The Bad Men Project

If you’ve managed to avoid the Good Men Project thus far, lucky you. I only learned about them recently due to the shitstorm they’ve managed to stir up by being bleeding idiots.  It started with an essay called, “Nice Guys Commit Rape Too.”  I wish the writer was being sarcastic, but alas no, under the guise of discussing why rapists rape the article goes on to claim exactly what the title says.  Rather than retracting and apologizing and doing the soul-searching that ought to follow such a ridiculousness, they then followed it up with a second piece by an admitted (but non-convicted) rapist about how consent is just so confusing and labeling people who rape as bad people and, well, rapists is just not fair.  For a good description and rebuke of the piece, complete with the article itself in quotes, check out the following, but be wary of triggers as it’s full of rape-apologism and awfulness:

And just when you thought the Good Men Project couldn’t get any worse….

I wrote this in the comments section, but in case you don’t want to wade through the many, many outraged responses, here are some of my own thoughts on it, and on the issue in question:

Once upon a time, alcohol and other substances enabled me to do dangerous, irresponsible, and stupid things that I was able to rationalize or convince myself weren’t that bad, but it didn’t put any ideas in my head. Nothing came out that wasn’t already there, which is why I never raped anyone. As for the things I did do, part of my recovery is taking responsibility for them and recognizing that there is a difference between an explanation and an excuse. The explanation is that I am an addict, but there are no excuses.

This guy claims to be only offering an explanation, but the fact that he mentions his victim’s behavior (“actually flirting”) and that she later entered recovery screams victim-blaming and undermines any possible claim he could have on rationality. As if either of those facts have anything to do with what he did to her. Moreover, the fact that he still questions whether he’s a rapist despite the fact that she straight-up told him speaks to a complete disregard for his victim’s experience and humanity. The comparison to his friend’s experience? BS. Yeah, he made a different call: the wrong one.

I know plenty of women who got sober after being assaulted or raped, sometimes as a result of the experience. They realized they were putting themselves in danger by being vulnerable around guys like this one, but they are also clear on the fact that just because you’re vulnerable doesn’t mean anyone has to take advantage of you. Forgetting to lock your door doesn’t make anyone rob you, and the fact that you learn a lesson from it and never forget again doesn’t retroactively excuse the burglary.

Though inadvertently, the essay in question does bring up one point that I do find interesting and worth discussing, and that’s the vulnerability and perceived un-rape-ability of addicts.  Between the common dehumanization of alcoholics and drug users as a whole and the (reasonable) perception of them as liars, addicts make the ideal rape victims (this is particularly true when they also belong to other “un-rape-able” groups such as sex workers or women of color, who are in turn perceived as likely addicts).  Sexual assault is all too often seen as the “natural” consequence of intoxication for women, and for people who struggle with addiction this is even more potent; rape is understood as the punishment for their lack of self-control and discipline.  What’s ironic is that so frequently it is the other way around: many people of both genders develop addictions in response to experiences sexual assault and/or childhood sexual abuse.  Based on my own anecdotal understanding, I would venture that most women and a substantial proportion of men who suffer from addiction have experienced some form of sexual trauma.

If you’re interested in learning more about what’s going on with the GMP and the responses to their rape-apologism, here are a few pertinent links. I particularly recommend the first one, and the Yes Means Yes blog and book in general. I kept the later in my bathroom for months and it’s awesome.

Good Men Project’s Rape Faceplant

What In Holy Hell is This

Nonsense at the Good Men Project

The Good Men Who Only Occasionally Rape Project


I’m very ambivalent about this time of year.  On the one hand, Christmas music eating my airwaves.  On the other, top ten lists! I’m going to try and do a few of my own this time around, but nothing obvious like best movies or songs (not sure I even saw more than 10 movies from 2012).  Something interesting and off-beat. I have one idea already, and that’s most redundant headlines.  Though really the only reason I would do it would be so I could give this one the top spot: “Horrible Father Throws Baby Off Bridge.”  Yeah.  I can’t find the link to the article, but I promise it exists, or did anyway.  So, any thoughts on others that should make the list?

