Cybersexual Violence Series Part 2: Felicia’s Story- Divergences and Commonalities

Roxanne May

A quotation from Kim Katrin Crosby, award-winning multidisciplinary artist, activist, consultant, facilitator, and educator:

“As a young girl, I was ‘too sexy’, ‘too developed’ – constantly being compared to standards of white girlhood and never found to be deserving of that innocence. And as a survivor of rape, sexual assault in my home and outside of it…this is a matter of life and death. I developed quickly, by 13, I was told I looked ‘grown’ and this is something I also want to challenge – by whose standards [do i look grown]? I looked like many other Black girls my age, but the standard of white femininity proposes that womyn of colour Black, Latina, First Nations people – our bodies are inherently sexualized. Ask yourself why big breasts or big asses mean ‘sex’? Who crafted that definition and why are we participating in the hyper sexualization of Women of Colour?”

From Instagram.com/fgarcia94

From Instagram.com/fgarcia94

On October 24th 2012, New Yorker Felicia Garcia committed suicide, throwing herself onto the tracks in front of an oncoming subway. While Garcia had expressed feelings of depression and frustration with her home life for at least a few months prior to her suicide, there is ample evidence indicating that the primary distress that led her to kill herself was the merciless “torture” suffered at the hands of her peers during her last ten days. “This poor girl was called a slut. She was teased on Facebook,” a classmate, Victoria, told the New York Post.

According to earlier reports, the onslaught of intense verbal, physical and sexual harassment began when four football players bragged about having had sex with Garcia over the second weekend of October. However, over the few days following her suicide, law enforcement officials confirmed that the sex had been video-recorded and distributed online without Felicia’s consent, triggering this hostile, degrading treatment from her peers.

Felicia’s despair escalated over the next ten days, at first manifesting on her Twitter with defensive-reading tweets such as, “I hate when peopl are in my buisness, you dont even know whats going on, mind ya neck #Shot -_-” until two days before her death when she tweeted “I can’t. I’m done. I give up.” That same day she had also uploaded two disturbing pictures to her Instagram account tagged “#beatup.” In these photos, her face appears to be swollen and bleeding, including fine red lines over her lips suggesting that her mouth had either been cut or sewn shut. It’s unclear from the pictures and subsequent commentary whether the gore was real or fake, self-inflicted or the result of an attack.

On the day that Felicia Garcia killed herself, teachers had set up a mediation session involving Felicia, a 17-year-old male, and a counselor , in order to address the harassment Felicia had been facing. Outside of the office, Felicia and this 17-year-old “exchanged words” wherein he denied ever harassing the young woman. A few hours later – minutes before she fell backwards onto the train platform and amid obscene taunts from present football players – she had texted her foster parents, “I’m sorry. I love you guys. But I have to do this.” It wasn’t until after Garcia’s suicide that two students (neither of them football players) were suspended and the possibility of criminal charges was explored for the distribution of child pornography. Meanwhile, both Felicia’s Instagram and Twitter accounts are still online, drawing both sympathy and vitriol from interested onlookers.

The similarities between Amanda Todd and Felicia Garcia are striking: both were 15 years old at the time of their deaths (spaced exactly two weeks apart); both have been described in the media as remarkably beautiful; both were sexually exploited through digital means; both were blamed in their victimhood and degraded as a result of this exploitation while the perpetrators remained largely unscathed; and both turned back to the Internet to express their resulting pain before killing themselves.

Subsequent to their deaths, both young women’s sexualities became a central topic of discussion in both mass and social media. Reactions and input ranged from benevolent concern to outright bashing. Meanwhile, the sexual violence these young women suffered at the hands of their peers was largely misrepresented under the apolitical, euphemistic term “bullying.”

Both in retrospect and in those crucial few weeks in October where Felicia Garcia and Amanda Todd’s stories were given attention, I believed online mass-media had every opportunity to call attention to these similarities in ways that could spark a large-scale, nuanced conversation concerning the ways in which “slut-”shaming, both on- and off-line, affects young women and their experience of sexual violence. Unfortunately, besides being toned down to stories concerning “bullying,” the common ground held by Felicia Garcia and Amanda Todd instead became the foundation upon which mass- and social-media could showcase the role of racism, as it intersects with sexism, in their representations of sexual violence.

