Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

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Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby MadCat on Mon Nov 14, 2011 1:22 am

An interesting article at Huffington Post, that discusses how most sexual harassment in schools is aimed at girls and anyone perceived to be LGBT; is no longer used to attempt to exploit people sexually, but rather to degrade or insult them using sexual remarks; and is actually a result of either misogyny or homophobia. The solution? Education.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/marianne- ... 087004.htm
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby Dave on Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:07 am

"Page not found" :(

But yeah, it's more about power over the victim than it is about sex.
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby MadCat on Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:17 am

Well Poo, then I shall post the text of the article here:

Sexual Harassment: Not Really About Sex at All

This week, a national study found that sexual harassment affects about half of the students in grades seven to 12. Some might see this as an indication that there is too much talk about sex in our schools. They would be wrong. Others have chalked it up to teenage hormones and suggested that we leave well enough alone. They would be equally wrong.

Sexual harassment is nothing new. In 2008, a study found that just over a third of middle and high school students had been sexually harassed. The National Coalition for Women's and Girls Education put the percentage at almost 90 in 1997. And, indeed, discrimination based on gender has been an actionable offence under Title IX of the Education Amendments since 1972, and since then the courts have applied Title IX to various types of sexual harassment.

But the motivation for sexual harassment seems to be shifting. Bill Bond, a school safety expert for the National Association of Secondary School Principals, notes that attempts to exploit fellow students sexually have become less common, and that now students seem to use sexual remarks to degrade or insult someone else.

This sense, that sexual harassment nowadays is more about hostility than about sex, was validated by the study published this week as well as by the study published in 2008. Both concluded that most sexual harassment in middle and high schools in the United States is directed at girls and at children suspected of being gay or lesbian.

Where straight girls are targeted, the harassment is generally about their level of sexual activity, which is either deemed too much (they are "sluts") or too little (they are "prudes"). In the case of youth who are thought to be gay, it is the mere fact that they might even want to have sex that is "wrong."

In other words, the more frequent type of harassment suffered by children today--and the one they report as affecting them the most negatively--is expressing hostility at children who do not fit into some preconceived notion of what "normal" sexuality is. Normality in this connection apparently means that girls must display a level of sexual activity that can go unperceived (neither too much nor too little), and that everyone should be straight.

Or to be a bit more blunt about it: sexual harassment in middle and high schools today is motivated by either misogyny or homophobia. Neither has to do with sex. And neither would be helped by treating sexual harassment between children as a result of overactive hormones to be dismissed.

In fact, the solution is just the opposite: active and broad engagement about sexuality and sex roles. Because misogyny and homophobia are fuelled by ignorance and fear. And ignorance and fear can be fought with knowledge.

Unfortunately, broad knowledge-building is not generally the objective of sex education in US middle and high schools. At best, sex education deals with sexuality as a matter of biology: how do male and female bodies engage in (heterosexual and procreative) sex. At worst, the message is that all sex is bad unless you are married and want to procreate. These types of sex education do not transfer much needed tools to our children as they grapple with their evolving sexuality. Indeed, by ignoring (or vilifying) sexuality altogether, limited sex education may instead feed the fear that expresses itself as sexual harassment.

Comprehensive sex education, on the other hand, provides the broader knowledge our children need and want. At its best, comprehensives sex education engages children on their own level of comprehension in a conversation about what sexuality means, how to relate to ourselves and each other with respect, and how to make responsible and informed choices about our sexual and reproductive lives. Comprehensive sex education not only combats the fear and stereotypes that fuel sexual harassment, it also works in terms of delaying the age of sexual initiation and lowering the number of teenage pregnancies.

All children have a right to comprehensive sex education. Giving them the information they need and are entitled to has obvious benefits for their reproductive and sexual health. It is also a way to reduce the chances that they will subject their peers to sexual harassment.

Also, does this link work any better?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/marianne- ... y%20Voices
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby Dave on Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:37 am

Yes, yes it does (work).
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby trebuchet on Mon Nov 14, 2011 5:40 am

At the risk of being a wet blanket...

I tend to view humanity in its most negative light. After I read the article I immediately applied its education-as-solution theory to people I remember from school. The jocks I knew and grew up with attended seminars and classes intended to teach sensitivity and gender-appropriate behavior. The article writer's perception that sexual harassment is not about sex is spot on in this case. Their anti-social behavior persisted and, in some cases, became worse. At the time I was surprised. Now, I'm not so surprised.

Take XBOX Live, for instance. If somebody can educate those apes I would nominate that person to be canonized. No amount of education at school will deter the deep-seeded misogyny and homophobia that is implanted by parents and peer groups of these kids. Education is an attempt at behavior modification. It is a feeble attempt with a low success rate. I think beatings would be a better form of behavior modification. Don't give little Tommy a "time-out" in the corner for pulling Sally's hair. Take that little shit, put him over your lap, get the paddle out, and beat the living daylights out of his ass.
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby MadCat on Mon Nov 14, 2011 9:13 pm

Regarding your conclusion, I have to strongly and completely disagree. I cannot condone physical abuse as a form of correction, especially for children. It has been proven ineffective and causes more harm than good. If you can't teach a child without physical abuse, you aren't a very good parent.
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby trebuchet on Tue Nov 15, 2011 12:16 pm

What's your definition of physical abuse? My parents spanked me when I was behaving badly and I turned out okay. What's wrong with that?
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby Yino on Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:09 pm

It's called conditional behaviour. It can have some effect on some kids, on others it teaches you to lie and to hide your acts. It doesn't teach you why what you did is wrong, but rather that you should avoid doing it while being seen.
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby trebuchet on Wed Nov 16, 2011 8:25 am

My point was that spanking is not physical abuse. It's discipline, regardless of its effectiveness. A matter of semantics, not efficacy.
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Re: Sexual Harassment not really about Sex

Postby MadCat on Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:49 pm

Sorry, I really don't have the mental and emotional energy to get involved in any more discussions right now. >< So I'm going to sum up my point, and then leave the rest to experts who have actually researched this stuff.

Basically, my point is that you shouldn't beat your kids any more than you should beat your wife. It's not 'discipline', it's physical abuse, and it has lasting effects. So if you want your kid to have a lower IQ, post-traumatic stress, violent behavior and cognitive delay, sexual and relationship problems, etc., then hey, spanking works great!

If you actually want to raise a happy, well-adjusted child, don't physically abuse them.


Here, have some links that can explain better than I can why this is bad:

http://counsellingresource.com/features ... ine-abuse/
"research not only fails to support the most common rationalizations in favor of spanking, it suggests the opposite — that spanking is bad for kids."


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 220451.htm
“These results, together with the results of more than 100 other studies, suggest that spanking is one of the roots of relationship violence and mental health problems.


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 231749.htm
The research found that the stress of corporal punishment shows up as an increase in post-traumatic stress symptoms such as being fearful that terrible things are about to happen and being easily startled.


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 100941.htm
spanking 1-year-olds leads to more aggressive behaviors and less sophisticated cognitive development in the next two years.



http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 210528.htm

http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art43487.asp

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UN_Convent ... _the_Child
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