Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Military

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Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Military

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 3:16 am

Apart from the slightly problematic title, this was a pretty solid, well-written article. The problem with the title is that it mostly details the problems facing women in the military, except for a quick mention at the end about how more men get sexually abused in the military simply because there are far more men in the service than women. I'm not complaining that men were included in this discussion - I just thought it was kind of odd to put "most victims are men" right there in the title when that's not really what the article was about.

Needless to say, this story broke my heart and sickened me to my very core. What bothered me more than the article were the fucking comments. I ran out of downvotes in record time on this one. I really don't know what to say about the things I've seen there today. Well, there is one thought that keeps running through my mind... what the fuck is wrong with these people?
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Kivutar » Wed Oct 14, 2015 4:20 am

Some folks just have no empathy.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 4:38 am

I'm sure you're right, but this doesn't seem like the sort of thing for which one would require empathy. The sexual assault of our military personnel by their own damn comrades-in-arms is problematic on many levels that don't require any emotional involvement. Besides, I don't think it's a lack of empathy so much an aggressive, almost malicious degree of deliberate apathy. Mr. Evans made a pretty good point with the following observation:

And let's be frank here: If ISIS released a video depicting themselves sexually assaulting a captured American soldier, the nation would demand their entire hemisphere get nuked. So when the same thing happens at the hands of a fellow American soldier, the victims deserve better than "What did they expect?"
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Twistappel » Wed Oct 14, 2015 3:07 pm

DamianaRaven wrote: I'm not complaining that men were included in this discussion - I just thought it was kind of odd to put "most victims are men" right there in the title when that's not really what the article was about.

Yeah... you'd think that after all this time I'd have stopped getting angry about the click-bait-y/rage-bait-y/generally sensationalist headlines on Cracked. It's obviously just a ploy to get more traffic, but it still makes me want to hit things.

I often feel sorry for writers who put together balanced, well-researched articles, only to have some editor come along and stick an inflammatory headline on it. Then everybody blames the author.*

* Not accusing you of doing that, but it is a thing that seems to happen.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Kate » Wed Oct 14, 2015 5:42 pm

I want to say two things. One, "To be clear, the vast majority of men and women in the military are perfectly decent human beings who would never rape a fly," made me laugh so hard I couldn't breathe properly for a few minutes. I don't know why. It just tickled me.

Two, "And holy shit, you think it's hard for a woman to come forward? At least society recognizes that female rape victims exist. You've probably noticed that none of our sources for this article were men. That's not by design. We tried to find male victims who'd talk to us, but couldn't. So let us try again: If you are a man who was sexually assaulted during your time in the military, then please reach out to us. Our culture's truly shitty attitudes toward sex have made rape one of the only crimes that make a victim feel the shame that should be felt by a perpetrator. But you're not weak, you weren't asking for it, and letting others know they're not alone can only help."

*Standing ovation*

Good lord, Robert Evans (or whoever wrote that), I admire the hell out of you.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:02 pm

I noticed several people sneeringly commented, "yeah dude, if you were raped, you should totally contact a comedy website about your experience." I kind of almost understand their concern that Cracked is planning to turn their trauma into a joke, but I think very few of them understand how much an offer like that might mean to a man who's been raped in the military. How many other organizations are extending an offer to listen and believe, without making judgments or stupid, homophobic assumptions?

Also polluting the comments are the ever-popular "we can't take rape more seriously as a crime because sometimes women will LIIIIIIIIIIE about it just to spite some guy who turned her down for a date. My friend's brother's bartender's mechanic totally had this happen and it ruined his life!" No one has ever denied the existence of false accusations, but think about the double standard for a moment. I constantly hear men complaining that because only a very small percentage of men actually rape people, it's wrong and ignorant and unfair to treat every man like a potential rapist. (#notallmen) Isn't it ironic... don't you think?
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby sunglasses » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:07 pm

Ooooh yeah. I get so tired of that.

