Feminism to Blame (Again!)

Shorter Stephen Baskerville: New American
Feminist Gulag: No Prosecution Necessary


  • It was feminists and their ridiculous ideas about “rape” and domestic violence being actual real crimes that have caused the USA to have the highest incarceration rate of its own citizens in the world. But most importantly, men shouldn’t have to pay child support (which only goes to ex-wives, not actual kids) if they never wanted to get divorced in the first place.

‘Shorter’ concept created by Daniel Davies and perfected by Elton Beard, as seen on Sadly, No!

*USA Incarceration rates. Does Prof Baskerville give us any stats for how many men in the prisons are there for rape, DV or skipping child support compared to other crimes? No, indeed he does not.

Categories: culture wars, ethics & philosophy

27 replies

  1. Silly me! I thought the core of the prison problem in the US was mandatory sentences for drug convictions (Rockefeller Laws).

  2. Wait, what? The MRA’s are now claiming that rape isn’t a crime?? You know, just when I think my skin is rhino-tough, that nothing will shock me, I read that one sentence and I practically have a panic attack, I’m so revolted and horrified that a person would say, out loud, that rape isn’t an “actual real crime”. Men hate us. They really, really do.

    • The “Shorter” concept involves a snarky paraphrase of a longer post, which is what I’ve done. (Edit: I’ve edited the post to make this more clear)
      The author is less about saying that rape isn’t a crime per se and more about classifying most rapes as “not really rape” because it’s just a woman claiming coercion from someone she knows! (this seems to be a common conservative tactic so that they can still claim to be tough on real rape (y’know, the stranger that jumps out of the bushes and attacks a virgin scripture teacher the week before her wedding day)).

  3. And here’s me thinking the massive US prison population was thanks to the clueless War on Drugs… silly me.
    In fact, releasing all non-violent drug offenders would completely change the US imprisonment picture, even up the racial bias in US gaols and … still keep the crime rate low.
    .-= skepticlawyer´s last blog ..Fancy an Indian? =-.

  4. What a complete load of hogwash. I especially liked the bit where men were ‘forced to admit to domestic violence, even when they didn’t believe that they had committed it’. Just because they don’t agree with the legal definition don’t mean squat buddy.

  5. I love this part:

    New crimes have been created; old crimes have been redefined politically

    Um, yes, laws should change as society changes. That’s a good thing, Stephen.
    (I’d imagine he might come back and say that his problem is what he’s referring to with the use of the word “politically” there – to some extent, I sympathise, but I’m a pragmatist and I accept that politics happens when laws are created. I may not be in favour of all said politics, or all of the results of said politics, but I am in favour of dynamic, living laws and I’m willing to accept the side products.)
    And his account of the treatment of women/belief of women who say they have been raped – seriously, is he living in a different universe?
    I had to stop reading soon after that, for fear that my head would explode.

  6. When I clicked on the link to the story and the website’s top headlines were “Boston College and Its Radical Feminist ‘Catholic’”, “Berkeley High Poised to Eliminate Science Classes Because They’re Too ‘White’”, “Nation’s Largest Abortion Mill to Open in Houston”, and “New Study Finds Spanking is Good for Kids”, I knew I was in for a stimulating intellectual read.
    Wooh boy, was that a pile of dreck.
    Now I understand the festering hatred of the American right. If all they read is thinly-veiled tirades against women’s rights, civil rights, and children’s rights, it’s no wonder that they feel that the eroding liberty to abandon your family, discriminate against minorities, and beat your children is a signal of the end times.

  7. Jenn,

    Those links are one of the reasons that I linked to a Googlecache of the article instead of linking directly.


  8. I think that’s going to be my new shorthand for linking to a cache: DNDL.

  9. Well, we already know from reliable analysis that feminism caused the upswing in terrorism, leading to 9/11. Why should it be surprising that it also caused unfair imprisonment of men? /end sarcasm
    First Eve, then Pandora… the litany goes ever on. When is the next starship for Tau Ceti?

  10. I’m in such a bad mood right now, but clicking into this post made me laugh so much that I almost, well you know!
    I’m not gonna click into the link because y’know, life is just really too short.
    Ta 🙂

  11. Ah, it’s a Republican-leaning website. That explains a lot. Putting the blame for the massive imprisonment of men on the War on Drugs is a no-go. As, indeed, is a proper description of why the US child support system is so messed up. (Loosely speaking: making social welfare payments to single mothers is not politically popular. Instead, the payments are effectively an advance on child support, which is set regardless of whether the father can afford them or indeed if he is the dad. This lead to a wave of “deadbeat dads”, followed by increasingly nasty penalties such as the confiscation of driving licenses, the reintroduction of debtors’ prisons, etc.)

