For the last 3 years, we have been engaged in an ongoing discussion about sexual violence. What started with the popularization of the term rape culture moved into street harassment and then transitioned into the #metoo movement. But it’s all still a part of rape culture. Throughout all of this change, we have seen women coming forward in record numbers to talk about their experiences. We have focused, rightfully so, on empowering women and removing the stigmas they face as they come forward. But as with all movements, there are dark places hidden in the light, and rape culture is as deeply embedded into American Society as Racism. Some of the very same tenets that potentially make someone a rapist also make them successful.
We also have to reconcile that even with all this focus on sexual assault, plenty of known perpetrators are still moving seamlessly through the halls of power. Donald Trump was elected president even after he admitted with his own mouth to being a sexual assaulter. Now Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s supreme court nominee is facing sexual allegations of his own. However, it looks like he will still ascend to the highest court in the land regardless of whether he did it or not. As with Trump, a slew of women support Kavanaugh and they too are making their voices heard.
Then, further in the back, we have men who have been assaulted, these men find themselves in the same space that women found themselves in decades ago. Afraid to come forward, ridiculed and teased when they do, and very often met with disbelief. These shades are all part of what we call rape culture, and in this episode of Lessons from the Screen, we are going to dive right in.
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