Showing posts with label Rape Culture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rape Culture. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

About That Thing In Steubenville, Ohio...

via science of relationships




























''It's really a sense of power that comes from specialness ... anyone who finds himself at the center of the world they're in has a sense of impunity.'' 
Ken Dryden, lawyer and Hall of Fame goalie for the Montreal Canadiens. 

It's the last day of April, the month which has been claimed by several causes to promote awareness. One of those topics which deserves raised awareness is the frightening persistence of sexual assault in society. I published the article below on Secular Woman earlier this month:

In a down-on-its-luck eastern Ohio town, the local high school's star football players were powerful people. As the town's pride and joy - its hope for the future - the young men in Steubenville enjoyed all the privileges of small town princelings, just like millions of young men in millions of small towns all over the world. One of the privileges of that power was that the football players had their "pick" of the town's unattached girls. For star athletes, the privilege of first pick of the most desirable girls is like selecting ripe melons at Kroger. The athlete gets to choose or discard, never the girl.

Adults treat them like heroes, students treat them like rock stars, and amidst classes, club meetings and exams, there exists a gutter economy where women become a form of currency. Dave Zirin, The Verdict: Steubenville Shows the Bond Between Jock Culture and Rape Culture, The Nation, March 18, 2013.


The moment that a person - usually a female-bodied person - becomes the object of a more powerful person's desire (whether for sex or some desire to exert control), her humanity ceases to matter. She becomes, literally, a thing - currency that the more powerful person feels entitled to spend. Human culture is patriarchal: heterosexual men are the only persons whose full humanity is never questioned, while women - and men who are suspected by other men of not being the right kind of heterosexual man - are treated by every society on earth as less than fully human. Their existence and worth is measured almost exclusively within the context of their relationships with and effect upon heterosexual men. Heterosexual men are persons whose living, thinking and taking action defines who they are, while women are men's accessories: their mothers, their girlfriends, the mothers of their children. It is the thing that they are to men which defines what women are.

Pick a girl melon, any melon girl,
young football princelings!
The young woman who was carted from party to party in Steubenville that August night was little more than a ripe melon - or a piece of meat - to those football players. They treated her like a plaything as if there was no human being inside that unconscious body because, on a deeply primitive level, for some young men there is no human being inside a female body. And when she somehow gathered the courage to press charges against the young men who raped her, she became the thing which her town raged could unfairly (!) ruin their princelings' lives. Having also grown up swimming in the rape culture that still permeates nearly every human society, the rape victim feared she would be blamed and vilified for reporting the crime or pressing charges and she was right.  She had to be persuaded to go forward with the case, but she finally did - courageously, and in the face of vicious condemnation from her former friends and neighbors.

(trigger warning for sexual assault)
The girl was completely naked on the floor, laying motionless on her side, not far from where she'd just puked out of the side of her mouth.
By her side was one of his teammates, Trent Mays, who Westlake testified was fully exposed and smacking his penis on the girl's hip. Laying behind her was another player, Ma'lik Richmond, whom Westlake testified he saw penetrating the girl with two fingers, "halfway to the knuckle."
"It wasn't what I expected to see," Westlake testified Friday at the Jefferson County Justice Center here in this old Eastern Ohio mill town, where Mays and Richmond stand trial for rape. "I wasn't really sure what to think."
Why didn't you stop it, special prosecutor Marianne Hemmeter asked?
"Well," Westlake said, "it wasn't violent. I didn't know exactly what rape was. I always pictured it as forcing yourself on someone."
Let's ignore the obvious point that you don't need to "force" yourself on a girl who is incapacitated by alcohol. Instead, let's simply ask what did Evan Westlake do?
"I said my goodbyes," he testified.
Goodbyes? And what exactly was the response from Mays and Richmond after having someone walk in on them in the middle of that moment – even if, as the defense is arguing, it actually was consensual?
"They said, 'I'll see you Monday at football,' " Westlake said. 
Prosecutors may get conviction in Steubenville rape trial, but it will come at a cost. Dan Wetzel, Yahoo Sports, March 16, 2013.

How is it possible that a modern, educated teenager does not know what rape is? If inserting objects and body parts into the body of an unconscious person is not "forcing yourself on someone", then what is it?  How could it be that in a society which claims to abhor rape, a young man stood a few feet away while a rape was being committed, felt surprised but apparently undisturbed by what he was witnessing, then casually "said his good-nights" and walked away. He walked away without the slightest sense that a crime was being committed. The sight of an unconscious girl being casually violated by two young men aroused not a scintilla of basic human compassion in him. None at all. Three football teammates casually said, "see you Monday at football" while two of them were still raping an unconscious, vomit-spattered, urine-soaked girl and Evan Westlake was not sure what to think! How could he not know what to think about that?

One has to wonder: would Evan Westlake have known what to think had the unconscious victim been one of his male teammates? If his buddies casually said "good-night" to him as they shoved foreign objects and body parts into the anus and mouth of an unconscious 16-year-old boy lying naked on the floor right in front of him, would that have seemed a little more surprising to him? Disturbing, even? Would the nature of the criminal behavior have suddenly been a little easier to discern?

Although most people strongly protest that they would never condone rape, the reality is that most people actually do condone rape. Like Evan Westlake, they condone rape because they believe that most kinds of forced sex are not really rape as long as the recipient of the forced sex is female-bodiedMost people think that opportunistic or coerced sex, which is the modus operandi in the majority of sexual assaults, is normal, understandable or justifiable thanks to a culture which normalizes and excuses men who rape women. There may be a general rueful admission that "taking advantage" of a drunk woman or pressuring a date into sex may not exactly be polite, or the smoothest, coolest way to operate, but it is still after all just a guy doing what comes naturally when he wants something and that thing is apparently right there for the taking. If the object of his interest is incapacitated after drinking too much, her failure to say "no" can be taken for a "yes"- at his discretion. If the thing he wants is not 100% clear about her refusal (at least in his own mind - remember boys: no means maybe and maybe means yes!), then a guy feels justified in assuming that he has her consent and society backs him up on that. In essence, society hands over a woman's 'right to consent' to men, who are permitted - even encouraged - to apply it according to their own interpretation of reality, however influenced that may be by anger, alcohol or unreciprocated sexual arousal.

