Carrie Wooten

UCSD Intramural Rape League... oh yes, it's as bad as it sounds

Filed By Carrie Wooten | April 26, 2007 1:27 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, The Movement, You Gotta See This
Tags: rape, University of California San Diego

Thanks to feministing.com, this story has been circulating rapidly through the blogosphere.

Four white male students (rumored to be fraternity brothers) at the University of California San Diego thought it would be cute to create the "UCSD Intramural Rape League" as an oh so hilarious April Fool's Day joke. They wrote a mock article in the student newspaper about their group in which they describe their tactics for stalking women, techniques and strategies of rape, and go on to describe rape as an "art" form. Here's a quote:

"Often misunderstood, the team explained that verbal consent is a social construction made to enchain those who prefer to have sex without any semblance of communication before - and often during - sexual intercourse."

This is exactly why I posted this yesterday. It has definitely been my experience at Purdue, as I am sure it has for many others at various universities, that college men consider rape a complete joke. Action really needs to be taken to address the reality of this sort of college phenomenon, where rape is being normalized on a daily basis. The four men above are perfect sites of privilege being played out at the expense of true victims - I presume none of them have been raped and so they deem it fair game to mock the realities of those who have. Now, one could argue that the men are being tongue-and-cheek, that they clearly don't mean what they have said. But there is something about what they have done that leads me to believe that this wasn't a political project aimed at bringing the atrocities of rape to the forefront of everyone's minds. It seems more sinister in intent, more abusive and mocking. It seems that they had little care for the consequences of their actions on those who know who a rapist really is all too well.


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Jen Jorczak | April 26, 2007 2:49 PM

HOLY CRAP. I can't think of anything less funny. Carrie, I read your post yesterday and didn't know what to say--when I was in college, rape was NOT okay or accepted or okay to joke about. (Whether that's because I specifically chose a school with little-to-no Greek system, I don't know...) What the hell were the editors of the campus papter thinking, to print that sort of thing?

Yes, fraternity rape is a game of sorts, particularly gang rape ... even better when a woman is drugged and rendered helpless. Check out my url --- drug rape is nothing new.
Thank you for your blog, which gives me an opportunity to offer my opinion.

Marla R. Stevens | April 26, 2007 9:24 PM

It is not funny. It is just plain sick.

I read the mock article, it was hilarious. It didn't come across at all as sympathetic to rape or rapists.

The crux of the humour - the whole joke, the entirety of it - is that something utterly unacceptable or beyond the pale is being presented as a normal, healthy activity. Our expectations were confounded and from thence the humour arose.

The joke relies upon the idea of rape being unacceptable and totally wrong. If you believe rape is okay, the article stops being a joke. If the people who wrote it believed rape was okay, they wouldn't find this funny, and so wouldn't have written it.

Far from 'normalising' rape it underlines the total unacceptability of the act.

I say 'our' expectations. But you seem to expect 'privileged' men to be tacitly pro-rape, which is as ridiculous and bigoted an assumption as expecting all poor blacks to be pro-crime.

So for you there's no humour because your expectations are confirmed rather than confounded. Truly, the joke is not funny.