• How Far Can Abused Women Go To Protect Themselves? (Gender Bias in the Legal System) by E. Flock

How Far Can Abused Women Go To Protect Themselves? (Gender Bias in the Legal System) by E. Flock

I was horrified and upset to see illustrated in this report the huge double standard between how men and women are treated legally if and when they use self defense – women come out being treated unfairly, while men do not.

This happens to be a very long read, but I encourage the reader to click the link to the read the entire piece.

I will only be providing some excerpts from the page, not the entire page, on my blog.

How Far Can Abused Women Go To Protect Themselves? (Gender Bias in the Legal System)

[Long story involving a woman named Brittany who was doing a favor for her drug-addicted friend, Todd.

Todd phoned Brittany claiming to be stranded and without a place to stay, so she picked him up and allowed him to stay at her place.

Once he was at Brittany’s place, he brutally raped and beat her, and told her if she told the police or anyone else that he would murder her.

Things escalated more, when Brittany managed to warn her family about Todd keeping her hostage all day.

Brittany’s brother Chris confronted Todd, Brittany had to shoot and kill Todd to save her brother Chris from being killed by Todd.

Brittany called 911 to get Todd, who was dying on the floor, some medical help, and the police showed up to her home.

If I recall correctly, the police took photos of Brittany once they got there, and there was, I believe, a medical test performed on her at a hospital, where medical professionals logged the extent of injuries Brittany had suffered at Todd’s hands. I think there was a rape test performed as well.

The point being, either the police or hospital staff (or both) had PROOF that Brittany had been raped and beaten by Todd.

 When all was said and done, the legal system and the court appointed psychiatrists and psychologists  then proceeded to blame Brittany and to treat her like a lunatic and a liar.

During one appointment with a mental health professional, the doctor laughed in amusement when she told him how Todd mocked her voice when she was begging him to stop raping her.

The article goes on to say that in states that have a “stand your ground law,” the legal side always believes the men who say they were acting in self defense, and these men get off.

However, women who claim self defense are thrown in jail, they are not believed. Judges won’t allow their claims of domestic violence be brought up in court cases, even though the women killed their husbands or boyfriends because they were being beaten literally to death.]

…Initially, Chris and Brittany [who are siblings] told the police that he had killed Todd.

Both of them believed that a woman who had defended herself against violence would never get a fair trial in Jackson County, where Stevenson is situated.

“I hate to say this, but, Jackson County, they’re a little bit behind on the times,” Chris told me, arguing that, if law enforcement had known that it was Brittany who fired the gun, they would not have taken her for a rape-kit examination until it was too late.

Women, he said, “get the short end of the stick.”

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• The Miseducation of the American Boy – Toxic Masculinity and the Brokeness of Boyhood by P. Orenstein

The Miseducation of the American Boy – Toxic Masculinity and the Brokeness of Boyhood by P. Orenstein

The Miseducation of the American Boy

Snippets:

…I’ve spent two years talking with boys across America—more than 100 of them between the ages of 16 and 21—about masculinity, sex, and love: about the forces, seen and unseen, that shape them as men.

They [the boys and young men the author interviewed] considered their female classmates to be smart and competent, entitled to their place on the athletic field and in school leadership, deserving of their admission to college and of professional opportunities.

They all had female friends; most had gay male friends as well.

That was a huge shift from what you might have seen 50, 40, maybe even 20 years ago.

They could also easily reel off the excesses of masculinity. They’d seen the headlines about mass shootings, domestic violence, sexual harassment, campus rape, presidential Twitter tantrums, and Supreme Court confirmation hearings.

A Big Ten football player I interviewed bandied about the term toxic masculinity. “Everyone knows what that is,” he said, when I seemed surprised.

Yet when asked to describe the attributes of “the ideal guy,” those same boys appeared to be harking back to 1955. Dominance. Aggression. Rugged good looks (with an emphasis on height). Sexual prowess. Stoicism. Athleticism. Wealth (at least some day).

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• Rape Law After Harvey Weinstein by S. Green

Rape Law After Harvey Weinstein by S. Green

I see some parallels and applicability to the topics of C.S.A. (Clergy Sex Abuse), complementarian teachings to women about sex and marriage, and how churches mistreat victims of sexual in the Christian church, as the issues discussed in the article below.

Rape Law After Harvey Weinstein

by S. Green

In the #MeToo era, should we see sexual contact between the powerful and the relatively powerless as inherently coercive?

January 4, 2019

…Mr. Weinstein’s alleged crimes and misconduct can be divided into three broad categories. The first consists of physically forcing a victim to endure a sexual assault against her will.

This is what the actress Annabella Sciorra, for example, alleges Mr. Weinstein did to her in 1993, when she says he attacked her in her Manhattan apartment. If proven, such conduct would clearly constitute rape.

