or alternative to law enforcement (?) but never says "if you're a rape survivor, its okay to use the law if that's the route you wanna go."

forbiddenbooks
Mar 20 2013 09:27

Every victim of capitalism deserves our love and support if/when they're willing to defect from the paradigm. I believe our narrative can overcome. But until then a rapist is a rapist and CNN ain't helping the matter one bit by perpetuating rape culture. These bros could even go on to perpetuate more abuse, only reinforced in thinking that the glorious career they were entitled to has now been snatched away by "women" (generalized, of course).