    • Well, it appears I’ve learnt something hornswoggling about the US child support system then. It’s truly just a set payment with no reference to affordability based on the non-custodial parent’s income? Is this all over or just in some states? Are there no states with a saner child-support payments system?
      (Child support payments ordered by Family Courts here in NSW are proportional to the non-custodial parent’s income at the time of the court decision. A custodial parent can go back to the Court to have the payments reviewed upwards if the non-custodial parent’s financial situation improves, a non-custodial parent can have the payments reviewed downwards if their financial situation worsens.)

  12. From what I can tell, it varies slightly from state to state (and is also more sensible when it’s due to divorce rather than single parenthood). In theory parental income is generally taken into account, but this assumes the alleged father (a) actually knows about the kid and (b) makes it to the court hearing and puts in a correct challenge. The notification requirements are low (as low as a letter to the last known address) and retroactive changes are hard or impossible. If the other parent doesn’t turn up in court, support is set at a legally-mandated minimum which is frequently way too high.
    Even if the parent does manage to get to court later and get the future payments reduced (or even stopped in the case of incorrect paternity) the arrears remain. They can’t be disposed of by bankruptcy, inability to pay, or any court judgment. Oh, and some states charge lots of interest too.
    (Note that this is all second-hand information; thankfully I don’t live there except in a metaphorical sense.)

  13. Makomk, your second-hand information comes straight from the MRA talking-points bulletin. In the US, child support payments are generally *extremely* low (I’m talking $100/month here) unless the custodial parent can prove the father has more money, and in every case his income is taken into account. Any joint custody agreement reduces the child support payment on a pro rata basis, even if the father declines to actually participate in parenting. Furthermore, the only way to get money out of a deadbeat dad is to garnish his wages and tax returns. This takes many months through a state’s attorney general’s office. I guarantee that child support enforcement is not the best-funded department in those organizations.
    Furthermore, one cannot sue a man for child support without a marriage license and/or a valid paternity test, so the notion that all of our deadbeat dads are just victims of wanton court judgments is absolutely absurd. We also do not have debtors’ prisons here in the US. Give me a freakin’ break. Perhaps it would be in your interest, Makomk, to get some actual information before spreading such wildly inaccurate disinformation.

    • Certainly what you’re saying is more what my impression has been from past discussions, Jezebella. That’s why makomk’s claims surprised me so.

  14. Jezebella: sorry, nope, and I don’t trust MRA information.
    You are right that in theory child support payments are supposed to be reduced pro-rata in proportion to custody time (though (a) that requires joint custody, and (b) “even if the father declines to actually participate in parenting” cuts both ways – if he ends up doing more parenting, or even all of it, getting the payments changed is also hard.)
    On the other hand, a lot is just outright broken. (Any alignment with MRA talking points is probably because they do get the occasional thing right.) California especially ended up in a particularly bad mess with massive arrears owed by people who can’t possibly pay, due to a nasty combination of: 10% interest which has to be paid off first, high default payments (set at the MBSAC if income figures aren’t immediately available, which is way too high – about $500 a month per child AFAICT), 70% of judgments by default due to poorly-served summons with no attempts to find up-to-date addresses, failure to reduce payment amounts, etc.
    Oh, and while garnishing wages and tax rebates is the only way of directly taking arrears from a “deadbeat dad”, most US states now allow taking away his driving license and passport, suspending his professional license, and/or locking him up. These all have one thing in common: they tend to ensure said “deadbeat dad” no longer has a job, if he did already.
    Of course, the MRAs would find something to complain about even with a child support system that was more sensible. (Plus, this mainly affects the poor anyway.)

  15. Uh, that is one hell of a “paraphrasing” :s
    I’d say there’s a pretty big difference between saying that rape shouldn’t be considered a crime and saying “Aggressive feminist lobbying in the legislatures and courts since the 1970s redefined rape to make it indistinguishable from consensual sex” — which is what he’s saying.

