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Dr. Helen

How Should a Man Handle a “Silencing Tool?”

May 18th, 2013 - 8:10 am

I often think about how men are silenced these days on anything having to do with gender issues. I received an email from a male reader who is concerned about the same thing: he is told he is a “rape apologist” for even suggesting that men might be unfairly accused of rape. Here is his letter:

Hi Dr. Helen,

One of the things that’s caught my attention lately is a constant repetition by my lefty friends (I live in Boston, so I have many of them) of the term “rape culture.” My understanding of this term is that our culture (meaning, I suppose, western, judeo christian, etc) tolerates and tacitly encourages men to rape, and does not punish them sufficiently when they do.

Now, I understand the difficulty of getting a rape conviction. I do. There generally aren’t any witnesses, and what little physical evidence there may be could just as easily be the byproduct of consensual sex. This leaves the victim as the only witness, and her credibility is frequently the only thing in her favor.

On the other hand, we know that there are false rape allegations. I’ve asked my lefty friends how they’d change things to improve this situation. The answers I generally get boil down pretty much to “believe the accuser” and “past sexual behavior shouldn’t be admissable”. When I point out that this flies in the face of key legal concepts like the presumption of innocence, and the right of the accused to an affirmative defense, I get called a “rape apologist.”

Camille Paglia has pointed out that it used to be that there were “extralegal” ways of punishing rapists. Which is to say that a victim’s father and brothers would often go have a friendly chat with the rapist, who, after he got out of the hospital would either mend his ways or run afoul of a family who weren’t so friendly.

That tactic is difficult to pull of in cases where the identity of the rapist is unknown, where the victim is too embarrassed to tell the family or where the family is spread out, geographically. It’s also, I must admit, a bit barbaric.

That we’ve largely abandoned this does leave us in a spot where convictions are difficult to obtain, and that’s a difficult thing, even for those of us concerned about false accusations; we want the real perps to be punished no less than we want the innocent to go free.

However, I’m told that being concerned with such trivialities as being presumed innocent makes me a rape apologist and a part of rape culture.

Even worse is when some poor man dares to make suggestions about how women can go about reducing the likelihood of being raped. The only acceptable answer to this, it seems, is that men need to stop raping. If one were to point out that A) I have a right not to have my house burglarized, but that B ) I lock my door anyway… yup… rape apologist, rape culture.

I have looked around the edges of the “‘men’s movement”. While I see that there are men who are concerned about the same things I am, I also see things I don’t like (most notably the celebration of “pick up artists” as men who manage to eschew the bonds of relationships and marriage, but still manage to get laid.) However, when I’ve seen the subject broached among feminists, the term “hate groups” comes up almost immediately.

When I did interviews for my book Men on Strike: Why Men Are Boycotting Marriage, Fatherhood, and the American Dream – and Why It Matters, one of the lawyers I interviewed said, “men’s rights only go as far as how honest she chooses to be.” In the case of the allegation of sexual abuse or rape, this is true. As the reader points out, no one wants to let a rapist go free, but just as important is that we do not allow the society to feel that it is okay to jail or punish a man who is falsely accused. Feminists and their supporters want our society to believe that women don’t lie about rape or abuse, but this takes away from the fact that women are human and some humans lie.

In an article at the Washington Times entitled “False reports outpace sex assaults in the military” even the Pentagon found that there was an increase in unfounded allegations:

False complaints of sexual abuse in the military are rising at a faster rate than overall reports of sexual assault, a trend that could harm combat readiness, analysts say.

Virtually all media attention on a Pentagon report last week focused on an increase in service members’ claims of sexual abuse in an anonymous survey, but unmentioned were statistics showing that a significant percentage of such actually investigated cases were baseless.

From 2009 to 2012, the number of sexual abuse reports rose from 3,244 to 3,374 — a 4 percent increase.

During the same period, the number of what the Pentagon calls “unfounded allegations” based on completed investigations of those reports rose from 331 to 444 — a 35 percent increase.

And though the number of allegations is increasing, nothing is being done:

Unsubstantiated accusations remain a significant problem, but the SAPRO is doing nothing about it,” Mrs. Donnelly said. “I went through both volumes and found no evidence of concern about the significant 17 percent of ‘unfounded accusations.’ Something should be done to reduce the numbers of false accusations, the first step being an admission that the problem exists.”

Just as nothing is being done in the military, nothing is being done much about false allegations against men in general except to occasionally say “Oops, too bad for you.” Apparently, an innocent man’s life and reputation is worth little, especially if women need to feel that something is being done. A man should be happy to sacrifice his life for the good of women and their supporter’s “rape culture” cause.

Don’t believe it. Stand up for men’s due process rights, free speech and yes, their reputations just as you would for a woman’s. We are all citizens in a supposedly (yeah, right…) free society where we are entitled to due process, the presumption of innocence and the ability to speak out when feminists and their Uncle Tim supporters accuse us of being “rape apologists” as the reader above described. These accusers are sexist pigs who think that one woman’s life is worth more than 100 falsely accused men who can rot in jail for all they care. And if they are innocent, that might just be better in their book. Because they are guilty of something by virtue of being male.

Now, my question to you, dear readers, is how do you deal with the silencing tools used by the left, the right, women, men and others who wish to silence the decent men in our society?

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
Firstly, people should not have friends who resort to name-calling after pointing something out.

Secondly, this guy ought to have pointed out that if he's a "rape apologist" so was Atticus Finch.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
I absolutely agree, but there's a different point of view that some men come to when they get over 50 years of age:

Who cares about women.

My sex drive is finally starting to diminish, and I can see women for what they are - if they have a real intellect (not a "women's studies intellect"), then they are as valid as a man to talk to. Otherwise, and this really impacts most women, unfortunately, they have nothing to offer other than sex. But it is specifically that offering (sex) that is so important to young men and that gives young women their unbridled sense of entitlement.

It is really funny to watch in public. Women manipulate men left and right only based on men's sex drives. Otherwise, women are mostly gossipy morons.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
For every social action there is a delayed but over compensating reaction.
Men will go "underground" when it comes to forming social bonds.
Women who want "men" will not be able to find them or find out what their social reputation is.
Men with wealth and power are starting to avoid American wives even with pre-nuptial agreements. They are forming families not only with foreign women but doing it in foreign countries. The only men left for the feminist will be their worst nightmares, animals on two legs.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (77)
All Comments   (77)
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I fight back by calling out actual people with actual names who huddle in formal and informal groups, and I write essays describing them as the racial and gender bigots and anti-racist hypocrites they are, and post them on the internet.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
I teach at a university down south.

I find that the young women are confident, organized, hard-working, and smart. I've rarely known any but wymn studies majors, or students in the English (Anguish) and sociology (P'tooie) departments who are man angry.

Those who are man angry, are almost always witless furies, who work hard at making themselves look like moistened rats with glasses (I don't know what that means), and who apparently think their lady parts are a big deal to everyone else. Consider the appeal of the Vagina Monologues---a play about a loquacious organ that just can't keep its little yap shut.

Many of the female professoriat---that is, the useful idiots of the left and invariably awful instructors (I mean really stupid, uninformed, and disorganized)---are harpies, harridans, and aging bags who realize that they have neither brains, looks, nor a man (the best of whom---the men, I mean---roared west to freedom out highway 40 on their Harleys---or Kawasaki 900's, a much better deal---long ago).

And now to the point....

The best way to handle the variety of silencing tools is not to respond at all, or to respond in a way that is courteous but empty of any feeling that might stimulate the glands of the female anger unit.

"We live in a rape culture, you say? Oh. Ah. Rape culture. How awful. Indeed. Yes Yes."

"Intercourse is rape, you asseverate? I will be careful to avoid intercourse. If any happens to come my way, I will politely decline."

"All men are latent rapists? I didn't know that. Damn them!"

"Women have a one in four chance of being raped in their lifetime? You sure that isn't misquoted from a book written in the late 1970's?... Oh, you are sure? Well, from which book from the late 1970's did you get this fact?.... Hmmmm?"

Why? Because the silencing tool is a double bind. If you agree, you are bad. If you disagree, you are bad. And you cannot not respond, or you're bad. So, you respond as if you're talking to a nincompoop, which in fact, you are.




48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Q.)How do you deal with the silencing tools used by the left, the right, women, men and others who wish to silence the decent men in our society?

A1). Call them out, whenever and wherever possible. Try to be civil.

And let's not forget the decent women who are silenced as well. Feminism abides no dissent and eats it's own at a moments notice. Ask any ex-communicated feminist how small a divergence from the dogma was required to be lumped together with the rape-apologists, the patriarchy, the privileged, the "hate-speakers", et al. It doesn't take much.

A2). Provide and disseminate good information, have a sense of humor (feminists usually don't), and be attractive.

Okay. So. I have only maybe one of those. But I'm working on another one...

Here goes:

--An intelligent person who feminists would love to silence--
Girl Writes What: https://www.youtube.com/user/girlwriteswhat


P.S. Thank you, Dr. Helen, for giving us this place to speak. :-)
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Just point out that anyone who complains about rape that much HAS to be a closet rapist.

It worked for the homosexual lobby.
Should work for the rape lobby.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wow. From these comments, some men really, really hate women. Almost as much as some feminists hate men. Very eye opening that there are men in the world who wouldn't interact with me solely because of my gender. And they aren't even Muslim.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
There is an unfortunate truth to some of what you say. The liberal feminist lobby have made a number of men extremely fearful and gun shy of women. I simply avoid women with liberal political leanings, and I have no problem with the many women of conservative values I call my friends. First and foremost I have to know where their mindset is before I will approach.

The problem is that there are women out in the world today who hate men enough to lie about it. Even if you are looking at the Jodi Aras trial women who will murder men, try to hide it, and claim they were the subject of abuse when caught committing brutal murder. There are also women who have faked violent sexual asaults on their own person to the point of having the "rapist" carve words into their bodies. When the investigators questioned why the words were written backwards from a mirrored position one recent case fell apart where a violent feminist blogger had faked her own rape and attack.

This chilling mindset does indeed affect gender relations in a negative manner. I'm not saying rapists and murderers don't exist or shouldn't be punished. I am saying evil liars also exist, and many will stoop to any means to promote their radicalized political agenda.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Most men don't "really, really hate" women. Many of us don't particularly like feminists (especially the current, reptilian crop). A woman giving a man the "gift" of her feminism is like giving a puppy a pet 12 foot Boa Constrictor. He may think it means him no harm (right until he feels his soul slowly being wrung from his body.)

It's not just hardcore feminists who push men out of the fold, either. Quite a few traditionalist women actively contribute to their men disengaging.

Most of the women that I've known continuously cherry-pick what they want from feminism/radfem while remaining quietly on the sidelines when it comes to locking arms with "the menz" against feminism's burgeoning egregiousness. It seems to come down to "not offending any sisters", uber alles.

And then there's the eye-rolling, the shaming, the name-calling (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/10/sarah-palin-rick-santorum-neanderthal_n_821228.html), etc.,

Too many women --from all areas of the political spectrum-- treat men like working livestock (as if this were something completely normal and acceptable to do). Too many men put up with it.

Don't treat him like a bull you wish were an ox. Stop threatening him with the means to his end. Stop treating him like all he is to you is a steak waiting to happen.

If you're not certain that you aren't doing this, there's a good chance that you probably are.

48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Coincidentally, I just read this yesterday. It seems like a pretty good plan of attack.

Especially considering that it comes from a major league progressive!

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05-20/how-to-humble-a-wing-nut.html

48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
The real rape culture is the one that sexualizes girls at younger and younger ages, far before they're mentally or emotionally ready to handle the complexities of a sexual relationship. The real rape culture is the one that encourages young women to behave badly, making poor choices such as getting excessively drunk at parties full of strange men, inviting men into their bed on the first date, or embracing all manner of deviancy and degenerate behavior. The real rape culture is the one that promotes promiscuity and open sexual access, forcing young women who don't wish to participate into going against their values or facing a lifetime of spinsterhood. The real rape culture is the one that actively tears away the traditions that our culture has built over centuries that protect women and guide men towards responsible manhood.