A second category involves inducing a victim into sex by using coercive, non-violent threats – of the “have sex with me or you’ll never work in this town again” sort. Conduct like this typically wouldn’t have been prosecuted before the mid-1990s.

Today, it routinely is.

Legal authorities now share a broad consensus that sex without valid consent is rape, and that “consent” obtained by coercive threat isn’t valid.

What won’t be on trial in January, however, is a third and more problematic category of sexual misconduct, of the sort that not only Mr. Weinstein but countless other men have been accused of during the #MeToo movement.

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• An Epidemic of Disbelief – What New Research Reveals About Sexual Predators, And Why Police Fail to Catch Them by B. B. Hagerty

An Epidemic of Disbelief – What New Research Reveals About Sexual Predators, And Why Police Fail to Catch Them by B. B. Hagerty

If men were raped at the same number as women are raped by men, I have a sneaking suspicion that rape would be treated a lot more seriously in our nation (and in other nations), and rape kits would not be sitting unopened and untested for years.

Oh, and the conservatives out there, such as the Tucker Carlsons and others, who keep whining that men are supposedly bigger victims in our culture than are women, and ergo, society has no need for feminism – especially in light of information like that presented below – you guys can kindly S.T.F.U. and F.U.

(For the naive Christians out there: click this link if you’d like to know what “STFU” stands for.)

You guys make me embarrassed to be a conservative.

An Epidemic of Disbelief

Snippets:

What new research reveals about sexual predators, and why police fail to catch them

…Spada’s estimate was conservative. Eventually 11,341 untested rape kits were found, some dating back more than 30 years—each one a hermetically sealed testament to the most terrifying minutes of a woman’s life, each one holding evidence that had been swabbed or plucked from the most private parts of her body. And in all likelihood, some microscopic part of her assailant—his DNA, his identity—sat in that kit as well.

Or kits.

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• A New Documentary About the Victims of Dr. Larry Nassar Indicts Both the Specific Culture of U.S. Gymnastics, and the More General Disinclination to Believe Women, Sophie Gilbert Writes

A New Documentary About the Victims of Dr. Larry Nassar Indicts Both the Specific Culture of U.S. Gymnastics, and the More General Disinclination to Believe Women, Sophie Gilbert Writes

A New Film Reveals How Larry Nassar Benefited From a Culture of Silence

The sports doctor was able to assault so many athletes for so long. Erin Lee Carr’s HBO documentary, At the Heart of Gold, explores the environment that protected him.


What’s hard to comprehend, now, is how much of Dr. Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse of more than 300 preteen and teenage girls was conducted in plain sight.

Erin Lee Carr’s new HBO documentary, At the Heart of Gold, includes excerpts from instructional videos Nassar posted online for other sports doctors to observe.

In them, he runs his hands over girls’ bodies clothed in leotards; points out (and touches) one athlete’s gluteus muscle; massages one girl’s chest; pats yet another on the butt. Nassar went even further in private sessions with athletes, giving procedures he called “intravaginal adjustments” with ungloved hands and without prior warning.

Often, when he did this, the girls’ parents were standing in the same room, watching while Nassar abused their daughters, listening as he talked nonstop the whole time.

Nassar, as At the Heart of Gold documents, was uniquely positioned to get away with what he did.

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• Tucker Carlson Is Not A Victim, and Yes, His Recently Unearthed Comments About Women Were Insulting and Sexist

Tucker Carlson Is Not A Victim, and Yes, His Recently Unearthed Comments About Women Were Insulting and Sexist

A day ago, a site published some content by Carlson, where Carlson was speaking to a radio host named Bubba The Love Sponge.

Among those comments by Carlson were some sexist, creepy, obnoxious opinions about women, girls, rape, and child sexual abuse (you can read in detail about this below).

Today, more controversial comments made by Carlson years ago were released, comments pertaining to other topics, which I won’t cover here.

Today, some conservatives are actually attempting to defend Carlson.

I’m a conservative myself, but there is no way I am going to try to defend the indefensible.

Carlson’s comments and attitudes about women and girls are in fact disgusting.

One of my biggest problems with other conservatives and with Republicans (I am a former Republican myself) is that they will swear up and down that they are not sexist against women (as Democrats often claim them to be), but then, they will in fact support the most sexist ideas and opinions, and they will spout off the most sexist things.

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• Journalists Suspended Over Their Participation in Secret Facebook Group That Encouraged Online Harassment of Women by Hadas Gold

Journalists Suspended Over Their Participation in Secret Facebook Group That Encouraged Online Harassment of Women by Hadas Gold

Journalists Suspended Over Their Participation in Secret Facebook Group That Encouraged Online Harassment of Women

by Hadas Gold / February 2019

Paris (CNN Business) Several prominent French journalists have been suspended and another could lose his job over their participation in a secret Facebook group that encouraged the online harassment of women.

