I am absolutely fed up with this "blame the victim" mindset which plagues America today.
Ann Coulter accuses the parents of the dead children of Sandy Hook of being fame whores, Penn State receives millions of dollars in sympathy donations because they refuse to accept that Joe Paterno was a pedophile enabler and they believe he was treated unfairly, and now, the final nail in the coffin of humanity, the Steubenville rapists are considered martyrs while the victim gets death threats for being a drunk whore who lured these poor boys to their unkind fates.
What is wrong with this country? What has happened that people now are so selfish, so narcissistic, so unfeeling? How did this happen?
I'm fed up, and I refuse to accept that this is now the way of the world.
I blame Snookie.
You're not far off, r1. The media has not helped.
The question is not why people blame the victim. There are always people like that. The question is why do you hear about it? The answer of course is that the right wing controls the media.
OP, blaming the victim allows spiritually and intellectually weak people (a majority) to avoid taking responsibility for correcting the evils of the society that surrounds them.
That kind of responsibility is too much of a threat. The blamers would have to confront the evil in their neighbors (which would make them anathema in their community) and in themselves. Then they would have to act against it. In a country as lazy and fucked up as the United States, that's a tall order.
One of the uses of leadership is to counter attitudes like you describe. Needless to say, our bought-and-paid-for political class has other priorities.
Actually, OP. I'm not a fan of everyone today playing a victim, as though nothing is ever their fault.
I have no idea what you're talking about. This has become a victim culture, where everyone deserves a cash settlement if someone looks cross-eyed at them.
Handicap parking spaces, free money, job help, special menus... the only way to get ahead now is declare yourself a victim, and watch the pity party begin. Who knows, maybe you're next- good luck!
R5, are any of the examples I mentioned people "playing the victim?" No.
Yes, there are people who feel sorry for themselves, but there are clear cut victims of violence and hatred who are now made out to be the guilty ones.
If, r5, you are referring to the Steubenville rape victim "playing a victim," I would like you to tell me your thought process. Because it seems that you are precisely the type of person I'm talking about.
I agree, R6, people who use wheelchairs can fight for a parking spot half a mile from the entrance like everyone else.
I guess I am, R7. I'll leave this thread now. Sorry.
Because America loves its narcissists and psychopaths...perhaps wants to be like 'Dexter' or Coulter on some level.
How this has come about is sure subject to discussion...perhaps it's in an American attitude that started with the genocide of Native peoples. Perhaps it's because media, run by narcissists, heavily promotes these values. In any event, it's great for friends of Rush, Coulter and others who would like us to turn a blind eye to gun violence and environmental consequences.
Ministry of Truth stuff, and the right wing does it best of all.
Oh no, r9, don't leave. Tell us why you are superior to those who are true victims.
It's not new, OP. Rape victims have been blamed forever and ever. It's a good measure of progress (or lack thereof). A truly civilized culture would be beyond that, and we're not even close.
All these points are true, plus there's the delusion that people cling to that since the victim is somehow to blame, either due to stupidity, lack of morals, whatever, such a thing could NEVER happen to me or mine. We aren't like them.
False sense of security.
Feel free to jump down my throat, as it were, but I wonder if some of this started post-racial diversity in the workplace. YES, we need diversity, yes, minorities of all sorts, including women in the workplace, were discriminated against (still are, but subtly), yes "quotas" are good to not let businesses get away with murder.
But. I wonder if a lot of white males were pissed of. I know there have been cases over the years (I worked at a law firm that did pro bono on one of the cases - SF Fire Dept) where white men would score high on, say, a fireman test. Or a police test.
But they would be passed over for a minority candidate with a lower score. I am not making this up or exaggerating it.
Used to be that a state trooper in NY State (I'm going back MANY years) had to be 5 10 and 180 or something. In the 60's, that rule might have been interpreted "better" if a woman was also 5 10 and 180. But I think eventually the height/weight requirements were lowered.
Fine, and this sort of thing also went on - 70's? in San Francisco. Height/weight limits were, I believe, waived. Perhaps to be supportive to Asian American candidates, often "shorter" (I am just quoting facts.)
