Rape is not *just* about sex.

31 Jul

I returned home from a short break in Ireland to find that our Prime Minister David Cameron has made a monumental balls-up. Later this year (he plans), a filter will be placed over UK internet preventing people from searching for or accessing pornographic sites. People can sign up to have the filter removed, but that is hardly the point- it’s the kind of censorship that can escalate and I worry about where that escalation will end.
His reason for this filter is “online pornography is corroding childhood”. (Will somebody pleeeease think of the children!) He also claims that the murderers of April Jones and Tia Sharp accessed child pornography before committing the crimes. The thing is, child pornography is generally not something you’d search for… unless you’re already a paedophile, and child pornography is, of course, illegal in the first place. So in order to be seen doing something, he has decided that rape pornography must also be banned, even if the actors are consenting adults.

Of course real rape is vile and if there’s even the slightest doubt about the consent of the performers, it should be removed, but performers of this kind of work sign release forms and disclaimers to say that they’re happy and safe. In addition to this, many are interviewed before I should know- while I am not an adult performer, I am a bondage model and sign these forms all the time.
It isn’t a secret that pornography depicts an unrealistic view of sex, but then spy films depict unrealistic versions of spies and after Casino Royale aired, MI6 did not see an increase in applicants (I checked!). There is no evidence or study that shows that watching violent pornography encourages people to commit violent acts.

I’m not surprised… as pornography is about sex and rape is about control While the physical act is sexual, in most circumstances the motive is control- dominance. There is an unusually high correlation between rape and arson convictions; in both crimes, the object is to control the victim, either by violating their body or destroying their property.
If rape was a crime caused purely by sexual desire, victims would conform to a type: mostly young and attractive. However, people of all ages and types are raped. Many serial rapists attack the elderly. Why? Because these people are vulnerable. I saw this myself in the company of sex offender/photographer Shaun Colclough. The sentence he repeated was “you are vulnerable… you look vulnerable.”

This is why putting such a misguided law into place will have little to no effect on rape statistics, and particularly child- centred sex crimes. In fact, the idea that viewers of extreme pornography must also be paedophiles is dangerously like suggesting that BDSM fans and gay people are also that way inclined. It is why I worry about where this will lead- will bondage websites be considered pornography? Even mild damsel-in-distress scenarios? This affects my job and I do not even consider myself an adult worker.
What about television? Films? The Last House On The Left has a brutal rape scene in it. In Kill Bill, the part involving Buck-who’s-here-to-fuck and his friend is very, very disturbing. Will both be banned too? I agree that more could be done to prevent sex crimes but censoring what the public watch and do not watch is NOT the answer.

I’m sure anyone reading this knows that rape is drastically under reported compared to most crimes. This is due to a combination of things- namely shame, fear of repercussions, fear of not being believed and a ‘what good will it do?’ attitude perpetuated by the fact that in many cases the answer is ‘none’.
What Cameron could do is lengthen the prison sentence for rapists (currently averaging eight years, not including early release and parole etc). He could look at changing sex education in schools which currently sends out a ‘don’t get raped’ message to girls while neglecting to tell boys ‘don’t rape’. He could insist on lessons about consent (which is a huge grey area) and not getting drunk or drugged enough to a) be unable to consent and b) be unable to tell if someone consents or not, as this is an issue too.

He could address the lingering idea that clothing affects rape statistics. Reports on reports on reports have indicated that clothing does nothing and that targets are chosen due to perceived vulnerability, not ‘slut factor’. Perhaps this would help assure victims that the only person that should be ashamed is the rapist.
Rape pornography has little to do with child sex crimes or, in fact, real rape. The problem is that it’s easier to scapegoat and ban extreme pornography than it is to prevent crimes. Cameron, you are a coward.

28 Responses to “Rape is not *just* about sex.”

  1. falstaff36 July 31, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

    Well, Ol’ Camesies is a thatcherite (I won’t give that evil hag the honour of a capital letter), so this pathetic display fits right in with his M.O.

    • roswellivory August 3, 2013 at 9:39 am #

      I’m afraid I actually know very little about politics- I can read biology textbooks and ebncyclopedias for fun but politics makes me go cross-eyed and angry, lol!

  2. Frivolous Monsters July 31, 2013 at 9:44 pm #

    This all happened before in the nineties with the Bulger murder (I think) where they pointed the finger at the violent films. I think any sort of psychological thinking about cause and effect has gone out of the window in the search for proactive headlines.

    There is so much wrong about rape in the media as you cannot have a discussion about it, especially if you’re a man, as lots have been hauled over the coals for trying.

