Belinda Brown: Feminists have dismantled the social conventions that protected women against rape

Feminists recently got upset by a very sensible Sussex Police poster advising young women to stick together on their night out. What I would suggest really sparked feminist anxiety was a non-overtly feminist organisation participating in any way on the discourse around rape.

Rape is to feminists what exploitation is to the communists. It provides concrete evidence that their ideology is needed, and it enshrines it in the heart of our legal system. It is their  most holy sacred cow.

In their version of events, the low conviction rate of reported rapes is a product of society’s confusion, our prejudices and bias. Our young people are about to have an educational programme about consent inflicted on them to disabuse them of their ignorance, correct their attitudes and make sure that they all start explicitly giving consent.

The feminists are wrong.  It is the rate of reporting which is a product of ideology and the rate of conviction which represents the triumph of common sense.

The primary issue is whether a woman actually consented. Long gone are the days when rape was unambiguous here.  Context is vitally important in the toolkit which feminists have provided because this can help determine if there were underlying differences in power constraining the complainant’s capacity to say no. Imbalances of power in our contemporary feminist society are ubiquitous and always favour the man. Apart from leaving men more  vulnerable to accusation, the focus on context distracts from the role of female agency. This is derided as being part of “female precipitation beliefs” – and there was I thinking it only rained men.

While a vital task on the feminist agenda has been to discredit ideas about “female precipitation”, evidence suggests that jury and judges are harder to convince. Thus where the complainant was intoxicated at the time of the alleged rape, defendants are much less likely to be charged.

This I would suggest may not simply be because the complainant’s  version of events was unreliable. It might also be because the jury appreciate that there is a level of individual agency which underlies the decision, or series of decisions to enter into an intoxicated state. After all the vast majority of us know (or at least should reasonably know) that when we consume large amounts of alcohol we are likely to become less reserved, lose our inhibitions, become more flirtatious, possibly promiscuous and invariably do things which we will subsequently regret.  If we choose to enter into this intoxicated state we should accept (and I believe most women do), the consequences of our actions, even if this includes sexual intercourse to which we do not entirely remember giving consent.  We do after all always have a safe alternative and that is to avoid getting drunk.

Further, most women, I suspect have a strong sense of their own agency in obtaining sexual intercourse. They don’t necessarily expect to be asked permission, nor feel that they have to give consent. While in feminist sex, women it seems say yes and continue to give their consent all through the sexual activity (aah that’s what Sally was doing) – actually this is not how we carry on in our everyday lives.

Let’s see what we can find from research. Monica Moore and Diana Butler documented fifty two “non-verbal solicitation behaviours” that women used and concluded that in 90 per cent  of these cases an observer could predict from the woman’s non-verbal behaviour whether she would be approached by a man. Further,  those who did exhibit these behaviours were very much more likely to be approached than those who did not.

Women know very well how to pull the strings.

Timothy Perper and David Weis found that 87 per cent of women were able to identify specific behaviours which they engaged in designed to elicit an offer to have sex from a particular man.  Of course inviting a man to a private place or listening to music  or offering a man a drink do not mean that women are asking men to have sex with them. But  it does mean that women have ways of getting what they want (which feminists seem intent on interfering with).

Furthermore, these strategies do not necessarily involve the use of explicit consent. The Perper and Weis study found that less than 1Ž4 of the women would ask a man to engage in sex. Sandra Byers and Kim Lewis concluded  that “women most commonly use non-verbal methods to give consent to sexual intercourse”. Most damming of all a study found that 39 per cent of Texas female college undergraduates reported that they had said no when they wanted to have sex. And 61 per cent of the sexually experienced women in this study stated they had said “no” when they had intended to have sex.

Whilst all this research is old it still suggests that there could be a great deal of scope in our commonly accepted social conventions for men to think that women are willing to have sex with them without gaining Alison Saunders explicit and ongoing consent. In all this we must remember that it  is the behaviour of the promiscuous minority who choose to have a larger number of sexual partners who will be far more influential, than those of us who are more inhibited, on the social conventions surrounding sex.

If a particular series of behaviours  can in one sexual encounter lead to entirely consensual sex, it is not fair of us to allow a man who might experience exactly the same series of behaviours to  then be accused of rape.

A glaring omission from feminist rape discourse is any discussion of the differing sexual responses of women and men.  According to the  law, that consent can be withdrawn at any point during sexual activity . This does not appear to take any account of the physiology of men and if applied literally would be very open to abuse.

The average man wants sex more than the average woman.  This is a good thing. Without it we would never have evolved as human beings and our sex lives would be a lot more dull. And far from making men predatory, I suspect it actually makes men far more practised in self-restraint.

However, it also means a man, given the opportunity,  is more likely to have sex with a woman for whom he has no other real interest. This can easily occur when a woman is fully consenting and we cannot protect ourselves from this by elaborating ever more complex laws on rape.

We used to have very good mechanisms for protecting women from the downside of the male sex drive. We used to practice chastity and self- restraint,  or test their level of commitment – would they be prepared to marry us, provide for us. In tribal societies men are set some challenges to see how far they would be prepared to go.

Every single social convention which used to protect women has been systematically dismantled. Sexual experience is valued over virginity.  In terms of sexual promiscuity we are encouraged to compete with men. We are encouraged to flaunt and expose our bodies. And we have removed every incentive for men wanting to marry us.

It is not the phantom “rape culture” which renders us vulnerable. It is the culture of promiscuity, sexual exploration and sexual fulfilment that leaves us unprotected. And for this we have our feminist liberators to thank.

Belinda Brown

  • Kingbingo

    As a young man enjoying London in my 20’s I hope you will excuse my lack of modesty when I say I did rather well with the young ladies. I forget how many end up back at my flat but it was commensurate with the fact I used to go out 5 nights a week in the touristy part of London for several years looking for the girls with a ‘holiday mentality’ and romantic ideals of meeting a well-spoken suave brit during their stay.

    And honesty I don’t think I ever once formally obtained verbal consent. Not a single time.

    Not on a single occasion did I suddenly halt all the petting and cooing and step back from the young lass in question and demand to know that she was of sound mind and consented to sexual relations commencing post haste. I always just too it for granted that if she spent half the night talking to me in the bar, told all her friends to clear off without her, got in a taxi with me, allowed me to peel off all her clothes in my lounge that I could reasonably assume that she was fine with the proceedings.

    Yet I’m pretty sure that under the new ‘Yes means Yes’ law passed in California recently that the lack of overtly obtained consent would mean I had committed a crime.

    Now this is fine in 99% of cases. But every now and again you get some real wild cards, I mean like situations where the following day the girls sister ends up telling her mother what she did last night and the overprotective mother fly’s into a vengeful fury and browbeats the young woman to lodge a rape case based on a lack of spoken consent. This happened to one poor lad in California, I wish I could find the link, but the poor guy’s life was destroyed by this insane mother getting involved and insisting her daughter would never do anything as heinous as actually physically desire a guy her age.

    Now of course – of course, real rapists are scum, whom I would glad plug into the electric chair myself. But randomly destroying innocent young men’s lives to make a few bitter misandrist feminists feel better by inflicting pain on men, any men, is just as bad.

    • Belinda Brown

      I think the way the law has changed you might find that you could be accused of rape here too if a female felt vindictive for some reason. I think this whole issue really needs talking about openly and honestly because I suspect that there are many innocent young men being dragged through the legal system unnecessarily – and a few very unfortunate ones might get accused. Of course none of this is to excuse real rape where force or drugs or bullying are used. I do also know of a couple of women who have been in situations which would probably have qualified for a rape charge in contemporary society. I don’t think either of them felt remotely psychologically damaged. Just that they had been very very stupid. And very drunk.

  • Jenny L

    Thank you for writing this article, I agree with every single word. An excellent piece!!

    • Belinda Brown

      Thank you Jenny

  • Mez

    The type of facial expressions mentioned in your research article cover flirting, how a woman might catch an attractive mans eye across a room. To have got to a situation when that could be seriously considered consent – really I’m horrified. Forced verbal consent might ruin one night stands, (shock and horror people might actually have to have a meaningful conversation with somebody before getting laid), it could be a good thing. My mother would describe this as ‘behaving like animals’, but I don’t think it stems from feminism necessarily, although there are feminists who want to behave like men, a lot just want equal opportunity in education and the work place. Promiscuity has arrived courtesy of the media, eg articles in Cosmopolitan 30 years ago were urging girls to behave like men, and Hollywood ‘love at first sight’ is probably the cause of a lot of marriage break down; people choosing partners for all the wrong reasons. I had a Christian upbringing, consistent behaviour, conservative dressing and so on, yet still managed to attract the most appalling and assumptive behaviour from men I didn’t know at all, and were not even interested in, so much so that over a period of time I just gave up on it and decided a life alone is safer.
    There does seem to be a young movement in America back towards the old much more healthy and secure way of behaving, although it hasnt altered statistics yet. Cross cultural premarital research Africa and India are still pro – no sex before marriage.
    here http://www.academia.edu/1803428/A_cross-cultural_psychology_perspective_on_premarital_sex