We can first explore how these dynamics work by first comparing the media coverage of Felicia Garcia, a young Latina, to that of Amanda Todd, who is biracial but presents as White.

The most obvious discrepancy between the coverage of these young women is in the quantity of representation granted by the media. While it’s important to realize that the attention granted to both Amanda Todd and Felicia Garcia is unusually large as far as teen suicides are concerned, the public response to Amanda Todd’s suicide was swift and colossal by any standard. Within three days, “My Story” had garnered over 1.6 million views on YouTube while the “RIP Amanda Todd” page on Facebook accumulated nearly half a million “likes.” The interest was sustained long enough that, as of December 28th, 2012, “My Story” on YouTube and “RIP Amanda Todd” on Facebook have garnered over 6.6 million views and 1.4 million “likes” respectively. Several major news outlets also flocked to her story, including CTV, ABC, Fox News, BBC, The Guardian and The Daily Mirror, each publishing at least one high-traffic article or interview relating to Amanda Todd. Most impressively, on December 13th, The Huffington Post revealed that “Amanda Todd” was the third most searched name of 2012, behind Whitney Houston and Kate Middleton.

On the other hand, the most popular page dedicated to Felicia Garcia on Facebook, “RIP Felicia Garcia—Stop Bullying,” has accumulated a mere 14,238 “likes” while only a handful of high-traffic news outlets were interested in her story. A quick Google project reveals not only that Amanda Todd’s name returns almost nine times as many results as Felicia Garcia’s name, but that when we rule out results for “Felicia Garcia” which contain the name “Amanda Todd,” results for “Felicia Garcia” are cut in half. When the same experiment is performed in reverse—excluding articles containing “Felicia Garcia” when Googling “Amanda Todd”—results drop by only 9%, despite the wealth of articles still being published after news of Felicia Garcia’s death.

Armed with this knowledge, one gets the distinct impression that while Amanda Todd’s story is tragic, interesting, and significant by itself, the few articles written about Felicia Garcia seem largely to justify themselves by pointing to and bolstering the relevance of Amanda Todd’s suicide.

Unfortunately, this is not the only issue in the quality of Felicia Garcia’s representation compared to that of Amanda Todd. As mentioned in Section I, the vast majority of articles written about Amanda Todd frame their headlines and basic premise around the consequences of “bullying.” While some of the precious few articles written about Felicia Garcia also featured this angle, including the articles featured on  New York Times and Jezebel, there were also a disturbing cluster of articles that attracted readership with headlines making sensationalist references to Felicia Garcia’s sexual encounter with the football players. The New York Post was the most blunt: their byline read, “A Tottenville High School student jumped in front of a train after she was bullied for having sex with four football players at the same time during a party after a game this weekend, sources said.” No similar shock tactics could be readily found so early and prominently when combing through prominent articles on Amanda Todd. Indeed, the double standard is especially hard to ignore when considering The New York Daily News, which covered both stories, chose to entitle one, “Teen who posted video about cyberbullying commits suicide” while dubbing the other, “Tormented 15-year-old Felicia Garcia jumped to death in front of train after bullying over sex with football players”.

Why should the details of a sexual encounter be the first things a reader knows about one fifteen year old suicide victim while the other’s depiction is granted significantly more sensitivity? Did it occur to no one writing, editing or publishing these headlines and bylines that, in choosing to define Felicia Garcia by her sexual encounter, they were reproducing the very attitudes that fuelled her despair? Or that hypersexualizing a 15-year-old, even more so than simply depicting her as a victim of “bullying,” actively discourages readers from shifting attention and blame from the choices of the victim onto those who violated her?

We might gather some hints to the dynamics at work in this discrepancy from a similar story from last year which garnered significantly less sympathy than either Felicia’s or Amanda’s stories, although thankfully this one did not end in suicide: the “Amber Cole scandal.”