Consider the following rape apologia:
 "What did she expect to happen when she went out dressed like that?"
 "What did she expect would happen?" reasonable people ask, "If she didn't want to have sex, she ought not to have sent the wrong signal by getting drunk. If she has regrets in the morning, it was her own stupid fault."
 "If she didn't say "No', then she probably meant "Yes". She wasn't clear! How is a guy supposed to know, anyway?"
 "Why should some poor man go to jail because of some lying slut who only got what she was asking for?"
 "If something happened that she didn't really want, then she ought to have thought of that before going on that date/accepting that drink/asking him in for coffee/smiling and flirting/trying to enjoy full rights to free citizenship while being female..." - pick any scenario because they all lead to forced sex somewhere every day.
And of course, the ever-popular  "If men don't pursue women aggressively, the human race will go extinct!" which both excuses male aggression and denies normal, healthy female sexuality in one astonishing stroke.

These are common excuses given after a sexual assault. Some rapists may admit that it was not quite consensual sex, but they vehemently deny that it was rape. It does not matter if the woman did not want sex. Too many men feel that if the man wants sex - if he has interpreted anything about the woman from her style of dress to her behavior as some sort of sexual invitation - then he is entitled to force sex on her. In his mind, it is not forcing sex, though; he has been encouraged by rape culture to tell himself that she "asked" for it (even if she actually said "no"; even if the "invitation" was all in his own imagination).

With very rare exceptions, not quite consensual sex is seen as the inevitable result of mistakes made by women (leading men on, dressing like sluts, asking for it, needing to be put in their place, expecting to enjoy the freedom to go places and do things that men enjoy, etc) and not as rape committed by a man. When made by a very young girl or teenager (who is still assumed to be a virgin), these "mistakes" are considered foolish but innocently regrettable (though the sexual assault is still the girl's own fault), in the case of non-virgin women, the use of the word "mistakes" is a transparently insincere way of describing what is clearly believed by the culture to be calculated, provocative behavior on the part of a lying female who later regrets her own bad behavior but who inexplicably still wants to draw attention to it by accusing an innocent man of rape.

She must have led him on - how was he to know she only wanted to enjoy a flirtatious evening and then go home alone? Obviously, she didn't - she just changed her mind after the fact! 

Having internalized these attitudes thanks to the pervasive rape culture, most people are uncomfortable labeling such incidents "rapes".  It strikes people as somehow unfair to call a man who merely uses a woman's body without her explicit consent a rapist. Most of the time, people agree, women only get what they deserve!

Then, there is the myth which goes something like this: the only real rapists are monsters. When they are not leaping out of bushes to attack a woman with a weapon, rapist monters are hanging out at bars creepily stalking stupid women.  Even so, it isn't a crime to be a creepy guy - innocent nice guys are sometimes called creepy and just think of that slippery slope!  If women weren't so stupid, they would not provoke real creeps to stalk and/or attack them! But, the handsome, normal guy who won't take "no" for an answer after a date is nothing like those monstrous rapists. Maybe he paid for a nice dinner date and she's been smiling at him all night - so he can't be blamed for having expectations! and anyway his making a move is a natural red-blooded male reaction to female provocation. People ought to give him the benefit of the doubt because he is such a nice guy but they should have a healthy skepticism about the honesty of the girl or woman. A man should be thought innocent until proven guilty; a woman should be thought a liar until she proves she is telling the truth. Reasonable people should always be extremely cautious about casting doubt on a person's character - it could haunt him for life! - so trashing a woman's reputation instead is the only reasonable response to a rape accusation. The accused man is a person - a fully human being whose life could be ruined by the accusation that he is a rapist monster! - the accuser is merely a woman - just a female, and everyone knows how they lie...the question of whether her life might be ruined by whatever transpired is hardly worth asking. Females are, after all, made to be used by men, so why are feminists making such a big deal over this?

Another popular justification for rape apologia is the pretended even-handedness of criticizing young men for walking alone in unsafe places or getting drunk in situations where they might be assaulted and criticizing young women for walking alone in unsafe places (just about anywhere away from male protectors - and even then not so much, but that is for another post) or getting drunk in situations where they might be assaulted.

"Holding a girl responsible for her own stupidity is not victim-blaming! I'd criticize a guy, too, if he stupidly put himself in danger by getting drunk with the wrong crowd or hanging out on the dodgy side of town!"

But here is where this false equivalency breaks down: even if we accept the claim that society really does accuse young men of bringing crime on themselves because of their appearance or their behavior (something so rare that even a determined google search can find little evidence of it - with the notable exception of too many cases which are suspiciously limited to young men of color or other marginalized groups, but again, that's another post in itself), the difference is that no one ever suggests that because of a male victim's stupidity, his attackers should not be held accountable for their crimes.



















In no other assault scenarios are victims routinely blamed for inciting envy, fear, rage, a desire to hurt or control or any other emotion in their attackers. Only when girls or women are attacked - and in particular when they are sexually assaulted - is the onus for the crime placed upon the victim. It is not even sexual assault itself that is the exception but specifically sexual assault against women and girls which is reserved for this special 'victim-caused' category. Rapes of boys and men are not generally dismissed as "he was asking for it". One only has to point to the recent public hue and cry over the sexual crimes committed by priests in the Catholic Church to see that this is true.

The rape of a child or teenager - or indeed any person who is in a subordinate position to an authority figure - is unconscionable and deserves to be prosecuted vigorously. However, the deliberately vague term "child rape" that is always used to describe these clerical crimes obscures the fact that most of those victims were not just "children" but specifically underage boys.  The stark truth is that it is because the majority of these crimes were committed against boys and young men that society is as horrified as it is by them, and it is because this fact is obfuscated by the coy usage of "child" instead of "boy" that society can continue to pretend that it treats all rapes - of both male and female victims - as equally terrible. The truth, however, is that similar abuses have been visited upon girls and women in far greater numbers for all of human history - at least 1 in 4 girls and women are raped in their lifetime by clerics, teachers, family members, neighbors, boyfriends, employers, husbands and sometimes even strangers - but this ugly feminine reality has never elicited universal societal condemnation like the outrage over the recently uncovered sexual abuse of boys by priests. On the contrary, rape, forced pregnancy, assault and battery of girls and women has been protected all over the world for most of human history by patriarchal social mores and laws, often justified by 'respect" for religious freedom. Rape and male oppression is accepted as the way things are for women. Boys and men, on the other hand, are never supposed to be the targets of this kind of abuse. When it happens, it is considered an intolerable blight in society.

