A Tale of Rape, Misogyny, & Sexual Harassment or How President Pussy-Grabber Won

ruffieawarenessThe election of the Pussy-Grabber to the presidency and the revelation of Bill Cosby’s admission of using date rape drugs during sex form the perfect bookends for a year and a half of rape, sexual harassment, and misogyny. In between we’ve had many ignominious volumes:

  • Roger Ailes’ sexual harassment, rape, and sexual abuse of his female employees including the virtual enslavement of Gretchen Carlson.
  • Brock Turner’s rape of an unconscious woman including using a splintery piece of wood to sodomize her and his father, Dan 20-minutes of action Turner, who defended his son’s actions and begged the court for leniency. The apple don’t all too far from the proverbial tree. You don’t do the things that Brock did to that young woman without having worked your way up to it, and you can easily imagine that there are women out there that had equally fun times with ol’ Dan!
  • The resurfacing of Anthony Weiner‘s ongoing and by now painful inability to control his love of his own dick picks and inability to realize the rest of us aren’t.
  • The trials of two of the Vanderbilt rapists for a rape of an unconscious woman in a dorm in 2013 and that they, of course, photographed and video taped occurred over the summer. Brandon Vandenberg was sentenced to 17 years. Corey Batey was sentenced to 15 years. Brandon Banks and Jaborian “Tip” McKenzie have yet to be tried.
  • In this year of the summer Olympics, we had 16 US gymnasts accuse the team doctor and Michigan State University faculty member, Larry G. Nassar, of sexually abusing them!
  • This year we were witness to Bill Clinton’s investigator, Kenneth Starr, being fired as president of the world’s largest Baptist college, Baylor University, over his lack of zeal for investigating allegations of rape by Baylor athletes.
  • And, those are some of the higher profile rape-related events from this year. With a sexual assault occurring every two minutes, there will be thirty people sexually assaulted by the time I finish writing this post! We’re making America great again, America!
  • And, we aren’t even counting the sexual harassment of unwanted comments and the assault of unwanted touching, or the sexual microaggressions and transgressions that happen on an almost unconscious level every single day.

So, much aggression against women… where does it come from? Why do men do these things? Violence against women has many causes and can be very confusing. First, let’s dispel the notion that sexual assault, rape, sexual harassment, or misogyny is about sex or romantic relationship. They have nothing to do with the beauty or attractiveness of or sexual provocation by the target. They have everything to do with the perpetrator.

Psychology offers two broad explanations for violence which can be useful in understanding male violence against women: social learning theory and the social interaction explanation.

Social Psychology Explains

White_Marshmallows-958x364
Can Trump Pass the Marshmallow Test?

Social learning theory (Bandura) suggests that people learn through observing the actions of others, especially young children. And, if things seem to work out for the people we observe, we have a good chance of doing those things ourselves. If we identify with the model, we are even more likely to adopt the behavior. But, it goes beyond just vicarious reinforcement when it comes to violence. Repeated exposure to violence desensitizes us to the pain it inflicts on others — a diminishing of empathy. When you’re President Pussy-Grabber, you never had any empathy or self control, so it doesn’t matter how much exposure he had, he was going to hurt people no matter what and women in particular. After all, there is no way that President Pussy-Grabber passes the Marshmallow Test.

Wildebeest
Groupthink or Group Cluster…

The social interaction explanation makes use of realistic conflict theory (Sherif) and social identity theory (Tajfel). It suggests that violence is a form of social interaction and should be analyzed as a means for achieving an end such as respect of peers, possession of something valued, reducing frustration, having a sexual experience, or vindicating injured pride. Social identity theory states that we value the social groups that we belong to and derive our sense of self and esteem from the identity and esteem of the group. To enhance the esteem of the group, and, therefore, ourselves, we denigrate rival groups. Kinda like President Pussy-Grabber has done with immigrants, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, religious, and racial minorities, and women. So, if those who identify with the Pussy-Grabber want to strengthen that identity or improve their self-esteem, they’ll take an action that they imagine the Pussy-Grabber (a) wants them to, and (b) would wholeheartedly approve of.

Realistic conflict theory indicates that when groups compete for scarce resources conflict ensues. When the resources become very scarce, the conflict becomes particularly intense often resulting in violence.

Explaining Violence Against Women

3bearsnotinfrontofthekidIt is not hard to put these three ideas together to come up with a culture that promotes rape, sexual harassment, and misogyny. Children who grow up in households that experience conflict, dissension, strife, and violence tend towards social aggression. It can come from the media as well as your friends as school, too. It really depends on the degree of identity that the boy has with the perpetrator.

Then, if that boy has a strong social identity as a male, and makes women the out-group, he will be more likely to improve his self-esteem and his imagined standing in the group of males by attacking women.

While these ideas go a long way to explaining male violence against women, it doesn’t quite explain the non-violent sexual harassment or misogyny. To do that, we have to divide sexist attitudes of men into benevolent and hostile sexism. A benevolent sexist attitude patronizes women with the belief that they need the protection of a strong male. There is condescension which often results in mansplaining. These are the men who are horrified by the Pussy-Grabber because my god, I have a wife and daughters! Left unsaid is that they need me to protect them from aggressive men and that sexual assault is in and of itself horrifying and should be opposed. It also suggests that there maybe some ambivalence towards sexual assault where it targets other women.

Whereas, hostile attitudes tap into the scarce resources of the realistic conflict theory in that dominance is the scarce resource. Consequently, women become castrating bitches because only one can be on top. What is surprising is that men hold both of these attitudes simultaneously. One is for the Madonna-type women in their lives and the other is for the whores in their lives. Or, one is for the women that they like and the other is for the women that upset them. Obviously, these roles can switch.

If men can hold both attitudes, so can women. Human beings evolved to live in groups. We needed the group to help ensure that our offspring lived to reproductive age — if your offspring don’t reproduce, then you haven’t advanced your genes beyond the next generation and they will be removed from the gene pool. Women needed protection to take care of their children. They needed men to protect them and their children. They needed men to love them and believe that the child was the man’s child. So, we evolved with women being dependent on men when resources were scarce and difficult to get. Where a woman with a helpless infant or next to helpless toddler couldn’t fend for herself and children and needed the generosity of a man to share his resources with her. As distasteful as all of this is nowadays, that was evolution!

This explains why some women, especially white women, voted for the Pussy-Grabber.

Benevolent sexism states that as long as a woman is a Madonna, she will be protected. Hostile sexism states that when a woman crosses the line to whoredom, that protection turns into prosecution. Women who want birth control so they can have sex like men — free from the fear of getting pregnant — obviously are whores and need to be prosecuted. They don’t need men to protect them. Women who make equal pay as men are whores who need to be prosecuted because they don’t need men to protect them.

Until these views evolve, we are stuck with a system that was suited to the hunter-gatherers of the savannahs and not the thoroughly modern world that we live in. Until then, we are stuck being the United Fucking States of Fucking Stupid.

 

 

6 comments

    1. Howdy Usfman!

      He most certainly be protecting them from the abuses of our culture and our society, but, then again, they don’t see that treatment as abuse, either. Go figure.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

    1. Howdy Francese!

      Thank you for your kind words. I am shocked at how widespread real harassment and abuse is for women. Shocked. Most men don’t see it. I think if we could elevate the visibility of the mistreatment, more men would act against it. In the time of Trump, though, it is incumbent upon all of us to interrupt and disrupt abuse and aggression when we see it.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

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