Schrodinger's Rapist

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Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 3:49 pm

It was suggested that I read about Schrodinger's Rapist. I have the following comment.

The following statement is made.

"Is preventing violent assault or murder part of your daily routine, rather than merely something you do when you venture into war zones? Because, for women, it is."

In fact the statistics show that men are more likely than women to be victims of any violent crime except rape. Specifically I believe that they are about twice as likely to be victims of homicide, although I can't find the reference for this at the moment.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_and_crime

It seems unrealistic of the author of this post to suppose that men are not also obliged to take precautions against violent assault and murder, which is more likely to happen to them than to women. In fact it's a little bit patronizing to suppose that it's something that they need to be educated about. We all need to take precautions against violent assault and murder.

Apart from that, the advice offered in the post sounded like basic common sense to me.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby ellindsey » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:01 pm

Rupert wrote:In fact the statistics show that men are more likely than women to be victims of any violent crime except rape. Specifically I believe that they are about twice as likely to be victims of homicide, although I can't find the reference for this at the moment.


If you are intending to draw a comparison between women taking steps to protect themselves from rape and men taking steps to protect themselves from murder, then the statistics you should be looking at are not how men are more likely than women to be a victim of homicide. Rather, you should compare a man's overall likelihood to be a victim of homicide to a woman's overall likelihood to be a victim of rape. I would expect the woman's risk to be higher, although I don't have the numbers immediately available.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Cipher » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:07 pm

It seems unrealistic of the author of this post to suppose that men are not also obliged to take precautions against violent assault and murder, which is more likely to happen to them than to women. In fact it's a little bit patronizing to suppose that it's something that they need to be educated about. We all need to take precautions against violent assault and murder.

Frequently, we find that men are astonished at the level at which women have learned to build the potential for violent assault and murder into their daily routines - into what we wear, our plans, our schedules. We're taught that it's common sense, but in fact it often turns out to be very restrictive.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Jadehawk » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:07 pm

being more likely to be physically assaulted is not synonymous with "preventing violent assault or murder part of your daily routine". Since men aren't blamed for when they become victims, they aren't the ones burdened with not getting themselves murdered or assaulted. Women OTOH are. They are forced to be the police for themselves, whereas men (unless they belong to a traditionally oppressed minority like African Americans) have the police to be the police for them.

By the way, your stats don't show the lifetime likelihood for a man to become a victim of violent crime. You got that on hand, by any chance?
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby ischemgeek » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:09 pm

All else being equal, the violent assault or murder of a man will be taken more seriously by police than that of a woman, and the violent assault or murder of a man will not be met with an attempt to put the blame on the victim. Consider, for example, a man and a woman who are both violently assaulted in an alleyway. The man will be taken to the hospital, interviewed by police, and his case will in general be taken seriously. A woman will have to field lots of questions: What were you doing there in the first place? Don't you know alleyways are high-risk areas? What were you wearing? Was it appropriate? Did you talk to the person? Lead that person on? Do something to provoke that person? Etc. Consider, for example, a recent case where a woman was sexually assaulted at a bar. The judge blamed her for the assault because she shouldn't have been in the bar in the first place. If a man had been the victim in a bar fight, the judge would not have told him not to go to bars, she would have told the assailant not to hit people. That case is an exception only in that the judge stated her prejudice for the record in open court and in that it recieved so much publicity. Many women do not report sexual assault because of their perception that they will be judged or blamed for their assault - this is not a mistake on our part. This is a reality of the system.

This is why Schrodinger's Rapist is A Thing for women: Men can count on the justice system and society as a whole to support them when they're victims. Women can not. We have to look out for ourselves and be hypervigilant because if something does happen, we're less likely to get justice than our male counterparts and more likely to be blamed for what happened.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Catherine » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:14 pm

A great example of this that did the rounds a while back, what would happen if a male mugging victim was treated like a female rape victim:

Man: Hello, I'd like to report a mugging.

Officer: A mugging, eh? Where did it take place?