But you tell me: who would you rathre have rescue you from a building OR "protect" you in a crime on the street: a "person" (doesn't matter male or female) of muscle and size, c. 6 feet, or someone 5 2 and 105 pounds? Which person do you think is probably physically stronger???
I'm fat, female, over 50, so fit "minority" status myself.
Sorry to ramble; my POINT is that perhaps once white guys, formerly the "ruling class" in their own minds, became "passed over", and there begin to be a number of "reverse discrimination" cases:
I wonder if this might have been the beginning. More likely, it occurs to me:
parents abdicating their responsibility for their kids. Wanting schools to do everything. "my kid is "differently abled"! he needs more time for tests! He can't eat this, or that! Waaaaaaaaaa!
A lot of it: lazy thinking.
Oprah is guilty of pushing this philosophy on the American public. Before her, the 'I am responsible for everything that happens to me' ala Louise Hays bullshit was a minor cult movement for AIDS sufferers and New Age fraus.
Also, the twelve step groups like AA and NA push the notion that you had a part in your abuse and must fess up to your actions, even if you were an innocent child of abuse or a woman/man victim of rape.
The Course in Miracles pushes the idea that you were abused or you suffered as a result of reincarnation and it was your choice to have experienced said abuse.
It's all bullshit of course but gained a huge new following because of Oprah. Oprah needed some sort of philosophy to explain to herself her incredible success because she is not that smart or talented. She knows that her great wealth is a fluke and felt guilty--so she has convinced herself that her success is a result of reincarnation, karma (the misunderstood American version) magick, and cosmic annointing.
I'll never forget when she said that the victims of slavery were asking for it in order to learn 'spiritual lessons.'
Michael Nodianos has had to leave school- now who's the victim?
The girl who was raped, r16. Not the rapist.
If he had never been caught, if he had never been found guilty, if the girl had kept quiet, would he still express regret?
It's been plaguing humans longer than America has been in existence.
In the case of the rapists, it's combined with the cult of athletes. Only someone in a position of undeserved privilege would act the way they did, and it should be expected that the very people who gave these boys that underserved status, would also want to give them a free pass for raping someone.
There's likely some misogeny mixed in to the mix. She has been reduced to a stereotype of a vapid teenage girl who's life centers around crushes on boys.
Hunty @R16, please.
Nodianos a victim? Hardly. If anything it will teach the little shithead two things:
1. Keep his big drunken mouth shut.
2. If he's unable to do #1, then at least make sure there aren't any camera phones around recording his drunken, adolescent rants for the word to hear (and record for posterity).
R14 pushing a tried and discredited conservative mantra. It is right wingers who heaped this shit on America. And when have any of them ever taken responsibility for their misdeeds?
r14 is on to something. These people who blame the victims are angered that they can no longer get away with their atrocities, so they fight back and point fingers, anything to absolve them of any guilt. It's very much a stereotype, but it is true that these people are white conservative males, and as in the case of Steubenville and Penn State, sports is in the mix. It is a macho thing to fight back against the victims, but they don't realize the hypocrisy in such actions because, in turn, they make victims of themselves!
The problem is that these people are also the ones who tell the less fortunate to "pick themselves up by their bootstraps" and "work hard," and above all to "take personal responsibility for their actions" when they take NO personal responsibility for their actions.
R16 is a prime example of such a person.
When a man is killed while wearing a white hood in Harlem...
I blame the victim.
[quote]Actually, OP. I'm not a fan of everyone today playing a victim, as though nothing is ever their fault.
Agreed. Had they been responsible parents, those 5 and 6 year old kids would've been armed.
Is someone here failing to take personal responsibility?
Not surprising at all. One in five Americans is mentally ill according to US government statistics. See link below:
[quote]They will always want more and more until they reach a black point where they will then pass out.
While I understand the noble message that the young man in R17's link is trying to send, from an addiction/alcoholism point of view he's enabling that young lady. Any one who drinks to the point of passing out in a strange place or in public has a serious drinking problem.
Let's hope the victim and her attackers are all receiving some sort of addiction counseling.
