Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Off-topic: Are you familiar with this prison rape game?

Here's a note recently passed on to Glenn Sacks, which Glenn recently published, about a particularly vile game:

Dear Glenn:

Here's a board game that's sure to rival "Monopoly" in popularity and please everyone: Don't Drop the Soap. The goal is to fight your way through various prison hazards to achieve parole, all the while trying to avoid "being cornered" (a code word for "raped") in the prison shower -- hence the hilarious name, "Don't Drop the Soap." It comes with its own Soap Dish Parole card holder. And this delightful game can be yours for just $34.99.

Delightful, because we all know how funny prison rape is.

The prevalence of prison rape is staggering, see this, for example.

The typical victim of an assault is a non-violent young, gay or trans male. For more information, click here.

Imagine the outcry if a board game was released called "Date Rape," and the object was to avoid landing your token on the GHB space. The purveyors of any such game would be barraged with outraged emails. And rightly so. "Date rape" should not be a joking matter. But prison rape -- where young, non-violent, totally defenseless males are subjected to often brutal sexual assaults -- is hilarious, right?

The victims of neither date rape nor prison rape deserve it, so why the double-standard? The only significant difference between the typical victim of the two kinds of rape is gender. In short, prison rape is dismissed as just more male-on-male violence and does not have a prominent place in the feminist sexual assault metanarrative, which has dominated the public discourse on rape for decades.

The game was developed by John Sebelius, 23, the son of Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius (mentioned as a possible VP candidate on the Democratic ticket. To find out more, click here.) and a U.S. magistrate judge. They should be very proud of their little boy.