Monday, March 23, 2015

I Wonder

I go through fits of reading Instapundit, usually about a month at a time every year.  I consider it valuable, but I do eventually tire of it.  He has his hobbyhorses, somewhat different than mine, and it is good to catch up.

He is very big on the college feminists' complaints about sexual assault, trigger warnings, rape culture, and the like.  The incidents he tracks are indeed harrowing. It occurred to me to turn the telescope around and look at this from the opposite magnification.  There are of course women who have been abused and assaulted and experience PTSD in milder or more intense forms.

Some of them go to college.

When they get to college, they will gravitate to philosophies and perspectives that provide some explanation that will help them cope. A particular brand of victim feminism is one of those, though there are others.  In adopting those beliefs, they will be a strong basis for a community (or, if you prefer, a Petri dish), waiting for others to drop in.  Some of those who drop in will be real victims, others will be histrionics/narcissists who need to feel like victims because they cannot endure the annihilation of being unimportant despite their many advantages.

Either way, their responses should not dictate culture to the rest of us.  The poor souls who were abused need rescue and compassion, not politics.  They will get more misery and less relief there. The narcissists - well, I don't know what they need.  I don't know what fixes that - but they don't need to be given the referee's whistle.  It does them no good and ruins the lives of everyone else.


Sam L. said...

In theory, one will grow into adulthood in college. Some, and it appears to be mostly women, don't like that idea even one teeny-tiny bit.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

I wonder if those are simply the ones who make the news. As the fall guys in these scenarios are often "drunken frat guys," or men who kept going out with women who once turned them in, I can't give them big adulthood points either.

The Mad Soprano said...

I have heard of an extremely nasty brand of feminism that claims that all sex is rape even if consensual.

james said...

"Hard cases make bad law" is a good rule, even if it seems uncaring.

Roy Lofquist said...

The problem is that they are given way too much attention. Title IX has been twisted to force educational institutions to respond vigorously to any hint of sexual discrimination or perceived victimization. There is also a small but politically important constituency of the Democratic Party that lives on this.

bs king said...

I agree that folks will gravitate towards this stuff if they've been assaulted. The other interesting and more disturbing trend we've seen is that those who are damaged in some other way end up liking these groups as well. In all of the most public false accusation cases, it seems that no one in the group thought it was their job to question the stories they were hearing.

Now, in a support group, it's really not your job to question. If you take a look at Jackie at UVA though, it appears her story was changing, people were uncomfortable with it, and no one did anything. It's a tricky spot.

Oddly, the best parallel I can think of is the church. You have a group of people together who are trying to be kind to each other and provide a place that people feel welcome. Sociopaths and personality disorders like places like that. I've seen many churches struggle with how to cope with such members, and seen many people enable bad behavior because they thought they were helping. The social dynamics of being a kind and welcoming place while screening for very disordered behavior is tough, and I haven't seen many places get it right.

Social dynamics aside, when you hit the legal realm, it really just boils down to what James said.

David Foster said...

Peter Drucker, who grew up in Vienna, challenged the Freud-derived idea that it had been a place of sexual repression. The Viennese were mostly pretty free and easy about sex, said Drucker, what they were repressed about was money (everyone afraid of sliding into poverty)....BUT there was an important exception. Women who had grown up in conservative rural areas, and found themselves in the highly-sexualized social whirl of Vienna, did, according to Drucker, often exhibit hysterical symptoms.

Perhaps a parallel on today's campuses?

Texan99 said...

bsking--it makes you a bit nostalgic for the old-fashioned kind of priest, doesn't it? Someone who knew how to be kind, but would still lay down the law and call someone on his BS. Kind of like my idea of an ideal AA sponsor, something I admittedly am familiar with only via Hollywood.