Sexism in the music industry? Lily Allen says NO.

Find out why it’s hard out here for a bitch.

Join the twitter discourse with hash tags #HOH and #bitches.

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How about we cut your d*cks off?

…Enjoy?

– Claws xo

No (e)quality

The latest news on the grapevine: If you are a woman in Britain, and you value your clitoris – yes you read me correctly – then you may be facing the likes of one of the most ridiculous campaigns I have yet to every come across.

There is a movement currently being undertaken by Islamic men in Britain to force ALL women (not just Islamic), to have their clitoris forcibly removed, because apparently “ONLY WHORES NEED A CLITORIS”.

This mutilation is not only dangerous, but is a clear attempt to suppress the sexuality of women, because quite frankly, these mysoginistic pigs do not like the idea that women should also be able to experience.

One cannot tell me that it is ‘religion’ which urges them to suppress women in such way – in fact the Islamic religion preaches equality, and love. No, this is to be blamed on the ego’s…

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Teaching not to rape.

 

I think a valid point in this quote is that teaching people not to rape isn’t as simple as telling them ‘Don’t be creepy rapists waiting in dark alleys” but simply that consent isn’t automatic, and you should never assume. Also, society needs a lesson on teaching not to rape to address the ROOT of the issue, not just teaching the best ways to avoid rape, and how it’s your fault if you don’t.

What people don’t understand is when we say “Teach men not to rape,” we’re not talking about telling them not to jump out of the bushes in a ski mask and grab the nearest female. We’re talking about the way we teach boys that masculinity is measured by power over others, and that they aren’t men unless they “get some.” We’re talking about teaching men (and women) that it’s not okay to laugh at jokes about rape and abuse. We’re talking about telling men that a lack of “No” doesn’t mean “Yes,” that if a woman is too drunk to consent they shouldn’t touch her, that dating someone – or even being married to someone – does not mean automatic consent. We’re talking about teaching boys to pay attention to the girl they’re with, and if she looks uncomfortable to stop and ask if she’s okay, because sometimes girls don’t know how to say stop in a situation like that. We’re talking about how women have the right to change their mind. Even if she’s been saying yes all night, if she says no, that’s it. It’s over. That’s what we mean when we say “Teach men not to rape.”

Equal Pay Day

Think that there really is equality in the work place? Think again. We have previously published statistics from the U.S but how do we fare locally?

Last October AMP/NATSEM released a new report that showed a 25-year-old woman with post-graduate qualifications would, over her lifetime, earn $2.49 million. The 25-year-old who had taken the same classes and finished the same degree would accumulate $3.78 million.

However, the 25- year-old woman whom had completed her postgraduate degree would still not earn as much as her male school leaver counterpart – he would earn $2.55 million.

Upset? Annoyed? Perhaps a little angry?
Unfortunately this is not unique to Australia.

See what the Swiss women’s organisation, Zürcher Frauenzentrale did when they teamed up with the Swiss bank and ad agency Publicis Zurich for Equal Pay Day earlier this year.

– Claws xo

 

 

Women Perpetrators of Rape and their Victims – Cultural Dismissal.

I was going to write a post on this topic, however I do not feel as though I could have done it justice, unlike the post below.

The cultural dismissal of women perpetrators of rape and their victims

“I’ll kill your sister”
“If you tell anyone, you’ll be kicked out of school”
“If you tell your parents, we will beat you up”
“If you tell anyone, I’ll kill you”

Sound familiar?

The above quotes sound like sound bites from female survivors of rape. They often are, except this time the above quotes have been copied from male survivors featured in Grace Brown’s “Project Unbreakable” – an online platform that strives to “increase awareness of the issues surrounding sexual assault and encourage the act of healing”.

Rape against men by other men or women is something that is rarely spoken about in Australian society and when it is spoken about – it is dismissed, ridiculed and disregarded as a delusion by the male survivor. A damaging response to a horrific crime. Still in today’s society, we have a cultural expectation that men can’t or don’t want to say no to sex or sexual contact from anyone (particularly women) nor can they control themselves in when in the presence of another (again particularly women).

As a cisgendered woman, I was born into a body where sexual violence is expected, it wouldn’t surprise anyone if I was raped. Rape against women happens all the time and while some people take the victim blaming road, our culture tends to be sympathetic towards female survivors. There are campaigns and movements against it – Slut Walk, Take Back the Night featuring guest speakers and protests. Trained counselors sit on hot lines waiting for calls, doctors do rape kits as a routine procedure – the world knows and fights against violence against women.

Men not so much. Men have a body where the fallacy is told that they can’t say no to sexual contact- at all. They can’t or shouldn’t say no short skirts, jeans or to women walking past minding their own business. To the point that female survivors get victim blamed into thinking it was their fault because of the fallacy that men just can’t say no or can’t control themselves. Men have a body where it’s expected they’ll perpetrate sexual violence against women – not be survivors of it. Counselors aren’t trained for male survivors and if they are – they rarely encounter them due to lack of incident reporting, family members may swallow the fallacy it can’t happen. Society tells them, that they should want it or are gay if they don’t and if they can’t fight off a male abuser – they’re weak.

It’s a horrible thing to tell young boys and men that they are expected to want and have sex all the time and that they are regarded as nothing more than lower life forms who can’t control themselves in the presence of other people. Which is nothing more than to dismissed acts of violence against women anyway.

That is a very harsh sense of loneliness, when the world says you’re wrong and no-one is trained to help you process what you have experienced.

