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Don’t Be That Rape Apologist: Arthur Koestler, Judgy Bitch, and why MRAs hate rape awareness campaigns

Arthur Koestler: Brilliant writer, serial rapist?
Arthur Koestler: Brilliant writer, serial rapist?

Today I’m going to talk about Janet Bloomfield — AKA JudgyBitch — and her bizarre attack on the original Don’t Be That Guy anti-rape posters in Edmonton. But I’m going to take a bit of a detour first, so bear with me.

I recently picked up a copy of Arthur Koestler’s The Case of the Midwife Toad, a nonfiction account of a scientific feud that provided me with some diverting travel reading and put me in the mood to read more of Koestler’s nonfiction.

But doing some rudimentary Googling I made a rather horrifying discovery about Koestler, whom I’d admired since reading his bracing account of breaking with Communism in the classic The God That Failed anthology: according to a recent biographer, Koestler was a serial rapist and abuser of women.

While some doubt the evidence of rape, even his supporters have had to acknowledge, as one reviewer has written, that Koestler’s “treatment of the many women in his life [was] – even without the ‘rape’ – deeply unpleasant. He was manipulative, demanding, sexually voracious and utterly faithless.”

Koestler himself doesn’t exactly make a persuasive witness for his own defense, having once written to his second wife that “without an element of initial rape there is no delight.”

But in some ways as eye-opening as these revelations has been the response of some of Koestler’s defenders. Case in point: Michael Scammell, the author of a nearly 700-page biography of Koestler. After detailing many instances of Koestler’s mistreatment of women, he writes of the accusations of violent rape:

The exercise of male strength to gain sexual satisfaction wasn’t exactly uncommon at that time … The line between consensual and forced sex was often blurred.

Hey, it was the 1950s. EVERYBODY raped women back then.

The sad fact is that, while this is no defense of Koestler’s alleged behavior, there is an element of truth to Scammell’s claims. The line between consensual sex and rape was often blurred back then. Women were often cajoled, pressured, manipulated, and forced into sex by more physically powerful men. And neither party necessarily recognized what had happened as rape.

The fact that the line between consensual sex and rape is a lot clearer today — and that the rate of rape has declined markedly in the past several decades — is largely due to feminism. Feminism challenged older attitudes and definitions of rape and worked at changing these attitudes through education and awareness campaigns.

Feminist activists worked on teaching — and reteaching — both men and women what is and what isn’t acceptable sexual behavior.

It’s an ongoing process, which continues in awareness campaigns like this one, the Don’t Be That Guy campaign launched in Edmonton (and elsewhere):

posters1edmonton-police-re-launch-poster-campaign-to-deter-sexual-assault_posters

It’s pretty clear that there’s a lot more work to be done, as the reactions to this campaign have pretty clearly shown.

Anyone who has read much in the so-called manosphere — on MRA and PUA sites alike — will have noticed a lot of alarmist nonsense about the alleged difficulties men have in determining if a sex act with a woman is consensual or not, as if it is simply impossible, if there is any confusion, for men to open their mouths and ask. MRAs and PUAs act as if obtaining consent “the way feminists want it” would consist of some complicated legalistic procedure that would ruin sex forever.

This is patent nonsense. Clarifying issues of consent about (and during) sex — making anything that’s blurry clear — can be done in less time than it takes to read this sentence.

“Do you like this?” “Yes.”

“Do you want me to [incredibly dirty thing]?” “Yes.”

But, as I said, the MRAs and PUAs complaining about the alleged difficulties of consent don’t really seem to be interested in making things clear. They would, it seems, rather have things as blurry as possible.

And that’s because a lot of them want to return to a world in which, to paraphrase that quote from Scammell above, the exercise of male strength to gain sexual satisfaction isn’t exactly uncommon, and in which the line between consensual and forced sex is often blurred.

They would prefer to return to a world in which it’s considered fair game to “take advantage” of seriously drunk women. One in which all accusations of date rape could be dismissed as the result of a fickle woman changing her mind later.

And that, I think, is why MRAs have such a problem with date rape awareness campaigns like Edmonton’s Don’t Be That Guy campaign — which they try to both ridicule as unnecessary and denounce as an exercise in Nazi-style anti-male propaganda. Sometimes both at the same time.

Consider, for example, Janet Bloomfield/JudgyBitch’s recent A Voice for Men post on the Edmonton poster controversies. Bloomfield — who apparently likes to think of herself as one of those no-nonsense women who can get by just fine without any help from feminists, thank you very much — begins by trying to ridicule the original Don’t Be That Guy posters as simple-minded, obvious and utterly unnecessary.

Referring to several specific posters from the original campaign, she writes:

No, obviously, you should not be having sex with a woman so drunk she is passed out face down on the couch with her ass in the air. …

Obviously, helping a drunk woman home does not entitle you to sex.

And in what is going to come as SHOCKING news to everyone, if someone doesn’t want to have sex with you, you should not have sex with them.

I’ll give you a while to process that information, because I’m sure that until this clever campaign came along, you were all busy screwing comatose girls at parties and gleefully hailing cabs so you could help ladies home and then rape them.