Man: I was walking by 21st and Dundritch Street and a man pulled out a gun and said, "Give me all your money."

Officer: And did you?

Man: Yes, I co-operated.

Officer: So you willingly gave the man your money without fighting back, calling for help or trying to escape?

Man: Well, yes, but I was terrified. I thought he was going to kill me!

Officer: Mmm. But you did co-operate with him. And I've been informed that you're quite a philanthropist, too.

Man: I give to charity, yes.

Officer: So you like to give money away. You make a habit of giving money away.

Man: What does that have to do with this situation?

Officer: You knowingly walked down Dundritch Street in your suit when everyone knows you like to give away money, and then you didn't fight back. It sounds like you gave money to someone, but now you're having after-donation regret. Tell me, do you really want to ruin his life because of your mistake?

Man: This is ridiculous!

Officer: This is a rape analogy. This is what women face every single day when they try to bring their rapists to justice.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:28 pm

Hi ellindsey,

I'm responding to what was written. She asked me, the reader, "Is preventing violent assault and murder part of your daily routine?" with the implication that it is part of her daily routine but not mine. Well, as a man I'm more likely to me a victim of violent assault and murder than she is, as far as I can tell. That seems to be what the Wikipedia article says, given that I am twice as likely to be murdered and more likely to be a victim of any given violent crime except rape. I find it unlikely that all of this is outweighed when you bring rape into the equation. But we'd have to look into it I suppose. I'll see what I can find out about it.

Jadehawk writes 'being more likely to be physically assaulted is not synonymous with "preventing violent assault or murder part of your daily routine".' That's true, obviously. I think it would be over the top to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of my daily routine. But as far as I can tell these things are more likely to happen to me than to her. So I think it must be over the top for her to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of her daily routine.

ischemgeek suggests that men can count on the justice system and women can't. That's certainly unfortunate if it's true, but that consideration wouldn't really lead me to be less careful about trying to prevent violent assaults from taking place in the first place. I attach a fair amount of importance to it being a case of prevention rather than cure. And the reality appears to be that more violent assaults against men actually take place.

Basically what she is trying to tell me is that even though she is less likely to be a victim of violent crime than me, the steps she needs to take to take precautions against violent crime have a much worse impact on her well-being than the steps I need to take. I wouldn't want to run the risk of being insensitive, but as a skeptic I'd need to see a lot more evidence before I'm convinced.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby ischemgeek » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:39 pm

Rupert wrote:ischemgeek suggests that men can count on the justice system and women can't. That's certainly unfortunate if it's true, but that consideration wouldn't really lead me to be less careful about trying to prevent violent assaults from taking place in the first place. I attach a fair amount of importance to it being a case of prevention rather than cure. And the reality appears to be that more violent assaults against men actually take place.

Basically what she is trying to tell me is that even though she is less likely to be a victim of violent crime than me, the steps she needs to take to take precautions against violent crime have a much worse impact on her well-being than the steps I need to take. I wouldn't want to run the risk of being insensitive, but as a skeptic I'd need to see a lot more evidence before I'm convinced.


You're talking about fruit, we're talking about aggregate fruits. You're saying that because other types of fruit outnumber aggregate fruits like blackberries, thinking about them is a waste of time. Men have more violent assaults committed against them, yes, but that's because men are more likely to get into fights and are socialized to be violent with each other. Women are more likely to be raped, to face domestic abuse, etc. And in the cases where women are more likely to be the victims, social stigma blames the victims even after the assault in a way that society does not blame the victim of a mugging or the person who ended up on the losing end of a fistfight.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:41 pm

Catherine,

Based on my father's experiences as a member of a jury in a rape case I would say it is hard for women to bring their rapists to justice. I think this is very unfortunate and I'm in favour of efforts to address the problem.

Nevertheless, the reality is that more violent crimes against men do in fact take place. So if men are generally more successful at bringing their attackers to justice that is obviously not having enough of a deterrent effect to negate the fact that men are more likely to be victims of violent crime.

