Corrective Rape

Corrective rape. It’s difficult to accept that it happens, really difficult to talk about, but it’s real and that needs to be known. If you haven’t heard of this term, it refers to the disgusting practice of raping lesbian women and gay men with the idea that it will somehow make them ‘straight.’ Why am I bringing this up? Because it’s happening. It’s common across Africa, it’s common in India, and it’s also happening right here in North America. Women are being raped by men who seek to ‘fix’ them, and young boys are being forced to have sex with their female relatives. Most recently it was discovered that a boy in India was forced to have sex with his own mother! These perverse parasites are convinced that homosexuality must be eradicated, and they have chosen sexual violence as their weapon.

Now, part of Outspoken Ally’s message is that patriarchy, and its offspring misogyny, tears apart the social fabric that could unify us if given the chance. Patriarchal and misogynistic ideals are what guide the perpetuation of rape culture. They quietly tell us it’s okay. They make excuses for drunken frat boys armed with the date rape drug. They blame the victim for dressing too provocatively. They tell us to teach our daughters to be modest yet sexy, and our sons that man = animal. They tell us that men can’t be raped, and are ‘pansies’ if they claim to have been. They tell us there’s no such thing as a real lesbian, only women who don’t know how good sex with a man is … and that men have the right to show them, by force if necessary. They tell us that male cisnormative standards are correct and must be upheld. In short, patriarchal and misogynistic ideals drive sexual violence, including corrective rape.

Corrective rape is a joke to a lot of people, and a non-issue for others. Aside from stand-up ‘comics’ and over-privileged knuckle draggers at keg parties, nobody really talks about it. Perhaps, though, we would all benefit by taking a moment to think about the victims. Those faceless victims who have had their lives taken from them, forced to live in fear of the next attack, the next violation at the hands of someone who is so threatened that they justify trying to right what they think is wrong – people who feel entitled to meddle in the personal lives of others to the point of using extreme violence. This is a very real issue for the victims, and that makes it an issue for us.

It’s fair to say that corrective rape is a major failure of humanity, and that those who use and condone it are base creatures lacking empathy, compassion, respect, and the capacity for logical thought. How entitled does a man have to be to feel so threatened by the mere existence of someone who couldn’t possibly be attracted to him? How small-minded and incredibly insecure to think that desperately forcing himself upon a woman will change her sexual orientation. How disgusting and vile the people who force young boys to have sex with family members. It is a sick and disturbed individual who feels a God-ordained duty to bring gay and lesbian people “out of sin” and into agreement with “God’s plan for man and woman.” Apparently this plan does not include homosexuality, but is just fine with violent assault.

I doubt anybody reading this thinks that corrective rape is a good thing – if you do, you have problems and should definitely seek help. The point of bringing it up today is to say that it’s very real, and we need to start talking about it. Most people just aren’t aware that corrective rape is happening, and if we don’t draw attention to it, more and more victims are going to suffer. We have to seek out these stories. Learn about it. Talk about it. Fight against it. Let’s not allow the victims of this horrible crime to suffer in silence any longer!

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