That would be very witty and pointed but for the fact that, guess what, men do attempt to “have sex” with women who are passed out or asleep, and that there are plenty of men who seem to think that this counts as a sort of “no harm, no foul, no rape” situation.

Take a look at the discussion whenever this topic comes up on Reddit, for example. Or consider all those supporters of Julian Assange who pretend that the issue is women changing their mind after sex when in fact one of the things he’s been accused of is penetrating a woman sans condom while she was sleeping.

And as for “taking advantage” of seriously drunk women, well, there are plenty of men who think this is perfectly fine — and some who make this the centerpiece of their “seduction” technique. Indeed, one prominent PUA — Roosh V — has confessed to doing just that with one woman who was clearly too drunk to consent:

While walking to my place, I realized how drunk she was. In America, having sex with her would have been rape, since she legally couldn’t give her consent. It didn’t help matters that I was relatively sober, but I can’t say I cared or even hesitated. I won’t rationalize my actions, but having sex is what I do.

Somehow this confession — boast? —  hasn’t, to my knowledge, earned him any condemnations from manosphere or MRA bloggers, or even, it seems, cost him any fans.

Meanwhile, on the very site Bloomfield is publishing her post, Paul Elam blames drunk women for being sexually assaulted, writing (as I pointed out yesterday) that women who drink with men are, “freaking begging” to be raped,

Damn near demanding it. … walk[ing] though life with the equivalent of a I’M A STUPID, CONNIVING BITCH – PLEASE RAPE ME neon sign glowing above their empty little narcissistic heads.

After dismissing the Don’t Be That Guy campaign as so much silliness,  Bloomfield makes a sudden 180 degree turn and declares it the virtual equivalent of Nazi propaganda against Jews.

Which would be offensive if it weren’t so manifestly absurd. The Don’t Be That Guy campaign isn’t directed at men, per se. It’s directed at men WHO THINK IT’S OK TO RAPE WOMEN and/or MEN WHO MAKE EXCUSES FOR RAPISTS.

A good number of these men — and some women with similar beliefs — seem to spend much of their time reading and/or writing for manosphere sites like Roosh V’s blog and A Voice for Men.

736 replies on “Don’t Be That Rape Apologist: Arthur Koestler, Judgy Bitch, and why MRAs hate rape awareness campaigns”

“You mock me because you’re all bitter bitches who finally realize that all the men of quality, all the men of talent and intelligence will no longer have anything to do with your slutty asses, and instead rather find foreign women or go MGTOW. All you have left are the rapists, which is why you’re so into BDSM.”

Look, don’t conflate men of “quality” “talent and intelligence” with your crowd. Mr. GeologistSpouse uses evidence and sound reasoning to back up his arguments.

Ohhh noez, Dr. Husband is going to leave me and stop trying to hook me up with hot ladies on the side, OH THE HUMANITY. And then I won’t have anyone to cook me tasty Italian food!

On the contrary, it’s a safe thing to believe. Not only are you not responsible for it, but you can do NOTHING ABOUT IT!

And you can feel morally superior while not doing anything about anything! How’s that for a self-serving belief system?

Pecunium, in case it wasn’t clear before, the line about steel melting was my summation of Loose-change style videos, not a direct quote from Petey. (although I’m sure we could find him saying it somewhere)

“we also have no potable water in the pipes right now, and haven’t for the past three days”

Youch, hope you’ve complained to whomever it is you complain to (and if you need a plumber, I might be able to help with that)

Also…

“You think rape is your right.

You are a danger to women, and make the lives of good men harder.”

*standing ovation*

Why? Because knowing there are actually good men in the world makes the Petey’s of the world just a wee bit less bothersome.

I post under my real name too. You’re free to mock my work if you like, except that you can’t because it’s awesome.

Translation: “Whatever you say, you’re wrong!”

Since tedious troll is tedious, I thought you might enjoy these lovely photos of Snowdonia I found on the flickr blog.

I believe I was promised snow? ::is cross::

Has this album been posted here before? Because it’s super.

What a beautiful woman and what a beautiful cat.

I think you’re all A W E S O M E*. Group hug? With a non-hugging option (shy handwaves? a big pile o’ kittens?) for anyone who’s not so much of a hugger?

*Excluding of course Petey, who is an asshat.

Testing something —

I would go so far as to suggest that Shaenon is A W E S O M E.

cloudiah: Has anyone here been?

Yes. It’s gorgeous, but hard work to get to. Hot, wet, far from people, so worth it. Took a day to hike in, (pack-in, pack-out), water was ancient (the spring we were using was filtering through hundreds of feet of sandstone, so between 200-400 years from rainfall to drinking), weather was warm.

It’s in the Paria, and you need to get permits to hike in. We took mules/packhorses, and were there for one week (which is as long as they would give us).

The water level rises/falls, based on rain you can’t always see. Many types of mud. Much fun. (see Petey, this is what we talk about when not bashing bathetic boobs)

Argenti: Youch, hope you’ve complained to whomever it is you complain to (and if you need a plumber, I might be able to help with that)

They told us. Broken 12″ main caused a pressure problem. Boil all water. :/ In a few more days I’ll be out of ice, but we have bottles, and I can use Gin (:)) to sterilise it.

