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I've seen some criticism that the punchline of this:



is disingenuous because criticism of one's clothing choices and sexual assault are incomparable.

This criticism is itself disingenuous because of its gross scope insensitivity. To illustrate, a quick thought experiment:

Would you be okay with a single person saying "I think you shouldn't have worn that shirt" once? Probably.

Would you be okay with hundreds of thousands of strangers telling you over and over again that you shouldn't have worn that shirt, for several days running with no end in sight?

Yeah, didn't think so.

Context matters. Scope is part of context.

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
selenite
Nov. 19th, 2014 06:15 pm (UTC)
Watching a Two Minute Hate spring up is scary.
whswhs
Nov. 19th, 2014 08:47 pm (UTC)
What struck me about this was that just a few months ago, the news about Rotherham came out, and the American papers (with few exceptions) and the feminist blogosphere greeting the situation of 1400 underage girls being targeted for repeated rape and the police and the child welfare services keeping it quiet with . . . silence. (At least, I just did a search on "Rotherham scandal feminist commentary" and everything on Google's first page was people criticizing feminists for not speaking up.) And now, one man is photographed with a shirt bearing the kind of art that I see every year at Comic-Con, and no suggestion that he ever did actual physical or emotional harm to even one woman, and there's an Internet firestorm. The implied priorities are disturbing.
maradydd
Nov. 25th, 2014 02:34 pm (UTC)
Every time I start to think about the implied priorities, it's like my brain segfaults or something. I try really hard to understand where people are coming from, but I cannot piece together what sort of principles would lead someone to consider any article of clothing to be worse than multiple police departments covering up rape.
whswhs
Nov. 25th, 2014 02:54 pm (UTC)
I can think of several hypotheses, but most of them have very ugly implications:

° For many feminists, simple insularity: They get news only from the feminist blogosphere or from American news media, which have had little to say about Rotherham—I first heard of Rotherham from Instapundit, a conservative/libertarian/technophile blog (more conservative than I'm entirely comfortable with, but valuable), and then verified the story by looking at British news media.

° Class sympathies: The possible hurt feelings of professional women faced with a shirt with pin-up imagery weigh more heavily than the agony of girls largely from the working class or lower.

° The man wearing that shirt was not at all scary to confront or condemn; his first thought was to apologize. The multiple rapists in Rotherham were apparently seriously willing to threaten their victims with things like immolation, and confronting them would take real courage.

° In the feminist community, as in British government employment, there are real risks to criticizing any Muslim for anything; to do so is to take the chance of being labeled a racist and cast out, as happened to Elizabeth Moon a few years ago. Feminists have largely decided that Muslims are fellow victims and so will forgive them any amount of actual brutality toward actual women.

I'd like to think there is some less discreditable explanation, but really I can't think of this as anything but a huge failure of moral imagination.
doissetep
Dec. 2nd, 2014 03:10 pm (UTC)
Perhaps because it is easier to throw a tomato than to light a candle.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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