In first world countries, most women gained citizenship, the right to vote and legal recognition of their human rights over the last century. Nevertheless, most societies still do not accept that the majority of rape claims by women are really rapes. The hyper-vigilance over "false accusations" is not because assaults have not occurred, but because society denies that those alleged sexual assaults are equivalent to 'forcible rape'. There is always a justification, always an excuse for why it was understandable for that man to force that woman into a sexual act.

The Rape Culture that pervades all human societies ensures that women are still considered less than fully human - even in the first world - so that abuse of their autonomy and consent is tolerated and condoned even by the justice system. By and large, the reality in most societies is that while there may be laws on the books criminalizing rape, society actually refuses to recognize most forms of sexual assault on women as legitimate rape, and in practice most societies regard nearly all women as unrapable. When the fault lies with the alleged victim, there can have been no crime committed. Rape culture reinforces the idea that women, by their very existence, are always sexually tempting men, always at fault, always to blame. Women make men force sex on them, so it is never rape.

In many parts of the world, rape is accepted as an everyday occurrence, and even a male prerogative. In 1991, at a coed boarding school in Kenya, seventy-one girls were raped by their male classmates, and nineteen died in the ensuing panic. The deputy principal reassured the public: "The boys never meant any harm against the girls. They just wanted to rape." Michael Parenti, "The Global Rape Culture", The Culture Struggle, 2005.

Rape culture serves up a double whammy to women - it not only dismisses the assault of women and girls as justifiable based upon the feelings of their attackers, but it also holds the victims responsible for those feelings. Young men raised in rape culture are accustomed to judging the morality of their behavior toward women according to their own emotions and desires - how they feel around a woman justifies their behavior toward her - and at the same time they are encouraged by rape culture to hold women responsible for how they, men, feel. Rape culture tells men that they are entitled to satisfy their own urges at a woman's expense. Many, if not most, men who assault women believe that what they feel has been deliberately caused by the women they target and therefore the women are responsible for whatever "happens". Surprisingly frequently, especially if charges are laid against him, a rapist will actually claim (and actually believe) that he is the victim in the situation. Plenty of evidence supports the contention that society - steeped in rape culture misogyny - usually agrees with him.

via parenting teens
Rape Culture is an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture.  Rape culture is perpetuated through the use of misogynistic language, the objectification of women’s bodies, and the glamorization of sexual violence, thereby creating a society that disregards women’s rights and safety.
  Rape Culture affects every woman.  The rape of one woman is a degradation, terror, and limitation to all women. Most women and girls limit their behavior because of the existence of rape. Most women and girls live in fear of rape. Men, in general, do not. That’s how rape functions as a powerful means by which the whole female population is held in a subordinate position to the whole male population, even though many men don’t rape, and many women are never victims of rape.  This cycle of fear is the legacy of Rape Culture. (Rape Culture, Marshall University Women's Center.)

Many women unwittingly support rape culture by taking comfort in the mistaken belief that rape only happens to a certain kind of woman and they themselves can avoid it by living properly (whatever they think that means). What they fail to realize is that by promulgating rape myths, they actually strengthen the rape culture that makes them more likely to be victimized. Rape myths provide cover for those who actually commit the majority of rapes: seemingly ordinary men who also believe the myths of rape culture and who thus believe that in many situations the consent of a woman can be considered implicit based upon how he interprets her behavior. If he feels that what she is wearing or where she is or how much she has drunk or how much she has flirted is an invitation to him, then it is an invitation to him regardless of whether the woman ever had any thought of issuing an invitation. What she thinks or feels simply does not matter because the possibility that she actually has real thoughts and honest feelings like he - a fully human person - does, simply does not exist. Many rapists have so thoroughly absorbed the poison of rape culture that they truly believe that they are entitled to take what they tell themselves women are offering and therefore whatever they have done, it is not rape.

Thanks to the warped view that rape culture propagates of what is normal sex, many men feel genuinely threatened by the idea that any non-consensual sex might be called  'rape'. Most of these very concerned men consider themselves nice guys but some are uncomfortably aware that they may have skated over the consent line at times. Defensively, they insist that there are grey areas in the mating landscape.

Women are hard to read! Sometimes 'maybe' can mean 'yes', not "no" Why should any red-blooded man accept that ambivalence is a form of "no" and be forced to hope lamely that on another occasion she will give enthusiastic consent? Why should women get to have the upper hand in sexual matters?

They argue that parsing the meaning of a woman's "It's getting late", "I'd like to go home now" or "It's not a good time" is a complex problem and that consent is a very vexing and elusive concept.

Women jerk men around! Why would she say 'maybe' if she means 'no'? Maybe 'maybe' means 'yes'! Why shouldn't a guy interpret her ambivalence as 'yes'? Everyone knows women want to be swept away. But if she doesn't want that, then she should be clear about it. Who can blame a guy for pressing the issue? If he doesn't press, he might never have sex! 

They worry that to criminalize all nonconsensual sex is a slippery slope which could unfairly bring innocent men down with the (very, very few!) guilty ones.

Consent can be very ambiguous and difficult to determine! When she accepted the date/flirted/drank too much, who can blame a guy for thinking she was giving tacit consent to more? How dare she cry rape in the morning just because she regrets her slutty behavior of the night before!

Ignoring for now the constant underlying thread of misogyny that runs through all rape apologia (which can be boiled down to: women lie, they lie constantly and they enjoy lying just to hurt an innocent man for the evil pleasure of it), there is an interesting inconsistency highlighted by this claim that sexual consent is difficult to decipher.

At least one study has shown that human beings are perfectly capable of recognizing both verbal and non-verbal refusals, even when the word "No" is not used at all.  In every other sphere of human interaction, human signals for 'no' - for refusal - are widely understood by both men and women and yet men who rape persist in special pleading that it is difficult to be sure in just one specific situation: when a woman is saying 'No' to sex. Rapists prefer the emphasis to be on whether a woman said "No" clearly enough because they know that there will be wiggle room for them to pretend that most forms of verbal and nonverbal "no" secretly mean "yes" when it comes to female sexual responses and, unfortunately, society allows them to make - and win - that argument.