I've had an experience where I was assaulted in a nightclub while working in China and I was told that even if I was able to identify my attacker to the police I would have no chance of getting a conviction because of the way the justice system in China worked. That's China of course. It wasn't an especially serious assault, just a shove in the chest.

I just don't think that it's especially realistic to say that the possibility of being a victim of a violent crime is something that women need to worry about more when it is demonstrably more likely to happen to men. I'm not in favour of anyone being a victim of violent crime and I'm in favour of efforts to have the justice system work effectively for all victims of violent crime.

As I say, the actual advice offered in the stuff about Schrodinger's Rapist just seemed like basic common sense to me, pretty much: respect other people's boundaries, present yourself in a reasonable way if you're going to make an unsolicited approach to a woman, and so on. I suppose I could also have said to my ex-girlfriend "Try not to intoxicate yourself and flirt with other men and put me in situations where I am at risk of being assaulted". That should be basic common sense too. Not everyone is always reasonable, unfortunately.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:43 pm

ischemgeek wrote:You're saying that because other types of fruit outnumber aggregate fruits like blackberries, thinking about them is a waste of time.


Actually that's a straw person; I quite obviously never said any such thing. I have been asked to take care to represent other people's position fairly; maybe you could extend the same courtesy to me.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Jadehawk » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:50 pm

So if men are generally more successful at bringing their attackers to justice that is obviously not having enough of a deterrent effect to negate the fact that men are more likely to be victims of violent crime.
this is irrelevant to the question of whether men are tasked with preventing themselves from being assaulted the way women are.

I just don't think that it's especially realistic to say that the possibility of being a victim of a violent crime is something that women need to worry about more when it is demonstrably more likely to happen to men.
are you actually going to read the responses given to you, or will you just repeat this point despite the fact that a)it's been explained that this isn't what the line you're complaining about was actually referring to; and b)you actually lack the statistics to make that claim, since what you linked to doesn't provide the data on the lifetime chance of being a victim (violent crimes are very unevenly distributed in the male population; much more so than rape of women is)
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Jadehawk » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:52 pm

but that consideration wouldn't really lead me to be less careful about trying to prevent violent assaults from taking place in the first place.
except that it does, since you yourself said that preventing yourself from being murdered or assaulted isn't part of your routine.
So I think it must be over the top for her to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of her daily routine.
incorrect. it is part of my daily routine. because if I'm assaulted, I will be blamed for it and I will not see justice done.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby qmartindale » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:56 pm

ischemgeek wrote: Consider, for example, a recent case where a woman was sexually assaulted at a bar. The judge blamed her for the assault because she shouldn't have been in the bar in the first place. If a man had been the victim in a bar fight, the judge would not have told him not to go to bars, he would have told the assailant not to hit people. That case is an exception only in that the judge stated his prejudice for the record in open court and in that it recieved so much publicity.


First, the judge was a woman. Second, please don't cite the Daily Mail.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Cipher » Fri Sep 14, 2012 4:59 pm

So I think it must be over the top for her to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of her daily routine.

Yeah, no, it's really not.
This is what we're trying to get across to you with this whole male privilege thing - you're trying to extrapolate from your experience to ours, and use that to invalidate our claims of how we live. That doesn't work, because your life is not like ours.
The only reason it's not part of my daily routine is because I try not to leave the house when I don't have to... which, I guess, DOES make it part of my daily routine. When I do, I have to actively make choices about how much and how thoroughly to protect myself- it's never something that's out of my mind, or really even in the back of it.

EDITED: To correct bizarre quoting of Jadehawk's post instead of Rupert's :oops:
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby ischemgeek » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:02 pm

qmartindale wrote:
ischemgeek wrote: Consider, for example, a recent case where a woman was sexually assaulted at a bar. The judge blamed her for the assault because she shouldn't have been in the bar in the first place. If a man had been the victim in a bar fight, the judge would not have told him not to go to bars, he would have told the assailant not to hit people. That case is an exception only in that the judge stated his prejudice for the record in open court and in that it recieved so much publicity.


