05 June 2014

"Rape Culture" or a culture of denial?

A reasonably good friend of mine, with whom I disagree almost always when it comes to politics, shared this on Facebook this morning.

And when the mother of a friend of ours from high school commented:

"I agree BUT, when a girl or woman is wearing shorts so short that everyone can see her butt cheeks and shirts so low you can almost see her nipples, I think she should expect to be objectified."

My friend replied, simply, "No." (Which... Dude. Rude!)

Now, I never wade into these debates on Facebook. I have a million things to say and anyone who knows me knows that I have very little fear about saying them, but just I don't do that stuff on Facebook. People get ugly, immediately, and presume the worst about each other, and I'm not on Facebook to get flamed by strangers who happen to know someone I know.

I'm tempted to break my rules and get into it this time. This is a departure from reality, and like all departures from reality just really bothers me.

Of course a fifteen year old girl, dressed provocatively, is going to be sexualized by the men and boys who see her. That's why she dresses provocatively. What other reason is there? Seriously: name one reason to wear short-shorts that dig into your crotch if not so that people will look at your legs?

This message from a teenager who doesn't understand her own power, her own worth, and the danger she's potentially putting herself in is almost understandable. She's fifteen. She may not have been raised by parents who taught her self-respect. She has a lot of growing up to do. She has a lot more to see of the world and the ugliness that's out there before she can hope to realize that covering herself modestly is best for everyone. She's been steeped in a radical feminist worldview that talks constantly about "rape culture" and yet ignores that the atmosphere of cheap, supposedly consequence-free sex is a major contributor to the fact of rape.

Ever-younger girls are parading around dressed like the Pussycat Dolls. Have you tried to shop for a modest bathing suit for a nine year-old recently? Best of luck to you, because clothing manufacturers seem to think that pre-pubescent girls need padded bra tops and string bikinis. Such things are available for toddlers.


Why is that even being manufactured in a size 3T? Is it really necessary for my daughter to be running around the beach in a bikini with her diaper sticking out? (Yes, my one-and-a-half year old is wearing size 3T bathing suits. She's a tall, solid, healthy kid.)

Look, there's nothing healthy about deciding to pretend that wearing sexy clothes to school should be a right for teenagers. My friend who shared the picture has two sons, and he and his wife have taken steps to ensure no more babies (which just makes me sad), and thus he will never know what it's like to parent a daughter. He's never been a woman. He's never experienced being leered at while wearing a maxi dress with no exposed cleavage, let alone while wearing a bikini, and he never will.

It's easy for male "feminists" to share these sentiments and even to think they mean them. But parents of daughters know better. Grown women know better.

It's not rape culture, it's reality.


  1. Thank you Colleen. It is so hard to work in a middle school and see what the girls wear everyday. Even harder to go to a country concert and see some of the worst clothing choices ever. Modesty people! And bikinis don't even look cute or fit right on toddlers.

    1. I agree! It's okay to leave a LITTLE something to the imagination, people.

      Thanks for stopping by!