It really is very simple.
"Did she say 'yes'?
"No."
"Then your answer was 'No'."
"But she said, 'Maybe'!"
"But, did she say 'yes'?"
"No."
"Then your answer was 'No'."
"But she seemed like she was not sure, maybe she wanted to consent!"
"Did she say 'Yes'?"
"No."
"Then your answer was - undeniably, unambiguously - 'No'."

In spite of the best efforts of women's groups working to reduce sexual assault, no large-scale social movement to accept a working definition of consent such as "Only an unequivocal 'Yes' means 'Yes'" has been forthcoming. Many men - who definitely do not see themselves as rapists - prefer the pliable, male-interpreted "No" because it would be much harder for those Nice Guys to kid themselves about their own opportunistic behavior - and harder for society to excuse them, too - if the only acceptable green light for sex was an unequivocal "yes". "'No' means 'No'" (except when Nice Guys™ think it means 'Yes' to them) has been massaged by the rape culture to suggest the possibility of ambiguity and that leaves the door open for not-so-nice-guys to cash in on the sexual aggressiveness of a few men.

Thanks to the fact that women live in fear of sexual assault, less sexually aggressive men can still benefit from the rape culture which provides cover for more blatant rapists. By pretending to be confused by "mixed signals", a so-called Nice Guy can pressure a woman into sex she doesn't want by telling her that she made him think she had promised him something. More aggressive males pave the way for the Nice Guys because a woman's fear of male anger if she refuses to honor this bogus "promise" seals the deal. By shaming women for being reluctant to trust that their intentions are honorable (even when they are not), Nice Guys often succeed in coercing women to engage in unwanted sex. By accusing women of teasing because they have interpreted a sexual invitation from a little light-hearted flirting, Nice Guys can and do frighten women into agreeing to unwanted sex because women have learned to fear the consequences of being labeled a "tease" (a "tease" can either put out what she has been "promising", or have it taken from her forcibly, which society will judge she deserves). Nice Guys never do anything overtly aggressive, but they trade on the fear of male aggressiveness to manipulate and coerce women into unwanted sex. In other words, Nice Guys do rape, too.

The patriarchal culture which teaches men to view women as simultaneously both lying temptresses and sexually submissive subordinates ensures that self-aware rapists know they need not fear any negative social consequences as they continue to victimize women and girls. It will always be the woman's fault. Meanwhile the self-deluding "nice guys" observe society's acceptance and normalization of male aggression toward females, admire what they see not as rape but as other mens' sexual conquests and regard their own sexual opportunism as perfectly normal and reasonable within that context. This is the reason why many men sincerely believe that false rape accusations are a real thing. If they - normal, nice guys! - have felt and done these things (or think it's OK to do these things), then it cannot be rape! Only monsters commit rape and these nice guys are not monsters!

The Steubenville case, the Rehtaeh Parsons case, the UCLA water polo player case and countless other sexual assault cases, both reported and unreported,  starkly illustrate how rape culture ensures that many young men and women really do not believe that forcing sex on a woman without her consent is always rape, especially if she was initially flirting or drinking at a party or has had sex before. A rape victim's recovery from sexual violation is horrendous enough, but rape culture ensures that the society which is supposed to protect her will victimize her again through victim-blaming, slut-shaming, sympathy for the perpetrator and even erasing the victim from discussion of the impact of the crime which is viewed - like almost everything else in patriarchal culture - not from the female victim's perspective but from the male's. Isn't it time that we took concrete, effective steps to dismantle Rape Culture once and for all? We've tried the ridiculously ineffective tactic of urging women not to get themselves raped. Perhaps, at long last, we can begin to urge men not to rape.

The first step is to raise young men who understand and respect that women are human beings whose feelings and wishes are as important as mens'. A man's feeling of entitlement to use a woman's body because he felt that she was offering it does not trump her feelings or her right to refuse consent or even to withdraw consent at any time if she becomes uncomfortable with the man. We need to change the sad reality that, because of our rape culture, men's sense of superior entitlement is protected at the expense of women's humanity. His feelings are of paramount importance, while it is often barely acknowledged that she has any legitimate feelings at all. She is a thing that causes uncomfortable feelings in a man. When rape happens it is deemed justifiable by society because of however the man felt (he felt he was led on, he misunderstood her "mixed signals", he felt she had provoked him, etc) while the woman is held responsible both for whatever he was feeling and for the consequences when he decided not to exercise any self-control over those feelings.
Only men can stop rape.

Obviously, rape culture creates a win-win situation for would-be rapists. Unfortunately, it also creates an environment where the dehumanization of women is so normalized that even some nice, decent men ultimately perceive virtually every woman as "unrapable" in most contexts. In other words, because of the constant stream of misogynist rape apologia in our culture, too many boys and men unconsciously form the belief that almost nothing that they can do to a woman can ever be called rape - even though they still honestly believe that they consider 'real rape' a heinous crime.

The second step is to make men understand that the behavior that many of them do not consider "rapey" is, in fact, rape. That the women whom some men tell themselves were "asking for it" or whose consent some men believe they can assume because of how they, men, are feeling are not there simply for them to take.  That when a man decides that because a woman has put herself in one situation willingly (a party, date or whatever) therefore it is perfectly reasonable for him to presume she has given her consent for anything else he expects the evening to lead to - even if he has to push it a little - that is rape.

Below is an ad aired in the UK which addresses Rape Culture in a gut-wrenching, all-too-common scenario: a party, drinking, the initial trust of the young woman, the expectations of the young man, and the eventual rape. This ad underlines the truth that rape occurs whenever one person coerces another person into sexual activity against the second person's wishes. The only thing that will prevent rape is if rapists stop raping.

Teaching men how not to rape: Hey, it's so crazy, it just might work!

Indeed, it is the only thing that will work.

TRIGGER WARNING!  Please be aware that this ad portrays a common scenario where a rape occurs, and though very well-done, it may be painfully triggering to some viewers.



Further Reading:

How a victim-blaming system excuses rape, Jen Roesch, socialistworker.org, January 7, 2013.

Sexual Assault and Rape Resource Guide, R. Graham, Carolina Women's Center, UNC Chapel Hill, Spring 2003.

