November 29, 2013

"I think a lot about what it means to exist as a Female-Identified Woman in this world when people very, very close to me use 'rape' as an ordinary verb, like feel or eat or think or do."

"The answer is not that I surround myself with Bad People, and certainly not that I involve myself with those who intend harm."
These are smart people; they have great jobs, work hard. Some of them have known struggle. Others were raised in big, happy, wealthy families. They’re decent. They’re in love. Passionate. Artists. Good people who will be there when you call them. People who have families and buy presents for babies. People who can quote a whole movie. People who matter.

So why do they feel the need to reappropriate such a word as “rape”?
By their definition, they use “rape” to signify the “incessant want of something:”

“I’m going to rape that pizza.”
“I’m feeling kinda rapey about that restaurant.”
“Oh my god I would rape a six pack right now.”
“That dump I took raped my butthole.”
This is the first I've heard of this problem. So... what do you think?

Is this usage similar to the casual, metaphorical use of other verbs of violence like "kill"— That joke killed me — and "murder" — The Lions murdered the Packers yesterday?

Or is "rape" a special case because there are, out there, rape victims whose PTSD might be triggered and potential rapists may lose their last shred of restraint and human decency?

And by they way, what's with this delusion that the people around you are good? Do you realize how much trouble has been caused in the world over the millennia by indulgence in this cognitive distortion?

And what is your test of goodness? Artists?! Artists get the goodness stamp of approval? Here's an artist I read about this morning: Ian Watkins. It's much more likely that artists think the rules don't apply to them and feel superior to the conventions of your boring fussy little world.

And "People who can quote a whole movie"?! First, what movie? Second, why is the memorization of movie scripts a test of goodness? It's nice to find someone who can approximate lines from movies you like, but who is this dubious character who launches a full recital of — what? — "Scarface"?

103 comments:

St. George said...

Here is this author's bio:

Lisa M. Basile is a poet who lives in Queens, NY. She loves editing her women’s website, Luna Luna Mag, and wearing copious amounts of violent red lipstick. She’s written for Alloy Media’s Blisstree and The Grindstone, Billboard Magazine, 20-Something Magazine and more. She’s the editor of a couple chapbooks, and performs as her alter-ego, Luna Liprari at places like The Poetry Brothel.

Email: Lisambasile@gmail.com
Twitter: @lisamariebasile

What I Do, Job-wise: I try not to think about it.

What I Do, Fun-wise: I like salty food, sex and makeup. In that order. I read poems to random TV channels in Europe. I dress up as a femme fatale and flirt with strangers in literary bars. I travel to other countries and eat everything I can.

My Motto: “Live fast. Die young. Be wild. Have fun.” - Lana Del Rey (LOL)

My Anti-Motto: “I regret…”

The First Movie Star I Ever Had A Crush On: Jack Skellington, really.

My “celebs to make out with” list: Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Jennifer Lawrence, Christopher Walkin

The Most Played Song On My iTunes: “Never is a promise,” by Fiona Apple

Last Book I Read: The Diary of Anais Nin

I Have Faked An Orgasm (Yes/No): Yes, literally half of my life until I learned to get what I want and use a vibrator.

betamax3000 said...

I am Comfortable with Ian Watkins Being Fed Alive to Pigs.

Henry said...

I know no people that use the word "rape" in casual fashion. Maybe Ms. Basile needs to hang out with old square people instead of young artistes.

(Some of my old square peers are brilliant artists. They also happen to be civilized.)

Henry said...

I know no people that use the word "rape" in casual fashion. Maybe Ms. Basile needs to hang out with old square people instead of young artistes.

(Some of my old square peers are brilliant artists. They also happen to be civilized.)

Shouting Thomas said...

I read about four paragraphs before I gave up.

I don't know any people who use the word "rape" in that fashion.

Yes, artists are usually completely untrustworthy, and often not very smart people. I'm much more inclined to trust a business person.

I am innately distrustful of people who announce their goodness and wonderful ideals. My BS alarm goes off when I hear this crap. I tend to have a higher degree of trust in people who openly declare that they are self-interested sinners. Such people are also a hell of a lot more fun.

