August 2014 edit: TRIGGER WARNING FOR DISCUSSION, DEPICTION OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE
In case you can’t tell from the title, in the latest Tomb Raider installment (and reboot!) the lead female almost gets raped by her captors. This made a shit ton of people mad, and while their intentions were good, the outcome was ultimately…worse.
The game designers explained this rape attempt was to make Croft, who is known for being a gun-toting bad-ass, more “vulnerable” and “human,” perhaps thinking society could finally have a rational discussion about rape. Boy were they mistaken, judging by the online reaction! (Which incidentally led to a detracted statement that could easily be construed as a silencing attempt, almost mirroring the aftermath an actual rape victim would find themselves in.)
The online reaction was the typical knee-jerk foaming-at-the-mouth feminist “oh my god how could they do this to my favorite female hero and literally one of the only few strong female hero’s” arguments. And it was especially nice to see the men wringing their digital hands louder than any one else.
But how often has a video game tackled rape? And have they ever approached the subject in even as remotely delicate of a manner as the latest Tomb Raider?
The answer is a no, again easily answered by the level of outrage.
Mic Wright wrote in the Kernel, “I don’t remember Master Chief ever being anally raped to help us empathise with him more.” Helen Lewis also compared Croft to the male Halo franchise hero in the New Statesman: “Bungie didn’t think that the only way players would root for Master Chief was by having him raped.”
I don’t know how Wright or Lewis can be confused, but in case you dear reader are too, I’d like to take this moment to point out to you that Master Chief is a man, and Lara Croft is a woman.
And not only that, but, RAPE is one of those weird sexual things men have been doing to women since the dawn of time.
The Hebrew Muslim and Christian god condoned and advocated using rape as a weapon of war in the Old Testament, and armies to this day still use it as as demoralizing tool all over the world. Even military contractors and soldiers in modern war zones still rape women, and they even rape women who are not their enemies but their comrades-in-arms.
Recent statistics for rape in the United States put a sexual assault or rape at every two minutes, and 1/6 of the female population in America will be raped, or fight off a rapist in her lifetime. Globally, one in every five women will be raped. But you didn’t come here to read rape statistics, and if you’re bored by all those numbers, sorry. I just thought I had to note them, because I laughed when Kellie Foxx-Gonzales wrote, NOT IRONICALLY, on The Mary Sue:
“The responsibility is wholly upon her to protect herself, it is not upon the scumbag rapists who are trying to hurt her. “
Duh, Kellie. Do you not know how rape happens? Women usually have to protect themselves alone, from the men attacking them. And rapists are generally scumbags. That’s why they’re rapists!
Not to keep picking on Kellie from The Mary Sue, but she went on to say rape shouldn’t be in any video game because she’s “had enough of that in real life.”
Great. So now we can’t talk about rape because it happens too much? I thought one of the biggest problems with rape was that people don’t talk about it enough: the crime doesn’t always get reported, etc. Read the rest of this entry »
Alternative title: “The partial defense of the Daily Caller writer advocating ‘converting’ lesbian soldiers through rape (or so accuses internet commenters)“
or, second alternative title: “Straight Men in the Military Are Sex Obsessed: Thoughts on Sexual Orientation Segregation”
third alternative title: “The Marginalization of Straight Men Begins in the Military“
Joe Rehyansky caused a stir last week in his “Don’t hint, don’t wink: An immodest proposal” piece over on The Daily Caller, where he makes homophobic statements indicative of his age, geographic location and upbringing. The piece could very well be this Onion piece, and lesbians and under-fire feminists are enraged with some good, albeit wrong, reasons.
Despite the absurdity of Rehyansky’s written word, he touches a point rarely discussed: some men in the military fear homosexuals because they fear rape. I once commented on an unrelated Laurie Essig piece, where I explain Rehyanksky’s fear before he even expressed it: Read the rest of this entry »
Do you remember Jamie Leigh Jones? She was drugged and brutally gang-raped while working for KBR and then confined to a shipping container after the incident. When I say brutally, I am talking about lacerations in her anus and vagina, and a damaged breast implant. It has taken years for Jones to get her day in court, because when she signed her KBR contract, the fine print had an arbitration clause that stated all matters would be settled in a secret court. Al Franken set out to fix this problem recently by adding an amendment that gives defense contractor employees the right to sue in case they are raped, thus holding defense contractors responsible for their employees actions.
Maybe because it was Franken, or maybe they were voting along Republican lines, but thirty old white male senators voted against this amendment. Let the internet shaming begin! A new website sprung up last week titled Republicans for Rape, and has pictures of the senators (and contact numbers!) who voted against this amendment (including Saxby Chambliss, John McCain and Lindsey Graham). The blog section is updated frequently with hilarious “pro-rape” satire, and even sports a fake letter from Sarah Palin in support of the website. A facebook page was created yesterday, has over 200 followers and the comments on the main page are down-right cackle-worthy:
Rape is the new Republican family value! Thanks, Senator Cornyn! via Resa Harrison
If we let those liberal heathens take away our God given right to rape, what’s next? via Sean Huze
The conservative right has no moral high ground left after this.
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