‘Doctor Who’ iTunes Giveaway: Favorite ‘Asylum of the Daleks’ Quote

BBC America is holding a contest asking viewers about their favorite Asylum of the Daleks quote and why (link here if you’re interested).  seeing as that episode is pretty much the only reason I still have hope for the show, I felt like I had to enter, but I couldn’t pick just one and I ended up writing kind of a lot about my two favorites, so I decided to share my thoughts here too:

My first choice was when Amy tells Rory, “don’t you dare talk to me about waiting outside a box, because that is nothing, Rory, NOTHING compared to giving you up.” I for one spent a long time feeling like Amy and Rory were just Rose and Mickey all over again. After all, Amy spent a lot of the fifth season running away from marrying him, and when we first met him she introduced him as a friend. He’s done so much for her over the seasons, it was great to finally see a demonstration of how devoted she is to him (could’ve used some more showing, not telling, but at this point I’ll take whatever’s on offer), and brought closure to that aspect of their character arcs. I also like how it foreshadows Angels in Manhattan and speaks to a theme running through the recent episodes, of the Doctor having the give up Amy and Rory to allow them to truly live their lives. It drove home how difficult that would be and how much it’s an expression of his love for them.

My second, and the one I ended up using in my entry, is, “I am Oswin Oswald. I fought the Daleks and I am human. Remember me…Run! Run, you clever boy. And remember.” This line sums up the whole episode, and so much of Doctor Who in general, to me. As I see it, the episode is about what it means to be human versus a dalek. For the first time we see humans that are daleks internally; we learn that being a dalek is a state of mind, a way of thinking and feeling, and not just being physically part of a certain species. Oswin might physically be a dalek, but mentally and emotionally she’s still human: she still loves her mother, she’s still capable of kindness, humor, and most importantly the kind of nobility that leads her to sacrifice herself for Amy, Rory, and the Doctor.

In regards to the show as a whole, so much of what the Doctor does, especially the eleventh, involves memory and bearing witness. As the last Time Lord, he alone keeps the memory of his people alive. He remembers his time with Donna even though she can’t and The Year That Never Was when almost no one else does. We saw in the fifth season that being forgotten in the whoniverse means ceasing to exist, figuratively and even literally, and that this is a fate worse than death. Conversely, remembering can be an act of creation that can even give life, as it does when Amy remembers the Doctor at her wedding.  Memory is powerful: we even see this demonstrated in this very episode, when Oswin makes the daleks forget about the Doctor.  So by remembering her the Doctor honors the heart and spirit that kept Oswin human; he keeps a part of her, the best, most human part, alive.  Then of course there’s the reference to running, which needs no explanation.

So there you have it.  Knock on wood and cross your fingers for me, if you don’t mind, unless of course you feel like entering yourself.  I think they’re going to have a different prize every week up until the Christmas special, so it’s definitely worth giving it a go.

Ladies to Love

Thanks to this essay (read it, it’s hilarious), I found myself watching Teen Wolf  in the wee hours of this morning.  I’m only sort of embarrassed to admit that because even though it was pretty much what you’d expect from MTV (melodramatic music, twinks with disturbingly few facial expressions, lots of bare skin), there was one serious bright spot: her name is Holland Roden, she’s a 25-year-old TV actress, and I’m nursing a serious crush.  I mean, just look at her:

Not only is she an (okay, allegedly) natural redhead, but the girl is rocking some seriously sexy curves.  She’s smart too: she first came to L.A. to study molecular biology at UCLA but, be still my heart, graduated with a major in women’s studies.  I’ve checked out some of her interviews and she seems like an intelligent, thoughtful, and genuinely grounded individual.  As with any Hollywood/celebrity culture output, I try to take them with a grain of salt, but regardless, I love that someone is putting out messages like these (I was going to post some quotes from that one, but realized I would end up quoting the entire thing, so I’ll leave it for people to read on their own and just say I strongly encourage you to do so).

I like her character too.  She may be “the popular girl” dating the lacrosse captain, but she’s great at science and math, and my introduction to her was a conversation in which she reminded a friend to have safe sex.  In and out of character, she seems like my kind of woman.

Ratings in David Tennant “oh yes”s: show 2/5, lady 5/5

My Hero

“I heard police or ambulancemen, standing in our house, say, “She must have provoked him,” or, “Mrs Stewart, it takes two to make a fight.” They had no idea. The truth is my mother did nothing to deserve the violence she endured. She did not provoke my father, and even if she had, violence is an unacceptable way of dealing with conflict. Violence is a choice a man makes and he alone is responsible for it.”

-Patrick Stewart (via Shevilfempire)

Something That Makes Me Smile

A Beginner’s Guide to Sherlock Fandom

Here that, Supernatural and Teen Wolf and Inception and Thor and Suits and now Skyfall and…?  This is why I avoid you on the internet. And even though I enjoyed you, X-Men and The Avengers? It’s getting a little boring.

Rating in David Tennant “oh yes”s: 4/5