Rape Jokes are not fucking funny. End of.

HUGE big TRIGGER WARNING HERE- I get angry and say the R-word a lot. This post could upset you via the links I have posted, too- if you feel at all triggered, don’t worry about reading them. The safe one is the one about burlesque.

 

People have warned me, through blogs, that I would lose friends over what happened to me. Rape is a word people don’t like to use, but often when they do, it is all in the wrong contexts.

This is what happened today.

Let me set the scene. A friend of mine is a burlesque artist, fire eater, stilt walker and all-round amazing performance artist. She had posted a rant about a certain so-called “feminist” comedienne who had done a piece about burlesque, supposedly both taking the mick and making it “feminist” at the same time. What she was actually doing was making a fool of herself in front of an audience of idiots. Apparently, bashing other women is a “feminist” thing now, too. See it here: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/02/25/nadia-kamil-feminist-burlesque_n_4853522.html

The taking the mick out of burlesque part I thought was childish- burlesque IS feminist, and actually pretty difficult to perform. I have worked with a burlesque dancer, and she pulled no punches. She booked her own shows and bought her own rhinestones, and knew that mostly, her audience was couples and women. She is a true businesswoman, has a degree, and has met important political figures. I actually thought the routine this comedienne did would have been helpfully corrected by burlesquers, and she would definitely have been lectured on her lack of feathers or rhinestone. (See here for a much better refutation of the burlesque side than I have just written- https://lililascala.wordpress.com/2014/02/27/feminist-burlesque-dont-make-me-laugh/ )

What actually had me fuming, and feeling sick, was that the comedienne decided that in her routine, there was going to be a tasteless moment involving a true fact about rape. I watched that, and the bile rose in my throat.

So, as I do if something affects me, I posted it to my Facebook page. I was very much aware that I was skirting close to what has actually happened to me, but I knew that most people I know have seen posts about abusive relationships that I have uploaded. I have admitted to my depression there, but not the rape. I don’t know when, or if, I will be strong enough for that, but those closest to me have already guessed or I have told them.

Anyway… We all have those friends who seem to think they cannot be wrong, and they are so intellectual that everyone else is dumb. I had one of these friends- let’s call her Silly for now. Silly has had not the greatest of upbringings, and has used drugs and drink, but is apparently clean and sober and actually living life properly now. She has been obnoxious since her parents split, and always picks arguments for the sake of arguing. I have tried to explain away her behaviour for years- she has been a good friend and she can be very funny- but she has insulted people close to me, and now they won’t speak to her. I have constantly tried to be a good friend to her, by being understanding and supportive, but the fact remains that she can be very offensive. Silly will pick the wrong side of an argument, and she will argue til she is blue in the face to prove it right- I mean, I wouldn’t put it past her to say that torture was right and acceptable just to piss the other person off, and prove how wonderfully intelligent she is.

 

Silly saw the post, and this is exactly what happened.

She wrote something like what are you objecting over with the rape joke? I thought it was a pretty good one and a very true statement.

I saw red, and replied with my view- rape jokes are never funny. People in the audience who had been through this shit would have to face that in an evening of comedy, which is not what they had signed up for. She was still using the piece of information about rape in a sexualised context, so it still meant she didn’t take it seriously. Feminist my ass. For some people, even the word triggers flashbacks. I agree completely with what was on the piece of paper (100% of rapes are the fault of… the rapist)  but to display it in that way was quite frankly disgusting.

I thought she would understand. Why oh why did I think that? Did I not know Silly? Had I not been there as she insulted her way through our mutual friendship group, in the name of intellect?

Silly then came back with the following:

Well yes, even the mention of rape can be triggering (although you don’t know if she included a trigger warning for her show or not), rape jokes, when done tastefully and entertainingly (i.e. not just Daniel Tosh styley) can still be super funny, just like any other joke about a risky triggering subject ( e.g. any violent crime, the holocaust, 9/11 etc) that may have members of the audience who will be upset by it- and in comedy, it seems like either you can make fun of everything or nothing

Also, comedy is a great way for many people for dealing with things like this- by subverting the issue and pointing out how silly the whole of rape culture is- and the more people realise what a ridiculous joke rape culture is- the less people will be buying into it!

Anyway, there’s a whole bunch of articles out there who cover this far more eloquently than I can, like this one: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/can-rape-jokes-be-funny… , but I’ll also leave you with this super funny video- http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded…

www.huffingtonpost.com

 
 
I sat staring at my screen, horrified. What the hell was all that about?! I was so revolted by what Silly had written that I immediately de-friended her.
 