[quote]Also, the twelve step groups like AA and NA push the notion that you had a part in your abuse and must fess up to your actions, even if you were an innocent child of abuse or a woman/man victim of rape.
AA is all about taking responsibility for your own deeds past and present. It instructs its adherents not to deflect the blame for their own choices onto other people. AA does not tell people to blame themselves for having been abused by others.
The only people who cannot gain anything from AA are those who are so fundamentally dishonest to themselves that they can never shoulder the responsibility for their own choices and actions.
Stop it, r27. Just stop it.
Have you ever been to college? Have you ever been to a college party?
You don't have to be an alcoholic to get blackout drunk. What if somebody doesn't drink very often? What if that person goes to a party and someone starts feeding that person alcohol and peer pressuring to drink more. And then when you're not used to drinking, you don't understand your inhibitions are down. The thing is, that person, as long as they are of legal drinking age, is committing no crime punishable by law whatsoever.
Then that person gets blackout, passes out and then is raped.
Now on top of that you accuse that person who was raped of being an alcoholic? You're classically and predictably deflecting the issue.
And why aren't you calling the rapists alcoholic? They're drinking too, and maybe they wouldn't have raped anyone if they hadn't been drinking. Obviously, the way they joked about it, they sounded like they were pros at this. The setup is legendary.
Everybody makes mistakes. Drinking too much occasionally is not a crime. Raping that drunk person IS a crime. And even if that person who was raped is an alcoholic, it is NOT that person's fault because the person DID NOT ASK FOR IT.
Alcoholic - what a fool you are. You sound like a meth addict yourself.
[quote]Let's hope the victim and her attackers are all receiving some sort of addiction counseling.
Let's hope R27 finds a clue somewhere up it's bloated anus.
Oh, dear. Really, you've been conned by the Cult of AA.
If AA'ers are so honest than why do so many commit crimes 'in sobriety.' Why do so many women in AA tell stories of having been raped or twelve-stepped by older men 'with time.'
Why do so many members talk about having been ripped off financially by other members. Why do so many AA'ers not pay their bills, and have to declare bankruptcy?
I know about all of these things because I had a boyfriend in the program who refused to do work with AA'ers. That's because he said they never pay their bills! And he was a proud AA'er himself! But when it came to money, he knew better than to risk his livlihood with those flakes.
And yes, AA does tell it's members to take blame for being a crime victim. You are lying if you deny this.
R27 and R28 are twelve-steppers which is a program that enables rapists and criminals, because that's who goes to those retarded meetings.
Blaming the victim is what they do.
Raping a passed out person is a crime, but drinking too much and refusing to take responsibility for your self in public is motherfucking stupid and yes, courting trouble. It is not either/or; both things are true. That is why people like r29 find themselves losing the ears and wholesale sympathy of the sane and rational. I highly doubt that if the drunk girl in question had gotten in her vehicle and killed r29's closest relative, that she would be as willing to absolve Miss Blackout of personal responsibility in doing anything wrong or dumb just because she has a weak willpower and let her friends tell her what to do.
Drinking yourself into a stupor is not a crime, nor is it irresponsible, because everyone's reaction to alcohol is different. And most young women are plied with alcohol by men--so whose fault is that?
Why are there so many fucking PURITANS in America that blame women for getting drunk??!!
R32, I am not a twelve-stepper. I am a recovering alcoholic who attended AA meetings casually but long enough to know that it is not a brainwashed cult and that it demands rigorous honesty with oneself.
People who dump on AA are often seeking justification for the continuance of their own alcoholic drinking. Some people would rather destroy themselves then take accountability for their own choices. You can't help a person who won't help himself.
I am sorry that your boyfriend had some bad experiences with AA. It helped me tremendously and it has helped millions of others.
R31, I've been a member of AA for many years, worked the steps, some multiple times, and I do not remember ever having heard, let alone experienced, anything like this assertion of yours:
[quote]And yes, AA does tell it's members to take blame for being a crime victim. You are lying if you deny this.
R34 Your argument is borderline sexist and ancient. Most women have minds of their own. And they can control how much they drink and are smart enough to spot a good man from a sleaze.
