Thursday, March 10, 2011

College Men Strut in High Heels to 'Raise Awareness of Violence Against Women'

Men at the University of Montana put on a vaudeville show for the women yesterday -- a chance for the girls to come out and have a good guffaw at their penis-bearing classmates and professors as the men strutted around in high heels during the school's annual Walk A Mile In Her Shoes event. The men paid five dollars for the "honor" of playing buffoons for a supposedly good cause of raising awareness about sexual assault and relationship violence.

Did the men gain much from the experience? A heightened sensitivity, perhaps, to the plight of women constantly subjected to violence at the hands of men? 

Judging from their comments, the men seemed more intrigued about the whole inane process of walking around in heels.

"I kept my chest up and my abs in and relaxed my legs and it worked out pretty good," said student Chris Wilkins. 

"I give props to the girls and women all around the world who wear heels because that's a lot of work," added Jabin Sambrano, also a student at the University. 

In fact, the men gained nothing.

Is it any wonder? The truth is, the event is merely an opportunity for UM's Student Assault Resource Center to justify its existence and to publicize the "fact" that rape is rampant even though it isn't; for young men to act like clowns and, for once, to be applauded for it; and for young women to be entertained by the young men acting like clowns.

It would be downright shocking if this or similar events ever prevented a single sexual assault from occurring because: (1) prancing around in high heels and similar useless stunts has nothing to do with preventing sexual assault; and (2) the vast majority of young men who strutted their stuff and who participate in such events are highly unlikely to ever rape a woman.  That's the truth, and sorry to throw cold water on the circus.

If we want to curb sexual assault, we need to teach our young people the truth, but the truth doesn't jibe with the current rape meta-narrative that holds only one gender responsible for stopping it.

We need to teach both young men and young women that the alcohol-fueled hook-up culture is a disaster for too many young people. Unfortunately, the prevailing feminist mantra is for young women to "party like the guys," without bothering to tell them about the "regret asymmetry" that separates the genders.

Young people generally do not understand that women experience much greater after-the-fact regret than men do. Sometimes feelings of regret are translated into feelings of "being used," and sometimes feelings of "being used" are misinterpreted or purposefully misconstrued as "rape."

Asking the police, a judge, or a jury to sort out what happened in an alcohol-fueled tryst based on a "he said/she said" account puts an impossible burden on our law enforcement and judicial apparatuses. Nobody ever wins in that scenario.

The sad, politically incorrect fact of the matter is that the high heels spectacle targeted the wrong people. There is no "rape culture"; there is no "rape continuum."  Rape is committed by social deviants, not the nice boy next door. It is almost a certainty that none of the charming young buffoons who strutted around in women's heels yesterday will ever rape a woman. And here's the scary part: those innocent young men have precisely zero ability to stop a rapist from taking advantage of a young woman.

The sad, politically incorrect fact of the matter is that young women have far more power to stop rape than innocent young men by not putting themselves in situations where rape is more likely to occur. 

The sad, politically incorrect fact of the matter is that young women are being taught that they are little more than leaves in the wind, not free moral agents with the ability and the responsisibility to protect themselves.

In every other sphere of life, women insist they not be treated as helpless pawns waiting to be rescued by the handsome prince; in the bedroom, however, the prevailing feminist narrative insists women are more passive than the most distressed of Disney damsels, helplessly waiting for Prince Charming to rescue them from rape.

Well, I've got news for them: their Prince Charmings were the guys strutting around the UM campus in heels yesterday. Trust me -- they can't end rape. And we cannot empower our daughters by pretending they are powerless.

Now, next year, how about having a Walk a Mile in His Jockstrap to raise awareness about the fact that it is innocent young men, not young women, who need to "take back the night"?  That's because it is beyond dispute that innocent men are more vulnerable to the criminals than innocent women. Check out a source even feminists could not dispute, J. Friedman, J. Valenti, Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and A World Without Rape (2008) at 23: "Men are 150 percent more likely to be the victims of violent crimes than women are. . . . . Men are more likely to be victimized by a stranger (63 percent of violent victimizations) . . . ."

Sources: and

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