November 22, 2011

A Nauseating, Detestable Culture that Deserves to Die

Following up on my comments yesterday, there's this.

Speaking of which (unfortunately), I watched the film Horrible Bosses over the weekend (unfortunately). It's drenched, marinated and stewed in nauseating, detestable male entitlement and privilege. Endless jokes about sexual harassment and rape, because sexual harassment and rape are just so goddamned funny. You have to love that the "horrible boss" who engages in endless, humiliating sexual harassment is Jennifer Aniston. Because a woman widely viewed as extremely attractive and sexually desirable wanting to have sex all the time with her nerdy, dopey, idiotic male assistant is, like, totally the most common form of sexual harassment, as scientifically documented in thousands of studies. Or, two men conversing at one point: "Oh, no, I'd be more rape-able in prison!" "Are you kidding?! I'd be much more rape-able!" Because rape is so goddamned much fun. Especially prison rape.

Don't trouble yourself with any of these facts:
Rape in prison is an ugly reality that most people have learned to ignore, but prisoner rape is an institutionalized form of cruelty that infringes upon basic human rights, contributes to the spread of disease, and perpetuates violence both inside and outside of prison walls.


Male custodial officials have vaginally, anally, and orally raped female prisoners and have abused their authority by exchanging goods and privileges for sex. In many women’s facilities, male corrections officers are often allowed to watch female inmates when they are dressing, showering, or using the toilet, and some regularly engage in verbal degradation and harassment of women prisoners. Women also report groping and other sexual abuse by male staff during pat frisks and searches.

Currently, reporting procedures, where they exist, are often ineffectual, and complaints by prisoners about sexual assault are routinely ignored by prison staff and government authorities. In general, corrections officers are not adequately trained to prevent sexual assault or to treat survivors after an attack.


Punishment for prisoner rape is rare. Few public prosecutors concern themselves with crimes against inmates, and instead leave such problems to the discretion of prison authorities. As a result, perpetrators of prisoner rape almost never face charges. Staff members who sexually abuse inmates are rarely held accountable, facing only light administrative sanctions, if any. In fact, some female inmates have reported retaliation from corrections officers against whom reports of sexual misconduct have been lodged.

Prisoner rape has been used in some cases as a tool to punish inmates for misbehavior. Male inmates have testified that they were forced into cells with known sexual predators as a form of punishment for unrelated misconduct.
Oh, but the characters in Horrible Bosses were men joking about men being raped. That's totally different. Read the rest of my post from 2004, which includes part of Tom Cahill's account of being gang-raped for twenty-four hours. And the gang-rape was deliberately orchestrated by a guard. (Some of the internal links in that old post don't work any longer.)

Almost all of the "humor" in Horrible Bosses comes out of the same sewer. The film isn't remotely funny to any minimally aware, decent human being, in addition to which it's generally shitty in every other respect. But the ranks of minimally aware, decent human beings would not appear to include the NYT reviewer. Who is -- surprise! -- an enormously privileged, straight white man. By the way, I didn't mention that Horrible Bosses was written by three men, and directed by a man. Also a surprise! I was going to offer a few specific comments about Scott's review in theTimes, but fuck. Life is too short, and my stomach isn't strong enough.

On the subject of life for a woman in the Rape Culture, read this -- and watch this video. I'm sure the wonderful fucks who created Horrible Bosses and the wonderful fuck who reviewed it for the Times would find that monologue fall-on-the-floor funny.

With regard to the riotously hilarious song that greeted Michele Bachmann (Jimmy Fallon joked about it on Twitter, so it must be funny!): I find Bachmann to be a ludicrously awful politician, many of whose views are deeply repellent. That is, as they say, not remotely the point. If you don't know what the the point is, please go away. On your way out, take a look at "Kill That Woman!" and a followup article, "A Depraved, Violent and Indifferent Culture."

This ends the good news for today.