    It doesn’t help how some (many?) rape campaigners believe that all men accused of rape are guilty as I have heard I have heard them on the news – abusing statistics – declaring that they need to increase the percentage jailed, even though they’re talking about people found innocent in court cases.

    This is a whole hornets’ nest of a discussion!

    Surely this internet thing is unworkable and hopefully will turn out to be yet another government U-turn.

    • roswellivory August 3, 2013 at 9:36 am #

      Oh, I remember learning about this in sociology. (I was too young at the time to get it, though I heard a little about ‘video nasties’. (Still haven’t seen “Child’s Play”- looks crap.)

      It is true that men seem to be pushed out of rape-related discussions (I think people forget that men also can get raped and attacked.) There was a study quite some time ago now (can’t remember the exact details- sociology class again), in which a rape case was acted out in front of different court settings. The deciding factor over the fate of the accused was the gender of the judge.

      I’m very much hoping Cameron will realise he’s being a monumental douche and pretend the whole thing never happened.

      • Frivolous Monsters August 3, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

        I’ve never seen any of the Child’s Play films either: according to Wikipedia there are six of them with one out this year! I don’t know the full argument about those films, but I imagine that and the children with pornography debate should be controlled by the same thing: their parents!

        • roswellivory August 5, 2013 at 2:26 pm #

          Absofreakinglutely!
          I think although some parents are idiots, most know their children enough to know what’ll freak them out or disturb them. My mum let me watch anything like ‘Alien’ from a very young age. Anything realistic, she took case-by-case.

    • rhicooper August 15, 2013 at 5:46 pm #

      The finger was pointed at Childs Play because the 2 murderers replicated things they had seen in the movie in order to kill Jamie Bulger. They admitted that they had watched the movie without permission or supervision from parents. However, there must already be an underlying issue for them to think that it is ok to replicate these things and not understand right from wrong. It is a very tough thing to debate because some people do copy what they see, some don’t, it depends on a hell of a lot of factors.

      • roswellivory August 17, 2013 at 10:41 am #

        Holy crap.
        I’ve just read through the case notes (and plot of Child’s Play). I’m researching my next book (crime) so am reading a lot of very nasty stuff but that is one of the most horrific things I have ever read. The killers should still be behind bars. O_O
        Still, I do think someone has to be very very sick in the first place to replicate such a thing and a ten year old does know right and wrong. 😦

        xx

        • Frivolous Monsters August 17, 2013 at 12:24 pm #

          I remember mentions – from the time, for some reason I think it might have been on Newsround – of another film that suffered from copycats which led to kids lying down in the middle of roads and resultantly getting killed. Looking about know I think it’s ‘The Program’ from 1993.

          Whilst such source material may be used as a cause célèbre (if that’s the word) by certain areas of the media on a high-profile bang-a-drum which hunt you can’t hold aloft the vast minority and use their actions for the guidelines of how everybody else has to live.

          And as for the Bulger killers I do know of someone who was involved in the case and I heard brief mentions of the things that went on that were kept out of the media (certainly at the time, I don’t know now) and they were horrific. The route of such actions cannot be placed at the door of a “monkey see, monkey do” mentality even though I’m sure we’d all agree that those kids shouldn’t have seen the Child’s Play films… whatever they are like.

          • roswellivory August 20, 2013 at 10:26 am #

            That’s weird! I haven’t heard of that one. I think that if anything is even remotely like a film, the film gets blamed rather than the person’s own psycho-mentality! Both Kill Bill and Oldboy have had it in the neck at some point.

            Nope- I totally agree ten year old children should not be watching horror films- that blame should sit at the door of the parents, but I refuse to entertain the idea that if they had not seen the film, Bulger would be alive. My mum was pretty laid back about films- if it was realistic, it was just kept out of my way- but I was introduced to Alien and Terminator *very* early on.

  3. khaled July 31, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

    I am I big fan
    I buy your magazan from amazon I readed thanks

  4. Liddy August 1, 2013 at 9:56 am #

    Well informed and well researched piece!

    It’s good that you made suggestions at the end – it’s very easy to complain about things but to offer a solution is better!

    I completely agree with you!

    What I think they should also change are:

    – Putting lads mags into opaque packaging and putting them on the top shelf, out of reach and eyes of children.
    – Banning page 3 girls – it’s really off putting having to read about world events and seeing tits on the page opposite to floods in Pakistan! Either that or they could do things the Viennese way and have a page 3 guy once a month in all the metro newspapers =P

    It is a thankless job being an MP, I guess. But it just seems that politicians introduce new laws without doing the most basic of research!

    He was so critical of Labour’s nanny state ideas and here he goes doing just that! -.-

    Keep writing!

    xxx

    • roswellivory August 3, 2013 at 9:30 am #

      Heya!

