Immaculate Rape

Immaculate Rape (noun) – Rape in which there is no rapist, merely a victim who may be found culpable due to one or more of the following: ingestion of alchohol, wearing of revealing clothing, living in a society that permits sex outside of marriage, being near a male in the throes of the evolutionary perogative.

Immaculate Rape as an accusation usually grows out of a right-wing religious cosmology, yet any attempts to link right-wing religious cosmology with mysogyny are met with accusations and derision.

Peter Hitchens makes this argument in an article eviscerated by Jessica and Melissa.  The crux:

Of course she is culpable, just as she would be culpable if she crashed a car and injured someone while drunk, or stepped out into the traffic while drunk and was run over.

Getting drunk is not something that happens to you. It is something you do.

I think Melissa shuts that down very effectively (Trigger Warning) in her post.  Jessica does it in the following line:

Hitchens can’t seem to get his head around the idea that rapists rape women, rather than women magically “getting themselves” raped.

But maybe Hitchens and purveyors of the immaculate rape myth ought to be taken at more than face value.  If alcohol is an invitation to get raped, why aren’t we making it a felony to serve rape juice to women?  Why doesn’t every bottle of rape beer contain a surgeon general’s warning: “may excuse rape”?

One things for certain, I wouldn’t be caught dead drinking with Peter Hitchens.

(image source)


4 Responses

  1. People love to run away from the idea that we are ultimately always held responsible for our own actions. This is the question I would ask anyone putting forth the immaculate rape question: If one man starts yelling at another man and calling him incendiary things, and the second man pulls out a gun and shoots the first man, can the second man then say, “well, he was asking for it?”

    No, because nothing a person does can be seen as an invitation for murder. The person performing the hurtful action can and should always be held responsible for their own actions.

    The immaculate rape theory sounds to me like a bunch of men saying, “hey, we get horny, girls know we get horny, girls should do everything possible to avoid flipping that switch or we can’t be held culpable.”

    Excuse me while I roll my eyes.

  2. Their is absolutely no excuse for rape. The man responsible pays. As a man I can not and will not excuse it.

    And what happens if it is a man that gets raped, can we then chuck it to beer as well?

  3. Cont….

    I mean you never hear the following:

    “That guy had it coming, he should have never opened a convenience store/gas station. He was just asking to be robbed.”

    “If you ride in a car through a bad neighborhood you are just asking to get jacked.”

    “Timmy got shot in school today. His fault you know, I mean people get shot in school all the time.”

    “Kid should have know better. I mean all priest as pedophiles, right. Kid in church, some sacramental wine and well you know the rest….”

    I mean for those who are so much into “personal responsibility” and “law and order” this line of thinking is downright stupid. Then again I think they feel that they have the right to rape any woman at any time, and that is the real reason for this perverted line of thought.

  4. Lindsey,
    The shooting analogy is a particularly easy one to grasp. But it immediately invites the question of intent. Our legal system does distinguish between planning a murder, and a “crime of passion”, simply with regard to how the perpetrator is treated. I don’t know enough about law (certainly British law) to know how much the question of intent plays a role in trials addressing rape. I’m sure some rapist has made the argument before. I don’t think there is any way to apply it though.

    Apparently, that seems to be the logic. But most society’s pretend that never happens (or when it happens to undesirables, such as prisoners, treats it as a joke).

    I think comparing the problem to kids in a church is perhaps the most effective route to take with regard to rape. It perfectly frames the problem from a victim’s perspective, they hold no blame for what happened to them. In the same way, simply having drinks shouldn’t be viewed by a society that allows them as an invitation to rape.

    Dammit this stuff pisses me off. Seriously, fucking Britain.

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