First, the judge was a woman. Second, please don't cite the Daily Mail.


First, women can be sexist, too. Second, that the first article I Googled for it was from the Daily Mail does not invalidate that it happened.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Jadehawk » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:03 pm

First, women can be sexist, too.
true, but you actually did say "his prejudice" ;-)
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Catherine » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:03 pm

It isn't just about men being more commonly victims though, they are also far more likely to be the perpetrators of violence as these statistics for US homicides show:
http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/gender.cfm

This means that women are going to be more wary of men than men are of women hence the schrodinger's rapist analogy, women have to be on there guard around men far more than men need to be on their guard around women.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Lovely » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:05 pm

Rupert wrote: But as far as I can tell these things are more likely to happen to me than to her. So I think it must be over the top for her to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of her daily routine.


Please. Do not do that. What you have just done here is said, "That doesn't happen to me. Therefore I think her experience is incorrect." This is a big issue when it comes to feminism. Women's experiences are marginalized about these things all the time. Using your own experience to invalidate hers is an unwelcome thing.

I promise you. If she says that her daily routine is greatly affected by attempting to prevent violent assault then it is. And, yes, my being a woman does have something to do with this, because I know firsthand what she is speaking about. My experiences are real. My feelings about those experiences are real.

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I am told day in and day out from all sorts of sources that I will be raped. I will be assaulted. It's only a matter of time. And when it does happen, it will be my fault, because at some point I will have let my guard down. I will have misjudged a situation. I am told that my punishment for my one moment of not being vigilant enough is assault, rape, and possibly even my death.


Are you told that? That's why she asks the question. That's why she wrote Schrodinger's Rapist.

Her post is not that women are most likely to be the victims of most violent crime overall. No. The point is that while women are far more likely to be the victims of sexual assault, and rape... that the constant threat of those things, and the frequent victim-blaming is also an enormous problem.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby ischemgeek » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:08 pm

Jadehawk wrote:
First, women can be sexist, too.
true, but you actually did say "his prejudice" ;-)



Corrected. My bad.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby qmartindale » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:11 pm

Rupert wrote:Apart from that, the advice offered in the post sounded like basic common sense to me.


When I was at a party in college, a drunk girl walked home from a party to her apartment by herself at night. It was maybe a 15 minute walk, but the people at the party feared for her safety. We thought it was "basic common sense" that a woman should not travel alone at night. That is not how the world should be. As I see it, Schroedinger's Rapist is not designed to illustrate a desirable reality, it's designed to illustrate the very negative aspects of the world in which we live. See also, "The Implication" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZ1lc6KASWg)
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:13 pm

Jadehawk wrote:this is irrelevant to the question of whether men are tasked with preventing themselves from being assaulted the way women are.


I really don't understand what this means. Everyone has to take steps to prevent themselves from being assaulted. That is just a fact of life. Since men are in fact more likely to be assaulted, it seems only reasonable to suppose that they have to take stronger steps than women.

are you actually going to read the responses given to you, or will you just repeat this point despite the fact that a)it's been explained that this isn't what the line you're complaining about was actually referring to; and b)you actually lack the statistics to make that claim, since what you linked to doesn't provide the data on the lifetime chance of being a victim (violent crimes are very unevenly distributed in the male population; much more so than rape of women is)


I am reading the responses given to me, all of them, carefully, and making a good faith effort to weigh up the evidence to the best of my abilities. I don't believe that it is reasonable for you to suggest otherwise.

When you say this isn't what the line was referring to, I find it hard to understand. Are you trying to tell me that the author of the post doesn't believe that preventing violence is something that women have to worry about more than men? Please excuse me but I do not understand what you are saying.

The statement in the Wikipedia article was "Men are also far more likely than women to be the victims of violent crime, with the exception of rape." and this is the reference

http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/gender.cfm

If you think the statement in the Wikipedia article is misleading can you elaborate?
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Cipher » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:17 pm

Rupert wrote:
Jadehawk wrote:this is irrelevant to the question of whether men are tasked with preventing themselves from being assaulted the way women are.


