27 May 2011

Abusing Rape

The subject of rape is never far away from the public forum. Recently a blog has gained much attention on Youtube due to its radical insinuation that basically everything a man does amounts to rape. As someone who feels strongly about men’s issues rape is a very important topic, and is not a word to be used lightly.

The place to start would be the statistics. A particularly alarming one is that 1 in 4 women are raped at some point in their lives. Many will suggest that there is no way of knowing how many women are raped because so many will not report it, and thus figures are rounded up and justified with questionable studies. Unsurprisingly, many studies have been carried out by Feminists, and as usual this movement has a lot to answer for when it comes to manipulating data.

Arguably the most famous study involves Ms Magazine in 1988, when Mary Koss was commissioned by Gloria Steinam. This uncovered that 1 in 4 women were raped on college campuses. When the questions are broken down it turns out that a woman who regrets a one night stand after drinking with a man counts as a victim. Furthermore only 27% of the women Koss identified as victims considered themselves to be raped, and 42% went on to have sex with their alleged attacker at a later date.

Coercion was used as a justification for this, as well as the fact that most relationships did eventually end. Of course, most college relationships end in a break up, so this is hardly a revelation. A further 49% of the rape victims felt that their experience was a result of “miscommunication”. 14% said it was a “crime but not rape”, and the final 11% said they “don’t feel victimised”. When all of this is factored in this gives us a far more conservative figure of 1 in 14 women being victims of rape.

Similar patterns of abusing data can be found in the UK. But it’s another US study that demonstrates just how common false rape accusations are. This was carried out in 1985. 556 charges of rape by servicewomen were investigated by the Air Force. It was found that 27% of the women admitted that their accusation had been false before or after a lie detector test. By using 25 criteria that were common to the women that admitted they’d lied, three independent reviewers counted a rape as false if all they all agreed. They found that 60% of the original allegations were false.

This is alarming to say the least given that many would argue that being falsely accused of rape is akin to being a victim of rape. Many will ostracise a rapist, be it family, friends, work colleagues, and the wider community, so this alone is difficult enough. The financial constraints that come with fighting against an accusation in court is also a major issue. Then there’s the fact that rape victims are entitled to anonymity, while accused rapists have no such entitlement. Violence from chivalric men against rapists is common, not to mention the fact that rapists can be targeted for rape and assault in prison. Imagine if you were falsely accused and you had all this to worry about – suddenly it’s easy to see how false rape accusations can ruin a man’s life.

A current case that exemplifies the debilitating effects of false rape involves Vladek Filler. Maine prosecutor Mary Kellett has taken it upon herself to drag Vladek through the courts for the second time for allegedly raping his wife Ligia Filler. There is no physical evidence of rape, and Ligia is a proven violent offender and abuser who lost custody of her children to Vladek, and has a history of serious psychiatric problems. Ben Harbour, Maine has a disproportionately high level of men charged with rape given the size of the US town, which is itself a worrying factor. Kellett is actively blocking the defence with a subpoena, so it is unable to bring forward evidence that would expose the background of Ligia. The most disturbing evidence, which is not for the feint hearted, is a police recording:

The allegations against Julian Assange can tell us a lot about the consequences of a state where the crime of rape is abused. Sweden has very strict laws involving rape, not unlike the flawed reasoning behind Koss’ study on college campuses. Having sex without a condom in Sweden is considered rape without the consent of a woman, which in itself is open to abuse given that it results in subjective testimony. In one instance Assange states that the condom split, while on another the woman did not protest when a condom was not used. These accusations have been used to make Assange’s life difficult, and many believe they are also designed to extradite him to the US, where he would be imprisoned in Guantanamo. Biased laws can be abused by the state, and when someone like Assange is actively seeking to expose the corruption of those in authority, it's easy to feel this is true.

Once we arrive at the fact that rape can be a nightmare for both accuser and accused it’s clear that anonymity should be granted to both parties. Anonymity would be beneficial to the accuser due to the delicacy of the crime, but the same could be said for the accused. The trouble is that we live in a society where men are regularly treated as inherently violent animals that cannot control their urges. All this despite the fact our culture raises men to be violent and emotionally numb, while absolving itself of the repercussions. Women can also realise rape is a sensitive accusation, and Zomgitscriss on Youtube is one example:

Many laws and ideologies behind Feminism treat women like children. They’re given victim status at every turn, but still elevated as the gender that can achieve anything. The truly hypocritical part is that women are treated as though they can’t be responsible for choices regarding consenting sex, and that the word “no” is not in their vocabulary.

This is RockingMrE – over and out!

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