“The New Kim Kardashian”: The Role of Racialized Sexism in the Representation and Exploitation of Amber Cole

Certainly in comparison to Amanda Todd – but even when weighed against Felicia Garcia – relatively little is known about the identities or contexts involved in the “Amber Cole scandal.” This leaves us with the bare bones of the violence committed against her.

In mid-October 2011, a video depicting 14-year-old Amber Cole performing fellatio on an unidentified male student behind Frederick Douglass High School in Baltimore was posted against her will. Despite the original tweet clearly identifying both students as minors, the clip spread like wildfire, becoming one of the most widely distributed pieces of child pornography in history. While there was some online resistance against this sexual harassment and violence in the form of hashtags such as #LeaveAmberColeAlone and Facebook groups like “I Support Amber Cole,” these were weak oppositions to an overwhelming demand for authentic links to the video once law enforcement and social media regulators began deleting the video. One poll found that 75% of respondents would watch the clip had they found it online. Meanwhile, blogs and other websites generally dedicated to propagating celebrity gossip gleefully spun this blatant sexual exploitation of a child into titillating voyeurism. “Amber Cole Video Makes 14-Year-Old Girl Famous (But Not in a Good Way!)” gushes GossipOnThis.com, adding that her “servicing” would “make Superhead jealous,” in reference to author and model Karrine Steffans.

ambercole

Similar provocative associations were made between Amber Cole, Kim Kardashian, and Rihanna, further demonstrating that even as a 14-year-old victim of sexual exploitation, Amber’s status as a Woman of Colour (more specifically, as a Black teenage woman of colour), made her more comparable to hyper-sexualized pop icons than to other victims of “bullying.” Thus, since she lived (thankfully) and didn’t happen to be exploited just two weeks after the world rallied around a young, conventionally beautiful White girl who had suffered much of the same torment, Amber Cole’s story was not recognized as a relevant cause for public concern. Instead, it was read as a titillating anecdote to be published alongside news of Sammie and Ronnie’s break-up on Jersey Shore. Meanwhile, as in the cases of Felicia and Amanda, the young men who recorded and distributed the video of Amber Cole were subject to very little scrutiny.

While a person’s relationship to systematic sexism can make the difference between whether they are publicly shamed, largely ignored, or validated in situations of sexual exploitation, racism also plays a significant role in determining which victims are represented as innocent, precious and worthy of protection and grief, and which victims are reduced to deviant, sensationalized sexual objects whose violations are only worth the public’s attention insofar as they can be commodified.

This understanding further highlights the absurdity of reducing the violations of Amanda, Amber, and Felicia to a term like “bullying.” Upon closer examination, it becomes clear that this framework is being deployed by an older generation to displace their share of accountability for the systematic oppression which they’ve perpetuated —racism and sexism, to say nothing of homophobia, classism, ableism and other axes of discrimination—onto a younger generation. This is enabled by their failure to recognize that although the execution of sexual violence may be unfamiliar – especially in its brazen presence in the public sphere of cyberspace – the underlying dynamics and views that foster it are far older than the Internet and the generation that grew up with it. Worse, “slut-”shaming and victim-blaming become so engrained and naturalized through this process that even the most well-intentioned journalists and publications, hell-bent on doing their part to prevent further victimizations of young women, cannot help but contribute to the culture which produces these tragedies in the first place.

9 responses to “Cybersexual Violence Series Part 2: Felicia’s Story- Divergences and Commonalities

  1. After your first article, this one is much, much better. The problem with the Amanda Todd story is that it has been muddled by not just bad reporting but also by the dubious storyline that has since been proved to be somewhat inaccurate. At least with other cases, they appear to be more straightforward – or at least as straightforward as any of these cases can be.
    The Felicia Garcia story garnered less response for a couple of reasons. Firstly, at the time all of the attention was on Amanda Todd, but mainly this: Amanda Todd portrayed herself as an innocent victim of a cruel world, and shifted any possible blame on to a possible stalker, or bullies, or boyfriend. The video helped create a ‘perfect storm’ scenario that managed to attract the attention of a wide audience. But the Garcia story immediately lost its impact simply because of the connotations of her having sex with the football players – it was just too easy to dismiss her in that dreadful way, as a potential slut who caused her own problems. And much the same mentality is applied to other similar stories – if people indulge in bad behaviour, they in some way deserve the fallout.
    One thing I need to say at this point: the people directly involved in this story are all young. In the previous article comments, where I raised the more likely view that all of the people involved in the Todd case, you seemed to still want to point the finger at older people. But I think that my point (backed up by research) is strengthened here. It’s odd, but definitely in the Todd case, and tellingly in others, the majority of the disapproval and shaming does not come from right-wing traditionalist old fogeys, but from the teens themselves. I’m not sure why – maybe it’s because the old fogeys tend not to use the Internet to vent.
    But you shouldn’t confuse the two stories. If anything, the Todd story should be treated as one case on its own. They are not similar.
    Garcia’s photos WERE a mistake; Todd’s were deliberately shown.
    Garcia’s suicide could be construed as a direct result of the terrible mess she had got herself into, and a result of shame, confusion, guilt, anguish and so on. Todd’s suicide was much more to do with mental health issues, lack of supervision, possibly even use of marijuana and alcohol. The Garcia case had identifiable perpetrators; the Todd case doesn’t, in reality, have any.
    The Amanda Todd story was deliberately framed around bullying for two reasons: one, it happened during National Anti-Bullying Month in Canada (or very close) and two, the media quickly realised that if they changed the story to investigate any other aspect, it would rapidly change from ‘Innocent girl gets bullied’ to ‘Young girl who masturbated on webcam for guys, smoked weed, drank and had underage sex and was, herself, a bully, commits suicide due to lack of response from authorities’. (And no, I’m not making that up for some reason – it is just far closer to the truth).
    Getting to the double-standard you mention, I’ve already sort of mentioned it. Media responses now are almost instantaneous. When the Todd case broke, all the media leapt on the ‘innocent’ bandwagon because they looked at the video. The audience fell in love with the fairy tale – no newspaper or TV show would dare now to say anything that might upset the readers/viewers. With the Garcia case, there was no self-excusing video – they immediately had the sex video, and that’s what they reported. ‘Girl jumps under train’ is relatively common news; ‘girl jumps under train after sex video’ pulls in the punters. Basic journalistic claptrap. Garcia’s story was no fairy tale.
    It’s interesting that you mention The Guardian. There is an article by Naomi Wolf there, but it manages to create a false salaciousness by mentioning ‘a webcam site where she met a 30-year-old man who cajoled her into showing him her breasts’. Now, everyone is aware that this is totally wrong. But it suits Naomi’s aims, and therefore is represented as truth. And it will be on the Internet forever – totally misleading anyone who is not fully informed.
    I need to ask a question here: you mention ‘slut-shaming’, when a woman is shamed for her sexual activity. But I’ve noticed that there is increasing ‘man-shaming’ – an urge, as in the Amanda Todd case, to insist, even in the face of evidence, that somewhere in the story a ‘man’ has to be involved. And I experienced something similar in previous comments – as a man, I was called names and accused of all sorts of things just for expressing my opinion. These discussions should not turn into bigotry.
    I’m not sure of the Amber Cole case, but I might get back to you. Meanwhile – I assume you are a journalist. Most journalists are working to get paid, and will get paid for writing articles that bring in readers. Right a sensible article, and no-one reads it. Right a useless article with a sordid headline – everyone reads it.
    This article is way, way, better than your first. I hope that doesn’t sound patronising – it’s just an opinion, and I hope it balances my previous comments. I would enjoy it if you responded, but please, don’t be rude.

  2. Meanwhile, on another note: ‘our bodies are inherently sexualized. Ask yourself why big breasts or big asses mean ‘sex’? Who crafted that definition and why are we participating in the hyper sexualization of Women of Colour?’. Yet again, I’m surprised at how people can get away with such nonsense. It’s barely worth a response. I have asked myself why big asses and big breasts mean sex, and the answer is provided in hundreds upon hundreds of scientific writings. And of course women’s bodies become sexualised – so do men’s. Have you seen the Chippendales? And there’s no more hyper sexualisation of women of colour than there is of any other women – look at the super-enhanced boobs of so many white women, and the complete prevalence of white women posing in magazines, and the very culturally odd Japanese portrayal of women, or the Kama Sutra. But you have to see that there are basic, innate instincts at work – it’s not some sort of evil plot, it’s just part of human nature. An example? In the 1970s, Playgirl was published. Its readership is tiny in comparison with all the men’s magazines of a similar nature, and it is implied that a lot of them are gay men. I just used this – maybe a bit feebly – to try and show that there simply is a difference between men and women – an obvious difference based on nature, not some conspiracy.

  3. Come on, Roxanne, I have to take issue with some of the things you say here. Let’s go through your last paragraph:
    ‘This understanding further highlights the absurdity of reducing the violations of Amanda, Amber, and Felicia to a term like “bullying.”’ You’re right – it is absurd to put this all down to bullying. But the reason is that most people don’t want to see of hear about real problems. It is much easier to label something with terms that are easy to understand and demand no thought processes. Nobody REALLY wants to think about what circumstances made the girls involved do what they did. Most people will simply stick their fingers in the air and go ‘la la la’ when asked to actually think, let alone act. ‘Upon closer examination..this framework is being deployed by an older generation to displace their share of accountability for the systematic oppression which they’ve perpetuated —racism and sexism, to say nothing of homophobia, classism, ableism and other axes of discrimination—onto a younger generation’. No it isn’t. The current ‘older generation’ is the generation of free love, of sexual liberation, of Gay Pride. It was this older generation that virtually destroyed many pre-existing prejudices. This older generation brought in laws and ways of thinking totally averse to racism and all that you mention – just look at how many advocates of change are from the older generation. The Rolling Stones, for God’s sake! And Bono is borderline! You still have right-wing idiots – young and old – but to say that is is the older generation perpetuating it is ridiculous. ‘This is enabled by their failure to recognize that although the execution of sexual violence may be unfamiliar’ Rubbish. Sexual violence was far more commonplace years ago – in the home, in the workplace. And it has been brought out into the open. Sexual behaviour (both mild and extreme) that was acceptable in the 70s and 80s (in the Catholic church, at schools, in the ‘pop’ culture) has hopefully nearly disappeared, and those who were guilty are being severely punished. – especially in its brazen presence in the public sphere of cyberspace – ‘ I’ll give you that. No-one much beyond the age of 20 has the slightest idea about what goes on online. ‘the underlying dynamics and views that foster it are far older than the Internet and the generation that grew up with it.’ No. Sorry. It’s not that the underlying dynamics are old, it’s just that the 21st Century and the Internet have introduced completely NEW ways of thought. What is going on online is not a product of OLD thought processes. What Amanda, and to a certain extent the other girls were doing was a product of a NEW way of behaviour, in which the girls involved have complete freedom to express themselves, and a new medium through which to do it. It wasn’t LACK of self-esteem that drove Amanda, it was an excessive pride in herself, a new development. It wasn’t a set of rules that said you CAN’T do something which caused problems, it was a set of new rules that say you can do whatever you like. It’s just they never foresaw the consequences. Because there is another peculiar thing that you seem to have overlooked. The vast majority of slut-shaming, abuse, accusations of whoredom and what have you came from KIDS. Not the older generation, who all thought Amanda was an angel and the other two were unfortunate girls who just got in trouble. The ultimate moral crusaders on the Internet are the 4channers and le 9gag army. And they are some of the worst misogynistic psychopaths you could imagine. Not for nothing is one of the definitions of 4chan ‘a place where God and Satan have vowed never to go’. And it is chock-a-block full of kids wielding a new source of power that the older generation have no idea about – the ability to literally kill someone with a few words. They love it when someone becomes an hero. And if their older generation parents ever found out their moral values, they would go mad – because they would be as anti it as hell. You just don’t get it. This is NEW. It might have its roots deep in the psyche from when we climbed out of the swamp, but it is a new mutation, if you will. ‘Worse, “slut-”shaming and victim-blaming become so engrained’ I’ve sort of dealt with this. It’s a girls v boys thing. It’s almost like a fight for domination of the Internet – the hardline gamers playing their hard boy games, doing hard boy things in an almost Asperger’s environment v the enemy (girls, moralfags, and adults). ‘well-intentioned journalists’ I have to laugh at that one. Look at Patrick McGuire. Look at the News of the World. Even most of the journalists like to think of themselves as some sort of hipster dudes because they have an iPad, but they are way behind the curve when it comes to the new Internet driven society. They are still in the 19th century! ‘hell-bent on doing their part to prevent further victimizations of young women’ ha ha. Look at the pictures of nip-slips, of girls showing knickers when getting out of cars, the race to show Kate Middleton’s pics, the Daily Mail’s regular pics of 14-15 year olds. Give me a break! ‘cannot help but contribute to the culture which produces these tragedies in the first place.’ You are looking in the wrong place. Amanda and co ARE the new culture. It is they who are creating this new culture. And as it is being created by the kids, for the kids – adults are virtually nowhere to be seen. Talk to the 11-15 year olds (some of them) online and it’s like the 60s and 70s never existed. Some of them, given the anonymity and the lack of supervision, have virtually gone feral like an Internet ‘Lord of the Flies’ – Amanda could have been a new version of Piggy. Go to 4chan. The rules there have absolutely nothing to do with culture outside of that environment – it’s its OWN culture. Stop using 20th Century mentality to try to come to terms with 21st century insanity.
    Ta ta for now ❤