  16. “the distinction between crime and private behavior has been erased”
    i.e. what men do to women in the privacy of the home should never be treated as a crime
    Combine the above with the ranting about women not having to prove that they didn’t consent any more, that the onus is now on men to prove affirmative assent. So he wants to go back to a time when any women is assumed to be in a state of consent unless she explicitly says no. The effect of reverting the current legislative standard will indeed mean that many men now able to be charged with rape/sexual assault will no longer be liable to such charges, so yes, he is advocating treating crimes now considered to be rape as not-really rape. I don’t feel that my paraphrase is unfair at all.
    I can’t think of any other behaviour that comes into dispute where it is assumed that one party to the dispute is consenting by default unless they explicitly say no.
    Accused of trespassing – defendant has to prove they were invited onto the property.
    Accused of theft – the defendant has to prove they had permission to take and use the property.
    Accused of fraud – the defendant has to prove that they had a reasonable belief that the deal they made with the accuser offered a genuine return on investment.
    etc etc
    So why should sexual behaviour be held to a different standard?

  17. I can imagine arguments for why that should be the case, for example; communication leading up to sex can be blurry and with a lot more implication than explication — unlike what I think would be the case in most cases of fraud, theft or trespassing.
    Whether that argument is good enough is not the point (and I’ll admit I don’t have any statistics to back it up), the point is that I don’t think someone who makes it could reasonably be accused of wanting to legalize rape.
    As for “the distinction between crime and private behavior has been erased” — I didn’t see this as a defense of spousal rape or abuse, it seems to me to be a bit of a stretch — maybe it’s a cultural thing.
    (For the record, I don’t think I agree with the guy, but I do think there’s something there. The stereotype of the man as villain and woman as innocence personified seems to be as strong as ever.)

  18. Innocence personified? Really? I thought we were all personified as sluts who are asking for it. It probably depends which side of the gender divide you are on.

  19. As for “the distinction between crime and private behavior has been erased” — I didn’t see this as a defense of spousal rape or abuse, it seems to me to be a bit of a stretch — maybe it’s a cultural thing.

    Maybe thinking about the concept in depth is new to you, so you’ve not been aware of it? I had a police officer – a self-described ‘progressive’ and fan of a prominent feminist politician – tell me to my face a mere couple of weeks ago that he wishes he wouldn’t ever have to do a “domestic” again, so he could focus on “real crime”. His words, not my paraphrase; and a disgustingly popular point of view.

  20. “Innocence personified? Really? I thought we were all personified as sluts who are asking for it. It probably depends which side of the gender divide you are on.”
    — You’re saying that as a man, I’m more inclined to see women as innocence personified, while you as a woman is more inclined to see women as “sluts who are asking for it”?
    Personally, I think both stereotypes exist, as reactions to each other. But both from the people I know and from the cultural artefacts of today, I just don’t see much of the “women are sluts who are asking for it”-belief. I’d want some evidence that this is a belief that exists in any significant degree outside of non-repentant rapists.

    • – You’re saying that as a man, I’m more inclined to see women as innocence personified, while you as a woman is more inclined to see women as “sluts who are asking for it”?

      No, that’s not what she’s saying, Mr Obtuse. She quite naturally assumed that you were offering a societal opinion up for examination, and countered with a competing societal opinion. Play the ball, son.
      If you don’t see much of the slut-shaming “asking for it” opinion on women accusing men of rape, then you simply don’t read enough comments sections in mainstream newspapers (from exactly the sort of people who make up the bulk of the jury pool). I suggest you go and educate yourself.

  21. Nice try Christer but I’m not taking the bait. I don’t see women as asking for it, I see women as living in a society where a large number of people of both sexes see rape victims as somehow complicit in their own rape. If you have never heard anyone express an opinion about a woman wearing revealing clothing, or walking after dark as somehow inviting an attack then you are very rare indeed.

  22. Sorry, I didn’t mean to troll, but I admit I was being facetious (which I understand is french for “I told a crappy joke”)
    I think we need to seperate between the idea that women should protect themselves from rape by not dressing or behaving in a provocative manner — and the idea that women are sluts who are consciously asking to be raped.
    One of these ideas is clearly misogynist — while the other one is just ignorant, and works just fine together with the idea of women as innocence personified (or men as incureable villains)

  23. There is no separation between those ideas. They are precisely the same. They are both very clearly misogynist. They both blame victims for their being assaulted and claim that clearly women must change their behavior, must live more constrained, more restricted lives, to prevent rape. This model of rape prevention doesn’t ask men to change their behavior.
    You don’t see the misogyny because you are on the other end of this particular privilege/oppression spectrum from us. Being privileged does not make you objective. My being emotionally invested doesn’t invalidate what I have to say.

%d bloggers like this: