Culture of Rape

I work part time at a theatre where there are house managers and security that kind of all work together. Since I have worked there starting in 2013, there have been three individuals outright fired or “let go” from their positions. The two males, ironically enough, were let go for the exact same reason: a sexual remark made to a female co-worker. I was not bothered in the least by any of the three being fired, but the most recent one happened within the last month or so and another co-worker’s reaction to that had me floored.

I was riding down the elevator with an older co-worker of mine, who I quite honestly just tolerate at best. This is the conversation we had:

Her: Did you hear L is gone?

Me: You mean fired?

Her: Yep.

(Now at this point I’m thinking that our bosses got tired of him not really doing his job, but rather just flirting with all the young girls who work at the bars.)

Her: It seems he said something in appropriate to that tall blonde girl. What’s her name?

Me: ….? Oh, you mean R?

Her: Yeah. He said something to her. Her of all people. You’d think anything said to her would be taken as a compliment.

I said nothing more, but I was shocked nonetheless. It doesn’t matter what a woman looks like. Whatever he said – and I do believe he said something inappropriate – is dead wrong. Period. It doesn’t surprise me that he said something overtly sexual to her. I had witnessed a handful of times an exchange between the two of them where he implied he’d take whatever he wanted from her and there wasn’t anything she could do. What does surprise me, though, is the reaction on the part of the woman who revealed this to me. Her attitude that R should be thankful for any male attention is just beyond me. It’s people like her and her view of what happened to R that feeds into this culture of rape that we have.