Acquaintance Rape of College Students, Rana Sampson, USDOJ, COPS Problem-Oriented Guides For Police, no.17.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

In The Eye of the Beholder - You Are Beautiful






















The video below may be the best thing you see today. Please take 3 minutes out of your busy day to watch it. If you are a NiftyWoman, you may want to have a hanky handy!

Sure, it's an ad campaign, but this is the best kind of use of corporate clout writ large. These Dove campaigns give wide exposure to crushing toxic notions of femininity that feminist groups have been struggling - and failing - to overcome for decades.

Harmful, demeaning cultural pressure on women to conform to an impossible fantasy of beauty is propped up by the constant barrage of media objectification of women and an unquestioned beauty culture. Girls soak up that poison early, too, so that self-criticism will usually fill in on the rare occasions when another person might try to reassure her that she is beautiful just as she is - that her beauty is in her humanity and all that makes her her, not in whether she wears a certain dress size or has a certain set of facial characteristics.

Just as rape continues to be epidemic even in so-called egalitarian, progressive societies because few powerful voices challenge the notion that most rape is not really rape, so the toxic beauty culture persists because few powerful voices challenge it either. One such powerful voice could be a large corporation with a robust advertising budget.

I think these promotions may and should pay off for this company. They have invested in ideas that matter. They have given corporate sponsorship to a recognition of the value of humanity - of women - beyond the superficial. And, as we have learned, well-funded campaigns really do change societal opinions and  bring meaningful shifts in cultural norms.

Someone at Dove decided to pair corporate self-interest with a social conscience. I call that a win-win.

What a NiftyIdea!




via doveunitedstates

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Yes, It Is Rape.

Today's post is a Nifty PSA that I hope my readers will pass on far and wide. Let's make it go viral on Facebook. There is no banner photo on this post because the subject is too serious and I do not want the TRIGGER WARNING* that this post discusses rape culture to be missed.

We live in a culture - the culture of virtually all of humankind, not any particular national culture - which refuses to hold men accountable for acts of sexual aggression against women. The sociological term for this is Rape Culture.

Glamorizing rape.
  Rape Culture is an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture.  Rape culture is perpetuated through the use of misogynistic language, the objectification of women’s bodies, and the glamorization of sexual violence, thereby creating a society that disregards women’s rights and safety.
  Rape Culture affects every woman.  The rape of one woman is a degradation, terror, and limitation to all women. Most women and girls limit their behavior because of the existence of rape. Most women and girls live in fear of rape. Men, in general, do not. That’s how rape functions as a powerful means by which the whole female population is held in a subordinate position to the whole male population, even though many men don’t rape, and many women are never victims of rape.  This cycle of fear is the legacy of Rape Culture. (Rape Culture, Marshall University Women's Center.)

 From very early ages, men and women are conditioned to accept different roles. Women
are raised to be passive and men are raised to be aggressive. We are conditioned to accept certain
attitudes, values and behaviors. Our conditioning is continuously and relentlessly encouraged and
reinforced by the popular media, cultural attitudes and the educational system. The media is a
major contributor  to  gender-based  attitudes  and  values.  The  media  provides  women  with  acomplete list of behaviors that precipitate rape. Social training about what is proper and ladylike,
as well as what is powerful and macho, teaches women to be victims and men to be aggressors.
 The high incidence of rape in this country is a result of the power imbalance between men
and women. Women are expected to assume a subordinate relationship to men. Consequently,
rape can be seen as a logical extension of the typical interactions between women and men. One
way to analyze the power relationship between men and women is by examining some of the
common social rules women are taught. (Defining a Rape Culture, UC Davis web publication.)


Glamorizing violence
Whittling down the definition of rape to such a thin sliver of possible scenarios that it might eventually simply disappear as a "crime" entirely, has become the vogue these days. The impetus behind that social and legislative push is that many men (and many women, too, since we all are immersed in Rape Culture) believe that, in most cases, forced sex is justifiable. Most people agree that it may not exactly be polite, or the smoothest, nicest way to behave, but coerced sex is usually not really rape: it's just a guy doing what comes naturally when he finds a woman attractive. If men don't pursue, the human race will go extinct! She probably asked for it. If she didn't say "No', then she probably meant "Yes", and if she wasn't clear, how is a guy supposed to know anyway? If something happened that she didn't really want, then she ought to have thought of that before going on that date/accepting that drink/asking him in for coffee/smiling and flirting/pick any scenario because they all lead to forced sex somewhere every day.

With very rare exceptions,  not quite consensual sex is seen as the inevitable result of mistakes made by women (leading men on, dressing like sluts, asking for it, etc) and therefore most people are uncomfortable labeling such incidents "rapes". After all, it somehow strikes people as unfair to call a man who uses a woman's body against her will a rapist, when he is otherwise a nice guy and anyway it was a natural reaction by any red-blooded male to female provocation. For many people there is really only one definition of rape: the violent 'bushy-haired stranger' (this imaginary monster is always a 'bushy-haired stranger', ever notice?) who sexually assaults a virgin, leaving visible injuries. 

Violent stranger rape is comparatively rare. If Republican hopes to narrow the definition of rape to so-called "forcible rape" are realized in every state, rare violent stranger rape could become the only kind that will be recognized as criminal, while women actually live in fear of the myriad forms of "not-really" rape that can happen to them at any time, while society looks the other way. Since in Republican dreams the coercive power of the threat of force is not equivalent to the use of physical force, cannot be measured and is probably all in the woman's hysterical, over-reacting imagination anyway, nearly all of the most prevalent rape scenarios would no longer be considered crimes. Women will be victimized by the sexual aggression of men without even the inadequate protection of seldom-prosecuted laws to give them the courage to step out into the world knowing that they have the legal right to not be sexually harrassed - even though that right is assaulted every single day in a thousand little ways. This systemic intimidation which limits women's ability to pursue their lives and happiness as freely as men is sanctioned and encouraged by Rape Culture. 


22 Ways to Stop Violence Against Women
Below is an ad airing in the UK which addresses Rape Culture in a gut-wrenching, all-too-common scenario: a party, probably with drinking, the initial trust of the young woman, the expectations of the young man, and the eventual rape. Rape culture ensures that many young men really do not believe that forcing sex on a person who is saying 'No' is rape, especially if she was initially flirting or drinking at a party or has had sex with him before. This ad underlines the truth that rape occurs whenever one person coerces another into sexual activity against the second person's wishes

*TRIGGER WARNING!  Please be aware that this ad portrays a commonly-experienced scenario where a rape occurs, and though very well-done, it may be painfully triggering to many viewers.

via Love, Joy, Feminism


Friday, November 2, 2012

Barmy Bible Study - The Biblical Kind of Rape



























It's Wednesday Thursday Friday night! Time for Barmy Bible Study!

