Dear Liberal Feminists,

The ENTIRE football team of Baylor University is being accused of mass gang rape in a new lawsuit. This has been going on for a while, right under the noses of the coach and university. Apparently, this is a bonding ritual during which the football players invite college co-eds to parties, drug them, and then gang rape them, referring to it as “running trains” on the girls. The football players of course document all the assaults and gleefully share all the photos with one another. Along with the assaults, there are also dog fighting and burglaries. A whole smorgasbord of toxic masculinity!

But these boys didn’t just go to Baylor and begin raping women. First, they learned how to properly objectify women as they were taken to strip clubs as part of recruitment. Then these boys learned how fully entitled they are to women and sex as the university provided them with prostitutes:

“Sex was part of the Baylor recruiting efforts, the suit alleges: Players escorted underage recruits to strip clubs, and coaching staff ‘arranged for women to have sex with recruits on their official campus visits.’ A ‘hostess’ program was unofficially used to promise sex to new recruits.” (NPR)

Patriarchy doesn’t just spring naturally from the womb. It is nurtured and sustained, and I don’t know of anymore evidence of how the sex industry sustains the patriarchy than the Baylor debacle (a nice, Baptist university, by the way). Not all men who attend strip clubs and use prostitutes are then going to apply female objectification in the manner in which the Baylor football team is assaulting women. But you cannot ignore the ways in which the boys have been groomed to believe women are objects for their pleasure and derision through exposure to the sex industry – and then that this was reinforced by the lack of legal action. You cannot ignore the fact that men don’t rape WITHOUT the belief that women are objects of sexual pleasure to be controlled and abused.

I have no doubt in my mind that this lawsuit will go nowhere. These lawsuits never do, and even IF all these players are suspended and arrested and put away for life, you still have a thriving sex industry in which to objectify women and groom a whole new team of rapists.

This is what class analysis is about. For these football players, the dehumanization of women through stripping and prostitution didn’t stop at the club or the bedroom. These football players didn’t suddenly go into the world and begin respecting women. Instead, they applied what they learned in the sex industry to the class of women as a whole: they committed mass gang rape and were never punished for it.

In her book “Paid For,” Rachel Moran talks about an incident during which a father wanted to buy her body for his teenage son to introduce him to sex. His son was a virgin and the Dad wanted him to “pop his cherry” as a rite of passage. Moran refused not just intercourse but oral sex as well because she just didn’t want to be a part of forming a boy’s first experience of sex as a transaction.

She knows what this means for society and women as a whole.

I also wouldn’t be surprised if these boys, before their lengthy sexual recruitment process, had already been exposed to the violent pornography that is proliferating around the internet – and forming boys’ early ideas of heterosexual relationships and how to treat women sexually.

So, liberal feminists, the next time you say you are “pro sex work” and “pro sex worker” – and believe all will be well in the world if the sex industry is simply legalized and normalized into society as “sex work” – google Baylor University and see how these boys’ extensive journey through the sex industry worked for the women they raped. The next time you want to talk about rape culture, do a little research about what is nourishing and allowing this culture to grow and thrive like a tumor – the sex industry.

No amount of “agency” or “consent” or “empowerment” of “sex workers” is going to change the way in which BOYS and MEN perceive and treat women as a result of consumption of the sex industry. Whether it’s prostitution, stripping, or pornography, the result FOR WOMEN AS A CLASS is the same – dehumanization, sexual assault, and lots and lots of pain.

Sincerely,

Very Annoyed and Frankly Worn Out ACTUAL Feminist

Disclaimer: I am very aware that unfortunately liberal feminists probably will not be reading this post.

Sources:

NPR: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/05/17/528804172/new-lawsuit-alleges-baylor-players-gang-raped-women-as-bonding-experience

Rachel Moran, “Paid For: My Journey Through Prostitution”