As it relates to the Duke Lacrosse team rape case and the Sarah Butters rape case, could you discuss the implications behind rape culture on college campuses? This discussion could relate to...

As it relates to the Duke Lacrosse team rape case and the Sarah Butters rape case, could you discuss the implications behind rape culture on college campuses?

This discussion could relate to aspects of rape culture being influenced by societies ingrained attitudes towards sexuality (i.e., how media depict women), economic class of victim and/or perpetrator, how the case is handled by school officials (ie., does the punishment fit the crime?), among other factors. You don't have to go into much detail about each case, but please include quote(s) from three peer-reviewed articles or data from official sources as it pertains to rape culture. I have included (below) one peer-reviewed article as an example. 

http://www.clayton.k12.mo.us/cms/lib/MO01000419/Centricity/Domain/243/Fraternities%20and%20Collegiate%20Rape%20Culture.pdf

Asked on by timcap

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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It would be interesting to know how many college/university school officials themselves were once fraternity or sorority members....

Those of us who have gone off to college and lived on campuses know well that the microcosm of thousands of male and females one's own age is not the real world. Without the fear of answering to adults for one's actions and surrounded by those who can reinforce the belief that certain conduct is acceptable, there can, indeed, be a "culture" of sorts that develops. Apparently, in certain fraternities and sororities where those who join are of the personalities that desire acceptance and wish to be like others around them, conduct that is unacceptable on the outside world can be condoned within this sphere by the obsequious members in their efforts to become "champions" or attain a reputation. However, personal conduct should never be condoned when it involves the violation of the rights of individuals who do not willingly comply with others, and when it involves illegal actions. University officials who do not address such conduct because of political or social reasons are unconscionable. Clearly, officials at James Madison University felt pressure from political or social sources when they gave three male students expulsion "after graduation." 

Zerlina Maxwell in Time magazine "Feminist" [so named] editorial that rape culture is real, and the refusal to recognize it is dangerous:

But by denying the obvious we continue to allow rapists to go unpunished and leave survivors silenced.

And, in response to the claims that "over-hyped hysterical feminists" are making outcries, she replies with these rhetorical questions:

Is 1 in 5 American women surviving rape or attempted rape considered a cultural norm? Is 1 in 6 men being abused before the age of 18 a cultural norm?

In another Time editorial "It's Time to End Rape Culture Hysteria" by Caroline Kitchens, she writes that the increasing preoccupation with ending "rape culture" has swung to the other extreme of obsession and hysteria:

Rape-culture theory is doing little to help victims, but its power to poison the minds of young women and lead to hostile environments for innocent males is immense.

The pendulum-swing effect so often applies to issues in America. What is needed is good common sense and fairness to all, principles which should apply in every judgment made regarding human behavior. But, from the histories of victims and perpetrators and from the reactions of many in the public, the implications are that reason and fairness may not quickly apply because radical-feminists may wish to go too far and the patronizers of the "red-blooded American frat-boy" culture may not take issues to their logical conclusions, thus allowing fraternities to continue to violate women.

It will be necessary for fundamental behaviors on the part of both male and females to alter. When no females attend the parties at fraternity houses known for sexual exploitation, change may begin; when males do not over-imbibe, change may begin; likewise, when rules of conduct are enforced at fraternity houses and on college campuses, change may begin, and when enough females begin to create a climate in which inappropriate dress and behavior are not acceptable, change may begin. No single factor can effect a cultural change; the demands on are numerous influences.

Sources:

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