This woman is struggling with the idiot dilemma that Western women face when they decide to make their livings as whores. The want the benefits, i.e., the money, attention and sex, only on their own terms, and refuse to acknowledge that the customer is the one who sets the terms of service.

They refuse to be good whores, that is to provide service in a decent and humble manner. And, think they've got a justified bitch because their clients want them to be good whores.

tim maguire said...

Sounds like she needs a better class of friends.

It also sounds like she's more interested in figuring out how to rationalize her life and lifestyle rather than actually examining her choices.

Couldn't help but notice the violence of her lipstick.

Deirdre Mundy said...

Murder victims seldom suffer from PTSD... so it must be the better crime, right?

In terms of good people -- the modern left (and her 'identifies female' comment alone puts her squarely on the left) confuses having the proper political leanings and feelings with being good.

But - you are what you do. You can go on about justice for the poor all day, but if you ignore the beggar in front of you? You're not a good person. You're a person who IMAGINES she is a good person.

Most people are better people in their own minds than they are in real life. Only a subset of people (usually those of a theological or philosophical leaning) are lucky enough to recognize this.

Carol said...

I stro9ngly suspect this a fashion in gay talk - is she a fag hag?

Matthew Sablan said...

I'll be honest, the people who use "rape" as a verb are generally younger, less conservative and more male, at least from what I've seen.

I think it is weird to use as a verb, at least with kill/murder, I get it. You intend to end something. But rape? You want to violate that six pack? That makes no sense.

Shouting Thomas said...

Woodstock, by the way, is an artist colony that is full of women who want to be kept by a man, or who suffer from these spoiled brat delusions about what their job as a whore demands.

Awful, awful, awful bitches.

Involvement with them is a guaranteed trip to the police station and the courts, and a potential lifelong lien on your checkbook.

I avoid them at all cost. And, yes, they do seek me out, Inga, because I'm a musician. My best defense is my Filipina girlfriend from Jersey. Sensible, middle class woman with a job.

Tank said...

I think a lot about what it means to exist as a Female-Identified Woman in this world ...

WTF? Am just a total dinosaur now? Isn't a "Female Identified Woman" a normal woman? Or can't we say that it might be normal to be a female identified woman?

Then later:

I think Annie Theriault defined “rape culture” well when she wrote, “Rape culture is a system that everyone, men and women, unconsciously participate in. It’s a system that promotes the normalization and trivialization of rape.”

What it this weird shit anyway? Anyone here think they are consciously or unconsciously promoting the normalization or trivialization of rape? I think maybe she hangs out with the wrong crowd, or is delusional, or has taken too many "courses."

EDH said...

"It's called mind-rape. It's actually pretty mellow. "

"Doesn't sound very mellow."

fivewheels said...

I've heard it used that way. Think of it as a synonym for "attack." You might attack a steak, or even a guitar.

The piece really needs no commentary by us, though. It's enough to point at it and say, "Geez, look at that. People like that really exist."

betamax3000 said...

And "People who can quote a whole Bob Dylan Song"?! First, what Bob Dylan Song? Second, why is the memorization of Bob Dylan Songs a test of goodness? It's nice to find someone who can approximate lines from Bob Dylan Songs you like, but who is this dubious character who launches a full recital of — what? — "Desolation Row"?

Naked Bob Dylan Robot Knows Such People.

tim maguire said...

I just forced myself to read most of it. Love the rape culture definition--"“Rape culture is a system that everyone, men and women, unconsciously participate in. It’s a system that promotes the normalization and trivialization of rape.” ".

My first reaction was that it is a reasonable definition of something that does not exist. But as I read on, I realized that a rape culture does exist and this woman has chosen to live in it and, therefore, to "unconsciously participate in." And she defends the "good people" who perpetuate it. At the same time, she undoubtedly feels superior to those of us who choose not to live in the rape culture because we (gasp!) don't recognize the rape culture around us.

