I Am Not My Cock

I Am Not My Cock.

There, I said it. I never thought I was going to need to, but welcome to 2005, I guess.

Before I go any further with what is likely to be a profanity laden tirade, how about some background. The Blogosphere has been alit lately with a lot of discussion about the subject of rape, mostly centering around that poor girl in Aruba and the implication that she somehow may have brought her unhappy circumstances upon herself.

For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, I welcome you to the planet Earth. I’ve set up an Earth-orientation tent to the left of this website. Please contact my office for further questions.

For the rest of you, the discussion of the Aruba girl’s disappearance has plopped the media back into its usual comfortable position, namely the chance to replace real journalism with MORAL OUTRAGE (age age age). Naturally, because our society’s morals are strictly organized around who should have access to pussy, media coverage has inevitably tilted to the “Just what was that girl doing in that place anyway?”

Atrios noticed this odious development early on, and made the following what-should-be-blindingly-obvious observation:

My guess is that they are very angry with the missing white woman for not providing them with a sufficient number of genuine news updates, so they’ll start pushing the “she deserved what she got” angle.

Having previously made mention of media sexism over at my own website, I find it ridiculous that anyone could possibly find fault with his observation. Hell, TiVo CNN, MSNBC or Fox during any given 24 hour period and you’ll be deluged with The Girl Gotta Have it imagery.

And yet somehow, someway, there’s always some douchebag political writer storing pent up sexism like water in a camel’s hump, patiently awaiting the moment when he’ll need to feed off of it for dear life, and inspiration. I fully expected conservatives to provide such dickheadery, but I was amazed to see it pop up on the left, from the mind of normally not a dickhead Steve Gilliard.

Steve, responding to the aforementioned Atrios post, started things off on the right foot. He rightfully pointed out racial and class bias inherent in coverage of the story, but then out of nowhere he turns into a pandering, fretting Ward Cleaver:

But what surprises me is that no one asked about the lax supervision on this trip. Because these were middle class kids, their drinking and screwing around wasn’t really a factor in the news coverage. Clearly, these kids were not closely supervised while they got drunk and picked up men. The chaperones who should have put clear limits on their behavior, well, were too busy screwing around on their own.

Um, I’m sorry, but did I miss something? Are 18 year olds no longer allowed to leave their houses without minders? Or is Steve being a moralizing intentionally obtuse prude? As if to answer my (only slightly rehtorical) question, the hole he dug gets deeper and he fills it up with complete bullshit:

Now, I’ve always been confused as to why a girl would go off with three guys. Was she going to pull a train? Or did she have two spare sex organs for them to use?

Steve, let me answer this one for you: Because it’s none of your goddamned business, that’s why. Got it? Let me add also that Who gives a goddamn why she goes off with three guys? Maybe they were talking about playing trivial pursuit. Hell, I once went to a hotel with 3 girls I met at a concert, in order to play monopoly and share cigarettes. Was I annoyed that none of them wanted to make out with me? Yes, but that’s not the point. The point is that Steve Gillard apparently gets turned on thinking about girls with more than one vagina. Ew.

I’m kidding, I swear!

Because otherwise, that sounds like a really bad decision. One which she should have been warned against. Boys in groups tend to do things they wouldn’t do alone. And the expectation of sex must have been high.

You know, and this is just me, but girls often do things in groups they wouldn’t do alone, just like boys. For instance, I wouldn’t think of playing soccer alone, because that would be stupid.

What also needs to be discussed with women going overseas, even to a vacation resort, is the perception of American women, courtesy of Hollywood. Which is this: they’re easy. European men see American women on vacation. In a place like Aruba, it’s even worse. So they expect American women are easy targets, and even better, they don’t hang around, so if there are any “accidents”, they deal with them at home. This was even the source of a column in the Onion, where this girl was waxing poetic about this Italian guy and the Italian guy was bragging about banging this silly American girl. Well, there’s reality in that, and I’ve seen it.

