The discussion above displays an unfortunate lack of balance in our thinking. In fact, I would say it so far displays an institutional sexism much like much talk of racist behaviors display an institutional racism on the part of many who would never think of overt racism.
A number of years ago members of the psychology department at Washington University started a study of rape in the student body. Many female students were asked, “Have you been a victim of sexual assault as a student?”At first only women were questioned. When the males in the department objected, male subjects were added. But the results were underwhelming. Only about 5 percent of males were replying “yes” to about 60 percent of females. People began to use that data to design programs aimed at men, to get them to behave better. But a couple of males doing the survey changed the question to “Have you ever been the subject of coercive sexual advances?” The positive female response remained unchanged, but more than 40 percent of the male subjects answered positive, a very startling and significant change. After further questioning and analysis if was found that men did not regard themselves as victims and would only reply to that suggestion with a negative. But many had been coerced into sex, often in alcohol related situations, often involving several women who were daring their friends and verbally humiliating the male if he did not cooperate.
Often the women were fitting patterns of female narcissism and bullying by threatening to publicly humiliate the male.
What is suggested here is that the problem in not nearly as much a problem with males and their hormones and socialization, although these are part of it. The problem is much more systemic, and is in the culture of treating others, male or female, as objects to be used for one’s pleasure and aggrandizement; another notch on the belt. Any suggested solution that addressed the problem as one of male behaviors against females will be unsuccessful and only add to the it.
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