The phrase is beng used everywhere of late, and it is maddening. “Rape Culture” is a phrase that was coined by feminists in the 1970’s, used as an all-encompassing definition of the way society tends to blame the victims of everything from sexual harassment to violent rape. I can’t get away from that phrase these days. I don’t find it “cultured” when you cannot turn on a news program without hearing stories of victims coming out of the woodwork accusing everyone from teenage college students to “untouchable”, respected public figures. I find it “uncultured” when the vast majority of victims refuse to speak of their experiences, let alone come forward, and hold their accused perpetrators accountable, not because I find them cowardly (I am one of those “in the closet” victims), but because of the almost certain negative ramifications they will face once they do come forward.
Let’s call it what it is…it’s “rape ignorance”. When victims are perceived as the criminals, it’s time for society to give it’s head a shake and smarten up. One sickening example of the pervasive ignorance that is infiltrating this mindset is the interview the author of “Marry Smart”, Susan Patton (also known as “Princeton Mom”) had with CNN’s Carol Costello. Patton was asked to give her opinion of “rape culture”, specifically as it relates to college campuses. The results were an absolute train wreck, however I did smile smuggly as I watched this so-called authority (whoever thought of booking this farce of an author needs to be severely reprimanded) go down in flames.
Almost right of the bat, Patton compared rape to sex when she said “the conversation about sex is a bit difficult”! What? Rape and sex are NOT synonymous, Susan Patton. The conversation was about RAPE.
She asked Carol why these women just don’t “get up and leave”. Again, WHAT? Patton was referring to women who were in situations with people they know, but, as Carol reminded her, MOST rapes happen between people who are familiar with each other. On the same note, Patton suggested that it’s up to the victims to be responsible for their own safety in this way…”I’m suggesting that women be smart for themselves, remain sober enough to extricate themselves from a situation that’s headed in a direction they’re not comfortable with,” she said. Finishing with the qualifier, but “I’m not blaming victims”, however. Really? Aren’t you?
If you want to be entertained and maddened at the same time, go ahead, watch the interview here.
Regarding Mr. Bill Cosby, I understand that one is to be considered innocent until proven guilty, but in this case, the law will not allow the opportunity for him to be proven anything, due to the US’s Statute of Limitations for rape. All these women can do is summon the courage to come forward in the face of intense scrutiny from the court of public opinion (the number is in the double-digits and climbing), have their lives and credibility examined under a microscope, and hope to make some kind of positive impact on the obvious “rape ignorance” that is surrounding them.