In light of recent public confusion about the rape thing and what the right-thinking Christian view on that whole thing should be, our text for tonight will be a selection of verses pertaining to this issue. Because the Biblical promises and exhortations for righteous rape are so numerous, I will only post a small sampling here. For extra credit, go and read more on the subject yourself. The Good Book™ is stuffed with stories of the Biblical kind of rape so you'll have no trouble finding plenty of references.

TRIGGER WARNING: Sexual assault; violence.

(Atheists and other haters of God's Holy Word skip down past the blue text)

Exodus 21:7-11 (Righteous treatment of female property)
When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. If she does not please the master who has selected her for himself,[b] he must let her be redeemed. He has no right to sell her to foreigners, because he has broken faith with her. 9 If he selects her for his son, he must grant her the rights of a daughter. 10 If he marries another woman, he must not deprive the first one of her food, clothing and marital rights. 11 If he does not provide her with these three things, she is to go free, without any payment of money.

Judges 19: 20-28 (A rape is prevented)
20 Then the old man said, “Welcome! Let me take care of your needs. Just don’t spend the night in the city square.” 21 So he took the Levite to his house and fed the donkeys. After they washed, they ate and drank.22 While they were enjoying themselves, some worthless men from the city surrounded the house and pounded on the door. They told the old man, the owner of the house, “Bring out the man who came to your house so that we can have sex with him.”23 The owner went out to them. He told them, “No, my friends! Please don’t do anything so evil! This man is a guest in my home. Don’t do such a godless thing! 24 Here, let me bring out my virgin daughter and this man’s concubine. Rape them, and do with them whatever you want. Just don’t do such a godless thing to this man.
Thank God! A legitimate rape was averted!
25 But the men refused to listen to him. So the Levite grabbed his concubine and forced her outside. They had sex with her and abused her all night until morning. They let her go when the sun was coming up. 26 At daybreak, the woman came to the door of the house where her husband was and collapsed. She was still there when it became light.27 Her husband got up in the morning, opened the doors of the house, and was about to leave. His wife (that is, his concubine) was lying at the door of the house with her hands on the doorstep. 28 The Levite said to her, “Get up! Let’s go!” But she did not answer. So he put her on the donkey and left for home.

2 Samuel 12:11-14 (David's punishment)
 Thus says the Lord: 'I will bring evil upon you out of your own house.  I will take your wives while you live to see it, and will give them to your neighbor.  He shall lie with your wives in broad daylight.  You have done this deed in secret, but I will bring it about in the presence of all Israel, and with the sun looking down.'
 Then David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the Lord."  Nathan answered David: "The Lord on his part has forgiven your sin: you shall not die.  But since you have utterly spurned the Lord by this deed, the child born to you must surely die."  


It isn't legitimate rape if a man has
paid fifty shekels for that girl!
That's Biblical rape - the godly kind!
Deuteronomy 22:28-29 (Justice for stolen property)
“If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, then the man who lay with her shall give to the father of the young woman fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife, because he has violated her. He may not divorce her all his days.

Judges 21:10-14 (God will provide)
Then the men of Benjamin returned to their homes, and the four hundred women of Jabesh-gilead who were spared were given to them as wives.  But there were not enough women for all of them.  The people felt sorry for Benjamin because the LORD had left this gap in the tribes of Israel.  So the Israelite leaders asked, "How can we find wives for the few who remain, since all the women of the tribe of Benjamin are dead?  There must be heirs for the survivors so that an entire tribe of Israel will not be lost forever.  But we cannot give them our own daughters in marriage because we have sworn with a solemn oath that anyone who does this will fall under God's curse."
 Then they thought of the annual festival of the LORD held in Shiloh, between Lebonah and Bethel, along the east side of the road that goes from Bethel to Shechem.  They told the men of Benjamin who still needed wives, "Go and hide in the vineyards.  When the women of Shiloh come out for their dances, rush out from the vineyards, and each of you can take one of them home to be your wife!  And when their fathers and brothers come to us in protest, we will tell them, 'Please be understanding.  Let them have your daughters, for we didn't find enough wives for them when we destroyed Jabesh-gilead. And you are not guilty of breaking the vow since you did not give your daughters in marriage to them.'"  So the men of Benjamin did as they were told.  They kidnapped the women who took part in the celebration and carried them off to the land of their own inheritance.  

Deuteronomy 22:23-24 (Justice for woman's sinfulness)
Why didn't she cry out?
Evil temptress! Stone her!
“If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbor's wife. So you shall purge the evil from your midst.

Zechariah 14:1-2
Behold, a day is coming for the Lord, when the spoil taken from you will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women raped. Half of the city shall go out into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city.

Deuteronomy 20:10-14 (Enemies who ask for it)
“When you draw near to a city to fight against it, offer terms of peace to it. And if it responds to you peaceably and it opens to you, then all the people who are found in it shall do forced labor for you and shall serve you. But if it makes no peace with you, but makes war against you, then you shall besiege it. And when the Lord your God gives it into your hand, you shall put all its males to the sword, but the women and the little ones, the livestock, and everything else in the city, all its spoil, you shall take as plunder for yourselves. And you shall enjoy the spoil of your enemies, which the Lord your God has given you.

Judges 5:30
‘Have they not found and divided the spoil?— A womb or two for every man; spoil of dyed materials for Sisera, spoil of dyed materials embroidered, two pieces of dyed work embroidered for the neck as spoil?’

Study Questions for The Biblical Kind of Rape

1. Does God intend for rape to happen? If so, what would be Biblical rape?

2. Is there any such thing as "legitimate rape"?

3. What can we learn from God's rules about Biblical rape and how can we apply these lessons to modern Christian life?
Yes, exactly as God intended
What is the matter with
you silly feminists? 

Read your Bible, Ban!

