A lack of plain common sense

April 7, 2006 at 5:13 pm (Society)

If you wanna see the abysses of human nature, you have to read through the comments on articles in a not quite exigent paper. Some guy called Ian wrote an interesting letter to the editor which doesn't contribute to the discussion but demonstrates a lack of common sense. But let's see what he wrote first:

If a drunk Newcastle fan started jeering Millwall in a group of drunk Millwall fans and was beaten, people would say he asked for it;

No, i would consider it to be another evidence of hooliganism in English football.

If you walk around with your wallet or purse in full view on top of a shopping bag then you will be told it was your fault for it being stolen; if you leave valuables in full view in a parked car – you will be told it is your fault if they are stolen.

I won't comment on these two now. You will see where this leads to.

There are times when a person's behaviour can lead to them getting into trouble.

Sure, you can either act illogically or sensible. Ian's comment is an example for the former.

What makes the individual's behaviour in a rape case something that should not be considered?

A good question. The answer is that the victim's (or survivor's) behaviour just doesn't play a role although an interesting twist exists. A man doesn't rape a woman (same with prison rape, etc.) because of wanting to have sexual intercourse. He rapes her to exert power on her. To impose his will on her. You see the difference? The motive primarily has nothing to do with sex! And this means that a sexual stimulus is just not necessary. Ian doesn't know that. Well, you can't blame him for his ignorance which he shares with so many men and women all over the world. But if you don't have a clue, why not keeping the mouth shut? But what if the victim's behaviour/clothing etc. does play a role? What if the rapist selects them over their behaviour? Well, this happens. Very often, i guess. But why should he do that after all what i wrote about the motifs? The reason is as simple as that: You have a better chance not to be convicted of rape thanks to all those Ian's out there who believe in (at least) partly responsible victims. Some rapists display common sense though it's not good.

It still does NOT excuse the rapist, but the 'well you asked for that' response is as understandable as in the previous examples it is not 'sexist' just plain common sense.

Sorry, Ian but you don't display any sort of common sense. And the only reason for the "well you asked for that" response to be understandable is the knowledge of so many Ian's being out there, living their lives and having no clue of what's really going on.

The Godfather says:

Ian, you asked for that!



  1. Austin of Sundrip Journals said,

    I’m not certain what to make of this blog. i think I’ve been reading for about 25 min now and it seems to all be for the betterment of understanding humanity as well as highlighting how society blames victims. What i dint know is who you are. Maybe I’ve just not seen it but is there a profile. Is there a particular reason that you wrote this blog? Is there one certain act or was it an “icing on the cake” type happening that motivated you to write this blog? I think you have a good understanding of victim issues and a good understanding of why offenders get off lightly or completely. But i have to wonder why a man would dedicate a website for the better treatment of women? Isn’t that crazy? I wonder why a man wants to dedicate a site to educate others so that women are treated better. …now there is something for me to think about.

    Austin of Sundrip Journals

  2. Austin of Sundrip Journals said,

    i’ve been thinking about this comment that i left. it sounds much more harsh than i intended it to sound. i was asking only what fuels your passion for this subject AND not asking who you think you are or anything along those measures. with that said, sorry if i sounded a bit harsh. i’m a survivor of sexual assault myself so when i was reading i was rather emotional. i think it came out that way in my comment too.


  3. Vito Corleone said,

    Well, i don’t think your comment sounded too harsh.
    I know that i wrote a lot about rape and “blaming the victim”. But that’s what a blog is for – writing down your thoughts/ your opinion on a special subject – isn’t it? It’s just that you often hear these kinds of comments about rape, etc. and i thought about it. And when i think about it i just get to the conclusion that the arguments not always seem to be grounded in reality or that those who make them have other intentions than to contribute to the better understanding of the subject.
    Blaming the victim is not only restricted to rape victims but i have the impression that rape victims are still treated different: Bashing rape victims seems to be much more common and also not only dependend on precedence (like bashing the victim when his car got stolen due to not locking it. You may hear “it’s your own fault” then but only then. But rape victims can be bashed anytime). So i thought i write down my own opinion. I try to figure out the reason why rape is a crime so highly polarising. Why do people behave the way they do?

    Your questions:

    “Is there one certain act or was it an “icing on the cake” type happening that motivated you to write this blog?”
    No, it’s just that i read pandagon.net and then got the idea of making my own blog. Doesn’t cost anything.

    “But i have to wonder why a man would dedicate a website for the better treatment of women? Isn’t that crazy?”
    It’s not that the site is entirely dedicated to women though i write about them almost exclusively. This reflects the importance of the issue rather than my attitude. I think that rape is always bad – regardless of whom it is committed to. But males are rarely the victims (except for prisons) and hushed up – maybe i should dedicate an article to them once. But female rape victims are on the majority and while child abuse is generally accepted to be a terrible crime (though i think that domestic child abuse doesn’t get the attention it deserves. People get much more embarassed when a stranger rapes a child as if a adolescent/adult accuses a member of his/her family though the huge majority of cases takes place at home. But then i think that those mechanisms work which make many people blame rape victims in general) this doesn’t apply to grown-ups the way it should. So it’s just logical to talk about women.
    But why do i talk about rape and not car jacking or murder or something else? I think that rape is really important since it inflicts wounds which never heal. The victim is in a way sentenced to life. And in contrast to torture most rape victims get blamed for what happened to them. So why not talk about it?

    “Maybe I’ve just not seen it but is there a profile.”
    There’s not a profile.

    Anyway, it’s good to know that there are actually people out there reading what i write.

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