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Eugene's "feminists" collaborating with rapist cops

University of Oregon's sexual assault awareness week sponsored by the worst sex offenders in town. Is this a nasty left/right alliance promulgating prudery and fear?

"I've been attacking what I regard as the ideology of date rape. At the same time that I consider rape an outrage, I consider the propaganda and hysteria about date rape equally outrageous from a Sixties point of view, utterly reactionary from a Sixties point of view. And I will continue to attack the well-meaning people who think they're protecting women and in fact are infantilizing them...

...And unfortunately what's happening today, with this kind of sanctimonious and sermonizing talk about sex that's coming out of the rape counselors and so on, people do not realize, with all their good intentions, how oppressive this is to sex, what a disaster this is to the mind, what a disaster this is to the spirit, to allow the rape counselors to take over the cultural stage. Now the work that they do is good, and it's wonderful that they're there. But we cannot have this scenario being projected of male rapaciousness and brutality and female victimage. We have got to make women realize that they are responsible, that sexuality is something that belongs to them. They have enormous power in their sexuality. It's up to them to use it correctly and to be wise about where they go and what they do. And I'm accused of being 'anti-woman' because of this attitude? Because I'm bringing common sense back into the rape discourse?
Now, people always say to me 'Oh, you're always talking about feminists as if they're monolithic. We are not monolithic. We're very pluralistic. We have so many different views.' No, excuse me: the date rape issue shows that I'm am correct. Because there is one voice speaking about date rape coast to coast, one voice, one stupid, shrewish, puritanical, sermonizing, hysterical voice."
-Camile Paglia, from "The Crisis in American Universities", lecture at MIT, 1991

Rapist police co-sponsoring University of Oregon rape awareness week

http://webcorp.com/mccarthy/decency.gif

It's Sexual Violence Awareness Week on Eugene's UO campus. Sounds good on the surface - people should know how to protect themselves from violence. Sounds good, until you actually study the brochure.
Sure, I was suspicious of the rhetoric about educating women about "common ploys used" by "sexual assaulters" (call me out-fashioned, hell, call me patriarchal, but I seem to remember that "using ploys" to get someone in bed with you is called "seduction"). And yes, it gnawed at my nerves a slight bit to read a flyer that has the word "sexual" all over it, yet lacks a single reference - not one - to the fact sex is often PLEASURABLE. A weeks worth of workshops on sexuality and nobody's talking about how to enjoy sex more, or more effectively stimulate your partner for that matter.
But the real clincher came when I read the list of sponsors, and right smack in the middle of the usual litany of rape counselors and stundent groups, there it was - Lo, and Behold!! - the Eugene Police Department!!!!!!
Now, I consider myself a literate young gentleman, and I do tend to read the newspapers. I could help but notice this summer that there's been a lot of public discussion about the fact that the Eugene Police are a bunch of rapists!. And I mean real rapists, like, y'know, at gunpoint. Not these bullshit "She crawled into bed and rubbed up against me and then wrote a zine about it after I felt her up" - type rapists we got in the activist scene.
The flyer even gives police phone numbers to call if you get groped. AS IF (real victim, er, "survivor", or otherwise) anyone in their right mind would want to call the Eugene cops. AS IF that wouldn't lead to some poor frat boy getting thrown in jail where he has a good chance of getting raped. Of course there's no mention of the prison rape issue, the brunt of which is borne by men, anywhere on the flyer.
I would really like to know how organizations like Sexual Assault Support Services (541-485-6700) and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Educational and Support Services Program (541-346-1134, program@darkwing.uoregon.edu) expect anyone to take them seriously when they cozzy up the cops and give the EPD free PR? Having been harassed and subjected to violence by the Eugene Police myself on numerous occaisions, I find the fact that the feminist movement is portraying itself as radical while they tolerate this crap to be downright insulting.
Further down the list of sponsors, we get this little gem: a student group called that Sexual Wellness Advocacy Team. Now when I meditate (aaaaah!) on the phrase "sexual wellness" the image that comes to mind is something along the lines of "oh yeah, baby, give it to me harder!!" (right?), but when you make an acronym out of the name of this group you get the word SWAT. What mental picture just popped up in your head? Thought so. Now why exactly would a group advocating "sexual wellness" choose an acronym that conjures an image of jackbooted thugs kicking your door in, especially in a town where the cops are known to bring Amoured Personnel Carriers to people's front doors. Why exactly is that? (in all fairness, SWAT does get props for including Kaite Roiphe on their reading list, however tokenistic)
One is lead to wonder what sort of political agenda is going on when leftie "feminists" are working (how closely, one wonders?) with the police and co-opting militaristic police culture? Considering that Eugene's feminist scene has a track record peppered with shining moments such as lauching pickets and vandalism attacks against the Eugene Weekly for running an ads for the sex industry and for an Annie Sprinkle (feminist porn star) show, I'd like to submit that it's an agenda which is profoundly hostile to sexual liberation and freedom of speech. (From the Sonja Snieder's Weekly article: "The language of the vandals -- "smut" and "sleaze" -- could just as well have come from the religious right as from the feminist left" ... yep) Currently, John 'anoint my feet' Ashcroft is using "women and children" rhetoric that sounds like it's straight out of Wolf's 'The Beauty Myth', to crusade against porn, interesting to seeing how that megalomaniac psycho and the campus Sisterhood make such strange bedfellows (pun intended).
Oh and one last thing: Take Back the Night, the grand finale of Sex Panic Week. The organizers are saying it "resists the notion that women should have to be afraid of the streets at night." Seems to me that they're the main group spreading that notion. Of course men are suffer from random violence (while women are raped more often, men are actually more likely to be attacked by strangers). I got beat up and mugged once in broad daylight, how come nobody's organizing a Take Back the Day March? And why the gender division? (men are banned from marching on most campuses, this year there was a big flap over how to handle the transgender issue - some of them are, y'know, sort of like men - pretty entertaining, in that slow-down-to-see-the-car-accident sort of way). I'm sure that we can count on the police to refrain from being trigger happy with the rubber bullets like they usually are at this march, seeing as how they're practically co-sponsoring it. Oh and for crying out loud, all the work that's gone into this march when for a full year nobody on this campus DONE A GODDAMN THING to stop the war in Iraq (where women are getting raped, you know) is SHAMEFUL (not to mention self-centered and priveleged), especially considering the close relationship the UO's various research departments maintain with the military.
There is so much screwed up nonsense in this 28.Apr.2004 14:57