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner. The old men can’t help it/girls are stupid monster rears it’s ugly head, and my jaw hits the floor. I have to ask if Steve has ever even left this country. Every single nation in the world believes that the women in other countries are mad sluts. My dad told me, just before going to England, that European girls do it like “shaking hands”. English people insisted to me that the Germans were ho-nasty freaks. I met someone from Poland who told me that she got tons more play in England than in Poland. The grass is greener and way, way sluttier on the other side, no matter where your yard is. To act like this isn’t the case is willfully know-nothing, and beneath Gilliard’s normal level of discourse and knowledge. It’s embarassing even having to point this out.

Which bring me back to my original point: my cock.

I Am Not My Cock.

And guys, you aren’t your cocks either.

You see, as Gillard’s oddly obtuse observations demonstrate, there is a widely held belief amongst even liberal men, that male humans are predators. That they are first and foremost nothing but a cock. After that, balls, then eyes, then rage, and somewhere way down the line, they become capable of speech, thought, and memory.

Whatever.

I want to go on record as saying a big, mean Fuck You to every single man who has ever claimed that men are incapable of stopping themselves when pussy is on the line. Here’s why:

I have never raped anyone. I have never hurt someone because they wouldn’t put out. I have never gang raped someone. I have never died from blue balls. I have never exploded because some sideboob accidentally came into my line of sight. I have never raped anyone. Shockingly, I also think this is a pretty normal state of affairs.

This isn’t something I’m proud of. That’s because I can’t be proud of not raping people anymore than I can be proud of not shitting on myself whenever I laugh. Not being a rapist is the default fucking setting. Far as I know, most men have never raped anyone. I assume this means that rapists are a minority of men, and in a normal world you’d think that not being an evil, violent monster would make one more sympathetic to the victims of rape, who are also not evil violent monsters.

Hell, you’d think that most guys, who like me have never raped anyone would think to themselves “Hey, I don’t go around assaulting people. I don’t rape women. When a girl says no, or turns me down, I handle it like an adult. And now that I think about it, I think I’m kinda normal. I guess being able to not hurt and murder and rape is the norm. Why, that means rapists are fucking evil freaks. Golly gee willikers, who’d a thunk it!”.

Apparently, that’s not the case, as demonstrated by Gilliard’s well meaning but clueless observations, and by some frankly disturbing commentary on his and other sites. Tons of male bloggers and commenters are suddenly stepping over themselves to equivocate and fiddle back and forth on the subject of rape. Sure, they lazily toss in disclaimers about their sympathy to women who have been assaulted, but that’s usually followed quickly by a lecture on how women ought to behave.

These sad douchebags state with a straight face the manifesto of all sexist dillweeds who can’t wait to castigate women for being sexual beings: “Men”, apparently meaning them, “can’t control themselves”, and therefore women shouldn’t be surprised by being assaulted. Really? From this point of view, it’s somehow the woman’s responsibility not to get raped, rather than society’s responsibility to punish and prevent rape in the first place.

I Am Not My Cock. Seriously.

Think about what the argument that you have no control over yourself says. They are arguing that men are either animals, retarded children, or monsters without self restraint. who must therefore be carefully controlled and protected from women. Rape after all being, in their worldview, an inevitable outcome of coming within 3 feet of pussy.

Honestly, why would ANYONE want to go on record as even obliquely justifying sexual assault? And with the Corky defense no less? Are you fucking insane? What’s next, going on record as “seeing how NAMBLA has a point”? As far as I can tell, rapists, like murderers, are the bad guys. Then again, you can legally kill someone who is trying to kill you. So there is, occasionally, a justification for murder. There is no such analogue for rape. Rape is, simply put, evil inflicted through sex. There is no defense for it, and anyone who goes looking for one out to be ashamed of themselves.

Is it true that some people of both sexes behave stupidly, overly trusting or even self destructive? Do people of both genders deserve to be held accountable when they fuck up? Sure! But then, I’m thinking about criminal behavior here. Last I checked, fucking isn’t illegal. Neither is drinking, singing, staying out late, or acting stupid.

