Aug. 10th, 2012

eleri: (Default)
I went over some of what was bugging me about the whole 'don't be a creeper' thing yesterday.

Then this post from John Scalzi came along, and (as always) it is well written and clearly stated. So I wanted to go through it point by point. Also, for background, understand that I am a person who experienced sexual assault & coercion as a teenager, and was married for 10 years to someone who had behaviors that could be considered rape.
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Scalzi goes into some What To Do points after this, the first of which is *Don't Touch*- "Here’s an idea: That person you want to touch? Put them in charge of the whole touch experience. That is, let them initiate any physical contact and let them set the pace of that contact when or if they do.

Ok, here is exactly what I was talking about yesterday- we're making people touchphobic. If everyone is always sitting around for the other person to be the first one to touch, then no one elver will! At the very least that should be ASK before touching, and Deal With It if the answer is no.

He brings this contradiction up later, too- "Let the other person be in change of starting the sexual innuendo." What, are people supposed to Rock/Scissors/Paper for it? You can't make being the first to touch/flirt/be suggestive into part of the 'This Person is a Creeper' checklist otherwise EVERYONE will be in the list.

The other thing that shows up in these threads about creepers (and, for some reason, I hate that term.) is that even though people admit there are females who are creepy- much of the assumption is that the offenders are male. So is that because males are more likely to be creepers, or that we're more accepting of 'creeper' behavior out of women? I think it is the latter. Women can hug, touch, flirt, comment on how 'hot' someone is, and no one accuses them of being a creepy pervert.

Heck, look at the latest 3Muskateers ad- three professional looking women cat-calling at a guy- And his body language is all "Why thank you!". Of course they were really cat-calling at the candy, but that's not the point. Can you imagine if this ad was gender reversed? Holly crap there would be an uproar. The woman would have been pegged a slut or a sell-out, the guys as oppressive creepy stalkers.

And yeah, I know that it comes from the fact that men are more likely to assault women, than vice versa- but the double standard exists, and needs to stop being glossed over. Too often pointing out that double standard is attacked as being apologistic. But, lets face it people; read through that list of Scalzi's and ask yourself if women are expected to follow those rules- with either gender? Acknowledge that 98% of the "how not to be a creeper" conversation is directed at a heteronormative 'guys who are interacting with girls', and that girls interacting with guys are not held to the same high standard of behavior to prevent being labeled.

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