The Wipeout Sexism group on Facebook have just updated their list of pro-rape and pro-violence Facebook pages. I'm not surprised to find that the list is still long after an arduous campaign in which Facebook responded simply by implementing a 'humour' tag and ignoring their hypocrisy. This tag excuses groups whose sole aim is to mock women, violence and rape under the ancient guise of "I'm just joking". Hey, comedians, you know who else finds rape jokes funny? rapists do.
internet racism seriously, we are not taking the serious problem of internet or real life sexism seriously. It's just not seen as a serious issue, unlike racist hate speech, it is legal and acceptable to exert sexist hate speech and encourage large groups to laugh about drugging and raping women ... because women have equality now? because rape isn't a real problem in our society? Wrong. I hear the word 'rape' being thrown around in a similar way as the word 'gay' used to be thrown around. The latest experience of mine was hearing a young man comparing being charged an extra 50 pence for a drink with being raped - if only, I thought, if only that were like being raped.
So, what is it? why do most people realise racism isn't okay in the form of a "joke" but sexism is perfectly fine? Is it because for many of us, racism is a distanced issue but admitting to sexism would mean admitting we've been discriminating against 50% of the people we know? I know most men and women see this as a personal attack on their morals and therefore immediately defend their sexist behaviour. I don't think that rape joke makers are bad people, they're just naive and often stubborn. What's wrong with listening to another point of view and admitting that maybe you were wrong?
I went to see Germaine Greer give a talk last month. While she didn't talk about this topic, she said "we need to think of ways of playfully taking revenge...and then say, 'Only joking!'" I'd probably take out the "playfully" in this situation.