"Drinking too much occasionally is not a crime."
You want to run that by everyone again? Because I believe it is if you get behind the wheel of a car drunk and kill someone. Or start a fight drunk and wind up behind bars. Or do you think everyone does the designated driver bit?
This whole case speaks to how underage drinking is acceptable in our society. The fact that an adult supplied the alcohol at this party has all but been brushed aside due to the disgusting crime that happened to this poor girl. And the nutcases who think that bringing up this issue equates with siding with the rapists. Meanwhile the guy who helped enable this crime is allowed to go free in the court of public opinion.
"Everybody makes mistakes."
Making light or "aw shucks" excuses out of people getting so drunk that they can't think for themselves is appalling. Binge drinking and drugging is a problem that has gotten worse among the youth with each passing generation. People like you with your stupid "Everybody does it" nonsense are absolutely no help.
A woman gets raped while out of her mind on heroin, we don't blame the woman for what happened, but do we say "Everyone makes mistakes" to excuse the fact that she was out of her mind on heroin? Or do we try and get the woman help?
There can be more than one pressing issue to this story, aside from the rape which the boys are clearly responsible for. Don't add to the problem by trying to minimize anything.
It's all about power, and the chief blame-the-victims douches all tend to be white, male, and in positions of authority (and those who sympathize with them). The most egregious cases I've heard of are military women who report sexual assault, forced to go through the chain of command which means that they are reporting to their rapist. And who are then held in violation of the military code of justice for adultery for having sex with a married man and are dishonorably discharged.
Many times, it's cretins like Coulter, who have landed in their positions of fame and notoriety out of no doing of their own and certainly not on their merits, who are the worst offenders. I mean, first she blames the 9/11 widows and widowers, and now the parents of Sandy Hook dead children? Does it get any lower then that? Surely Ann wakes up, looks in the mirror, and wonders why she is on teevee and sells so many books, because she has nothing to add to the conversation outside of disgusting platitudes and degenerate arguments. But, it makes bullies like BillO and Hannity glow with self righteous indignation, so she serves a purpose.
Even Justice Scalia, in oral arguments in the Voting Rights Act case before the court, tried to blame the victims when he said we have a culture of racial entitlements, as though there was -- and is -- no reason to have laws governing discrimination, particularly on states that have proven themselves incapable of governing without prejudice. I wonder how Tony would feel if we decided to pass some laws blocking fat, ignorant Italians from voting?
I think we're seeing more and more of this blame-the-victim mentality pervade our culture because of the changing demographics in our country, and the fact that (as the 2012 elections showed and as BillO opined on Faux Noise on election night) the white, male, Christian power structure is ending. We've entered the "anger" phase of facing reality, having reached the end of the denial phase and not yet reaching the acceptance phase.
But r31 clearly knows of which she speaks, after all her bf is an ex AA'r and no chance he would lie to her about why he can't get a job ,etc.
r37 Your thinly veiled misogyny is confusing, you must be a lawyer with the non relevant "facts" you spout. Drinking too much is not a crime, you throw the drunk driving and murder in to obfuscate the facts.
"Drinking too much is not a crime,"
•Annually, more than 100,000 deaths in the U.S. alone are caused by excessive alcohol consumption.
•Nearly half of all fatal car crashes are alcohol-related
•About 3 million violent crimes occur each year in which victims perceive the offender to have been drinking at the time of the offense
•Two-thirds of victims who suffered violence by an intimate (a current or former spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend) reported that alcohol had been a factor
Stupid, heal THYSELF.
R40 YOU are the stupid one. The fact of the matter is that excessive drinking in and of itself is NOT a crime.
Whether criminal behavior occurs as a result of excessive drinking or not is a separate issue.
Everyone who drinks too much does not drink and drive, or beat up their partners or commit another violent crime because of it. SOME people have a different reaction to alcohol that makes them violent. Not everyone becomes a belligerent drunk.
Hey, R40, asshole,
no one said that drunk driving wasn't a crime, you mind controlled AA loser.
She was just drunk, not a crime to be just drunk, puritan. She wasn't driving, asshole.