And my final thought: Imputing to us the attitudes she has perpetuated and then feeling superior to us because she recognizes what we do not. Typical liberal.

Shouting Thomas said...

Her real bitch, which is that there is a social stigma to being a whore, is just the jabbering of a fool.

There will always be a difference in social status between a "good" woman and a whore. That difference has plusses and minuses on both sides.

She should visit the Philippines, where this reality is well understood and accepted, both for male and female prostitutes.

Henry said...

Stupidity culture is a system that everyone, men and women, unconsciously participate in. It’s a system that promotes the normalization and trivialization of stupidity.


fivewheels said...

I can definitely quote multiple movies whole. Monty Python and the Holy Grail for sure. Star Wars and Empire Strikes Back. Godfather and Goodfellas. Maybe Pulp Fiction. Probably about five seasons worth of the Simpsons (3-7).

So this makes me like a saint, right?

Bob Boyd said...

"people very very close to me use 'rape'as an ordinary verb"

1st world problems.

Henry said...

The appalling thing is that nothing trivializes rape as much as these star chamber nihilists with their construct of rape culture. If you go around pronouncing that everything is rape culture, what word do you use for actual, criminal, rape?

Matthew Sablan said...

What world are these women living in where actively promoting feminism is frowned upon? I cannot think of any social situation I have been in -- when I visited a Mormon church, Young Republican meetings, College Democrats, random parties, etc. -- where even aggressive feminism was frowned upon.

Whatever social circles these two women at the start of the article are running in, they need to leave, now. No other American group I've ever been involved in has treated women the way they describe (in modern times, at least.)

Get out.

Matthew Sablan said...

"People who matter."

-- ... All people matter. That's... that's almost insulting that the author thinks she can decide who is important and who is unimportant.

Maybe that snobbery is what is the target of people's ridicule, not feminism?

Shouting Thomas said...

I frown on, and deplore all manifestations of feminism.

I belong to a small group of people who are similarly enlightened.

But yes, feminist stupidity envelops us like the air we breathe.

Matthew Sablan said...

Even feminism in the most traditional senses of the word (women deserve equality under the law and of opportunity?)

betamax3000 said...

Re: "And by they way, what's with this delusion that the people around you are good? "

Indeed. Some of Those people Around You Might End Up Feeding You to the Pigs. For Instance.

Shouting Thomas said...

@Matthew

You modern definition is a lie.

Matthew Sablan said...

I'm not sure what the modern definition is. I know what the term is supposed to mean though. Anyone who uses the word to mean something else is going all Alice in Wonderland on you.

In the actual definition of feminism, I have never found a single American in my personal life -- no matter how far right or left their persuasion -- who disagreed with it.

Shouting Thomas said...

Really?

I can point you to dozens of websites and men's groups who reject feminism in absolute terms.

I was once the editor of a men's group newsletter that presented that vierw.

The modern definition, which is that feminism is about some sort of equality before the law, is a complete lie.

betamax3000 said...

Perhaps They Can Vent Their Edginess without Resorting to Appropriating an Act of Violence. Maybe the Following Would Suffice:

“I’m going to Sodomize that pizza.”

“I’m feeling kinda Sodomizey about that restaurant.”

“Oh my god I would Sodomize a six pack right now.”

“That dump I took Sodomize my butthole.”

I Am Here to Help.

Henry said...

I write this as someone who finds most pop culture to be appallingly vulgar and misogynistic. It's important to use words with accepted, definite meaning. "Rape culture" is the opposite. It is a placeholder for theory, a vague cloud of anger and frustration intended to suffocate rather than illuminate.

Matthew Sablan said...

Huh. Then my world is enlightened, and saddened, a little bit.

Deirdre Mundy said...

Actually, in terms of 'Raping a Pizza"... it does make sense in terms of the older use of the word- like the "Rape of the Sabine Women."

The older use of rape was actually 'snatching without permission.' The 'Rape' of the Sabines was the kidnapping. Then the woman chose to stay and marry their new manly Roman husbands.....at which point, the relationship was consummated, if one believes Livy. (You really don't have to believe him, but it's how artists have portrayed the event over the centuries....)