No one just assumes someone who's been robbed is lying to "ruin someone's life" because "they woke up and regretted something."
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Marcuse » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:10 pm

I think part of that comes from the assumption that all men are potential rapists though. People believe accusations without thinking, either because they just assume it's expected of pretty much any man, or because they err on the side of believing in the accusation for fear of leaving a victim unheard. So it's really dangerous for someone to make a false accusation, because people do just take them at face value and it can destroy someone's life. But that doesn't mean the majority of accusations are false, or even that many. It's a poisoning the well thing, that we can't just trust people on this very sensitive and serious issue because some people act like assholes and make false accusations.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Kate » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:20 pm

I agree. I also think it's coming from people who...well, are more afraid of being falsely accused of rape than of being raped and not believed. It's a very real anxiety for them, and people who are anxious aren't always rational about the thing they're anxious about. Anyone who has been on the receiving end of betrayal or false rumors (think middle school "Kate got sent home sick because she kissed the dissection frog" stuff) is going to be particularly sensitive to that...same with anyone who has participated in spreading false rumors. That accounts for approximately 90% of us at one point in life or another.

It's also just an easier way to view the world. It's hard to accept the prevalence of rape. That's scary. Attributing things to false reports is another way to add a layer of "it can't happen to me/the ones I love."

Life sucks. We deal with life sucking by living in denial and being ultra defensive against the things we fear, sometimes. But...once we realize that, we need to make efforts to not do that, because that gets real people hurt (even though that's not usually the intent).
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:23 pm

Marcuse wrote:It's a poisoning the well thing, that we can't just trust people on this very sensitive and serious issue because some people act like assholes and make false accusations.


Indeed, but I'm not comfortable with expecting every woman on the planet to surrender her credibility because a statistically tiny number of them are evil cunts, any more than I'm comfortable with the idea of a man being convicted on nothing more than an accusation just because rapists exist. There is a fair compromise between "lock his rapey ass up," and "interrogate the bitch until she gives you an excuse to tell her to get lost." It's possible to investigate accusations of rape without taking sides, but where's the fun and clickbait potential in that?
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby sunglasses » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:25 pm

The real issue is if the persons investigating would do their job and investigate rather then just go on assumptions. A cop should never say to anyone, "well that didn't happen" without actually investigating it.

Case in point-
http://www.buzzfeed.com/katiejmbaker/th ... wnYV7Yd2Wl
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Marcuse » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:28 pm

I think the solution is not to get so hysterical about the entire situation (and that goes for anyone). The problem with rape prevention and prosecution seems to be the high emotional content of the cases and the high likelihood that emotional reaction will colour responses and make people more prone to jump to conclusions. What we should do is implement impartial investigation that asks pertinent questions, but doesn't presume an outcome.

Of course, good fucking luck finding a human being capable of such detachment.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:30 pm

Warning: that link will ruin your whole fucking day if you have any fraction of a human soul. Excuse me while I go cry and call Sunny a few names that she (probably) doesn't deserve at all. Seriously though, Sunshine, thank you - and also, fuck you - for making me have to know a thing like this.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby Kate » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:36 pm

Yeah, I don't think anyone here is comfortable with that. It's just such a delicate situation. If a man is falsely accused of something like that, he could lose everything. It is one of the ways that some women use to coerce men into having sex with them or silence them if they wake up to find a woman having sex with them; "Tell anyone and I'll say you raped me. Who are they going to believe, you or me?"

I agree with you that we need some middle ground, but...man, is that hard to find. I think the nature of rape just makes it harder than most other crimes to deal with like this, because it often comes down to he said, she said (or he said/he said, she said/she said, etc.) when it comes to acquaintance rape, and as we know, that accounts for most rape. There's just no way to mete out true justice in a lot of cases, because there's no way to verify who is telling the truth. Or even if they're both telling their perception of the truth.

ETA: Oh god that is horrifyingly heartbreaking.
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Re: Most Victims Are Men: 5 Realities of Rape in the Militar

Postby DamianaRaven » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:42 pm

I think we can all agree on one thing: no woman (or man) should ever, ever, EVER be charged with filing a false report unless there's some evidence of willful, malicious deceit. Naturally this does NOT include things like lying about what she was wearing or how much she'd had to drink... for obvious reasons. "I don't believe your story," is a piss-poor excuse to even call someone a liar, much less try to punish them as such.
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