Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I knew they could see eye to eye! Part 1

Well they could if each weren't so busy trying to tear the other side's eyes out that is.

Go take a look at Britney Spear's new video Womanizer (I refuse to embed it).

So about two weeks ago there was a post on Feministing about it. The writer comes at this from the very valid angle of how this video perpetuates the myth of male sexuality.

Come on don't act like you've never encountered someone that thought that all straight guys (and perhaps gay men too and I just haven't seen it) think about sex all the time, want to have sex all the time, and if we could get away with it we'd have sex all the time. And based on that one can conclude that a man could never be raped by a woman. Why? Because "deep down inside he knows he wanted it".

That's what we call a myth.

Contrary to what pop culture may say about male sexuality this is not the case. First let's just do a gender switch. What is the usual reaction if a woman was raped and the notion came up that she really wanted it? Yes there are a lot of people out there that would believe that but there are also a hell of a lot of people out there that would argue against such a statement. So if its unfair to say that a female rape victim really wanted it then why is it fine and dandy to say that a male rape rape victim really wanted?

So the question is why is it okay to assume that since a man always wants sex there is no such thing as "against his will"?

The writer says that such a thing is a patriarchal value. That's close but I think there is something else that is just as powerful and (IMO) more widespread that that. Yes the notion that men always want it (and therefore cannot revoke consent) is an old and long ingrained idea but in this day and age I wonder why is such an old and wrong idea still being fed. I'm gonna say money. Hear me out for a moment.

Video producers are basically marketing the artists they produce videos for. And like any one else that is in marketing video producers are out to make the most money for the least effort possible (and by least effort I mean abiding by what is politically correct at the time). Unfortunately with this approach a lot of people will be offended and lot of toes will be stepped on. Commercials with idiot dads who are rescued by all knowing all forgiving wives. TV shows moms who are "too weak" to do things like fix a car, mow the lawn, or hunt. Music videos that say since men want sex so badly they are always consenting and therefore cannot be raped. It pays to insult or hurt one group to entertain the other groups.

And not only is such a video telling men that they cannot refuse consent but it tells women that since men want sex very badly it's okay to hit them, push them, and abuse them over it.

Okay this is going a bit longer than intended so I'm gonna split this one up.