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Women speaking of rape, rape threats and harassment have always gotten flak.
Some conservatives can
What, you're skeptical? Well, look at exhibit one, George Will. Back in June, he explained that one reason we're hearing so many reports of campus rapes is that liberals have made "victimhood a coveted status that confers privileges." As a result, "victims proliferate."
Now obviously, in the universe we live in, being a rape victim doesn't actually confer privileges (unless Will thinks allowing a woman to report rape is a privilege in itself). Instead we have colleges that prefers to ignore victims. Or ignore victims. We have the victim's friends worrying that being associated with a rape victim will kill their social life.
As it's inconceivable a respected conservative columnist could be a sexist who doesn't take rape seriously, there's only one possible conclusion: Will's sending his columns in from some parallel world where 21st century America is wildly different. In that world, rape victims really do get privileges, though Will doesn't explain what those are. On his Earth, do they get a pony? A chance to star on the next Bachelorette?
I admit this is pretty thin proof of such ground-breaking physics, but Will's not the only right-winger living in that universe. Conservative SF novelist John C. Wright recently wrote a column about online harassment of women. Wright insists it's no big deal,and the only reason the supposed victims have for talking about rape or murder threats is self-interest: "Only a fool would fail to realize that such threats, especially against a woman, can generate sympathy, publicity and money ...If you did threaten Anita Sarkeesian, rest well in the knowledge that you bought her a new car."
So in the Will-Wright Continuum, even being threatened with rape brings you benefits. Cash benefits no less! So much cash you can buy a new car!
And not only that, people in that dimension are--sympathetic to rape victims. Which sounds a lot better than a universe where your friends don't want to support you because it would hurt their chance to pledge a good frat. Or where some people think even 13 and 14-year-olds are somehow at fault if they get raped. Or where a prosecutor can brush off a taped admission of rape by telling the victim she has "buyer's remorse."
Wright, however, doesn't seem to like that world much. On the contrary, he apparently finds women asking for sympathy because of a little think like a rape threat rather cheap and sleazy. And that publicity for how common this crap has become is likewise objectionable (he is, however, quite willing to shower sympathy on fellow conservatives for having to suffer the hell of being criticized).
In our world, of course, this is just old whine in a new bottle. Women speaking of rape, rape threats and harassment have always gotten flak. Why are they destroying a good man after virtually inviting the rape with that slutty dress? Don't people realize sexual harassment is just a made-up thing? Attacking sexual assault is really a feminazi attack on manhood itself!
But much as some conservatives might fantasize otherwise, men are not the victims here. And I doubt there's actually any universe in which women report rapes because it gives them so many amazing fringe benefits.
Fraser Sherman, : Having graduated college with a degree in biology, no interest in grad school, and no interest in a science career, Fraser Sherman decided he’d try writing. It turned out he liked it. And he was even reasonably good at it. Over the next couple of decades, he sold articles to Newsweek, The Writer, Dragon Magazine (yes he played D&D. Want to make something out of it?), Air & Space and more specialized markets such as Painting and Wallcovering and Gulf Coast Condo Owner. Because he wanted... (more...)