R38 is DEAD ON RIGHT. There is an anger that white males (AA er's, republicans, etc) have because they are losing their majority status.
My, my, such rage, such indignation. Well gee, maybe you shouldn't have been so hard on your white women if you wanted to keep the race going. There's a good reason why white women have turned to other races--often times it's because white men are too controlling and abusive, too critical.
Girls just wantt to have fun, you know.
It's no accident that all of these loser school shooters and child killers are young white men. They are enraged at their status as well. They feel their priviledge slipping away, and know that they won't get handed a good job or pussy just because they are white.
And yet, they just can't handle having to compete like everyone else. It's too much to have ot be in the mix with everyone else.
White women do just fine working with other races and competing on a fair level.
Why the difference?
I'm not stupid, dummy at r40. Let me reiterate this for you: in and of itself, DRINKING TOO MUCH IS NOT A CRIME. Sure you may have worn some criminally tacky outfits while drunk but you can't have everything and can't be arrested for looking like you stepped out of a 90's video. I get that you want it to be illegal to get drunk, but it isn't, not if you aren't driving. I hope you take your indignation to actual crimes, like child abuse. You seem passionate, use it.
R40 the act of drinking to much in itself is not a crime. Drinking and then committing a crime because you were drunk is a crime. Get it together!! Should people not drink to much sure I'll say that just like people should have safe sex every time and eat healthy and well every time but those things don't happen every time. Do you get it now?
Once again r42 goes off the rails right after she made some sense for a minute. I am lost by the latter part of the post. Reel it in, Rainman.
R46 is a twelve-step nazi who wants to criminalize alcohol ala Carrie Nation just because HE can't control himself so therefore, by projection, thinks that no one else can.
Now, to your question: why do white men blame the victims of crime so much? R38 did a better job of answering that than I can, but it's evident that white men and boys think they have a right to shoot up the world because they are losing their favored status in life.
read the paper
If this happened to a teenage guy, you would be baying for their blood and wanting them to be shot in the street. Many of you were more distraught when the gay couple who got married lost their belongings.
Because to many on the board the victim here in this case is seen as a future "frau", you refuse to see what is clearly an evil act from the teenage boys.
[quote] I highly doubt that if the drunk girl in question had gotten in her vehicle and killed [R29]'s closest relative, that she would be as willing to absolve Miss Blackout of personal responsibility in doing anything wrong or dumb just because she has a weak willpower and let her friends tell her what to do.
Check out r33's deflection from the topic skills. Classic. But you're right, if that girl got behind the wheel of a car completely shitfaced, well it wouldn't matter if she killed someone or not because drunk driving is illegal. Also, raping a person who is drunk is also illegal because in either case, the victim did not ask to be hit by a drunk driver or raped. Being drunk is not illegal.
And do NOT even preach to me about weak willpower. How many times have you been peer pressured to participate in risky behavior? Ever done any illegal drugs like smoke pot? Ever go for dinner and get margaritas or a bottle of wine and get behind the wheel of a car? Ever had sex without a condom?
If you answered "yes" to any of those questions r33, then you too asked for it, just like you believe that Steubenville rape victim asked for it.
Again, although it's underreported, men are raped more often than women in America.
Now, according to R33's logic, these men asked for it by being arrested. Why don't you, R38, go tell that to their faces?
I sure hope R33 tows the line in life because if he gets raped in jail he'll garner no pity.
What r48? I'm sorry, I was distracted by posting and wanking to James Holmes (poor guy was set up by the real world not approaching him on bended knee) I got lost in my fantasies..do you think Oscar Pistorius is gay? Because he is hot and I want to date him (blah, blah, other assorted stupid stuff)
Men are raped more than women in the U.S. ?
Maybe inside of prison, but not out in the real world.
do you know how to Google? Look it up. Far more men than women are raped in America, due to incarceration.
The stats are our there, why are you mad at me? The truth is the truth.
Many men have been raped, many women have been raped. They are not accountable for the actions done to them. WAKE UP!
I can't believe these words here, of all places.
