Rape Culture Means: Guys, Do Not Have Sex With Jordan Bosiljevac (Update)

http://theothermccain.com/2015/05/02/rape-culture-means-guys-do-not-have-sex-with-jordan-bosiljevac/

Jordan Bosiljevac is a deeply confused sophomore at Claremont McKenna College (annual tuition $47,395) and, like every other college girl, she’s got an opinion about rape culture:

Why Yes Can Mean No
It started with “consent is sexy.” But, of course, there was no point in that—it was like saying rape is just bad sex, instead of a felony. Then there was “consent is mandatory.” It was much better, reminding us that sex is consensual, and everything else is rape. But then there was me, after a party, in a man’s dorm room. And there was “is this ok?” If we are being legal about this, I said ‘yes’ — no coercion, no imminent threat of violence, no inebriation (well, not a lot, anyway). But what I want to talk about is what happened before I said yes, who taught me to say yes, why I thought it was better to say yes, and why I really meant ‘no.’ . . .

(Pause, dear reader, to imagine yourself in the position of the male Claremont McKenna College student who is the other half of this story. You hooked up with Jordan Bosiljevac after a party, and now she’s going to tell everyone who reads the student newspaper why, in fact, she really didn’t want to hook up with you.)

Depending on who you are, it might sound ridiculous: why would anyone ever say yes when they meant no? Honesty is important to any relationship — sexual or otherwise. Besides, the legal definition of rape in the State of California states “rape is an act of sexual intercourse when a person is incapable of” . . .
Honestly, there’s a lot more to it than that for me. At five, relatives used to kiss my cheeks even as I winced and turned away. At the tender age of twelve, I was taught that my bra straps and thighs deserved detention because they distracted boys at school. At sixteen, my boyfriend assured me that most girls liked this — I just needed to relax. So at 20, in someone’s room after a party, ‘no’ was scary and unfamiliar to me. These incidents, unfortunately, are not unique to me. In discussing this experience with friends, we coined the term “raped by rape culture” to describe what it was like to say yes, coerced by the culture that had raised us and the systems of power that worked on us, and to still want ‘no.’ Sometimes, for me, there was obligation from already having gone back to someone’s room, not wanting to ruin a good friendship, loneliness, worry that no one else would ever be interested, a fear that if I did say no, they might not stop, the influence of alcohol, and an understanding that hookups are “supposed” to be fun.

She was “coerced by the culture” and oppressed by “the systems of power,” you see. That dude she hooked up with after the party might havethought she was consenting to have sex with him when, in fact, he was “culture” and raped her. Or something like that.

The idea that women are “coerced by culture” into having sex by men is, of course, consistent with lesbian feminist Professor Marilyn Frye’s assertion that “most women have to be coerced into heterosexuality.” In other words, women do not actually want to have sex with men. Instead, because female “subordination is the basis of male power,” as Professor Charlotte Bunch explained, heterosexuality for women means “submission to personal oppression.” Having sex with men, feminist theory teaches, is part of the “socialized behavior instruction” of “the unnatural, yet universal roles patriarchy has assigned” to women. As lesbian feminist Adrienne Rich explained, “male power manifests itself . . . as enforcing heterosexuality on women,” so that “for women heterosexuality” is “imposed . . . and maintained by force.”

Whether or not Jordan Bosiljevac has learned any of that Advanced Feminist Logic™ at Claremont McKenna College, she clearly has grasped the core feminist doctrine that her entire life has been a traumatic experience of oppression. “Feminist consciousness is consciousness of victimization . . . to come to see oneself as a victim,” as Professor Sandra Lee Bartky has explained. Women’s oppression under patriarchy is so pervasive, according to feminist theory, that women cannot be sure that their ideas, beliefs and emotions are their own. Instead, feminism teaches women that they have been indoctrinated by a system of male supremacy, brainwashed into believing that having sex with men is “natural.” Feminist “rape culture” discourse is not about protecting women from rape; it’s about convincing them that any sexual activity with men can be considered rape, because how can any female (being a victim of male oppression) be able to freely “consent” to sex with her oppressor? This seems to be what Jordan Bosiljevac is trying to tell us:

For me, and many others like me, consent isn’t easy. Yes doesn’t always mean yes, and we misplaced ‘no’ several years ago. This experience isn’t random, but disproportionately affects oppressed communities. Consent is a privilege, and it was built for wealthy, heterosexual, cis, white, western, able-bodied masculinity. . . .
When you’re poor, disabled, queer, non-white, trans, or feminine, ‘no’ isn’t for you. . . . for me, finding ‘no’ is a process, consent is elusive, and sometimes, even when people don’t mean to — they hurt me.

