I know this cartoon has gotten a lot of blog coverage, but I am seriously disturbed by the artist's decision to depict President Obama getting up after having just raped the Statue of Liberty. Seriously, what can possibly make a person think this is funny?
Disturbing rape cartoon after the jump...
From Darleen Click of Protein Wisdom:
What I find most disturbing about the cartoon is the fact Click doesn’t even see anything wrong with trivializing rape at all. While she defends herself against claims that this cartoon is racist, her decision to compare legislation passed by a majority in Congress to rape is never addressed. It’s just not ultimately important.
I also think it’s interesting how some conservatives are quick to use rape metaphors but also dismiss the real tragedy of rape. I’m sure Click thought she was awfully clever with the line, “You gave all the consent I’ll ever need Nov 2008.” Maybe I would be able to see the humor if this wasn’t the very reason rapes in relationships are ignored.
I found a great post over at Pandagon that sums up what I’m getting at:
When it comes to actual rapes, the right wing position is that the problem of rape is way overblown, and that most rapes---most anything that gets called a date or acquaintance rape---aren’t a matter of men forcing themselves on women because they enjoy raping, but just bad sex that sluts regret later and therefore “cry rape”. Take for instance the debate on the BBC where Heather MacDonald basically denied that the vast majority of campus rapes were actual rape. It’s not fun having people imply to your face that you’re the sort of person who would lie about a good man for no reason except shame that you don’t have about sex or perhaps spite that you never felt towards the guy until he raped you. But that’s the least of the problems with this narrative. The big one is that the narrative conservatives tell obscures the fact that rapists rape because they enjoy the power trip over their victims. For whatever reason, a lot of right wingers like to push the idea that rape is a matter of innocent men getting mixed signals, which simply isn’t the reality of the situation. Rapists are predators and ordinary men are actually pretty good at understanding when a woman they’re on a date with isn’t into the sex.Obviously I don’t speak for all rape victims and I realize every individual person is going to have a different response to this cartoon. Rape metaphors are prolific in our culture and this cartoon is not new or shocking anymore then it’s well drawn. But regardless of one’s personal response to the cartoon (and mine is disgust), there is no doubt that this cartoon trivializes the very real horror of rape and the very real struggles rape victims go through.