The existence of the private group was first reported last week by French newspaper Liberation, which said it was founded in 2009. The group called itself the “LOL League” and was made up mainly of men.

Members of the group have admitted that it was used to harass women.

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• Conservatives Still Misunderstanding and Misrepresenting the Concepts / Terms Toxic Masculinity and Traditional Masculinity – The Christian Post Editorial by M. Brown

 Conservatives Still Misunderstanding and Misrepresenting the Concepts / Terms Toxic Masculinity and Traditional Masculinity – The Christian Post Editorial by M. Brown

A very brief reminder of who I am or what I believe:
I used to be a Christian gender complementarian, but I left complementarianism years ago, and I now question (but did not reject altogether) the Christian faith.
I do not identify as a feminist for reasons I explain here.
I remain a conservative but left the Republican Party approximately three years ago.
(In other words, I am not a liberal, I not a feminist, and I am not an atheist.)

In the past few weeks, debates and conversations about the concepts and phrases of “Traditional Masculinity” and “Toxic Masculinity” broke out once again thanks to the APA and a television commercial by razor company Gillette.

A few days ago, I was skimming the headlines at The Christian Post site and stopped to read this, by a Michael Brown:

Is it harder to be a man or woman in America today?

In that editorial, the author, Brown, discusses Traditional Masculinity and Toxic Masculinity (in this post of mine, I will pretty much use both phrases interchangeably).

In that editorial, Brown linked to a Tweet he made, in which he inserted a Twitter poll, asking ‘who has things worse, men or women.’

After I finished reading Brown’s editorial on The Christian Post site, it was evident to me he has a flawed understanding of what the term “Toxic Masculinity” means, so I tweeted at him to say as much, and I was very polite through the entire exchange.

I did not use profanity, lose my temper, engage in name-calling or personal attack (ad hominem) when tweeting to Brown.

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• The Right Should Reject Tucker Carlson’s Victimhood Populism by D. French

The Right Should Reject Tucker Carlson’s Victimhood Populism by D. French

I am a conservative – but I am repulsed and amazed at how so many other conservatives minimize or are else blind to the problem of sexism in American culture, and they feign ignorance of what Toxic Masculinity means. Conservative talk show host Tucker Carlson is among those conservatives.

One of my pet peeves with fellow conservatives is how they fault liberal, secular feminists for supposedly maintaining a “victimhood culture” in regards to women, but all the while, the same conservatives making this argument often paint men as being victims.

I’ve blogged on that topic before:

You Say You’re Against Victimhood Culture Yet You Depict All Men As Victims

Here is an editorial by David French addressing conservative Tucker Carlson’s victimhood mentality (Carlson shows a continued failed understanding of what “Toxic Masculinity” means, and he regularly has on his program, as guest commentators, conservative women who bad-mouth liberal feminism and who claim boys and men are under attack in American culture – in other words, Carlson gives air time to the notion that males in the United States are victims who should be pitied and protected):

The Right Should Reject Tucker Carlson’s Victimhood Populism by D. French 

January 2019

Carlson accurately identifies certain maladies, but they are maladies that public policy can’t cure.

Yesterday Tucker Carlson delivered the monologue heard around the conservative world.

He addresses one of the fundamental questions of our time — why, when GDP is rising and America is immensely rich, are so very many of our fellow citizens dying deaths of despair? As he bluntly says, “Anyone who thinks the health of a nation can be summed up in GDP is an idiot.”

He says many true things – that people long for connection with each other, that we can’t separate economics and family life into distinct spheres, and that men suffer from a unique challenge in modern American life.

But he also says false things. He says that manufacturing “all but disappeared over the course of a generation.” It hasn’t. He says, “increasingly, marriage is a luxury only the affluent in America can afford.” Yet a healthy, faithful marriage is often the gateway to affluence. Affluence is not a prerequisite for marriage.

He casts American boys as a generation of burnouts, yet the best evidence shows that marijuana use is only on a slight uptick and is still way down from its highs in the late 1970s and early 1980s. (Some evidence even suggests its use has stabilized in recent years.)

Carlson is advancing a form of victim-politics populism that takes a series of tectonic cultural changes — civil rights, women’s rights, a technological revolution as significant as the industrial revolution, the mass-scale loss of religious faith, the sexual revolution, etc. — and turns the negative or challenging aspects of those changes into an angry tale of what they are doing to you.

