There's been a very very interesting discussion over at Questioning Transphobia.
One that has revealed some of the stereotypes especially sex stereotypes not just outside the transgender community but also within feminism and inside the trans community too.
A very offensive thing has been said about Trans Men showing stereotypes and generalisations are alive and well.
And we have the very interesting phenomena of peoples reactions to my raising cis male rape victims of cis women.
I first learned of its existed because of a suicide, a teen killed himself after police laughed at him and told him he should have enjoyed it. You know who else laughed? Most of the people who talked about it! Someone was dead but it was funny cause they acted like such a girl by not wanting sex with an older woman and being upset and killing themself.
In the many years since then theres been the occassional rare mention in the media and other places of this sort of thing happening. Often met with outrage and anger by women that its even mentioned. Often met with disbelief from women that its even possible. In conversations i have mentioned the subject men will usually laugh at or condemn the victim for being weak useless stupid unmanly. While many women often disbelieve it at all because they cannot imagine that a woman could be string enough to rape a man and/or would want to and/or that the man or boy involved would object unless the woman was extremely unattractive others respond with sadistic glee happy that a man got a taste of his own medicine... but the victims aren't rapists raped back but innocents i might say... nope by being male they are guilty apparently.
See how much sex stereotypes of both men and women are involved?
Thing is i know cis male victims of both rape and attempted rape by women. Not just one but several. From one being tricked into getting drunk around someone he had no reason to think was unsafe through to one whose attacker used brute force and physical violence.
But of course we hear man or male and we usually think strong and powerful and conquering and desiring endless amounts of sex with anything that moves. And woman or female.. well i think you can guesss the rest. Despite many of us knowing exceptions to these, strong powerful aggressive women and weak soft gentle compliant men we still generalise back to these defaults to some extent. Feminism has undone a little of that... but not a lot.
Now cis male victims of cis females are far less common that the reverse. Not that we can get accurate figures because both rarely report an assault but its still likely to be true. But it happens enough that we should all know that it happens, that we should recognise what that means for our sex stereotypes. But the subject is too confronting, too taboo. The sex stereotypes too powerful and too beloved and too integral to the way we consider ourselves and each other... that we erase all exceptions.
Who has not felt the attacks and judgement for not fitting sex stereotypes? It doesn't matter that on average men have more muscular strength there's still many women who can out arm-wrestle many men. There are men with great reserve when it comes to sex and women who mark their conquests.
And the further you fall away from sex stereotypes the worse you get it.
Sexism does not just harm women it harms those men who don't fit the stereotype too.
Lisa at that link said "The whole fucking world exists to talk about cis men’s problems, Batty. " But thats NOT true. No if your reality goes totally against the grain of the sex stereotypes as the cis male victims of cis female sexual assault does then you dont count as a privileged male in the same way anymore. You are not the center of the world. You reality is a threat. There is not the place to discuss it, to get support and help coping with the aftermath let alone justice.
In the news right now is a woman arrested for sexually assaulting the elderly in my state. And news from spain about a horrific crime done by two ci-women agaunst a trans man.
In a discussion about safety from sexual predators every at-risk group no matter how much a minority they may be is a valid stakeholder. The erasure and taboo of cis male victims is caused by sexism, by the need to defend sex stereotypes. It does not erase the cis female victims to include cis males as a minority group of victims and cis females as a minority of perpetrators cause thats just a reality.
A reality that forces us to look harder at sexism to see it's complexity, its degrees of harm, its diverse effects. It makes us reasess our ideas of women when we acknowledge women can want to rape, murder, torture, destroy and value material possessions more than peoples lives it challenges our traditional idea of what consitutes a womans desires and behaviour. When we acknowledge they can be capable of doing that even to men it challenges our ideas of a womans power.
With the conflicts between parts of binary and non binary transgender, the conflicts between some trans women and trans men, the conflicts between feminism and transgender and the bathroom panic attacks on us from some political groups intending to ensure no equality for S&GD people and how sex stereotypes are so caught up in ALL of that then this form of sexism NEEDS to be addressed in our community.
And when a group so marginalised and erased that many have trouble accepting they exist at all yet common enough that I could know more than one in my life (and i don't have the biggest if social circles!) is considered by us taboo too because they happen to be connected to a priviliged class yet have no privilege in this regard.... no excluding discussion of victims of sexual assault like that is not ok. And the role of sexism in their marginalisation is too important to ignore.
Sexism is not simple. So we cannot afford to be simplistic about it.
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