So, in this sense, "Raping a Pizza" would mean snatching the Pizza without permission of the Pizza's owner.

See also "The Rape of the Lock" - Which involves taking a piece of hair without permission.

So.... again, one can rape any object, as long as one is not the OWNER of said object.

Shouting Thomas said...

@Matthew

Maybe you should find out what those heretics actually think.

Not my job to direct you. It's there if you want to know.

Deirdre Mundy said...

I assume this is also where statutory rape comes from.

Even if the girl in question was a willing giver of sexual favors, as a minor, they were not hers to bestow since they're considered the property of her guardians.

Big Mike said...

I've never heard of "rape" being used outside of its meaning as an act of forcible, non-consensual sex. I must move in non-artistic circles.

I agree with tim and others upthread who think Lisa should get a better class of friends. Here's a scary thought -- what if she can't get a better class of friends because a better class of people wouldn't associate with her unless she cleans up her act? Hmmm. Then I guess she'd better suck it up and just deal with her friends' casual mis-appropriation of the word "rape."

betamax3000 said...

Re: "Then I guess she'd better suck it up..."

Meant in a Non-Rape-Culture Way, I Assume.

Ann Althouse said...

Maybe people should think a little more about the way your food does not consent to be eaten.

Especially if we're talking about nonvegetarian pizza, I think "I'm going to rape that pizza" would be a way to acknowledge the violence we human beings do in this world.

I have seen some people eat as if they were having sex with their food. They display lust and emit groans of pleasure. The food is treated as an object and the eater works his will on it.

I think the custom of saying grace before eating may reflect a vague awareness that we are taking to satisfy our own needs, and the pre-feasting circumspection is a ritual similar to obtaining consent before having sex.

betamax3000 said...

Re: "Maybe people should think a little more about the way your food does not consent to be eaten."

The Gazelle Does Not Consent to the Lion.

The Mouse Does Not Consent to the Snake.

The World is Built on the Premise That Food Rarely Gives Consent.

Note: I say "Rarely" Because I Seem to Vaguely Remember a Story about a Man Who Consented to Being Eaten By a Cannibal.

In the Case of the Pizza I Believe There are Varying Shades of Consent.

Pepperoni or Other Meats: No Consent

Tomato Sauce: Indifferent.

Crazy Jane said...

Actually, to "rape" is to do a very bad thing. To use the word as an "ordinary verb" is to diminish its significant and, I would argue, sinister meaning.

People who speak that way are ignorant and crude. They participate in the cheapening of what is already a quite vulgar culture.

Ann Althouse said...

"I've never heard of "rape" being used outside of its meaning as an act of forcible, non-consensual sex. I must move in non-artistic circles."

You've never seen "rape of the land" to refer to environmental damage?

fivewheels said...

Come to think of it, I would also score very high on a "recite the next line" test for Scarface.

Oh yeah, Clerks too. And True Romance. Man, my 20s were silly.

Eric Jablow said...

Tank, I would conjecture "Female-Identified Woman" is a way of distinguishing between 'acceptable' women who condone abortion and government-sponsored birth control from 'unacceptable' women who abhor abortion, who perhaps are loyal Catholics, or who have served as Governor of Alaska.

But I am a "Male-Identified Man," so what do I know?

Meade said...

"I have seen some people eat as if they were having sex with their food. They display lust and emit groans of pleasure. The food is treated as an object and the eater works his will on it. "

Swallow or spit?

Ann Althouse said...

"Actually, to "rape" is to do a very bad thing. To use the word as an "ordinary verb" is to diminish its significant and, I would argue, sinister meaning. People who speak that way are ignorant and crude. They participate in the cheapening of what is already a quite vulgar culture."

But doesn't it depend on the context and the relationship you have with the other people who are around and what you know about their sense of humor? Some of the funniest verbal humor involves using words or images that are usually too extreme.

