Rape: The New Joke
I think the world has gone mad. It may be me of course, but on this occasion, I’m pretty sure it’s not.
Rape, it would appear, is the new joke. The new “it’s-so-funny-I-have-to-make-a-tshirt-of-it” kind of joke. Three times this week, I’ve read about things which make me want to scream “But that’s not FUNNY!” and I know I’m not the only one screaming it. What amazes me is that there are people screaming equally loudly “Yes it IS!”.
This isn’t the kind of joke that some people get and some don’t. It’s not down to a simple difference in humour taste. The things I’ve read this week are talking about violent abuse of the worst kind, and telling us it’s humorous.
The Facebook debacle about the page “You Know She’s Playing Hard to Get When You’re Chasing Her Down an Alley” is sickening. It’s sickening that someone would create such a page, that people would join it, write about rape as if it were joke, advocate rape and even, if the messages on there are to be believed, confess to rape. What’s more sickening is that the powers that be at Facebook would liken this page to an off-colour joke in a pub. This page, and its contents are, apparently, no more offensive than a risque joke in the boozer. It says a lot about Facebook that they find pictures of mothers breastfeeding their babies more offensive than men discussing rape, what they’d like to do, what they plan to do and what they have done. Their compliance team must be a therapist’s dream.
Then I read a piece about Amazon and the fact that they are selling a tshirt with the slogan “Statistically, 9 out of 10 people enjoy gang rape!” Oh, hilarious. So now we’re upping the ante – we’ve moved onto organised, violent crime against a person by a gang. I don’t think it’s just that I’m missing the point. Glorifying gang rape, or rape of any kind, is not okay. Not acceptable. Not on. It would seem that Amazon has seen the lght and removed this item from sale, but why on earth was it there in the first place? And what kind of sick people are employed by the Chargrilled label who produced this?
And finally,earlier this afternoon, I read about a clothing company who were selling a tshirt which proudly proclaimed “No+Rohypnol=Yes”.
WTF? And imagine my surprise when I discovered that it was the very same clothing company which was selling both of these beauties. I feel the need to go back to my original question: what kind of sick people are employed at Chargrilled?
The problem, it seem, comes straight from the top. Their CEO, unhappy that people had complained about these tshirts tweeted “Anyone out there who does not like my tshirts, I really don’t care. You don’t have to buy them. They weren’t meant for ugly feminists.”
Charlie Shiner (who has since removed his twitter account @charlieshinier) seems to be under the illusion that only feminists, ugly or otherwise, would have a problem with tshirts advocating and promoting rape. He can’t be that naive surely? Does he really have his head shoved that far up his own arse that he can’t see when he’s just plain wrong?
It worries me though. It worries me that as a society we seem to have descended so far that there are plenty of people who deem rape as reasonable topic for humour. I wonder if any of them would feel that way if they were a victim of rape? Would Charlie feel that it was OK to make jokes about it if he was attacked and viciously raped on his way home one night? I think not.
And it’s for that very reason that we should all stand against things like this. Rape is never funny. It’s not a joke. A joke about rape is not funny. A joke about rape is not a joke – it’s a sad indictment on society, which is why we must all continue to make a fuss, complain, protest, be an ugly feminist EVERY time some misguided individual decides it’s OK to make a quick buck at the expense of rape victims.