DL has been hijacked by whack jobs this afternoon.
Again, R55, google it and look up the statistics. More men are victims of violent rape than women in America.
And just because they are/were incarcerated doesn't mean it's not important.
The DL has been attracting very hateful and bizarre trolls lately. I know the weather's bad here but still, one can put on a warm jacket, or go shovel snow for the elderly neighbors.
You know, make themselves useful.
Ah, the mark of a true master debater, the old "google it"defense. Now I know you are dumb or a troll because a true believer would have numbers.
keep picking fights with people who care about rape victims. Keep defending the rapists, chivalry is dead, ain't it.
R54 calls me an idiot yet quotes the "Beastie Boys."
America, it was nice knowing ya, but farewell thee, beloved land.
I stand behind my Beastie Boys quote, and you are a fucking dummy who is either deliberately obtuse or a complete idiot.
I love how you've all fallen for the media's 'rape victims always take the blame' crap. The sky is not falling chicken littles. You sound like a bunch of harpie fraus. There's no new 'outbreak.'
R14? You do realize that the height and weight requirements were an underhanded way of keeping women from qualifying for those jobs, right? Because the average woman in the era you refer to was closer to 5'4 and 140. Please tell me that you don't actually think that those requirements were an effort to select superior cops.
If you do think that standards were "lowered" to accommodate women out of some affirmative action bs, you should really take a look at your own biases. Do you really think that cops need to be a certain height? Do they not carry weapons and have the law on their side? That right there is more effective than any 5'10, 180 pound man. The fact that they usually travel in pairs and have hundreds of backup cops at their disposal is another fact that flies in the face against height requirements.
Anyone who doesn't delve into the real meaning of such bullshit requirements is trying to find a reason to justify their own bias and ongoing discrimination.
As for the blame the victim mentality, which permeates our culture, I would say that it is something that is actively cultivated by the powerful.
We know that corporations get ahead by destroying weaker, less powerful competitors. Society embraces the winner in that kind of struggle. That attitude trickles down from the top and comes out in every move a company makes. The company does layoffs and management says they just got leaner and tougher by cutting the "fat." Society gets the message that those laid off were inferior and thus deserving of their fate. The people laid off struggle to find new, comparable work and the rest of us label them weak and incompetent. No one wants to give a hand up to anyone who's down and out.
Society gives them the message, "sorry, we would help if you were stronger and better. But this would not have happened to you if you were stronger and better. You must have deserved what happened."
The fact that this attitude is reinforced through the media is no surprise because the companies treating people like shit are the same companies that own the media. Is it really such a surprise that the "Survivor" mentality gets applied to victims of crime?
I think this attitude has less to do with blaming victims or specific crimes and more to do with a horrific societal groupthink that has become entrenched.
Society must restore me. Get out of the way of me and my service monkey.
r27 is gross.
And fuck all the gay men who think this girl is somehow to blame. You fucking well know better.
I blame op.
I hate to agree with Coulter....but I do wonder why so many of the Sandy Hook victims parents want to be on TV.
Diana, no you don't hate to agree with Coulter because you're doing it. But that's OK. Why don't you ask one of the parents? Go to their houses and ask them why they are on tv so much. Maybe because fucktards like Coulter are alive and spouting crap that tries to avoid the real issues here.
Have the parents been responding back to Coulter/Republicans ideas? Some of the parents seem kind of republican...is it a conservative town?
It's a big NRA town, r65.
OP = mass media hysteria. We were making fun of this a week ago. OP is a gullible dickhead. Probably gets all their 'news' from Nancy Grace.
R69, maybe b/c the media keeps going there and asking them to be on camera?
I was the victim of a sexual assault in college -- no witnesses; my word against theirs.
I'd seen too many TV movies in which the victim was blamed and put on trial.
I walked away. I regret it, but not after seeing reports on those convicted teen rapists being portrayed as the victims.
No, R73, OP is absolutely right.
It's not just a "media culture" of blaming the victim... it's a CULTURAL issue. Every rape victim has had it said that "well, they were a slut anyway", or "she was asking for it, look what she was wearing", etc, etc. It's repugnant.
