“Point,” Counter-Point

Thought the feminist backlash was over? Think again.

City Journal recently published an article entitled What Campus Rape Crisis? (found here: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-op-mac_donald24feb24,0,1096037,full.story) and an op-ed rebuttal from a student who works with Students Active for Ending Rape (found here: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oew-macdonald27feb27,0,6130673.story).

The former article sounds remarkably like Katie Roiphe’s 1994 The Morning After: Sex, Fear, and Feminism and is filled with claims that the oft-cited statistic that 1 in 4 college-aged women will experience sexual assault or attempted sexual assault before they graduate was garnered after second-wavers were displeased with their first, lower statistic about rape and tried again with fallacious questionnaires intended to confuse students into saying the had experienced unwelcome intercourse (the author doesn’t make it clear why they would want to do this, of course). Another ‘fact’ used to show the supposed sham is that college rape crisis centers don’t receive many calls – but it is precisely articles like this (and, albeit, a hand-full of other societal messages) that make women ashamed and embarrassed and hesitant to ever tell anyone for the fear that they won’t be believed or will be ridiculed or will be blamed for ‘asking for it.’

I am all for reasoned debate – and I hate dogmatic, politically convenient views more than anyone. But to dress up prejudice and misogyny and call it reason is something I just won’t stand for.

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