By the way, I feel this way about saying "God." It may be best never to take the Lord's name in vain, and that's good advice, perhaps for most people. But let's assume you want to use "God" in various exclamations… don't say it too much. I have a big problem with people who exclaim "Oh, my God" constantly as if they have no respect for people who hear "God" and really think of God.

fivewheels said...

The comments over there are gold, if you're willing to be amused by that kind of thing.

The author chimes in with: "I literally want to throw myself against a moving bus they're so clueless."

I find her casual misuse of "literally" to be an offensive rape of the language, but I thought better of leaving that comment over at XOJane.

betamax3000 said...

RE: "I have a big problem with people who exclaim "Oh, my God" constantly as if they have no respect for people who hear "God" and really think of God."

Naked Bob Dylan Robot says:

Why would I want to take your life?
You’ve only murdered my father, raped his wife
Tattooed my babies with a poison pen
Mocked my God, humiliated my friends

Michael said...

Grown ups dont use the word casually or st all unless in connection with discussing an actual or alleged event. The author of the subject article made it up.

betamax3000 said...

Maybe if rape wasn't so all-encompassing a word.

“I’m going to Polanski that pizza.”

“I’m feeling kinda Polanski about that restaurant.”

“Oh my god I would Polanski a six pack right now.”

“That dump I took Polanskied my butthole.”

madAsHell said...

I stopped reading at Female-Identified Woman.

What in the hell does that mean??

Matthew Sablan said...

"What in the hell does that mean??"

-- It is a cultural signifier to her readers, nothing more.

Matthew Sablan said...

(Well, nothing more than what it literally means. That she is a woman who identifies as female. Beyond the on the surface meaning, it is just a way of signalling her readers her beliefs on the subject of gender/sex identity.)

Michael said...

Also there is no "rape culture."

Deirdre Mundy said...

Throw herself against a moving bus? Doesn't one usually throw oneself in FRONT of a moving bus if one wants to end it all?

Throwing yourself AGAINST a moving bust might result in some bruises and embarrassment, but no lasting damage...

For a poet, she seems to be awfully clumsy with language.... she should work on that...

fivewheels said...

Well, there's a rape culture in prison, but since men are the victims it doesn't matter, don'tcha know.

Illuninati said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
betamax3000 said...

Maybe All of This Stems from a Typo of "Rap Culture."

From MC Ren of N.W.A.:

Because the dumb bitch licks out the asshole
And she'll let you videotape her
And if you got a gang of niggas, the bitch would let you rape her
She likes suckin' on dicks, and lickin' up nut
And they even take the broomstick at the butt


So You Can See the Mistake Was Made.

Illuninati said...

I don't hang out with people who use the word rape as a regular verb so I can only speculate.

Perhaps this new use for the word rape is the natural outcome of a culture in which people gain fame and notoriety by breaking cultural norms (ex Miley Cyrus and her twerking). As traditional taboos are broken down there is little else to destroy. But there are still a few left including rape. Perhaps people who use rape casually are trying to be avant-garde.

tim maguire said...

Actually, Michael, I'm learnign from this that there IS a rape culture. And this Lisa woman lives in it. The problem is, she thinks everybody lives in it when really it's only she and her friends.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

"Unconscious participation" in the rape culture sounds like rape to me.

And the prison-rape culture is sustained by trivializing the act of prison rape.

betamax3000 said...

By the Way: MC Ren Really Polanskied That Beat.

Mike said...

"I have seen some people eat as if they were having sex with their food. They display lust and emit groans of pleasure. The food is treated as an object and the eater works his will on it."

Lust and gluttony were both listed among the seven deadly sins precisely because both have to do with unrestrained appetite. One of my favorite Renaissance Spanish poems starts off like this:

Tres cosas me tienen preso
de amores el corazón,
la bella Inés, el jamón,
y berenjenas con queso.

Which roughly translated means: "Three things hold my heart a prisoner of love: beautiful Ines, ham, and eggplant with cheese."

The poet goes on to playfully point out that in the end one appetite can easily substitute for another, and that if Ines won't make herself available to him he would happily make do with the food. It reminds me of that episode of Seinfeld in which George tries to hit the trifecta of pleasure: simultaneous sex, food and TV.

fivewheels said...