Murder victims don't escape either. "He should have had a gun", "She shouldn't have been walking out that late by herself", etc. The blame is on the victim. Always.
Even gay people get the treatment: "You're the reason people hate gays" ... sound familiar? It's never the homophobe's problem, it's always that flamboyant queer that made him hate.
Poor people who can't find a job because there are no jobs are "lazy", and it's their fault they're poor.
And on and on and on.
It's disgusting, and shame on anyone and everyone that perpetuates this nonsense. Start blaming the people who actually commit the crimes... what a concept!
People blame the victim to feel safe. By saying that they would never do what the victim did leading up to the crime (or other bad thing), they assure themselves that it can never happen to them.
The reason there's been a massive upswing in blaming the victim is that people no longer feel safe.
The justice system is corrupt, the wealthy are destroying the middle class, employers are discarding good workers like used Kleenex, desperate and disenfranchised people are everywhere, and the immoral feel free to prey on anyone. Tiny, frightened minds refuse to accept the state of the world, and blame indivicual victims, so they can feel safe.
Everybody is going to hate me saying this...
While we have plenty of problems - there is none of this blaming the victim behaviour where I live. This seems to be very much an American thing. It's completely baffling and reprehensible.
R65 and R77 nailed it.
We are taught that our lives are our responsibility: "If you aren't successful or if you have misfortune, there is something wrong with you, change it."
We could just as easily taught that a person's success and fulfillment depends on his contributions to society, and when a person is suffering, society has a responsibility to help.: Life is a two-way street.
That is not the attitude in other countries.
What's the difference between a British worker and a U.S. worker? The British worker sees a billionaire driving a Rolls and says, "We all should have nice cars."
The U.S. worker says, "If I work harder I can have a Rolls."
That attitude is pervasive because it is in the interest of the rich who own the corporations that own the media don't want us blaming them. They want us blaming us.
Utah Phillips put it this way.
"All of us assign blame in our own best interest. Right?
"Well, if we assign blame in our own best interest, that means blame
is relative. And if blame is relative, then one of the important
functions in society becomes who controls the blame patterns.
"Why is it that large bodies of workers, like in my country, assign
blame downward to some welfare chisellers down at the bottom, you
know, they say "trying to get a little bit of something for nothing,"
and they never assign blame upward to the handful of big-time
chisellers at the top who get a whole lot of something for doing
nothing at all?
"Well, that's because the blame pattern is manipulated....the
government reaches out through its media, in every home, and pushes
those buttons and pulls those levers and elicits massive response for
or against anything it chooses."
- Utah Phillips
"The question is not why people blame the victim. There are always people like that. The question is why do you hear about it? The answer of course is that the right wing controls the media."
If people are blaming the victim, I want to know about it. I want it to be discussed. I want people to be outraged. And I want that outrage to be expressed so that people will understand that this is not acceptable.
It's not a question of the media bringing it to our attention. It's a question of whether the media is responsibly bringing it to our attention or if the media is adding to the perversion.
I'm not alone in my thoughts about the connections between binge drinking and sexual violence - especially on college campuses.
Discussing the correlation between heavy alcohol use and rape - especially date rape - isn't blaming the victim.
It's a conversation about the problem. When something like 75% of rape cases on campus involve the use of alcohol by one or both parties, there's a problem.
And another brief article from Slate.
And a quote by Caroline Knapp - Author of Drinking, a Love Story.
[quote]The deeper connections between alcohol and self-worth and sexuality, the way women (at least women like me) use alcohol to deaden a wide range of conflicted feeling-longing for intimacy and terror of it; a wish to merge with others and a fear of being consumed; profound uncertainty about how and when to maintain boundaries and how and when to let them down-weren't addressed with much texture or depth.
[quote]No is an extraordinarily complicated word when you're drunk. This isn't just because drinking impairs your judgment in specific situations, like parties or dates (which it certainly may); it's because drinking interferes with the larger, murkier business of identity, of forming a sense of the self as strong and capable and aware. This is a difficult task; for all human beings, but it's particularly difficult for women and it's close to impossible for women who drink.