2015-08-31

You Know Your Movement Is In Trouble When...

A few years back, Emily Yoffe, AKA "Dear Prudence," got in trouble with her readers - and the media - for suggesting that college girls who drink too much at parties are putting themselves at increased risk of sexual assault. Later, she wrote:
I wrote a story whose message is obvious: The campus culture of binge drinking is toxic, and many rapists prey on drunk young women. I said that when women lose the capacity to be responsible for their actions, sexual predators target them for attack. As banal as these observations are, I knew this story would result in a torrent of outrage.
Something called Feministing, which I guess is a pun on "fisting," although I'm not sure why on Earth feminists would want to reclaim a world like that, called it a "rape denialism [sic] mannifesto." I thought that was preposterous.

If you're not familiar with Yoffe's work, you might not know her ideological bent. It's fairly safe to say she leans left, even if not far left. I mention this because Yoffe is exactly the kind of reasonable left-leaning media pundit that leftist feminists would be happy to call an ally; yet when she suggested sobriety as a potential safeguard against sexual assault, she was criticized.

Today, we learn that true feminist icon Chrissie Hynde has suffered much the same fate for much the same line of commentary. See for yourself:
If I'm walking around and I'm very modestly dressed and I'm keeping to myself and someone attacks me, then I'd say that's his fault. But if I'm being very lairy and putting it about and being provocative, then you are enticing someone who's already unhinged - don't do that. Come on! That's just common sense.
Twitter, which has inexplicably become our moral compass, was quick to tar and feather her as a victim-blaming fool. Someone coming to her defense had this to say:
People criticising Chrissie Hynde for her comments are overlooking that she is a victim and this is self blame. I feel v sorry for her tbh
If someone had told me years ago that feminists would be criticizing Chrissie Hynde for having antiquated views on rape, I think I would have been speechless.

I'm for women's equality, and in that sense, yes, I am a feminist. But I don't want to be put in the same category as people who are criticizing the likes of Yoffe and Hynde for stating something so obvious as to be a banality.

There's something wrong with the way feminism is being applied in today's world. On some level I wonder if what bothers this new kind of feminist is not the prospect of having fault so much as the idea of having responsibility. Of course it's not your fault if someone breaks into your house, but if you deliberately leave the keys in the front door keyhole you have facilitated your own burglary. What makes your body so different?