    • Hmmm, I see a dude thinking I would care enough for his views that I would actually take precious time out of my day for his long, rambling, creepy nonsense after he’s admitted to justifying his viewership of child pornography with “she was having fun!”.

      Ha. Ha ha. Ha.

      (but seriously, please leave, it makes me sad to think of how many of my hits come from you.)

      • I don’t understand this. I thought you would at least have an open mind. I’ve not sought to justify anything. If you are to consider yourself a journalist, then you should at least have seen the video (or at least one them). In the video, she is accompanied by a friend, and they are both clearly just having a childish game. They are smiling and laughing, and decide that flashing is part of the game. There is no coercion, no fear, no lack of understanding about what they are doing. Like you said yourself – she is clearly just expressing herself in a sexual way. I would have understood it if it was a one-off occasion, but for it to occur to a level where, some months later, she was actually banned, points to a certain degree of her enjoying what she did, especially if she called herself ‘cutiielover’ and ‘Announcing Amanda’. You are getting confused in your accusations. Many pedophiles will excuse their participation in acts with children by saying he/she enjoyed it, but the same sort of views do not apply here. For Amanda, it was an enjoyable way for her to get attention. It was very much a sort of one-way activity. Nobody forced her to go online, and it is unlikely that anyone even asked her to do it, or enticed her in any way apart from simply viewing. It was entirely voluntary, and when she got banned you can see the extent to which she felt she needed to to go back online. All you are doing is perpetuating a view that you have – that Amanda was in some way a victim, or that she felt in some way that she had to do it, or that the ‘culture’ made her do it. But she wasn’t. Until you and others open your minds, the real problems underlying all this will never get tackled. To a certain extent, Amanda is representative of a new set of freedoms, one of which is to exhibit oneself online. And she took that freedom. She was just totally unaware of the consequences – not just from possibly being seen and contacted by certain people, but also the backlash of her peer group. You simply cannot go online doing the things she did and not expect a response. The unfortunate thing is that maybe she really didn’t think that it was a problem – that praise and attention would always be positive. Which is why we need to educate not just the kids but ourselves about what is going on.
        But surely – if you don’t want comments and freedom of opinion, why be a journalist, or why allow comments? I think it’s a shame that you don’t have the time to debate these issues.
        Have a nice day, and take care. I sincerely wish you peace and happiness.

  4. Interesting article. Thanks Roxanne,
    Wow – the Phillip doth protest too much!
    “No lack of understanding about what they are doing” and ” just totally unaware of the consequences” do not equate at all. Perhaps had she been older, which you keep dismissing, she may not have been so naive. Yes, a person can do these things and still be innocent. You just don’t get it. Just one of many instances of false logic and an inability to look from a position of anywhere other than your white male privilege. The idea that young people choose to slut-shame and victim-blame as a choice made externally to their socialisation, ( which includes intensive modelling from older generations), is just ludicrous.
    You have no desire to “debate”, you desire to mansplain, dismiss, deny, misdirect, derail and order about. Chippendales? Give ME a break. Guess what Mr. Physiological Determinism, a big ass does not mean sex, it can mean survival. It’s a portable storage unit. And the primary function of breasts is? Not sex, again, survival.
    Not even bothering any further with you.