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post I don't want to waste my time explaining it to you, John. From your post, I'm sure many women on campus have explained to you where your thinking about feminism is misguided. The fact that you quote Paglia is a big tip off, and that you whine about women daring to organizing a march when they haven't organized one against Iraq. Well, you also have animals getting tortured in your university for "science," and to me, that's the most pressing and extreme harm that's happening in your midst--but you don't see it, and you probably minimize it. The fact is that people organize where they are moved to. If you need someone to organize a take back the day march to memorialize your mugging, you go ahead and do it, and stop trying to screw up other people's actions.

lots of words few ideas 28.Apr.2004 16:00

anonymous male

This is a pretty weak line of reasoning (and it's bad HTML layout too!). I don't think radicals need "activists" like this in our communities.

I'm so tired of people knocking others work especially in propaganda filled diatribes like this.

You can generally detect in the tone whether the author is a committed organizer raising some legit concerns, or one of the oh-so-many arm-chair-radical-critics with FAR too much time on their hands. Try actually organizing something in your community for a year or 2 before talking shit about others....

for an end to all oppression.....

-me

Who is John Proctor? 28.Apr.2004 16:44

my guess

While the name John Proctor is an interesting one (fought against witch trials in Salem, was FBI agent in Mississipi Burning, and was Arthur Miller's charecter in The Crucible who stopped fucking young girls...(hint))...i'm pretty sure the author of this piece is Hank. That's right, the dude who got called out in PDX and now haunts Eugene, hitting on young women and growling about how everybody can lick his balls.

Just another day, I suppose.

you goddamn asshole 28.Apr.2004 16:46

me, motherfucker, another feminist

Shut up, shut up, shut up. All the fucked up things and horrific dribble i just read makes me so angry that I can't even begin to compose a coherent response. I'd kick the shit out of you right now if i knew who you were. Do us all a favor, and keep your fucking mouth shut till you've been re-educated, you have no idea how much you suck.

Free speech 28.Apr.2004 20:05

and speech you pay for

I too read.