So trauma is fair game now, is it, for cheap-thrills comedians? 9/11 is apparently really funny? How about the Holocaust, does that split your sides? Wow, and I thought me de-friending her was mean.
 
I actually wrote below all that drivel the words, “How could you say that?” before I de-friended her. In fact, I was still so angry I posted a status about it. Within three hours it had seventeen likes already, and I started a conversation with a girl I have recently met who has had bad experiences.
 
Silly had the cheek to send me a stupid beggy-pleady message: why have you de-friended me, I’m confused as to why the rape joke thing offended you, don’t lets waste our friendship over something like an intellectual discussion, I’ll delete all my comments…
 
I haven’t replied. I am still so angry that she has sided with the ‘rape culture’ she thinks she is opposing.
 
It is backwards logic to say that any rape joke is funny. No matter if the joke is flipped on its head to ‘expose the rapist, or societal norms,’ it is not up for you to debate, you silly cow. You have not had this happen to you or you would not be calling it intellectual. Nothing about what I went through was “intellectual”. I live in fear or agony most days. Agoraphobia, phobia of men, insomnia, suicidal thoughts, trauma-induced voices and much more are my fucking bedfellows. I can’t believe that someone who went to the same all girls school as me would have the stupidity to buy into that crap. Our old headmistress, who taught for the first three years of my secondary school life, was a big feminist in the sensible ‘equal rights’ manner. She wanted us to go and fulfill our potentials, and Silly was in the same assembly hall as I when she gave her empowering speeches.
 
The article I read was pure fucking drivel, too. I was so revolted by reading that another “feminist” comedienne thinks that rape jokes are fair game despite the fact that women she knew had been affected by rape. The ‘super funny’ video she posted has just made me retch. I want to get in the shower and scrub til I feel clean. I am SO NOT LAUGHING, I AM FUCKING REVOLTED HERE.
 
WHY is it so hard to get? My experiences ARE NOT A FUCKING JOKE. It’s akin to saying, oh yeah, torture is hilarious, let’s make a joke about thumbscrews and waterboarding. There would hopefully be silence, apart from a few sick fucks, but oh no, when it’s rape it’s hilarious because it’s about sex, of course, and sex is really funny.
 
WRONG. Rape is not about sex. Rape is about pain, torture, power and violation. It is about feeling like a fucking rag doll. It is about having all the trust you once had in someone who claimed to love you torn apart. It is about being reduced to a mere object, used for a cheap thrill.
 
That is why I have lost a friend. I don’t give a fuck about her little guilt trip. Silly, girl, go and grow up and stop pretending to be a fucking rebel. I have had it with your bullshit. Don’t you dare wave your superior intellect in my face and tell me I wasn’t really raped, cause that is where you were going next, isn’t it? Alcohol rapes = no real rape. Partner rapes = no real rape. BULLSHIT, girl.
 
Face up to the fact you lost a friend today because of your shallow intellectual posturing. I have tried, so hard, to explain your bad behaviour away and be forgiving, but I did that with my psychopathic ex FOR NEARLY SIX YEARS, and I sure as hell am not continuing to do it for you. I don’t care if nobody stands up to you: I am doing right now, and you are completely wrong.
 
Stew in that.
 
RAPE IS NOT OPEN FOR YOUR “INTELLECTUAL DISCUSSION” BULLSHIT. YOU WANT INTELLECTUAL? I HOPE IT DOESN’T, BUT CALL ME IF IT HAPPENS TO YOU, AND THEN WE CAN TALK. I will be sympathetic, unlike you undoubtedly would not have been if I had told you about what I had to go through.
 
Sorry, this is a rant, but it had me so angry I wanted to share it with you guys. I don’t feel guilty about dropping her. I actually feel liberated. No more stupidity from a silly little girl who refuses to grow out of the teen rebel phase.
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4 comments on “Rape Jokes are not fucking funny. End of.

  1. You’re so right to defriend her. It’s not something you should have to deal with! Maybe it may have had a different reaction if she knew, but it shouldn’t take knowing somebodies ‘issues’ (Sorry wrong word but I can’t think of anything better at this moment) for that ‘friend’ to respond in the right way!

    HUUGS XXX

  2. Good for you. You don’t need her stupidity to rile you up all the time. Surround yourself with like minded, positive people and get rid of the bullshit rest of them. Sometimes it sucks because you lose a so called ‘friend.’ But what have you lost, really?

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