I read a lot about crime. The psychological profiling of criminals interests me greatly. It may sound a bit odd, but knowing how these people’s minds work gives me great comfort. It makes me feel safer, somehow, like I have the upper hand. The offenders in whose psychology I am most interested are the violent ones. It’s not that I like violence, mind. It’s just that these people are so different from ordinary humans that their emotions (or the chilling lack thereof!) are likely to be darkly fascinating. And so they have proved to be. The men I am studying are mostly serial rapists and murderers, or a terrifying combination of both. And I’ve learned a lot. The information has led me to some stunning and unsettling conclusions.
First I must ask you if you are familiar with the question of whether or not immodesty encourages rape. I have heard, from sources that, frankly, I would not trust as far as I could throw, that it does. And by “sources” I mean websites and speakers who espouse the same twisted teachings I learned in Repentance. Men, these sources would like you to believe, are little more than sex-crazed animals, and all it takes to set them off is a brief glimpse of some indecent girl’s cleavage. In short, if a rape does occur, in many circumstances it would be the girl’s fault because she willingly presented an irresistible temptation.
I’ll get to the more obvious flaws with this hideous philosophy in a few moments, but I want to stop here for a second to say that the whole thing is downright sickening. It’s utterly despicable that any rational human being would place a shred of blame on the victim of a rape. I honestly cannot put in words the depth
of my hatred for this. As if it’s not already the most terrible experience in the world! Now you’ve got people saying you had it coming. Is it just me, or do any of you want to punch a wall right now? I hate this. I hate it. I hate it. Don’t ever blame the victim of a crime. And especially do not blame the victim of a rape. I cannot imagine the depth of emotional damage such a thing causes, and there is no excuse for making it worse. It’s never, ever, ever, EVER the victim’s fault.
Anyway, now I’ve got that off my chest, I will tell you the things I have learned from my studies of the criminal mind.
First of all, rapists are not just ordinary people whose sexual urges suddenly became too much for them. They are deeply disturbed individuals who no longer view people as people, but rather as objects to be played with, or, in some cases, to be punished. Their own pasts are often riddled with abuse, and they are unbalanced in a big way. Their minds do not work like ours do. Their entire psychological makeup is off. Ostensibly, they are looking for sex, but what they are really after is power. They want, more than anything, to have the ultimate control over another human being, to feel bigger, stronger, braver. That’s the reason some serial rapists escalate to murder. The crime has much less to do with sexual lust than it has to do with the insatiable lust for dominance.
And here’s another thing I learned about these particular criminals. Their victims are chosen very carefully, and many of them have striking physical or lifestyle similarities. Often it’s because they play a particular part in the rapist’s fantasy, and sometimes it’s because they resemble a woman the rapist wants to punish. But the one thing that almost all of them have in common is that they are people the rapist thinks he can control. It doesn’t matter how the girl dresses or her level of sexual attractiveness. The rapist, ironically, cares more about who she is inside; whether or not she is the kind of girl who will fight him. His ultimate fantasy, his dream victim, is a submissive, meek girl, a girl— and this is important — with low self-esteem or depression, someone who doesn’t speak up when she is taken advantage of, someone who does whatever he will tell her to. She is a girl who is already terrified of the world because she has been told for years that it is a dark and horrifying place. He looks, in short, most earnestly for a woman who does not look like she is going to put up a fight.
Now who does this sound like?
To me, this woman is exactly what the entire system of patriarchy wants its women to become. This system of thought teaches you that the ideal woman is one who walks around literally with her head down. She does what she is told to do, and she gives off an air of meekness and utter dependence. And of course, we are all familiar with the practice of keeping dirty secrets. Girls like this have already been taught to be afraid of the world. They are fearful, meek, submissive, and dependent.
It is no coincidence that both the rapist and this abusive system of thought are attracted to exactly the same type of person.
Meek? Good for patriarchy, good for rapist. Submissive? Good for patriarchy, good for rapist. Low self-esteem? Double score there too. Unlikely to bring public attention to this atrocity? Perfect for both parties! Is it just me, or are you deeply unsettled by this? Girls who are taught to have the “good little woman” personality are just being set up, cruelly, for a life of abuse. Even a domestically abusive spouse looks for a woman like this.
(All this is not, by the way, to say that girls who have the typical victim’s profile [submissive, meek, fearful, dependent] invite crime in any way. A crime will always be 100% the fault of the perpetrator.)
I said it was no coincidence that patriarchy churns out potential rape victims by the dozen, and it’s not. This system wants control over its victims the same as a rapist does. The people who set this up are looking for that same power, that ultimate dominance. They want, more than anything else in this world, for you to do exactly what they say, when they say it. Trust me, I've experienced this. You can see it in their eyes; they don't want your good. They want your obedience, and they are willing to hurt you to get it. It’s not about sex for the rapist, and it’s not about love for the patriarchy system. It’s about power. Everything is. Women— and, for that matter, men — who have a don’t-mess-with-me attitude are avoided by the rapist, and if patriarchy can’t break them, it sends them away so it doesn’t have to deal with them. Which is basically the exact same avoidance.
I find it interesting and ironic that people from the system of patriarchy actually dare to suggest that women who don’t live up to their standards in dress bear any level of responsibility for the sexual crimes perpetrated against them when in reality they— patriarchy, that is —are the ones creating the more desirable victim. A rapist— any criminal offender, actually — doesn’t look for the best prize, to put it crudely. He looks for the easiest. Criminals are opportunists. They consciously assess girls and judge whether or not they are going to put up a fight, and that, more than sexual attractiveness, is the driving factor in victim selection. And— big surprise! — abusive systems of thinking look for people like this too. Anyone who looks like they’re going to put up a fight is immediately expelled. Again, it’s all about dominance. And if you give the abuser that, whether he is a rapist or it is an entire system of thinking, the abuser will take full advantage. I can guarantee it.
Myself, I intend to fight like a cornered animal if ever I find myself in a dangerous situation. My plan of action can be outlined in three words: strike to kill. That’s right. I’m going straight for the carotid arteries. This goes, in a more figurative sense, for abusive organizations as well. I gave up my mental and spiritual freedom once. I won’t do it again. The fight I put up will be on a spectacular scale, to rival that one scene in The Bourne Supremacy when Jason Bourne went after that guy with a rolled-up magazine. I like acting fearless, even if I don’t feel it. It gives me a sense of… of what exactly, I can’t put into words. But it feels good. It feels like I’ve got an army on my side. And you know, I just might.
With fists I fought
To hold on to thought
— Driftless Pony Club, Imaginary Blood