Damn, test 2 & 3 —

I would go so far as to suggest that Shaenon isA W E S O M E.

I would go so far as to suggest that Shaenon is
A W E S O M E.

Lol, so apparently HTML hates this (there are ways, but not ones allowed in WP comments it seems) but just hitting enter works.

pecunium — now that’s a use of gin I’ll buy! Any idea when it’ll be fixed? Cuz fun times!

No, really, I went home for lunch, as I worked 8~ min from my apt, go to leave and THAT happened. Had to call in that I’d be back as soon as I found a path that wasn’t a river…lucky they were amused by this. We weren’t without water for terribly long though, but this shit is altogether too common in Pittsburgh.

No idea. Seems the water providor doesn’t have good maps of the pipes, and a contractor hit one. Until that gets fixed, the pressure is inadequate to be sure the bacterial count is below minimums. At a guess, it’s probably potable, but…

I sure as fuck don’t dare ignore it.

That happens to be one of the rare cases of losing data. I don’t have many and they are not anyplace handy. I am still (7 years later) grumped about it.

But does it reflect badly on me or does it reflect badly on you?

You, dude. Definitely you.

Oh I am very much wanted here. After all, otherwise all you guys would be doing is sitting around licking each other’s asses and sucking each other’s dicks…

You realize that saying this after you’ve been clearly told to get lost by multiple people doesn’t exactly make you look less rapey, right? Apparently interpreting “no” or “go away” as “keep bothering me, please!” is an ongoing problem for you.

Speaking of losing things, new plec didn’t survive the first week. Assuming my water tests come out normal, I’m probably trying again tommorow (for the non-aquarists among us, when they die in the first week it’s generally the fish, not your tank)

Nonetheless, I am none too pleased about this.

Pecunium — but you are getting enough to boil it?

We have a vested interest in not believing it. Think of how it absolutely shatters one’s worldview… How it destroy confidence not only governments, but in people in general. It is not a pleasant thing to believe at all.

But Petey, we’ve already seen your fiction page. We know that you wank to the idea of oppressive overlords and societal destruction, so apparently believing in those things is all kinds of fun for you.

You mock me because you’re all bitter bitches who finally realize that all the men of quality, all the men of talent and intelligence will no longer have anything to do with your slutty asses, and instead rather find foreign women or go MGTOW. All you have left are the rapists, which is why you’re so into BDSM.

Says the sad, lonely man who’s confessed that he has very little experience with women to the room full of women who are mostly either married or in a LTR.

PS: I’ve lived on 4 different continents. Trust me when I say that the “foreign” women don’t want you either unless they’re in such dire circumstances that you’re their only way out. Even in those cases they still don’t want you, they just want citizenship in a country with more opportunity.

Pecunium — well that’s something at least. Got the bottles to boil it and save it for later?

Oh gods. I just had to extricate my hair from the cat while she was trying to eat my head. Clearly it’s too fucking hot.

I’ve just got to think about the logistics of a prison planet (or continent). I wonder if robot prison guards are part of the plan, or if he’s actually thought about how many guards you’d need to maintain the prison continent, and how many other people to support the infrastructure for both the guards and the inmates.

Unless prison-planet-North America is just regular North America, but you can’t enter or leave. Which…would not be that bad.

If it were an island, then you just blockade. Have to be sure though that they don’t have enough resources to build infrastructure. So the blockade has to have an offensive aspect, to destroy the possibility of industry developing.

Which is expensive.

If it’s an alternate earth, well then all you need is a one way portal, and who cares?

Anyone fucked with by that hole in the space time continuum?

Seriously, how is it easier to believe that hundreds of people conspired to bring down the towers, presumably for the death toll, failed to get anything like maximum causalities, and no one has ever said a word about it; than to believe that 20~ people and another, what, dozen?, planners hijacked planes to make a show of power, which they quite effectively did.

And someone please give me a solid, non-physics based, answer to why the pentagon hole wasn’t plane shaped. I mentioned this over lunch and my mother went that route with “I’m just saying” *psyduck*

I’m also finding it interesting that Petey’s meltdown has mostly taken the form of attempting to insult people by suggesting that they have too much sex, or not enough sex, or that they’re female and possessed of the ability to have sex. I mean, for someone trying to sell himself as neither a misogynist or someone with a rapey mindset it’s all rather odd.

(Where’s my sarcasm font?)

Because of the relative differences in mass between the wings, and the cabin (part of which is the penetrating power of the shape. An arrow has a lot more penetrating power than a pistol round (as in it, like a rifle round, can punch through basic body armor).

And someone please give me a solid, non-physics based, answer to why the pentagon hole wasn’t plane shaped. I mentioned this over lunch and my mother went that route with “I’m just saying” *psyduck*

The same reason that if you actually broke through a wall, it wouldn’t leave a person-shaped outline like you were the walrus from Alice in Wonderland.

neuroticbeagle — yes, more like that. And he was laughing to hard to think to use the cell phone camera that he was holding!

ANd thanks guys, for both the fishy consolation and the physics.

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