Before these questions can be properly answered, we need a little background. Bible-believers understand that there is a foundational Truth™ upon which all of the Abrahamic religions are based. Everything written in the Bible about rape - and every "extreme" thing that Christian hardliners have been saying - makes perfect sense once this fundamental Biblical Truth is clearly understood. It is about time for every righteous person (and you too, ladies!) in the Christian United States of America to shout it out, loud and proud:

God's ultimate creation is MAN.

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. Genesis 2.

The book of Genesis tells us with crystal clarity that God did not create two "equal" sexes at the beginning of time, contrary to the revisionist theology of liberal so-called Christians. God created man, who alone was given dominion over all the other creatures of the earth and over the land and the waters, too. Adam was the prototype for all mankind; the original - the only soul-breathed, fully human creation in our male God's image. All of the politically correct, feminazi-controlled language which insists on twisting God's Holy Word to pretend an unBiblical, inclusive equality obscures the Truth™. Feminist women and men (may God forgive them!) have caused enough confusion and it is time to put a stop to it. It's time to take back the language, too, America! God did not create "humankind"; He created "mankind". Man is God's only fully human creation and it is high time we stopped bowing to godless liberal pressure and pretending otherwise.

Thank you, God,
for not making me a woman!

(Men's daily prayer)
This is the Biblical Truth™ which Christians intend to restore to its proper place as the foundation of human society: Man is the ultimate, soul-breathed  godly creation while wombman woman is an afterthought. She is a flawed thing - not quite human and not quite animal - created to serve man's needs. The men who wrote the book of Genesis were unquivocal: God had no prior plans to create woman in her own right like the beasts of the land, the fishes in the sea and His pièce de résistance - man. She was merely pulled out of man - a fraction of the man, so to speak - a little bit like him but much less than he. Man is primary, the pinnacle of creation, moral and thoughtful, a living soul - the delight of the Almighty. Woman is derivative, an animal made from a spare body part, amoral and thoughtless, devoid of the god-breathed soul which entitles man to his amazingly god-like dominance over all of creation, including her - the afterthought of the God of man.

Before the fall, man was right with God. He ruled over all the creatures of the earth without cruelty or strife. That was before the mistake of woman. Woman - that afterthought probably best left uncreated - brought man down and they were expelled from Eden and condemned to die. No longer guaranteed eternal life, the man had to procreate so that his kind could live on after his death. For this, he was able to use the womb that God had provided, which is why for all of Bible-influenced history women have been ruthlessly limited to their biological reproductive function. Finally, the female helpmeet's role was defined! Sex was employed (reluctantly by man, lasciviously by woman) after the fall as a way for man to reproduce and carry on his line (while he awaits the day when God finally relents and restores him to eternal life). Bible-believers understand that the womb woman's duty is to be the vessel through which man brings his issue into the world. Look, don't blame Christians, this is God's Holy Word.
Tch tch! Is it any wonder people
don't believe he is a Christian?
Thus, a woman's sole purpose in life, according to God's Holy Word, is to conceive and bear children to men - sons to carry on his line and daughters to provide wombs for his sons to continue the line of man. Males are persons while females are empty vessels to be used by men to produce more persons. A woman is meant to suffer in childbearing; it is God's punishment on her for the sins of Eve. She must never have control over any man; she is the tool of man so that he can beget sons. Her daughters will also be the tools of men. She has no right to choose, to consent or to deny. Like a man's livestock and beasts of burden, her purpose is to serve man. Like the livestock, she has no thoughts or feelings that are worthy of notice; she is the property of her father until she becomes the property of her husband. As our own CHIC, Ann Romney, so succinctly put it: It's how it is.  This is simply the inerrant Biblical Truth. 

It isn't that Christians want it to be this way - indeed, in their human frailty, most men mistakenly believe in the humanity of women and many are deeply troubled by the Biblical god's insistence that females have no intrinsic worth. But we are a Christian nation! The Bible has tough parts that liberal men may not want to hear, but righteous Christians must insist that they listen. It is imperative that this humanist morality be rooted out and replaced with stronger, righteous Biblical morality, which is why getting Bible-based teaching into our schools and into our laws is the top priority of Christian fundamentalists.

When the Truth™ (according to the author of Genesis) is understood, the lessons about sex, rape and procreation in the Bible - and indeed, the teachings of all of the Abrahamic religions regarding relations between men and lower creation - make perfect sense. Armed with this knowledge, the sincere Bible believer can easily answer the study questions in tonight's Bible Study.

1. Does God intend rape to happen?

Listen up, Liberals: there was no mistake.
These godly men speak nothing but
the Truth™ of God's Holy Word
The short answer is yes. God allows - and sometimes even commands (2 Samuel) - men to force sexual intercourse onto unwilling women and to force pregnancy upon women without their consent. Because He loves man and recognizes the weak human morality which tends toward empathy for others, God would prefer to see mankind enjoy the dignity of loving, consensual unions with willing women. Indeed, that is the Christian ideal, but the provocative nature of fickle, flirtatious females sometimes gives some Christian men no choice but to force the issue.

But, that is not legitimate rape. It is Biblical rape. As explained above, women were created for the use of men - in particular, to be used by men so that men can have children. As human breeding livestock, women have no more right to consent to sexual relations or to pregnancy than a dog can consent to fetch or a hen can consent to lay eggs. Because they have wombs, women must be forced to exist in a perpetual state of readiness to accept precious gifts from God, even if those gifts come through the actions of men whom they may not know, nor love nor want to have children with. As noted above: what women want or feel or experience is of no consequence. This is about every man's right to reproduce. This is about human life!

Recently, the news has been full of reports about good Christian men in government under attack because they have dared to speak the Biblical Truth™. The Bible makes it clear that God does intend rapes - and pregnancies caused by rapes - to happen. It is all part of His Plan. This is uncontroversial among Bible-believers and indeed, it is plainly written in dozens of places throughout scripture. Willful denial of these facts does not erase the truth, it only confuses the masses. If people would only pay attention to what the Bible actually says and stop trying to make it all so politically correct, there would be far less confusion in this country. Hopefully, this Bible Study will help to dispel the confusion.
Yes, it is what God intended.
 Read your Bibles, heretics!
Think of Biblical rape as an umbrella term for all of the resourceful ways that God provides wombs wives and children for the less fortunate of mankind: the men who cannot find willing wombmates. A multitude of passages in the Bible clearly show that it does not matter how a man manages to take a wife - trickery, rape, abduction, slavery; everything is allowed (sometimes even ordered) by God - nor what methods of conception he uses to get his issue into the world. It doesn't matter whether he impregnates a woman through stranger rape, wartime rape, slave rape, incestuous rape or legally-purchased spousal rape or through trickery, sabotage, intimidation, or coercion - just so long as his right to reproduce using whatever womb woman he can thrust his penis into is protected by Biblical mandate.