And my point? I Am Not My Cock.

Contrary to what many men (even on the left) seem to think, most guys can and do meet women all the time without even once assaulting them. It’s really easy. You just, you know, not be a rapist. Most guys, far as I know, don’t lose control of themselves when they see even a hint of sideboob. So why in hell do we men feel the need to sympathize with, identify with, or justify the behavior of people who haven’t learned the first thing about civilized behavior, or worse, rapists? How can it be so difficult for us to realize that rapists are the lowest form of scum, and that their victims are, in fact, victims?

Rape Victims do not ask to be raped, and no matter how carefully or irresponsibly they may behave, they do not deserve to be raped, no matter what circumstances one may feel makes a situation hazy. Which by the way don’t actually tend to, you know, exist. Got it guys? Rape victims deserve justice, sympathy and support, not your judgment or advice.

Look, I know the majority of men, myself included, are raised in a horribly sexist culture that considers our cock-prerogatives to be of utmost cultural importance. We’re taught to look to the male perspective first, and it bleeds into everything. Sexism is a problem, and women should be ready to deal with it. But guess what dipshits – The answer to that problem isn’t to tell girls “Them’s the breaks. If you can’t handle it, fuck off!” The solution, for those of you not following me, is to fight the actual problem, which is sexism and male entitlement.

But most importantly, I am not my cock. Period. I am not my balls. I am not my hormones, my sex drive, or my lust. I am not my cock. I am a man, capable of making decisions, capable of self control, capable of thought, of reason, of love and hate and lust and boredom and choice. My cock obeys my commands, and not the other way around. Guys, you are not your cock either. You have total control and you are not a slave. Don’t fall into the trap of believing otherwise.

I am not my cock, and I’m really quite happy about it. Anyone who feels differently just isn’t a man.

40 thoughts on “I Am Not My Cock

  1. Pingback: This Space For Rent

  2. Wow. Thank you Ross. I’ve been disturbed by the “blame the victim” mentality in the left blogsphere also. If women and men never went alone together the human race would cease to exist. If you deserved to be raped or killed from going alone with a man (or 3 men) than I would be dead several times over.

  3. Thanks for this, Ross. Another ugly side of this whole thing is when women like me legitimately criticize sexism in men, they retaliate with even more sexism. I was accused of babbling, having “daddy” issues, turning this into a situation of psychotherapy and otherwise being told, as women usually are, that our experiences are not interesting and not worth bringing to the table when Men are Talking About Important Things. Like how if a girl even gives off the implication she’s up for sex, she has no choice but to put out. I refuse to accept that. Like another commenter on my blog said, a man by the way, I demand a world where a girl can even explicitly tell three guys she’s going to fuck them, go with them, change her mind and have them respect her right to do so. That’s the standard. Lowering our standards is not going to make things better.

    And god, I so spend most of my socializing time with men, and I don’t “expect” to get raped. Granted, I’m usually with my boyfriend or a good male friend who definitely can be trusted, but still. I can imagine what kind of judgement would be passed on me if I were alone with someone I didn’t know for 15 minutes and he assaulted me and it was found out that I was at a ROCK SHOW with THREE MEN and DRINKING BEER. Like I am like every weekend.

  4. Bravo, Ross.

    And yet how fucking pathetic is it that your post here could be a lone voice of reason and sanity among left males? What kind of fucking world do we live in, anyhow? It’s not like your analysis hasn’t been out in the world, acccessible to any male who doesn’t have his head up his ass, for a generation and a half. I learned this stuff before Kos was born. It’s infuriating.

  5. Good post, Amanda.

    Yesterday there was a touching and disturbing diary on dKos about one woman’s story of abuse. It was deeply personal. It really hit home to me and a lot of other women about the culture of fear that women live in with regards to sexual assault. Somewhere along the way, the comments turned into “what about us men? We get abused too!”

    I had never thought about it quite that way until I read many of Amanda’s posts and that post a dKos, but it is really true. When I was a grad student we tried to start a women’s network. We got so much grief from the male graduate students that it could never get off the ground.

