Posts Tagged ‘rape apologia’

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December 8, 2009

Well I Guess That’s Us Told

Melissa McEwin responds to Ad Age’s suggestion (after Method pulled an ad which equated soap scum with rape):

While the words in this space are usually directed at marketers, we’d like to take an opportunity to talk to all of those out there who often find themselves so offended by ads that they feel a need to launch a crusade. To you we say: “Take a deep breath. Have some perspective.”

Anyway, McEwin says a lot of things in her reply that just make sense– how refreshing.  Also, I’ve been dealing with the “Why do you look for ways to get offended?” discussion a lot this week when I can’t help but see them. And my complaints? Somehow worse and more upsetting than the problems I complain about, apparently. Here’s an excerpt:

The notion that anti-rape advocates look for things about which to get offended is manifest horseshit: The truth is, if I actually spent my days actively paying attention to every example of rape apologia around me, I would be a profoundly unhappy woman. Not bitchy or grumpy or short-tempered, but paralyzingly depressed. Women have to train themselves to avoid consciously reacting to every bit of rape-advocating detritus permeating the culture through which we all move, lest they go quite insane. I write about the things I can’t not write about. If I wrote about all the examples of sexual predation I see every day, I’d never sleep.

And the recommendation to “ignore the little stuff,” so often intertwined with accusations of looking for things about which to get offended (as here), is not merely condescending, but counter to the objective of stopping rape. The “little stuff” is the fertile soil in which everything else takes root and from whence everything else springs; it’s the way that the fundamental idea that sexual assault is acceptable is conveyed over and over and over again.

Which, quite frankly, means that if even we did have to look for it, we’d be right to do so.

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