Thursday, February 4, 2010

The DADT saga, revisited (along with a rant about feminism).

In my previous blog on the subject, I pointed out that I think DADT is stupid and useless (if not quite that pointedly). I linked to a post at VFTP that linked to a post at Atomic Nerds by LabRat.

I've agreed with LabRat's statements almost completely. I ran into the almost with this post. Specifically:

All that said, one comparison frequently brought up is women showering with straight men, soldiers or not. And it’s true, women are generally unwilling to shower with men they’re not sleeping with, and it IS different than showering with other women.

Part of it is that there simply is no context in our culture in which men and women are nude together that is NOT explicitly sexual. Either way, any woman learns by the time she’s done with adolescence and early adulthood that if she doesn’t want to be groped or worse, she needs to set and maintain clear boundaries- which definitely do not include hopping in the shower with a guy you’d mind having sex with. I’d mind showering with a strange guy not because it would really bother me that much to have him see me naked- I figure if he’s interested I’ve probably already been naked in his imagination anyway- but because absolutely nothing in my experience prepares me to trust that he will keep his hands to himself.

I find these statements insulting, and I replied in comments as follows:

“Part of it is that there simply is no context in our culture in which men and women are nude together that is NOT explicitly sexual.”

True, and maybe that’s part of the problem. Is a straight man’s discomfort with unwanted attention any more reason for segregation than a woman’s?

Don’t get me wrong, I think DODT is stupid, and I’ve agreed entirely with your previous posts on the matter. I think gays have every reason to serve in the military as straights do, or women as it may be. But there are reasons for segregation of men and women in the military (wrong reasons, imo). Do straight men (and women as the case may be) not deserve the same protection from unwanted attention by the same sex as they receive for unwanted attention from the opposite sex?

And yeah, I get that whether they realize it or not they may be getting it already, and it should be dealt with as any unwanted attention that crosses the line should be. But it raises a legitimate argument for ending segregation between the sexes as well, and frankly I don’t think anyone is willing to consider that no matter how legitimate it may be.

As you’ve said before, assault is assault. It should be dealt with accordingly. Shouldn’t all men and women in the military (and the rest of society for that matter) grow up and realize that being naked doesn’t mean “let’s fuck”? Sexual interest is a two way street, plenty of people are going to be interested in you that you aren’t interested in. Unless it crosses the line, shouldn’t people just get over it?

Personally, I think the best thing that could happen in terms of sex equality is complete ending of segregation between the sexes, but of course that’s just because I’m a lecherous man who wants to stare at naked ladies (let’s just ignore the fact that I can do that any time I want by getting online, or if I need the real thing going to a strip club).

I've said before that I'm a radical feminist, and that the biggest gulf between male and female equality is segregation between the sexes. I fully acknowledge that women are predominantly the victims of sex crimes, and that men are predominantly the perpetrators, but the solution to that problem is not building more walls between people (making guns harder to get doesn't stop criminals from getting them, why would making women harder to get stop a rapist?). The solution is harsher penalties for these disgusting crimes and working to convince victims of such crimes to stop protecting their rapists and molesters by destroying evidence and refusing to cooperate in sex crime investigations.

It is a well documented fact that most sex crimes go unreported. How the fuck is anyone supposed to stop a rapist they KNOW NOTHING ABOUT?

Yeah, some people blame victims. And some victims blame themselves too. Neither is a good enough excuse to let another person suffer the same fate.


Ave said...

I've been doing some backreading on your blog (you're a log more active on here than I was imagining--it's a lot of reading) and I wanted to note that I see a marked improvement in the quality of your writing from when I first began reading your blogs. Stellar writing, Robert!

RobertM said...

Thank you! I guess it's like any other skill: practice practice practice!