It’s insulting, damaging and disgusting and disregards male victims of rape and sexual assault. The statistics of male sexual assault would be much higher if men were taken seriously and not disregarded. Add in the shame of being a physically larger male who is constantly told they should be stronger than women, the shame of being violated, the confusion of not wanting it but still having biological responses to being stimulated, being told by society that it can’t happen to you or that you were wrong and that you should have liked it because “all men like sexual contact” or being accused of being gay if you didn’t like it. Combine all these things and you get a recipe for underreported sexual assaults against men.

Here’s a newsflash that people can’t seem to grasp: Plenty of female rape victims get wet or orgasm. It’s a biological response to being stimulated. Same applies to male victims. If someone stimulates an area full of nerve endings, your body is going to respond – whether you want it or not.

Why would a man report it? We can’t get women to report rape, let alone men.

This also ties into the fallacy that women can’t rape – therefore men and women cannot be survivors of female perpetrated rape and abuse. Women are still thought of as submissive people who can’t harm anyone because most of us aren’t as physically strong as men or because people believe women can’t be aggressive. We still live in an age where women are portrayed as sexy but are shamed for being sexual beings therefore encouraging the fallacy that women aren’t sexual beings, where out-dated ideas of rape still exist and where people can‘t fathom that women can be predators.

This sets a dangerous precedence in regards to rape by women – if society continues to ignore the victims of rape by women (men, women and children), they are directly contributing to enabling these predators to continue abusing their victims.  Suzana Flores, a clinical psychologist in this article by Autostraddle, recalls the three main responses to victims of rape by women (especially in the case of female victims)

“The three main implications are ‘Women are too weak to harm someone,’ ‘Lesbian rape is hot and it’s harmless. It’s not real.’ and ‘All rapists are men.”

Where does that leave the victims? Alone and retraumatized over and over from being told that what happened to them wasn’t real. Often being subjected to comments like the ones left on thisarticle:

“It wasn’t rape…. they got caught, he bragged or someone told on them, then someone started quoting scripture to him, (and the age of consent laws) and then it became rape. What 13 year old boy wasn’t dreaming about shagging a 18 year old who would show him the ropes? Lol”

“The boy tried to stop, but Steiner forced him to have sex.” HA HA, yeah right! He bragged about it to his buddies and got caught!”

“I agree. It’s kinda physically impossible for a woman to rape a man. He must of got caught or somebody told on him and he got in trouble”

Note: The above comments were made by both men and women.

I do like this comment from a man, upset by the comments dismissing an erection as consent:

“To all you people talking about “A man only gets an erection when he wants to have sex and therefore can’t be raped.” You’re idiots. Men get erections from stimulation regardless of interest in a person. Sweet Jesus a man can get an erection from a spinal cord injury. So by your logic his back isn’t really broken, he just wants you to jump on his dick and ride.”

Unfortunately rape by women and male/female as victims is rarely talked about and if it is talked about – it’s either dismissed or someone will interject with how women are raped at a greater rate by men and we should be focusing on that first and foremost. I disagree that we should be focusing on women as rape victims first and foremost – I believe we should be looking at all victims of all forms of rape first and foremost so we don’t leave victims in the dust.

This article originally appeared on the blog ‘Insufferable Intolerance‘ on the 2/10/13. The article was written by Rayne, an Australian blogger.

– Claws xo

Rape Culture Part One: Victim Blaming

As touched on in our previous posts, rape culture ( as previously defined, links rape and sexual violence to the culture of a society, and in which prevalent attitudes and practices normalize, excuse, tolerate, or even condone rape) is a common issue which rears its ugly head most often in the form of ‘Slut Shaming’ and ‘Victim Blaming’.

Now, in the case of rape and sexual harassment, it sounds pretty damn stupid. This person just got raped, how dare you insinuate that they deserved it because of what they wore/what they were drinking/what they doing/ previous sexual history/*insert any other ridiculous claim here*. But sadly, if you do even a little research, you can see cases everywhere of victim blaming from high profile cases, to examples of it in academia research and probably your own friendship circles.

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IT WAS A TRICK QUESTION – RAPE IS NEVER OKAY. (but really guys, that shouldn’t seem tricky… it’s just common sense).

Some people like to bring in legal jargon, unrelated questions (like those above) and loopholes that excuse rapists, and make it seem like a ‘grey area’ in society but in reality it’s fairly black and white. The rapist, not the victim is at blame here. As this article points out, the only common factor in all rape cases is a rapist.

You could get people to stop drinking, you can get people to cover up, to not be active sexually, or any other ridiculous rule over their personal freedom, but this doesn’t address the root of the problem. We need to remove ‘rape culture’ and start holding rapists accountable.

– Kitty xx

Why Feminism IS a Dirty Word.

You’re probably thinking how dare she! (or he). But let’s think about it, at the moment it is. Too many women disagree about what constitutes feminism. 

Take for instance the latest cele-bitchy argument involving none other than Miley Cyrus, Nikki Minaj, Kim Kardashian and Rashida Jones whereby Jones has taken it upon herself to call out the other three celebs as ‘whores’ for their near nude trend setting.

Jones tweeted ‘This week’s celeb news takeaway: she who comes closest to showing the actual inside of her vagina is most popular.

Whilst the use of bitch, slut and whore by the female population may have originated as a political move, probably third wave feminist, but has it gone too far when it amounts to actual slut shaming?

I would argue that part of the reason why feminism is in such a mess is that no one can actually agree on what it entails (and that is even if they are one of the few who actually know what it means). I mean, there are some that capitalise the word feminism to read as Feminism.

So I ask the question, how can we expect anyone to get what we are on about if we cannot even agree?

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– Claws xo