In other words: the real rape culture is feminism.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
I do this as well.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm sorry, but why is it so red-letter AWFUL that it is hard to get a rape conviction? It's hard to get an assault and battery conviction for exactly the same reason -- it's usually the accuser's word against the accused, unless there's grossly obvious injury.

Rape is an assault and battery, just like any other trespass on your body -- no different than a doctor sticking a needle in your arm against your will, or the cops kicking you in the groin while you're shackled on the ground. It does not belong in the same frightful category as murder or child abuse, and the only reason we get all upset about not getting 100% convictions is only because we mistakenly put it in that very serious category. It's also why the penalties for rape are ridiculously harsh compared to any other type of assault and battery. You'll be punished more harshly for rape than for amputating someone's hand with a hatchet, which is nuts.

Maybe it is time to examine our "rape culture." Why do we fetishize rape into the be-all and end-all of crime short of (and for some crazies not even short of) murder? I thought we were all done treating women as delicate l'il Victorian flowers, and that it was a nasty relic of the patriarchy to treat woman's sexual access as an incredibly precious possession, that needs to be locked and guarded like Fort Knox.

If so...why is rape still considered in a much more horrible category than any other form of bodily violation? And if not...then where is the equality?
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Harsh penalties were a perfectly rational approach in the time when abortion was illegal, dangerous, and difficult and expensive to get and birth control ranged from unreliable to non-existent. Unlike the cuts and bruises of another type of physical assault, rape could produce a child that the woman was going to have to bear and somebody was going to have to help her support.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
"When I point out that this flies in the face of key legal concepts like the presumption of innocence, and the right of the accused to an affirmative defense, I get called a 'rape apologist.'”

Sheesh. I suppose if the writer pointed out to his friends that some people are falsely accused of murder, he would be branded a 'murder apologist'.

Time to be more selective in the choice of friends.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
The problem isn't "choice of friends," because the loons are imposing their rape culture POV on significant segments of society.

Take higher education - please. The feminist culture on campuses is imposing a "guilty 'til proven innocent" culture on men. A man can be hauled in front of a campus tribunal for sexual crimes even though a criminal complaint has not been charged and even in cases where a criminal charge has been declined by law enforcement. The man can be expelled from school or have nasty notes in his academic record with absolutely no legal finding.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
When I was in college I served on one of the student tribunals. The accused would get their day in court, and then we'd deliberate. Supposedly. A staff adviser wasn't supposed to sit in, but did anyway. They weren't supposed to say anything, but they'd give us the "real story" that the accusing student/staffer didn't tell us supposedly because they were too nice-- after a while, they didn't even bother explaining why entirely new charges and evidence was being introduced in secret. At one point, when there was a lone holdout on a case (me), they arbitrarily changed their decision-making process from unanimous consent to majority rule in the midst of deliberations to secure a guilty verdict.

But honestly, how different are these from other "administrative rulings" we get from the executive branch? Found guilty by a faceless committee of vaguely stated violations of vaguely stated laws. If you fight it? You're "obstructing justice"-- a wonderfully Orwellian turn of phrase for when Justice is obstructing the agenda. It's the inevitable result of the "independent agency" that supposedly takes the politics out of policy... and it does, by eliminating any political process and governing by fiat.

Which is the administrative equivalent of calling someone a "rape apologist". Or, for that matter, the modern formulation of "racist" which has little or nothing to do with race. The new one is "sl ut-shaming", and gives away the game. The idea is to de-legitimize other points of view, so that even expressing them is wrong, regardless of facts or argument. These administrative non-trials are the same thing -- designed to impose an agenda by fiat, by condemning a priori a person or position to be guilty.

The new definition of "harassment" is the ultimate expression of this philosophy. Anything you do or say can now be criminalized post hoc if someone decides to say they were offended by it. Of course, such an elastic definition requires designated experts to interpret, people who will make sure that only the Right People can level accusations and make them stick, and then only against Acceptable Targets.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
This, by the way, is what happened at the Dreyfus trial.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
BTW, PJM isn't immune to this. When I tried to post this a second ago, the system told me that I was "using words that were not allowed". I stuck a space in to bypass the filter; I hope a human being can see that in context there was nothing offensive about my language.

See? Even as we discuss Silencing Tools, PJM is using one of its own!
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
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