  6. Amanda -

    Unfortunately spending time with a man you know and trust is not a way to keep from being raped. Most rapes are committed by someone with whom the victim is acquainted or even knows very well – which makes the crime even more “intimate”.

  7. I realize this only adds to the chorus, but THANK YOU FOR BEING THE VOICE OF FUCKING REASON. It’s a comment on our times that “gee, men are capable of self control” is percieved as some sort of extreme leftist statement. Kind of like “we should abide by treaties” has become.

    Anon: Amanda is, unfortunately, QUITE aware of that fact. Doesn’t mean she’s going to isolate herself from half her fellow humans.

  8. Yeah, unfortunately I do know that from experience. Still, you gotta keep going. I can still trust my judgement, since I’ve been right about men a good 95% of the time, I think.

  9. Amanda & theogon -

    Didn’t mean to offend. I guess I started in the middle of a conversation.

  10. No worries, I wasn’t offended. You’re right about that, which just makes the argument that it’s up to women to be safe all the more offensive–it really be safe, we should never be around men at all because ultimately, you can’t say for certain what is inside another person’s head.

  11. “Not being a rapist is the default fucking setting.”

    Obvious and brilliant. Somehow you managed to get at the meat of what is wrong with EVEN suggesting that “she was asking for it”.

  12. And one more thing, Ross: didn’t some evolutionary ‘scientists’ write a book some years ago in which they claimed that rape was a ‘reproductive strategy’ for those men who could not spread their genes any other way?? Wtf??

  13. Yeah, that’s true. But to be fair, that study generated more controversy that those scientist’s previous one, in which it was determined that “begging” or “paying for it” were the only options open to the assholes making that study. Zing.

  14. I agree with your point that it’s normal to have complete control of your sexual behavior.

    Suppose a guy and girl at her house on the couch and it looks like they’ll end up having sex, but the girl changes her mind and the guy feels compelled to continue and assault her because “he can’t stop”…what would he do if he heard her parents coming in the front door?

    How much control would he have then?

    I disagree, though, with your attacks on those questioning her judgement. That’s not unfair or sexist. Just because it’s normal not to steal I’m not going to leave my brand new car in a bad neighborhood at night with the keys in the ignition. If I did that and you questioned my judgement, you’re not condoning stealing.

  15. And assholes those scientits certainly were, Ross! Unfortunately they (and people like Charles Murray and Robert Wright) are still cover story material and taken seriously!

  16. I’ve never been able to understand why men don’t rise up in anger at the people who suggest that you are all fundamentally rapists, untrustworthy, incapable of self-control. It’s demeaning and insulting, and I’m glad you took that position on so bluntly. Thanks.

  17. I can’t help thinking of Leonard Nimoy’s book, “I am not Spock”.

    Good rant, BTW.

  18. Dan said:
    “I disagree, though, with your attacks on those questioning her judgement. That’s not unfair or sexist. Just because it’s normal not to steal I’m not going to leave my brand new car in a bad neighborhood at night with the keys in the ignition. If I did that and you questioned my judgement, you’re not condoning stealing.”

    The difference, and the reason Ross is getting so steamed over this, is that if you leave your keys in your car and it gets stolen, NO ONE TRIES TO CLAIM THAT THIS EXONERATES THE THIEF. But if a woman uses poor judgement and gets raped, suddenly she gets ALL the blame for anything that happened, and the fact that the rapists COMMITTED A CRIME is just… lost.

  19. Aruba! Jamaica! Ooh, I wanna take ya to Bermuda, Bahama, come on, pretty mama!

    That said, I think the media’s sexist character attacks on Natalee were just a set up to give Sean Hannity more crap to yell at the Aruban officials about and increase his ratings.

  20. The only thing I do not understand is why men on the “right” would be more likely to think men can’t control themselves than men on the “left”. It seems to me that it would be more likely for those on the left to attribute male behaviour to some inherent flaw than those on the right.