I really don't understand what this means. Everyone has to take steps to prevent themselves from being assaulted. That is just a fact of life. Since men are in fact more likely to be assaulted, it seems only reasonable to suppose that they have to take stronger steps than women.

I'm sorry, but maybe you need to step back from this thread for a bit and just try and think about the responses, let them sink in. People have told you about victim-blaming right here in this thread - victim-blaming about rape and other sexual assault happens to women in a way that victim-blaming for murder rarely happens to men. Women incredibly rarely see any kind of justice for being raped. For a lot of us, the only protection we have is ourselves - we can't rely on society to help us at all. This is what Jadehawk is saying, as far as I can see.

Also, your "It seems only reasonable" is, as I've pointed out, a privilege thing. What seems reasonable to you is based on your life experiences, and that's okay! But you need to understand that it doesn't work to extrapolate from yours to ours.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Rupert » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:20 pm

Jadehawk wrote:
but that consideration wouldn't really lead me to be less careful about trying to prevent violent assaults from taking place in the first place.
except that it does, since you yourself said that preventing yourself from being murdered or assaulted isn't part of your routine.


I said that it would be over the top to say that it was "part of my daily routine", in the way that the author of the Schrodinger's Rapist post seemed to want to claim that it is for her. The inference you draw obviously doesn't follow.

So I think it must be over the top for her to suggest that preventing violent assault or murder is part of her daily routine.
incorrect. it is part of my daily routine. because if I'm assaulted, I will be blamed for it and I will not see justice done.


Well, I can't argue with you if you say that it is part of your daily routine. But the risk for me of the assault actually taking place is greater than the risk for you, and I would certainly much rather prevent it from happening than resort to using the justice system. So I suppose if I do not make efforts to prevent it from happening "part of my daily routine" then I am being foolish.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Cipher » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:21 pm

Well, I can't argue with you if you say that it is part of your daily routine. But the risk for me of the assault actually taking place is greater than the risk for you, and I would certainly much rather prevent it from happening than resort to using the justice system. So I suppose if I do not make efforts to prevent it from happening "part of my daily routine" then I am being foolish.

Or perhaps you are socialized as male.
ETA: Look - we aren't making the choice to do that completely on our own, in a vacuum. I tried to go to the corner store the other night because I was out of something I needed. It's two blocks away from my house. Yes, I've been assaulted on the way back from there once (with my (now-ex)boyfriend!), and yes, I've been catcalled and stared at by groups of drunk men a few times, but honestly, two blocks. So yeah, I thought about it, but I decided if I just put on shoes that were okay for running then I would be okay. My grandmother insisted on going with me carrying a heavy flashlight. Because it's not safe for a woman to be outside at night on her own, without a weapon.
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Re: Schrodinger's Rapist

Postby Jadehawk » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:22 pm

Since men are in fact more likely to be assaulted, it seems only reasonable to suppose that they have to take stronger steps than women.
but you already said that you don't, so you know quite well that such a supposition, reasonable or not, would be counterfactual.

making a good faith effort to weigh up the evidence to the best of my abilities
how can this be, when you directly tell the women who've posted here that you don't believe their experience is actually their experience? That's denying the evidence, not weighing it.

Are you trying to tell me that the author of the post doesn't believe that preventing violence is something that women have to worry about more than men?
I have already repeatedly said that the line is about the fact that policing for oneself is part of women's lives, but not part of men's lives (the latter of which you've confirmed; the former of which we have confirmed). Not about who has a higher lifetime chance of being assaulted (are you ever going to provide those statistics, or are you just going to continue running on an assumption?)

I said that it would be over the top to say that it was "part of my daily routine", in the way that the author of the Schrodinger's Rapist post seemed to want to claim that it is for her.
exactly. which means she's right: she has to police for herself, and you don't.

So I suppose if I do not make efforts to prevent it from happening "part of my daily routine" then I am being foolish.
no, you're just not trained by society to do it, nor will you be punished by said society and the legal system if you don't do it.
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