"And the prison-rape culture is sustained by trivializing the act of prison rape."

That's absolutely true. It's just not what she's talking about. At all.

Few things are more trivialized, or more ubiquitous, than prison rape jokes. "We're not going to white-collar resort prison. No, we're going to federal pound me in the ass prison."

Hey, that's right, I can quote Office Space whole too. I matter!

Carnifex said...

I'm sure this sentiment is expressed above, but...What a twat. "I could rape a pizza". I heard that just the other day. Not.

betamax3000 said...

If Someone Said that They Were Going to Bukkake That Pizza I Would Not Want a Slice, No Thanks.

betamax3000 said...

And I Would Not Go to a Restaurant that was Kind of Bukkake-y. Especially if they Were Known for their Sauces.

elkh1 said...

It's not a rape culture but a moronic culture in which the morons think "rape" is funny. Besides, it's not "rape, rape".

People who can't win a debate shut down their opponents by charging racism, war on women. I bet the "rape culture" was started by women who were desperate to prevail but were too inept to persuade.

betamax3000 said...

In Donut Culture the Opressive Nature of the Donut Hole Stirs Up Intense debate.

Sam L. said...

Let's use it until it means nothing. r ignore it until it goes away, as it will.

Chip said...

What she's describing is a sort of subversive argot that's fully conscious of the cultural sacredness attached to the word "rape." Appropriating the word for casual, humorous expression among friends is a signal; it tests and affirms status among an in-group. This is similar, I think, to the role dirty jokes once played in social intercourse, as explained by Gershon Legman decades ago.

Carnifex said...

Ps. Could this "Rape" culture explain the predominance of criminal activity at OWS rallies?

"You can't call the police! They have guns and batons and handcuffs! They are the rapists!"

betamax3000 said...

At Rape Culture Classes You have to Get Expressed Consent to Enter the Back Door.

David said...

It must be a New York thing.

On the other hand, if you cheapen a word by calling every sexual misunderstanding or regret a rape, it's not too long until people will start using it casually in all sorts of ways.

I do remember that at one time there was a term "we got raped" that meant we got a very unfair deal. Usually applied in sports.

So it goes.

Chip said...

A similar example of this type of meta-humor comes up in a Family Guy episode where a badass rollercoaster is named "The Holocaust." The reference acknowledges and subverts the sacredness of the signifier.

David said...

"The older use of rape was actually 'snatching without permission.'

I thought it was "snatch without permission."

Oops, sorry. Must not make rape jokes.

wildswan said...

If a female-identified man said "I'm going to rape that pizza" to a male-identified female, would that be bad? In this woman's eyes?

But if a man said that to me or in front of me I would think he was bored and trying for excitement with words and I think I would be bored myself with the evening spent with the loser.

betamax3000 said...

At Rape Culture Classes All Exams are Oral.

Sofa King said...

I do hear this sometimes among the younger crowd. Think of it this way: it's easy to understand the use of "fuck" as a verb connoting something vaguely bad. Well, "fuck" + "violence" = "rape." So, if I am going to figuratively violently fuck someone, I am going to figuratively rape them. In vulgar parlance, "rape x" substitutes for "fuck x up" with a dash of extra violence.

Sofa King said...

And yes, I do think people deliberately use it because of the extreme sensitivity displayed by other people. It's a way of signaling that you are not such a person and do not desire to associate with them overly much.

Sofa King said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
fivewheels said...

I'm also probably about 80 percent on Blade Runner. "All these upsetting rape references will be lost in time ... like tears in rain."

betamax3000 said...

Saddam Hussein Had Rape Rooms. I Would Consider That Rape Culture.

But Let's Talk Pizza and Six-Packs.

Jupiter said...

That one needs a "Click for less" link.

traditionalguy said...

Rape means a violent taking. The Obama trick is a violent taking of all middle class assets through devaluation and extortionate electricity rates post coal plants.

Christians look forward to a rape-true by God prior to the Tribulation .