    Other than that, this resounds. I especially like the observation on the media’s focus on who has access to what pussy (or dick or ass or what-have-you)

  21. A minor quibble: I wouldn’t say all rapists are evil freaks; some of them are simply clueless shmucks who don’t understand that insufficient resistance does not equal consent. Our culture, after all, does teach women that they’re not supposed to say yes to sex (because of course that would make them sluts), and so a lot of them get the idea that the only way to show consent is by not resisting, and as a result a lot of men get the idea that any woman who doesn’t resist (or doesn’t resist enough) is consenting.

    Yes, this is stupid, and no, it’s not an excuse for anyone’s behavior; deciding not to have sex with anyone who doesn’t explicitly say yes certainly isn’t bloody difficult, and no one’s going to fucking die from the resulting slowdown of their sex life. But I don’t think guys who can’t grasp this necessarily qualify as downright evil.

  22. Good rant, you made several nice points. This is actually a subject I’ve been pondering since long before the Aruba incident. Several of my closest friends and fellow students (who happen to be female, and SOMEHOW I manage to control myself) have confided to me personally that they have been victims of rape – so many that I’ve come to believe that unreported rape may be an ever-growing trend. It’s gotten so bad that I’ve actually asked myself: “WTF? Am I the only sane man left?” Rapists in general are men who let their id get the better of them, and don’t care either. Thanks for reassuring me that I am not the only man who doesn’t think with his dick.

  23. Thank you. That was wonderful, and exactly on the mark. I keep wondering who all these uncontrollable, testosterone-blinded manbeasts are, because every guy I know understands and deals with rejection like a civilized human being.

    I can’t believe I’ve taken the “she was asking for it” argument as only a slam against women for all these years, but you’re right; it’s equally insulting for men.

  24. hey, I just wanted to say thanks to all of you for reading, and for the kind words. Seriously.

  25. I’ve never been able to understand why men don’t rise up in anger at the people who suggest that you are all fundamentally rapists

    Rise: We do, depending on the suggestor’s genitalia. Look at how Andrea Dworkin was pilloried after Robin Morgan said it.

  26. Dan:

    I disagree, though, with your attacks on those questioning her judgement. That’s not unfair or sexist. Just because it’s normal not to steal I’m not going to leave my brand new car in a bad neighborhood at night with the keys in the ignition. If I did that and you questioned my judgement, you’re not condoning stealing.

    Two things:
    1) I am not a car. A man who rapes me is not stealing something. The the two acts are not similar, and while it might seem like an adequate anology, it is not: because no one can ever decide what the rape victim equivalent of “leaving your keys in your car” is.

    I realize that, to someone who doesn’t have to spend their life dealing with the spectre of rape, it seems very simple. But it is not. By simply being a woman you’re “leaving your keys in your car.” That’s basically what it comes down to, if you’re trying to use that argument.

    2) It is both unfair and sexist to question someone’s judgement after they’ve been raped. I mean, for christ’s sake, you’re talking about A RAPE VICTIM, not someone who just had their lunch stolen. I assure you that in even the most supportive of settings a rape victim will blame herself and “question her judgement” over and over again in her own mind. Why make it worse? Furthermore, who the fuck does anyone who thinks that they are in a position to “question” a rape victim’s judgement think they are? The whole idea that you are somehow morally and intellectually superior enough to make judgements about a woman’s behaviour, particularly in a situation involving rape, smacks of sexism.

  27. Jesus F Christ, Amen Amazon. Amen.

    I wish I had something better to add.

  28. I think you made excellent points that defend the general image and roles of males ands females in rape cases. I wish there were more men like you- people that take responsibility for their acts and don’t blame crimes on circumstances, bad upbringing or hormones. This isn’t a general attack to males, people: stop throwing a fit! Statistics don’t lie. Men rape and women are the ones getting raped. This piece is written exactly on what I regard the main problem of men who do rape: they don’t know their place. The author of this piece clearly showed he treats women as his equals as far as the subject sex goes and does not use sex as a machoistic way to seek power for himself. Rapists use the physical advantage they have over women. It’s that simple. They’re beasts that do never stop and question what it means for their victims having to live with the horrible scar they’ve bestowed upon them, or even worse: they realize this very well and use it as a weapon against women! May I also kindly point out that gang rapes by the military are a common war strategy? For more information, seek on Amnesty.com .

