Asia Argento, victim blaming, and #metoo

The plot thickens with the Asia Argento situation. As I mentioned in my last post, former child actor James Bennett accused Argento of raping him just two months after he turned 17. Argento and Bennett now 22, settled out of court. The settlement occurred while Argento made news when she accused Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein of rape.

Argento initially denied the allegations against her. However, within a few hours the media reported that Argento claimed her late husband Anthony Bourdain pushed her to settle the case with the alleged victim.

How unfortunate that Baourdain is no longer here to respond to such a claim. Granted, it is possible that he made such a suggestion and it is common for celebrities to pay out settlements rather than risk unwanted criminal cases and negative press. It does seem unlikely, however, that Bourdain would make such a suggestion if Argento could prove she did nothing wrong.

If it only ended there, Argento would merely look scuzzy for tarnishing the reputation of her late husband. TMZ, however, published texts allegedly from Argento about the incident. According to the texts, Argento is the victim: Continue reading

Boys are victims, except when girls have it worse

One of the interesting changes in discussing male victimization is the increasingly common feminist advocate for male victims. It is a curious thing to watch as these women suddenly become aware of the sexual violence men and boys experience. This awareness is indeed sudden, because despite the data showing a high rate of male victimization for years, these women, usually feminists, have just stumbled upon it.

What follows is typically an article or blog post detailing how the particular person now realizes how “serious” the situation is for men and boys. Those are not scare-quotes, by the way. As one will see below, usually the person does not actually think the situation is genuinely serious, nor do they have any real compassion or concern for male victims. The men and boys to whom they speak are merely tools to present the person’s narrative, which is either an attack on masculinity or a blatant attempt to control the conversation about male victimization.

Perhaps the most perplexing element is that in order to do this, the person usually recounts a man or boy’s actual experience, one which undermines to the dismissive argument to person with then proceed to make. For example, author Peggy Orenstein decided to interview a number young men for an article on The Cut. The article is part of the “How to Raise a Boy” series, which is bizarre on many levels considering the topic is sexually abuse against boys.

Orenstein interviewed a young man named Dylan who was raped by a woman will he was drunk. Orenstein used that account to go into a broader discussion about her conversations with boys over the years: Continue reading

Bulletin Board v307

Boys — the silent victims of sex trafficking — The silence nearly killed Tom Jones. As a child, Jones was raped, abused and sold to men for sex. The brutality ended when he was 15. But, like many male victims, Jones didn’t seek help, didn’t tell anyone about the trauma he had suffered. Instead, he buried his pain and shame deep inside, carrying the burden alone and in silence for another 15 years. Silence did not equal acceptance.

Caldey Abbey: first male victim comes forward to describe sexual abuse — A man has come forward to describe how he was groomed and sexually abused as a child by a Benedictine monk on Caldey Island, intensifying calls for an inquiry into what happened at the abbey in south-west Wales. The victim, who has told police of the abuse he was subject to during summer holiday trips to Caldey Island, is the first man to allege he was sexually assaulted by Father Thaddeus Kotik.

South Carolina Church To Pay $300,000 And Apologize In Child Sex Abuse Case — A Baptist church in South Carolina settled a child sexual abuse lawsuit, agreeing to issue an apology, admit liability, and to pay $300,000 to the plaintiff. Bryan Barnes, spokesman for First Baptist Church of Columbia, S.C., said that church leadership issued the apology and explained the terms of the settlement before the congregation on Sunday, according to the Baptist Press. Continue reading

CAFE Proposes First Shelter for Abused Men and Kids

I watched a video by Karen Straughan mentioning a proposed shelter for abused men and their children. CAFE, the Canadian organization which fights for men’s rights, set up a Go Fund Me page for the shelter. Below is their introduction video:

According to Karen, there is a donor who has agreed to match any donations the shelter receives. If you have the money to spare, please support the fundraiser. This will help provide abused men and their children with much needed support as many shelters in Canada discriminate against male victims by refusing them service or access to long-term safe housing.

Please visit the Go Fund Me page for more information.

Woman dodges prison to spare her kids from foster care

Here is yet another example of women getting a pass for a reason that would never apply to a man:

A FORMER dinner lady who had sex with a 14-year-old boy has been spared a prison term because it would have meant her four children would be put into foster care.

That makes perfect sense. A person commits a crime, but because they have a family who depends on them, said person should not face the consequences of their actions. We can be sure, of course, that the crime in this instance was completely harmless and the offender had no idea she violated the law:

Terri Spragg, 35, had sex with the young lad on several occasions – including on the kitchen floor – warned him not tell anyone because it was illegal.

So Spragg not only pursued the victim, gained his trust, and abused him, but she also clearly knew it was wrong.

That is likely why she was convicted on seven charges. Of course, the judge wasted little time holding the victim responsible: Continue reading

Welcome to the world of double standards

Let us say a person records themselves sexually abusing their son and shares the images with another person. Who should receive the harsher sentence: the person who abused the child or the one who received the images of the abuse?

Logic and ethics would suggest that the person who had physical contact with the child should face the stiffer sentence. However, this does not apply when one adds in the sex of those involved. Such is the situation in a recent case:

A Red Deer mother and licensed daycare worker has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison for using her four-year-old son to make child pornography.

The woman, 43 years old at the time she was charged, pleaded guilty to sexual assault, making child pornography and distributing child pornography.

Authorities discovered the woman while investigating Peter Allen Cash. The Idaho man had numerous videos and images of child pornography on his phone. Canadian and Idaho authorities worked together to track down one of the boys from the images, which led to the woman’s arrest. Here is where it gets odd: Continue reading