HI Hank, 28.Apr.2004 20:50

ant- rape male feminist vthcdrumr@yahoo.com

hi hank, you're only making more enemies here. next time i see you on my porch rest assured I won't walk uncomfortably by without a word. please email me, you should know who I am.

there is so much you do not understand about the realities of sexual violence, patriarchy, rape culture, sexism....

ploys to get people in bed is called coercion, not seduction, and it's not consensual. women have every right to express their sexuality without fear of men taking advantage of it. men like you create that fear, hank. you are enabling a rape culture with these attitudes, hank. 1 in 3 women will experience a sexual assault in her lifetime. 95-99% of domestic and sexual violence is perpetrated by men against women. this is a problem and it's got to stop, why don't you understand this? you can be sex positive and anti-rape, hank, I am. want tips? email me.

we know who you are hank, lots of people are really pissed at you, hank, if I were you hank, I'd humble myself a little, reflect seriously on what kind of advantages we have as men, hank. read Stopping Rape: A challenge for Men by Rus Ervin Funk. Read Refusing to be a Man by John Stoltenberg. Read Men's Work by Paul Kivel. Read Next Time She'll Be Dead by Ann Jones...

Hank, you've got a lot of work to do. until it's done, expect no sympathy, no friends and no places to stay in portland or, hopefully, anywhere else you go. people don't want you around because you are dangerous.

you should know who I am, Hank

email me with any questions or responses.

You ignorant fuck! 28.Apr.2004 21:14

You know who

How dare you fucking show up on my front porch looking for pity, trying to glorify yourself and all your "feminism", and then have the fucking nerve to send out shit like this. I honestly can't believe that you are so stupid (No, not even ignorant. This is just plain idiocy, you know better then this rhetorical bullshit!) to think this post will have any sort of positive outcome for you or anyone. Who the hell are you trying to impress here? You pout about not having friends anymore or not being able to "get laid," but how does that seem so rediculous when this is what you spout out every time you pretend to talk about womyns rights?

You wonder why you are viewed as a threat and a danger to the entire community. Let me tell you, this is exactly why. What womyn is ever supposed to feel safe in your company, for any reason, when you feel it is your "seductive" right to use whatever coercive means necessary to get them into bed? Not only that, but you also feel it is your right to villainize womyn for trying to hold you accountable for your blatantly fucked up behavior.

Frankly, I would love to see you again, if only for one single reason. If you ever show up here, I will kick you in the balls so hard that I hope to some higher power you will never be able to get it up again for as long as you think about sex. Fair warning.

You are a piece of work. Go to hell, asshole!

Excellent book suggestion for pro-feminist men 30.Apr.2004 17:13

Sam

"Read Refusing to be a Man by John Stoltenberg."

because this is soooo worth repeating.

nice character assasination, kids 01.May.2004 18:19

Hank (good guess, brownie points all around!!)

Sorry it's so unpleasant to watch your sacred cow get shot in the head. (oh, don't get uptight! I've actually been quite active with Animal Rights stuff, thank you very much!!!) I'm not trying to impress anybody, I have much more important goals in mind, namely trying to save feminism from itself by critiquing what I see as major political mistakes and by provoking discourse. And I'm not going to drop it.

Does anyone want to address the actual substance of the article - like, the fact that the feminist movement is being courted by the police? This isn't wingnut conspiracy theory here folks, this is straight from the official flyer that's all over campus. Or that fact that there's all this emphasis on bad sex without any talk about fun sex? Or the similarities between anti-porn "feminism" and John Ashcroft? I think those are some valid points that deserve a serious response.

Would anybody out there in net-land like to have a real dialog about this, or would you rather dish out more ad hominem put-downs, name calling, and threats against my testicles? (who's the violent one now?) *see footnote We can have it either way, it's up to you.

Thanks for the book list (read Transforming a Rape Culture already, thought some of the essays were good, bell hooks kicks ass of course, others not so good, like that one that was written by some lady who was freaked out that her that her boyfriend WANTED to be slapped around - clearly a manifestation of the rape culture to be surpressed, can't remember the author or title off the top of my head). Make you a deal, I'll read all of those books (including Refusing to Be a Man, even though the title makes me sick, I happen to enjoy men) if you read Public Sex by Pat Califa (especially the "Feminism and SM" chapter), The Morning After: Fear Sex and Feminism on Campus by Kaite Roiphe, the Myth of Male Power by Warren Farrell, Stiffed by Susan Faludi, and anything you can find by Gayle Rubin or Eric Rofes. Whattaya say?

