Men learn that:
- Women are weak—physically, as well as mentally.
- Women will accept abuse as normal.
- Women like (or will accept) anything that a man does to their bodies.
- Emotional investment or connection doesn’t matter.
Women are expected to perform, whether they want to or not: This message is given to men and women from a variety of mediums and is repeated and reinforced on a constant basis. It’s why some men feel they are entitled to sleep with women who aren’t interested.
- Women dressed “wrong” should expect a man to violate her. If she wears a short skirt or a revealing top, a woman is “asking to be raped”.
- Women who drink too much are automatically inviting a man for sex. She let her guard down, so now he will follow-through on her silent invitation.
- Women who are promiscuous (or who simply enjoy sex without being in a relationship) should expect men they don’t want to sleep with to simply do it anyway. It’s the way it works. And besides, if she didn’t want to have sex, she wouldn’t dress in a way that showed her as sexy.
The overarching issue is not only a barrage of the wrong education/messages by the media and society, but also an attitude of entitlement on the part of some men. It’s well documented:
Rape is not about sex, it’s about control. And, be it from society or porn or their families, men are receiving the same messages over and over and over again:
- Real men are in control.n
- Real men are strong.
- Real men go and get what they want.
- Real men have control of their surroundings, including the people in it.
It gets worse. Society oftentimes punishes women who get hurt or violated. She “asked for it” so she “got what she deserved.” Victims are then shamed into believing they are “sluts”. And—back to the messages they received as young girls—it is somehow their fault.
Only this time they aren’t just thinking it to themselves; the world around them is telling them that they brought bad treatment and abuse onto themselves simply because they wore a short skirt and walked into a parking lot after dancing with the wrong guy in a nightclub.
The change needed is dramatic, critical, and dependent on simple realizations: Women need to wake up to the fact that their personal power is internal, and that their femininity, sensuality and sexuality is created from a sense of self-worth, not by seeking validation and desirability externally — no matter how many nude selfies Kim Kardashian puts up on Instagram claiming she is “empowered” as she sells herself for clicks. And men need to realize that true masculinity isn’t about who or what you control; that it emanates from who you can positively affect not who you can coerce or force into sleeping with them.
It’s important to note that many of these issues have been around for a very long time. One or two of these issues doesn’t change our outlook of women, relationships, and sex. What is fundamentally altering our perception is the combination of these issues, and our lack of recognition/acceptance that it’s happening.
Bottom line: Real men don’t take. They receive what’s given freely based on mutual want. Anything else is without honor, without integrity, and without dignity.
And Brock, wherever you are: I obviously wasn’t there when this all went down with your victim. But if your fathers excusatory letter is any indication of your mentality and what you learned as a kid, it’s no wonder how you turned out as entitled as it seems you have.
Of course, this is all just my opinion I could be wrong.
Written by Charles J. OrlandoOriginally appeared in
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