    • Debra – you should be open to reasonable debate. I believe you have got things fundamentally wrong in your perception here.
      You insist on seeing things your way, without possibly entertaining the view that you might be wrong, or that neither of us is right – there might be something in between.
      I need to put forward some things. You seem to think in terms of ‘mansplain’ and so on, as if this seeks to be anti-female. Yet this article has not sought to address the fact that many more young males commit suicide than girls, but nearly all of them go ignored by the media. Why? Because nobody seems to care about the boys. Do you see that as misandrist? Or not?
      Please – don’t use terms like white male privilege. These terms are just not valid in this context.
      I think you underestimate the ability of children to know right from wrong. If you do research into the Amanda Todd story, you will see that many, many of kids of the same age and younger say that she should have known what she was doing.
      The use of the word innocent. A problem. What would you say instead? Did she REALLY have no concept that there was anything wrong or risky – even when she got banned? BlogTV and the other channels are plastered with rules and warnings, but she still went ahead.
      And I still think that you are not right about the extensive modelling from the older generation. Why, in that case, is it that the semi-deification of Amanda came from generally older people, for whom she became some sort of a saint. and the vilification was almost exclusively from people her own age.
      And, to a certain extent, you’re in a dilemma. If you say that the young kids have taken on some sort of moral judgment from the older generation, then why did Amanda not have any similar morals? Are young kids immoral, amoral, too young to have morals, filled with morals from older people – I’m confused.
      And you’re confused about biology. But I can’t be bothered to go into that.
      Really – I appreciate your views. But you should not allow your views to become bigotry.

  5. I really do think that Phillip Rose had a point. Although I do think how horrible it is that the girls were severely “bullied” for enjoying their sexual freedom and self-expression, he is right in saying that children nowadays lost pretty much all notions of consequences, and that consequences should at least be brought back into the world. The problem with that, though, is how well-placed consequences are, which opens up a window of opportunity for double-standards to come in. It seems like no matter where the material depicting such acts came from, who were involved, or how old the participants were, people will automatically look for the participant with the vagina to focus their loathe on. Even when the girl or woman involved is a victim (like in the recent Steubenville case) the media and the audience will look for a way to place at least a little blame on her (she was drunk, she was passed out, they were being boys) and try to make her mistake a causation for the criminal activity the football players chose TO DO TO HER (I can even safely bet that the MRA Redditors and AVfM members were giving the football players/rapists a pat on the back over the Internet)
    We can either learn to place the blame to where blame is due and to what degree- like leaving the scolding and punishing of the young girls to the parents and to not let a bunch of 4chan kiddies and to not forget that there were boys involved in the act, too- or just let everyone have their (healthy, not-harmful) sexual freedom.

    (before some rabid MRA who had the misfortune of finding this article and this comment, please know that I am well aware of the fact that men can be raped, too, and that society blames them in a different way, so you don’t have a need to attack Feminism for the things that the movement shouldn’t even be blamed for, okay? Thank you.)

  6. Plus, I’d like to mention that yes, women and men are biologically different and (the hetero type) are sexually attracted to each other, but the problem comes in when the media, church, even family members teach that one gender is a mere sexual object to the point that a woman can’t even go outside without “earning” inappropriate and unwanted attention and not respected as a human being. Yes, we have moved on from that some, but it seems like no matter how much Feminists will say “women are human beings” and introduce ways to ingrain that teaching through organizations, media outlets (like Feminist porn) and even laws, there will always be that force, that pathetic, cockroach-like opposition that want to “remind” women that we shouldn’t expect any form of respect and decency, that we are nothing more that mindless vessels meant for cooking, cleaning, and sex-when-we-don’t-really-want-to, no matter how much we have made accomplishments that proved them wrong.

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