The death penalty opponents were totally responsible for ending the death penalty for a violent taking of a females body. If they care so much, then sponsor a Constitutional Amendment and reinstate it for Rape of women.

William said...

Those who think microaggression is a silly word should consider how well it describes this piece. It's the very height of microaggression. I would say that it even transgresses into the sphere of the passive aggressive......Also I take offense at her casual use of the phrase Poetry Brothel. Thousands of girls, some as young as ten, are forced to work in brothels. How can she use the word brothel in such an offhand way.

Trashhauler said...

"Especially if we're talking about nonvegetarian pizza, I think 'I'm going to rape that pizza' would be a way to acknowledge the violence we human beings do in this world."

This is a prime example of the sort of religious-driven menu that one runs across with increasing frequency.

Richard Hofstader distinguished between the "intellectual" religious sects and the "enthusiastic" sects. The menu-as-religion movement is neither intellectual nor enthusiastic. All that is left is denial and ritual smugness.

Michael K said...

I didn't read it. It would have felt like rape.

Big Mike said...

@Althouse, you got me there. Good catch.

Jay Patrick said...

Mrs. Basile seems like a thoughtful and considerate person, and I'm thankful that the world includes so many like her.

Jason said...

Anyone who divides the world into people who matter and people who don't has already run hopelessly off the rails.

cubanbob said...

All of the time, energy and creativity spent on this nonsense is surreal.

Paul said...

The woman with 'friends' that use rape as a casual term are not 'normal' for they are obviously dysfunctional in some area to have such insensitivity.

And I say that being to the 'right' of John Wayne. Yes I'm a Texican and I never hear people use the term rape like 'I'm so POed off I'd murder/kill them." But to say you would rape them? No, that is sick.

SOJO said...

Stopped reading at "people who matter."

Bye-bye.

Still, it's a vicarious example of what even the word "rape" does. She feels the need to defend her friends, to state they are not trash, to show the world "they matter" because it will be assumed they don't.

Revenant said...

"People who matter"?

The hell?

Roger Sweeny said...

From the author's bio on xojane:

"Lisa M. Basile is a poet who lives in Queens, NY. She loves editing her women’s website, Luna Luna Mag, and wearing copious amounts of violent red lipstick."

Why does she feel the need to reappropriate such a word as "violent"?

n.n said...

Rape is defined as involuntary seizure. It is not strictly associated with physical violations. It also applies to financial seizures, including progressive or confiscatory tax schemes, or redistribution schemes conducted through predatory or fraudulent practices.

Archie said...

This sort of writing makes me think of a person who is physically unclean and bad smelling. Gives me the heebie- jeebies. Ick.

Hyphenated American said...

What about the stupid phrases like "oil companies are raping the planet"? I wonder how many feminists are upset about the enviro-nuts using it....

Revenant said...

This just in: human beings use metaphors.

Biff said...

My niece and her friends have used the word "rape" as an "ordinary verb" since her teens. (She is 21 now.) Usually, they use it in the context of competition, e.g. video games, sports, singing competitions, etc. They use it in the same way that previous generations would have used words like "romp" or "rock" or "crush" or "dominate," etc.

I cringe every time I hear them speak that way, and I've tried to explain to my niece that she'd be better off using another word, simply out of politeness and respect. She looks at me like I'm a hopelessly old and out of touch man when I do that. I chalk it up to the general coarsening of culture, as these same girls routinely use words that my dad, a former Navy sailor and hardhat construction worker, would have hesitated to use.

By the way, my niece is well educated, leftist, and plans to become a physician.

Valentine Smith said...

When you're a nail everything looks like a hammer.

Joe said...

One of the earliest definitions of rape was "The taking of something by force; seizure, plunder." Hence, "The Rape of Nanking."

ken in sc said...

I have never heard people use the word rape this way, However, I have read 'Rape of the Lock'. I thought it was pretty cool.

Snackeater said...

102 comments and no one mentioned the obvious similarities between the trivialization of the word "rape" and the trivialization of the words "racist" and/or "racism" in today's culture.