      Thanks, love! I think a lot of the time, people think it’s best to be seen doing something immediately rather than putting together a real plan.

      That’s a good idea- lads mags make me cringe! Though if Page 4 became a sexy guy page then I think that’s pretty funny. 🙂

      I actually feel quite sorry for politicians- not that most of them aren’t douchebags- but I doubt people go into politics with the express vision of screwing the country up. I’m sure most have good plans but then discover it’s all undercover crap and red tape. I’d hate to be a politician!

      Hope all’s well in Vienna!

      xxx

      p.s. Did you ever watch Cow and Chicken as a kid? Very stupid, but I translated the theme tune into German today, LOL!!! Small triumphs, small triumphs… 😛

      • Liddy August 3, 2013 at 11:46 pm #

        Haha! Yes! I loved Cow and Chicken but looking back on it now, they do look a bit disturbing!

        I’d love to see your German translation of their theme song! Send it to me so I can have a good giggle!

        The Beatles translated a few of their songs into German because they had a massive fan base in Germany so you should check out ‘Komm Gib Mir Deine Hand’ (I Wanna Hold Your Hand). They aren’t direct translations from the English lyrics though.

        So where are you headed to for your next adventure? =]

        xxx

        • Liddy August 3, 2013 at 11:47 pm #

          Oh and apparently they’ve put an age limit on the purchasing of lads mags, you now have to be 18 to buy them….I thought there was already an age limit! 0.o talk about corroding childhoods!

        • roswellivory August 5, 2013 at 3:22 pm #

          Lol! The theme song is firmly lodged in my head. Okay, no teasing… 😛
          Mutter hat eine Huhn
          Mutter hat eine Kuh
          Vater ist sehr stolz
          Er ________ nicht wie
          Kuh! Huhn!

          Bwahahaaaa! (I didn’t know ‘care’)

          Oh god, I must listen to that one. A friend told me to look for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme in German- a lot of syllables squished into a little music. 😀

          I’m off to Kent, then North and was going to Australia but tht’ll be next year now. Next overseas travel as far as I know is Holland, but I could end up elsewhere next week.

          R xx

          • Liddy August 9, 2013 at 10:33 am #

            Haha! Ahh that’s so good! Well done! =P

            Yeah the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles one is weird to listen to but I can only find the theme from when they were still Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTcwZ6gRXnQ

            Wow! All that traveling must be really exciting but also really daunting not knowing where you’re going to be next! I’m sure you must be able to adapt really quickly to where ever you are. Or do you still need to take time to adjust?

            xxx

            • roswellivory August 17, 2013 at 9:06 am #

              Lol! Thanking you!
              I’m generally pretty good at adapting- I always know where the nearest chemist and late night supermarket is, but still need to adjust to the language and remember what food I will find easy/hard to buy. 🙂

              R xx

  5. wolfgang August 1, 2013 at 11:38 am #

    I don’t know what to say about this issue. It is said that many women enjoy masturbating to rape fantasies, though they always deny it, and I’m sure that this kind of porn works terrific for them. But men who do the same are potential rapists and this porn could motivate them to go beyond fantasies. Since I’m the father of a young girl, I have some doubts.

    • roswellivory August 3, 2013 at 9:18 am #

      Hiya!
      It certainly isn’t my thing but I do have a friend who I know is into that kind of thing, including role play. She may decide to come and weigh in on this post, or remain anonymous. It’s up to her.

      Re potential rapists, it hasn’t been proven that this is the case, but even if it is- I doubt this would lead to your child being in increased danger. Rapist may equal ‘monster’, but it does not equal ‘paedophile’.

  6. Tony Segura August 2, 2013 at 10:31 pm #

    I agree with you whole heartedly, are people fighting this?

    • roswellivory August 3, 2013 at 9:15 am #

      Thankyou so much. As far as I know, there are quite a few petitions online but I can’t find a single ‘official’ petition. As soon as I find one, I’ll link it on my next blog.

  7. phydeau August 7, 2013 at 9:18 pm #

    Well said.

  8. Alex Lucas October 11, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

    In my opinion, it’s a sneaky attempt to introduce the beginnings of Chinese / North Korea style mass censorship under the guise of protecting children. If you’re against it, they can say: “Well you must be some kind of deviant!”

    They’ll not just be blocking porn, they’ll be blocking message boards, unpopular opinions, free speech, websites dealing in esoterica… anything which doesn’t support how they want us to think basically. And if you opt out? Well then your name will go on a register.

    Dubious.

    • roswellivory October 16, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

      I have very mixed feelings about censorship but am definitely against that kind of crazy mas scensorship (especially as my website is banned!)
      I guess we’ll see what happens though.

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