Metaphors have the power to take down false wisdom, but only if they’re handled correctly
In reaction to the recent national debates regarding rape the National Penis Association is calling for more, not fewer penises.
The president of the NPA, Richard D. Roop, has repeatedly affirmed the old saying, “Penises don’t rape, people with penises rape.” On Face the Nation last Sunday he asserted, “Rape would be a thing of the past, if only everyone had penises,” and he even went so far as to suggest that people who lack penises should shoulder the blame for the recent spate of gang rapes.
He went on to say, “Maybe we should begin to take seriously the radical idea that everyone who goes about in public should be packing. I’m not sure what that would look like. Maybe the penis-less should just be required to stay home. Or maybe the government could provide penises for those who lack a penis and lack the means to obtain one. But the last thing we should be doing is passing penis-control laws.”
I think that Mr. Roop’s position is absurd, and not only because I made him and his position up, but because I have noted that almost no one in all the debate going on has called for the banning of the ordinary hand-held penis, which is what people like Mr. Roop would imply.
In fact, I believe that it is clear to most intelligent people on both sides of the debate that the arguments supporting such a ban would only lead inevitably to a backlash, which would result in a segregated society where the penis-less would see their rights of free association and travel taken from them. This has already happened in Saudi Arabia and, to a lesser extent in India, for all the good it does, which is zip.
So, where does that leave us? The NPA says it leaves us with “Just enforce existing laws against rape. If someone rapes, try them, and if they’re convicted, behead them.”
But is that reasonable? Sure, beheading rapists is a feel-good solution, but would it promote the kind of society we want? And how practical is it? How often do juries convict rapists, anyway?
The truth is most liberals aren’t willing to go that route, because they have a thing about decapitation, so they are backed into a corner. They want to be tough on rapists but they can’t be that tough. They can’t call for a penis ban. They have to talk in terms of rape prevention, and that plays into the hands of conservatives who just say the problem is there are too many rape victims.
“You want to prevent rape, what you do is lock up all the potential rape victims,” says Richard “Not as imaginary as I would like him to be” D. Roop.
Pope Benedict XVI, in a surprising, related and fictitious move, reversed his church’s longstanding opposition to birth control. While he said he continues to believe that birth control does violence against the Will of God, nevertheless he went on Twitter to say “one has to go with the lesser of two absences of good sometimes,” and the simple fact is that there’d be “a lot less buggery if there was fewer little buggers tempting us. #irresistibleyoungbooty”
Likewise, in India, the vicious brutal gang-rape and murder of a young Indian woman is no doubt going to be the cause of more abortions of female fetuses, rather than fewer, because they are so much trouble to defend when they grow up.
I personally see in all these issues a perpetuation of the original sin of the Garden of Eden, which was not the temptation of Adam by Eve at the behest of the serpent, but the sin of blaming her for what he did about it. But, hey, I’m no theologian, thank God.
Where was I? Oh yeah: It’s time to put some real thought into rape prevention, I’d say.
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