I don’t have anything to say that has not been said already. But I need to add my voice to those raised in horror and shock at the latest mass shooting in the USA.
These events are becoming more and more common, and of course nothing is done. The gun manufacturers and libertarian nuts are too powerful. Every time something like this happens, it’s dismissed as an “isolated incident”. Mental illness is blamed. Society is blamed for not listening to what the killer wanted. In this case, what Elliot Rodger wanted was sex. His stated reason for the killings was that no woman would have sex with him.
What really sickens and terrifies me, though, is the reaction to this specific incident. There has been an outpouring of support for the killer, and not just as a “deranged, unstable individual”, but as somehow a victim himself. People have said — publicly, on Facebook, with their names attached — that he had every right to do what he did; that his human right to sex had been violated; that if only some woman had “taken one for the team”, this could have been avoided. The fact that men make up a majority of victims of violent crime is emphasised; the fact that they are a far larger majority of perpetrators is ignored.
At this point, I almost feel ashamed to identify as a man. I was raised in the same “rape culture” as Rodger and everyone else, and it took me a long time to unlearn all that horrible baggage. I’m sure I haven’t unlearnt it all. That is the part that scares me the most; I know exactly how people like this are made, because I’ve been subjected to — I’ve been part of — the same process.
It has to stop.
If you don’t care that men feel entitled to women’s bodies. If you talk about equality, but shirk away from terms like “feminist” or “patriarchy” for fear of seeming biased. If you wilfully ignore the statistics on violence against women. Then you scare the absolute shit out of me and I don’t want to know you.