Oh, by the way the 1-in-3 statistic that gets thrown around so much comes from Mary Koss, psych prof at Kent State who surveyed 3000 college women. In the report, Koss states that "rape represents an extreme behaivior but one that is on a continuum with normal male behavior" - a statement of politicized dogma, not . According to Koss, the answers to follow-up questions revealed that "only 27 percent" of the 1 in 3 that she counted labeled themselves as rape victims. Of the remainder, 49% said it was "miscommunication", 14% said it was a "crime but not rape", and 11% said they "don't feel victimized". But I guess Koss knows better than those women what really happened to them or how silenced and oppressed they are since she's a well-paid professor that writes for Ms magazine.

Why does gender feminist sex abuse rhetoric always emphasize how much women are being silenced, and then the same people say things like "keep your fucking mouth shut till you've been re-educated"? Re-education, that's a reassuring concept. Sort of like in Maoist China?

Arthur Miller wrote the Crucible to critique McCarthyism. Are you trying to say that John Proctor's persecution during the Salem Witch Trials was justified? are you siding with Puritanism on this one?

Care to state specifically what's wrong w/ Camile Paglia? Or we just supposed to assume that she's horrible 'cause you say so?

Oh and I've been doing political organizing in Oregon for more than six years, thank you for assuming otherwise w/out knowing a damn thing about me.

*Footnote: Castration was a key policy of social repression during the build-up to the holocaust in Nazi Germany. Homos and "sexual deviants" were the main target. Gay men had the lowest survival rates in the camps. Restricting and controlling sexuality is of utmost importance to the maintainance of totalitarian social systems. Promises of protection from the predatory "Other" is to the public to accept draconian policing measures.

yes, lots of flaws in the article 02.May.2004 02:40

the unexamined life

But I do want to clarify the Koss research. First of all, Koss states that 1 in 4 women identify themselves as having experiences meeting the legal definition of rape (that's here study of college women). Of those, many did indeed not consider themselves as having been raped. These stats have been consistent in surveys of men as well. Very few men will say that they have raped someone but when the question is presented with the legal definition of rape instead of the word "rape" many men will answer affirmatively (1 in 12 men in one study, and there's the other hand finds 1 in 3 men would commit an act of rape if they knew they could get away with it).

I also think that for many people there is no difficulty in separating seduction from coercion. And even coercion is probably not what was meant by "ploys." On college campuses "ploys" are often attempting to get women drunk, stoned, or otherwise intoxicated. That is not seduction. Other ploys include isolating women from their friends, getting them alone with no way to get home, or away or convincing them that you're not going to get violent if you just "go along" with what's happening.

Also, men are not banned from marching in take back the night anywhere that I've heard of. There is usually a safe space for women within the march but everyone who wants to can march.

As for the issue with the police, which would have seemed to be the focus from the title though the article was too disjoint and rambling to ever make a point. There is a question about whether this is good PR for the police and should be rejected. On the other hand, the asshole cops in one town I lived in did one thing really well, taught really effective self-defense classes. I suppose one could always endorse another group for self-defense but I really don't have a problem with people learning self-defense tactics from those they may one day be up against. I really wish I had taken those classes myself. Oh well, it could have been a legitimate critique if it hadn't been mired in so much defensive ranting.

And as for Paglia "Because I'm bringing common sense back into the rape discourse?":
"I'm someone who is on the record as being pro-pornography--all the way through kiddie porn and snuff films"

Apparently bringing common sense means appreciating kiddie porn and snuff films. Paglia is worth a read ebcause of her eclectic combination of ideas but I doubt most people here will find many of them particularly appealing (pro-capitalist, pro-consumerism, diatribes about the evils of social-welfare).

don't need a male savior 31.Aug.2004 12:22

khaos

Hank, I don't disagree with alot of your analysis. But I don't think its appropriate for a man to go on a crusade to save feminism from itself!
I just hope you do understand that there is a huge difference between "bad sex" and rape. Your idea of sexual wellness, "ooh baby, give it to me harder" does not coexist peacefully with my idea of sexual wellness, when so many survivors of rape and sexual assault cannot bear to be touched at all. Sometimes the way to sexual wellness for people is softer, not harder. Your statement indicates a lack of sensitivity.

However, I know you, and I know you must know this is true. Perhaps you are writing from a reactionary place, and not thinking out your words well enough. It doesn't serve your interests.

Hank, I think you have alot of healing to do in yourself before you try to heal our culture. I wish you wellness. K