Julie Gillis wonders if it’s possible that one of the defendants in Steubenville didn’t realize the violence of what they did to an unconscious girl.
Trigger warning for pretty much everything.
Prosecutors may get conviction in Steubenville rape trial, but it will come at a cost.
“Well,” Westlake said, “it wasn’t violent. I didn’t know exactly what rape was. I always pictured it as forcing yourself on someone.”
I’m gonna quote that again.
“It wasn’t violent. I didn’t know exactly what rape was. I always pictured it as forcing yourself on someone.”
Is this where we’ve come as a people, that getting a girl either so drunk or roofied isn’t violent? That carrying her around while she’s puking isn’t violent? That ejaculating on her while she’s passed out isn’t violent? That penetrating her with your fingers as she’s blacked out isn’t violent?
Putting parts of your body into someone who isn’t capable of participating isn’t force? Sharing photos of the assault? Texting pics with friends of her?
It’s kind? It’s gentle? It’s peaceable?
EVERYTHING ABOUT IT WAS VIOLENT.
Their words. Their texts. The photos. Their laughter and callous disregard are the DEFINITION of violence, interpersonal violence, violence of the body, mind, soul hers and quite frankly, THEIRS.
This is what we need to teach boys, girls, people NOT to do. I don’t care what gender is acting this way, or complicit in the other gender doing it, or hiding in the shadows, or acting out violence in a wide variety of ways based on gender, or culturally sanctioned modes of violence, I don’t care.
Teach people what violence is and teach them to stop it. This whole culture is steeped in it.
I don’t want to blame things like Grand Theft Auto or Saw or Hostel, but I do also want to look to a culture that thinks torture in war is A-OK, that guns should be the answer to rape, that torture porn movies make millions, and I’ve got to wonder what the fuck is going on. Not that violence didn’t exist in earlier times, but still. And I get that many of these boys had been raised in football and so “violent” might mean “bash the opposing side down” but come on, really?
He didn’t know? Or else he did, and was just plain lying. Either choice is horrifying.
Next week, I’ll have a post up about violence, bystander intervention, teaching compassion and heroism instead of backing down and giving into group authority and why the concepts of “good” and “evil” are part of our problem.
Originally appeared at JulieGillis.WordPress.com