Translation: Guys, do not have sex with Jordan Bosiljevac, ever.

She cannot authentically say “yes,” because “consent is elusive” and, while she is willing to stipulate consent as a hypothetical possibility, any male who would even think about having sex with Jordan Bosiljevac is as crazy as she is.

UPDATE: Thanks to the commenter who pointed out that, in another article at the Claremont McKenna Forum, Jordan Bosiljevac labels herself “a brown woman of gay parents,” and describes “third grade me, starting elementary school with more wealthy white children than I’d ever seen in my whole life”:

On the first day I entered this alien planet via my mothers’ red van — yes, that’s two moms that both came to drop me off. As if gay moms in an old, unfashionable van weren’t enough, I was one of a few children of color at my school. I had no friends, a lot of whispers about my strange family situation, and sudden regret for all the time I’d spent outside that past summer. Basically, I felt like a mess.

Well, “the personal is the political,” as Women’s Liberation pioneer Carol Hanisch famously proclaimed, and this sort of identity-based narrativeapproach to politics — i.e., offering one’s personal biography as the justification of a radical ideology — has multiple consequences. Forming any kind of coherent movement becomes difficult because everyone has an unlimited psychological investment in the movement, and must fight to make the movement reflective of their own identity. This was the history of Women’s Liberation in a nutshell, familiar to anyone who has read Alice Echols’ Daring to Be Bad or Susan Brownmiller’s In Our Time.

From its beginning amid the radical New Left of the 1960s, the modern feminist movement was crippled by its tendency to attract fanatical ax-grinders who were using politics as a means of addressing their own narrow personal grievances against men, against Judeo-Christian morality, against society in general. The undeniable fact that many of theleading activists in the Women’s Liberation movement were lesbiansshould have been a warning to any woman who joined the movement in expectation of advancing a reform agenda aimed at the everyday concerns of the typical woman’s life. When it became apparent that some of the movement’s most vocal spokeswomen (including both Kate Millett andShulamith Firestone) were quite literally psychotic, this should have prompted other feminists to reconsider their own basic principles.

Here we are, then, in the 21st century and the 20-year-old daughter of a lesbian couple finds that her search for happiness is fraught with perils and disappointments she can only analyze through a feminist lens. She has no other frame of reference and yet, as I have said, if feminism is the cause of your problem, the solution to your problem is not “more feminism.” This puts someone like Jordan Bosiljevac into a painful dilemma, for if she were somehow to re-examine her principles and discover traditionalism, she would be compelled to reject her own “family values.” Therefore it is much more likely that she will instead double-down on feminism, embracing an even more radical hostility to human nature.

This kind of reaction to feminism’s failure is exactly what we are witnessing everywhere now. A new book, Freedom Fallacy: The Limits of Liberal Feminism, edited by a pair of Australian feminists, collects essays advocating a renewed radicalism. The titles of these essays reveal a totalitarian suspicion of personal liberty (e.g., “Entitled to Be Free: Exposing the Limits of Choice”), a sense of a radical indignation (e.g., “The Illusion of Progress: A Betrayal of Women from Both Ends of the Political Spectrum”), and an underlying anti-heterosexual hostility toward men (e.g., “The Oppression That Dare Not Speak Its Name? Silences Around Heterosexuality in Contemporary Feminism”). These attitudes are surprising only to those who have not studied feminist gender theory and the history of the movement. (My book Sex Trouble provides a helpful introduction.) Ultimately, the movement aims to bring about the destruction of civilization as we know it, annihilating the traditional married family as a normative institution, and bringing about an “equality” of the sexes by the imposition of androgyny, i.e., “the abolition of gender.” If anyone asks where “the pursuit of happiness” fits into this radical vision, the answer is that feminists consider “happiness” a myth, a social construct of the heteronormative patriarchy.

BTW, as of May 5, it’s National Offend a Feminist Week. You can celebrate by being as happy as possible. Feminists hate happiness.

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