  • mrnotms

    Is it facile to ask, what is the average (radical) feminist’s experience of sex with anyone, not least men (who they hate so much)? Do their theories of consent come from a standpoint of active participation in heterosexual relations or an imaginary parallel universe? We seem to have come a long way from ‘Sex-Positive Feminism’. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex-positive_feminism

    • Mez

      well that supposes you have an accurate definition of what feminism actually is – according to Google this ,,, so on that basis feminists have normal relations with men but probably choose men who don’t feel the need to continually dominate or ridicule them, but do enjoy supporting each other and generally enjoy sharing parenthood.

      feminism
      ˈfɛmɪnɪz(ə)m/
      noun
      noun: feminism
      the advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes.synonyms:the women’s movement, the feminist movement, women’s liberation, female emancipation, women’s rights; More

  • Belinda Brown

    Thank Erin. It’s great to have my argument backed up with real experience.

  • I blame it on feminism.

    Media has been over run by feminists which is why they are spouting their hatred on the unsuspecting public.

    1-5?

    Rubbish!

    That is just feminist “researchers” cooking the figures so they can scare monger the whole population and get the government to give them loads of cash so they can push their hatred even further.

    Rape culture is a feminist wet dream and the tool they use to push themselves into our culture suggesting they will save all of us….from a problem that doesn’t exist.

    There is no rape culture!

    …”Paternalism (like govt male control on earth) which is sited as anti-feminism, is conversely actually opposing female liberty.”

    First practically every government in Europe has large numbers of femnazis in positions of power or in the civil service so governments are not anti-feminist.

    Secondly feminism is not now or was ever pro-women it is just pro-feminist because just about every woman I know detests the sick toxic ideology of feminism.

    • Belinda Brown

      When I was doing research with this article I found that there was research which had counted women as having been raped when they admitted to having had sex when they didn’t particularly want to. So wives feeling compassionate towards their beloved husbands can now count as having been raped!

      • For feminists to be happy a woman has to have a blow horn and a rattler so people know she is consenting enthusiastically.

        I’d imagine that banging on the walls, screaming his name will only be acceptable.

        Have one drink and then agree to sex is not allowed or you’ll be a rape victim.

        Belinda can you contact me john@menshumanrightsireland.org please

  • mrnotms

    Erin, just a point, but, as a man, I don’t look back at the days of ‘rigid dating rules’ with misty eyes – not least being (maybe subtly) judged on my suitability for someone’s beloved daughter – appearance, job, prospects, social skills etc. Also, as someone with your stature and experience, why wouldn’t you rejoice that some ‘good strong women’ will never be married or have children? You’ve seen the possible consequences of the opposite. How comparatively happy might they be? David

  • Jenny L

    Years ago when I was a teenager and going out on a date, wearing my mini-skirt and knee high black boots, I remember my mother calling to me as I went out the door, “Don’t you dare lead that young man on!”
    Her mantra was,”Never lead a boy on, it is not fair on the boy!”
    Just think how horrified feminists would be with the notion that I was expected to behave and to take responsibility for my own actions.

    • Belinda Brown

      Just think how horrified feminists would be that your mother taught you to consider the well being of the male!

  • Mez

    The womens liberation movement didn’t all agree with ‘the female Eunoch’, but it was that publication supported by an author already entrenched in the media which caused the situation that we have today- ie sexual liberation outside of marriage as opposed to economic liberation which we are still looking for.
    It isnt the feminist movement that’s rewriting history in the media to show the Edwardians or even the Doris Day era dropping their drawers before marriage – it’s men. Sensationalism sells. Look at the media – no Mary Whitehouse, now and almost anything goes..
    Feminists do like men – what they don’t like is patriarchy, which is a system of control, there’s a difference.

    • Belinda Brown

      Women created patriarchy as a way of eliciting men’s support for themselves and their children . It is a system created by women and it has served women and children very well for millennia . If we get rid of patriarchy men will just go off and do their own thing and have a ball – as they are already doing – and women will be left bickering amongst themselves (because we won’t have men to blame any more) and wondering where it all went wrong.

      • Woman at home

        Spot on, Belinda.

    • Mez

      There’s no patriarchy in hunter gatherer society which is egalitarian. Celtic and Saxon women married but had a great deal of freedom and were able to own property and create contracts in their own right, why would they choose to deny themselves those rights?. Patriarchy seems to have originated in the mIddle east, Jews denied women a lot of rights, they were unable to inherit property which went straight to the male heir for instance.

  • Mez really try learning something about human communication.

    Most of it is non-verbal.

    Most consent is not someone signing a long legal document saying they will agree to sex, their parents there to give their consent as well and have a film crew there to ensure that it is all completely consensual.

    It can be as simple as a look.

    The drink issue is simple according to the Nazis In Knickers (feminists with power) a woman who has drink taken cannot consent.