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• At the Evangelical #MeToo Summit, Christians Grappled With Just How Deep the Church’s Sexual Misconduct Problems Go by R. Graham

At the Evangelical #MeToo Summit, Christians Grappled With Just How Deep the Church’s Sexual Misconduct Problems Go by R. Graham

At the Evangelical #MeToo Summit, Christians Grappled With Just How Deep the Church’s Sexual Misconduct Problems Go by R. Graham

Dec 14, 2018

Snippets:

Within weeks of the ignition of the #MeToo movement last fall, activists with ties to evangelicalism began pointing out that abuse in Christian contexts often has its own awful dimensions.

Church leaders—typically men—are generally assumed to have God-given authority, for example. Scripture and theology can be used as weapons to perpetuate silence and shame.

And institutions pressure whistleblowers and victims to muffle potential scandals in the name of protecting God’s work. The activists called their movement #ChurchToo.

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• Expressing Anger is Healthy. Here’s How Parents Can Encourage Their Girls to Get Angry and Show It by K. Rope

Expressing Anger is Healthy. Here’s How Parents Can Encourage Their Girls to Get Angry and Show It by K. Rope

As I’ve noted before, Christian Gender Complementarianism is nothing but Codependency for Girls and women.

My mother was a Christian who believed in traditional gender roles as taught by the Baptist church, and she was definitely codependent – in part because of those sexist Christian complementarian teachings, but also due to having been raised in an alcoholic family where she took on codependent behaviors to try to protect herself.

One aspect of complementarianism – of codependency – is to socialize girls and women to suppress their anger.

Secular culture also plays at that game as well, but churches lay it on even more strongly, and tell girls and women it’s “God’s design” for girls and women to always be sweet, agreeable and smiley, to lack boundaries – so, if you are female, you’re never supposed to show anger.

Since I’ve abandoned complementarianism and codependency, I’ve had to learn how to show anger, and I’ve had to realize it’s okay to show anger – this comes after years and years, up to my early 40s!, of repressing anger.

One thing that continual repression of anger (and boundaries) can do in a person is lead to, or intensify, depression and anxiety.  God did not design girls and women to be perpetual, loving, sweet, little cupcakes who never express their anger, no matter what.

My mother definitely taught me from youth to place a premium in how others perceived me, that I care more about what others thought about me than what I thought about myself, and that I come across as “likable” and “sweet” to everyone all the time – that was a huge, huge parenting Fail on her part.

Expressing Anger is Healthy. Here’s How Parents Can Encourage Their Girls to Get Angry and Show It 

Snippets:

In telling girls to be nice and stifle anger, we neglect to teach them they have a right to be respected

by K. Rope

….The other book, “Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger” by Soraya Chemaly, looks at the extensive research on our gendered relationship with anger.

There is little difference in how boys and girls experience and express emotions, says Chemaly, but there is substantial difference in how we respond. Girls are rewarded for being pleasant, agreeable and helpful.

By preschool, children believe it is normal for boys to be angry, but not girls.

“We are so busy teaching girls to be likable that we forget to teach them that they have the right to be respected,” Chemaly told me. And the effects of that carry into adulthood.

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• Sexual Assault Victims Who Turn on Sexual Assault Victims by K. Burmeister

Sexual Assault Victims Who Turn on Sexual Assault Victims by K. Burmeister

Sexual Assault Victims Who Turn on Sexual Assault Victims

Snippets:

October 2018

Most sexual assault survivors are supportive of other survivors, but sometimes a sexual assault victim comes along who isn’t supportive. Sometimes these victims are outright hostile toward survivors.

It can be hard to understand why these fellow victims would try to throw other victims under the bus. In my experience, there are a few reasons this might happen, and I believe it’s important for us to be aware of these reasons as we’re having these difficult conversations.

….They Might Actually be a Jerk

Anyone can be the victim of sexual assault. Women. Men. Straight. LGBTQ. Adults. Children. Elders.

And jerks. Jerks can be sexually assaulted too.

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• We Shouldn’t Need Multiple Accusers to Stop a Sexual Harasser By Jill Filipovic

We Shouldn’t Need Multiple Accusers to Stop a Sexual Harasser

By Jill Filipovic

September 12, 2018

It took 12 women to push one man from his perch. Leslie Moonves, the chairman and CEO of CBS, departed the company after a total of a dozen sexual-harassment and assault allegations were leveled against him — six over a month ago, then six more on Sept. 9 after weeks of discussions but little action on ousting one of TV’s titans.

This is how these cases seem to go: One person speaks out, or maybe two or three talk to a reporter.

Only after the initial accusations are made public do the floodgates open.

This cascading effect — that it’s tough to get anyone to speak out first, but appears almost inevitable that more voices will then follow — illuminates some of the remaining challenges of combatting sexual harassment across our culture.

….We now seem to expect that a harasser will have a long list of victims, whether he (or she) is famous or not.

But there are consequences to that assumption: It inevitably makes it harder for a single accuser to have her claims heard.

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