Godly men can opt for the straightforward sale (eg. Exodus 21: 7-11) by the father of a breeder daughter to an eligible man (thirty shekels of silver was the going price in Moses' day). This usually requires that the man pass muster with the woman's owner father, since the mating will also impact the father's genetic line. A suitor found wanting by the prospective grandfather may be turned away. This situation might quite rightly enrage a rejected man, but luckily, the Bible has a solution...

To wit: the forced sale (Deuteronomy 22: 28-29) If a rejected suitor can manage to rape a female breeder, her father will then be forced to hand over his property to the rapist. The rapist must then, in addition to the usual price paid for a woman, pay a premium (fifty shekels of silver) to the father for the insult of having robbed him of the ability to choose a son-in-law. This form of Biblical rape is meant for the disadvantaged yet daring man. He may not have much luck securing a wife unless he steals one, so this form of Biblical rape provides the perfect solution to the less genetically-favored men in Bible-based societies. Praise God! He will always provide!

'A womb or two' - or more! - 
'for every man'.
That's the Biblical way!
When large numbers of "wives" are needed for restless armies of (ahem) vigorous young men, God has the solution: Biblical wartime rape (Deuteronomy 20: 10-14, Judges 21: 10-14). God orders His armies to murder all the people (in other words, all of the men) in some ill-favored place and carry off their livestock (including all the virgins) and chattels. Divvy up the spoils evenly among the godly young men, including the virgins, and voilà! Womb-shortage averted!

Yes, the women may be taken against their will and impregnated against their will, but that is not legitimate rape because God wills it. The Biblical God clearly sanctions rape as a method of conception for men who might otherwise be at risk of not having any offspring. Think about it: if given a choice, some women might refuse to have children. Some women might reject the sexual advances of perfectly nice guys. Already, some women actually demand that all women be given the power to control when and if they will become pregnant - literally threatening all men's right to reproduce! - and in some places, there are simply too few women to go around. Women must be prevented from holding reproductive power over men. We are talking about life here - the sanctity of a man's right to continue his genetic line. It is what women were created for and what a Bible-based America will insist upon. Read your Bible.

2. Is there any such thing as "legitimate rape"?

Yes, there is such a thing as legitimate rape.  When a male says he has been raped, that is legitimate rape. The seriousness of this heinous crime should be obvious to all and it is clearly forbidden by the Bible (Judges 19: 20-28). Terrible stories of the abuse of boys and young men by trusted religious and community figures are met with universal outrage and public demands for the arrest and severe punishment of the perpetrators are entirely appropriate. While centuries of Biblical rapes of millions of women and girls were of course unremarkable, the relatively rare instances of legitimate rape against (non-slave) males are quite rightly front page news. This is because it is virtually impossible to legitimately rape a woman, and of course Biblical rape is A-OK according to our Moral Guidebook, but the sexual assault of men and boys is a defilement, an abomination, an outrage against mankind.
Got that, Girl? 
Come on, you know you think I'm hot.
Now use that little ladybrain
and vote for me.
My sex appeal will shut that whole
thinking thing down.
3. What can we learn from God's rules about Biblical rape and how can we apply these lessons to modern Christian life?

The Bible makes it clear that women are entitled to absolutely no rights over their own bodies, over their lives or over their fertility. A woman's destiny is to be a mother, under the control of the father of her children. Every pregnancy is a gift from God, no matter how it occurred. A man is a person and the fruit of his seed is also a person. The vessel into which the man deposits the seed is not a person: it is a mere woman, sinful and fallen. These are the Biblical principles upon which godly men rely when they declare that abortion is murder, but denying an abortion to a woman who will die without one is not. Under no circumstances - not for rape (which never legitimately happens to females), nor incest (Genesis 19), nor to save a woman's life - should abortion ever be permitted. It is a crime against mankind. As soon as we restore its Biblical foundation, the Christian United States of America will re-criminalize all abortion without exceptions.

Likewise, female-controlled contraception is unBiblical and immoral. It is woman's role to conceive and bear children. She is a vessel, a breeder of men - but she is also untrustworthy, immoral, licentious and a liar. No woman should ever be permitted to indulge in lustful degeneracy and escape the consequences. She is incapable of moral behavior; she lacks normal human feelings toward life and will murder for convenience; she is a captive to her sexual urges and will sink into promiscuous dissipation which will destroy the American dream unless men regain control and restore order in society. In a Christian United States of America, female-controlled contraception will be banned and women returned to their rightful position of fearful submission to the will of man God (and man).

Our Christian nation must elect godly men who will enforce these Biblical precepts and restore this country to Bible-based righteousness. Finally, we have such men in the Republican party.Gov Mitt Romney (MA), Rep Paul Ryan (WI), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (VA), Sen Todd Akin (MO), Richard Mourdock (IN), Rep Steve King (IA), Rep.Joe Walsh (IL), Gov.Bob McDonnell (VA), Gov Mike Huckabee (NM), Gov Rick Perry (TX), Rep Frank Guinta (NH), Reince Preibus, Gov Jan Brewer (AZ), Gov Dennis Daugaard (SD), House Speaker John Boehner (OH), Sen Marco Rubio (FL), Gov Rick Scott (FL), Sen Rob Portman (OH), Gov Tim Pawlenty (MN), Sen John Thune (SD),  Rep Jim Buchy (OH) and literally hundreds of other state and federal respresentatives are leading the final charge in a war on women that has been brewing for more than thirty years.

These brave crusaders for a Bible-based Christian United States of America are not outliers: this is the Republican party today, on both the federal and state levels.  God's Own Party is strong, revitalized and - after the election - you betcha, they're ready to push women back where they belong - out of the workplace where they currently are stealing men's jobs (for less pay), out of the military and out of college - virtuously married (to a man only) unemployed and forced to bear as many children as possible. That's the Biblical way!

Praise God!

Class dismissed.