I don’t think my leanings on anything we’ve discussed throughout this course have really shifted, but I can assuredly say that my ponderings on various topics have become much more deeply rooted. I can think of one thing in particular which this course has caused me to delve deeply into: rape culture in relation to feminism. I made a comment about my frustration that every single book we’ve read has had rape scenes, and how I was rather exasperated that seemingly every feminist author just feels as if they Have to address rape in their writings. I wasn’t saying that the issue deserves any less attention, but… does Everyone have to include that issue? Well, the response that I got to my frustration was… “well, it is a big deal. So yah, lots of people are going to address that.”
Naturally, reading about rape makes me very uncomfortable. I’m aware that I’m a woman and not the best equipped individual to fend off an attacker, and that terrifies me. I don’t want to read about it happening to someone else because I experience too much of what it would be like for it to happen to me. In our discussions though, we brushed on victim blaming at one point. I’ve always been partially guilty of that. To me, if you don’t want to have sex, then don’t have your titties out. You’re seriously so surprised that you took off your clothes at a party to go skinny dipping, and a dude tried to force himself on you? I still can’t entirely shake the logic to cover up if you don’t want to get hit up, but at the same time I adhere to the fact that its never the victim’s fault. Trying to prepare in advance to avoid such a situation from happening is different from saying “It’s your fault this happened.” Talking about the subject in class has just immensely strengthened the idea in me that there is no “asking for it.” Sure, I still think it best that if you’re not wanting to invite the hounds to swarm you, then you shouldn’t slather yourself with honey and let it all hang out. One thing that now stands in the forefront of my mind though, is why in the world do we look at the victim, instead of blaming the rapist? It doesn’t matter if they’re wearing tight shorts and a v-neck. If they say no (or are incapable of saying anything), that means No. It outrages and amazes me when I talk to my friends about this subject, and they almost seem to excuse the rapist’s actions. Its worst when victims blame themselves for what happened to them. I’ll never let a victim-blaming comment slip by me again.