Rape Culture and the Male Ego
Updated: Oct 19, 2020
Disclaimer: The views and opinions reflected in this article are directed towards male perpetrators and criminals involved in violence against women. The content in this article is not intended to generalize, represent and/or malign any gender, sex, ethnicity or individual.
Let’s get right to the point:
It is estimated that 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or sexual violence by a non-partner (not including sexual harassment) at some point in their lives.
One rape was reported every 15 minutes in India during 2018. The NCRB data also showed that in almost 94 out of 100 rape cases, the victim were known to the offenders.
South Africa has recorded 132.4 rape cases per 100,000 citizens in 2020. The total number of cases here rests at 66,196.
The United States has a rape rate of 27.3, and number of cases here rests at 84,767. Only 9% of rapists in the US get prosecuted and only 3% of rapists will spend a day in prison. 97% of rapists in the United States will walk free.
In Pakistan, more than 3,500 cases of sexual abuse were reported in 2019. In the first 60 days of 2020, as many as 73 incidents of rape have been reported, including 5 gang-rape cases.
Let’s just start with this. Any form of abuse absolutely breaks my faith in humanity as I genuinely believe our innate qualities work towards preserving all beings in this world. So when one human finds the will and cognitive ability to abuse another human it’s almost as if I feel we live with another species of beings, a species we have limited knowledge of and yet they roam around us every day. From a psychological point of view, in order to actually abuse another human, you have to reach a certain level of emotional damage that has affected your mental processing so terribly that it allows you to commit such a crime. And whether that is murder or rape, the bottom line is that it’s not just wrong for one individual but for humanity as a whole to accept. Rape is something that completely tarnishes every inch of your self-worth, confidence and will to live and yet it is so common. It’s not only a violation of a human’s right but also a sickening crime that makes me question the grotesque mind-set you must attain in order to forcefully engage in sexual behavior?
The way rape is perceived in different parts of the world is mind-blowing. The countries where rape is a common threat to every woman, or in some cases every living being, is even more concerning. With the amount of rape cases we’ve seen blow up in the media, not once have I ever seen them question the right things about the issue. It is such a delicate issue and handled like your run-of-the-mill daily incident, with no importance or empathy for the calamity that has come across a human beings life. The questions of how it happened, why it happened, how could it have been avoided are emphasized on so much but what really needs to be talked about is the mental instability of the criminal/s involved, the disgusting upbringing that permits them to abuse another human, the preposterous ways in which people are victim-blaming and how often this has occurred within the same region yet the system has no answers. The focus is never about how we are all accountable for the lack of safety of our daughters, wives, sisters and children. And we all know that the solution was never to keep them in captive behind closed doors as potential predators are found everywhere.
The way we have created a rape culture which focuses heavily on victim-blaming and normalization of the issue is a concern for each individual that breathes the same air when yet another victim sighs with piercing anguish.
Masculinity and the Male Ego
The fact that majority of the rape cases involve a male perpetrating a female, I think it’s time to look at the values males are raised with and the paradox in the ‘masculinity’ they flaunt so freely.
I always questioned whether the way that men think was something to do with their genetic make-up or socialization or perhaps both. After some much needed research on the matter, I discovered that an evolved nest, which focuses on extensive affection and responsive multiple adult caregivers, is required to grow properly and the fact of the matter is that the male child requires that stability and security for a much longer period.
When we start to teach young boys about ‘masculinity’, what care-givers don’t realize is that at this growing stage of adolescence, what this masculinity translates into is a survival mode which triggers their primitive instincts that include territoriality, rivalry and group loyalty, in order to move ahead in this social world. And not-so-surprisingly, “the one thing abusers have in common is that their motive is to have power over their victim, because they don’t feel that they have personal power, regardless of worldly success.” This is the primary foundation of building insensitivity as a part of their male ego and the first pillar to entitlement. And of course, the rest is built-up through the archaic gender inequality, outdated ‘cultural values’ and systemic discrimination that continues to exist in this world, specifically in the Asian context.
Out of the thousand questions that pass my mind when I hear news involving sexual violence against women, these are a few I need to state:
Do you actually realize how mentally unstable you are that all you feel entitled by is the Y chromosome you were born with?
How do you lose all sense of empathy and not fear for your own female relatives when you attempt to physically strip another woman apart? Does it not make you feel repulsed, fearful and make your skin crawl with disgust?
Why does your penis represent the ‘man’ in you and make you forget that you are merely a purposeless human, with no conscience and sense of accountability, when you choose to impose on another human? How morally and ethically pathetic do you have to be to find pleasure in the demise of another soul?
Cultivate Respect and Diminish Entitlement
A society which is built on respect for humans, irrespective of sex, race, age, sexuality, relationship status, ethnicity and social class is the ultimate goal in order to raise individuals who are consciously aware of their actions, in all aspects of behavior. The concept of stratified respect and honor is culturally subdued and makes a certain group of people feel entitled to do as they please with zero accountability for their actions.
For this vision to become a reality, care-givers would have to play a big role in raising men who learn to cultivate respect and empathy and diminish egoistic entitlement from its core.
It starts with emphasizing equality within the household where your daughter is an equal to her brother, not an entity to be taken care of at every given phase of her life. It starts with learning to focus on your family and accepting what is comfortable and uncomfortable for each individual in the household.
It starts with educating your children about sex, consent and that no means no. No is not a trigger to be challenged. Resistance is not to be challenged, especially not as a child. It starts with acknowledging that the rise in rape cases is an alarming concern for the height of mental instability in the male population. The bottom line is, any form of abuse is inhumane, but the mind-set needed to sexually abuse is intrinsically brewed over many years, it doesn’t just magically happen when a woman walks out that door.