    Therefore, rapists deserve no sympathy. They failed the big exam of life. They destroy human lives, *even when the victim comes out alive*. Rape is not “having sex that is not so nice”. Rape is not “a bad time you’ll get over within a couple of weeks”. Rape is a brutal torture: mentally and physically. Some women are never able to able coitus in a normal way. Others can’t have children because of the “incident”. That are the physical scars. Emotional scars vary from locking themselves in house for years to not being able to bring a tampon into their vagina because this reminds them of the penetration of rape. We never here people say these things fla out, now do we? Well, it’s about time we did. I pity rape victims. I pity to see wonderful people completely destroyed just because some deluted mind. Rapists rape because they *can*. Take away they’re toy and they’re defenseless.

    The wound of rape never completely heals. It bleeds. Men know very well what they are doing when they start raping a girl. No matter if they were drugged, had a bad relationship with their mother or if they themselves were a victim of rape before- a human keeps his or her self responsibility and shoving that responsiblity in the shoes of rape victims is lower then low. She said *no*. That’s all there is to it.

    All we have to do now, is find ways to keep incompetent, disturbed males *in place*, for they obviously don’t know how to manage in this world. Society should stop treating rapists as the run-away, not-to-be-stopped horse. By releasing a rapist, our law system betrays all of us. Victims of rape also include the actual rape victim’s husband or boyfriend and her relatives. Imagine it was your sister, your wife, your daughter? All those people will *not* get the same Mary, Susan, Angie, etc. back. They won’t ever.

    A life for a life. That’s my philosophy. You’ve raped someone? Fine. Have a nice life in prison! That’s the only rightful punishment for any rapist. People still fail to see that every rape is in fact a human rights case.

    I still believe in a world without rape. Or at least a world in which rape is not such a common crime against women. I we want the world to change, we women need to work together. Our individuality has always hindered us in making progress on a politic and social scale. We need men like the autor along the way- men who realize there is absolutely no advantage or need to rape. *Men who place themselves above rape.*
    For there’s one thing we tend to forget: rapists do not lower their victims. They mainly lower themselves below any respectful standard. It’s not something to be proud of- destroying people just because you can. In fact, you just proved you missed the point of the social community life of human beings completely.

  29. Wow. You managed to put my views and thoughts into very clear and, most important, reasoned words. I applaud you but despair that this view is so rarely heard it deserves applause.

  30. What? You mean there’s no fucking sign (no pun intended) that rapists wear around on their chests? You mean to say that women don’t have this sense that detects “rapist vibes” so they know who and who not to go with? Damn… who’da thunk?[/sarcasm]
    The sad thing is, I was starting to wonder if it wasn’t partially her fault myself. SHIT. See how easily influenced we can be by the media? Thanks for saying what needs to be said.

    On another note, all the negative press and other negativities this is giving Aruba are completely not fair. Rape happens in Small Town Iowa. It’s not the country’s damn fault, it’s not the chaperone’s damn fault, and it’s not the girl’s damn fault. Anyone seen Batman Begins? Alfred telling the young Bruce “it was not you, it was all him”? Yeah. In America we hold the criminals responsibile for their crimes, not the freakin’ victims, and not the victims’ parents/guardians/chaperones. Why the hell is rape/murder different in that respect?

  31. My friend led me here because of how great your post was and he was right. You’re completely right. And thank you for saying everything you said. I’m just sad that in a time when our society on the whole is supposed to be the most enlightened…even *has* to say these things. You’d think by now this would just go along with the territory. We should learn it alongside ‘don’t touch the stove–hot’ & ‘look both ways before you cross the street’…’don’t rape people–no matter what’.

    Anyway, thank you again.

    Also, would you mind if I linked your entry to my livejournal to share your words of clarity with my friends?