Date: 2017-01-10 06:04 pm (UTC)
recessional: a young brunette leaning back and smoking (personal; it's death or victory)
From: [personal profile] recessional
In terms of things getting better: yes, if slowly and unevenly, and often in ways that make people with poor critical thinking skills and bad memories think things are worse, even though the very fact that they're now aware the things happen at all means it's getting better.

(See also: "epidemics" of ASD, ADHD, etc - it's not so much that there are more of us, frankly, it's that we don't get labelled "freak/bad kid" and then ignored except to aim kicks at, metaphorical and literal.)

And, cynically, I often think it only gets better because it's so, so much harder to hide shit: it's not that queer kids didn't commit suicide before the identified cluster of them that (for instance) sparked the "It Gets Better" stuff, it's that before the best you could probably do was leave a note that your parents might or might not decide to burn or suppress (especially if they disapproved of you). The same bad things happened, they just got hushed up, ignored, misinterpreted, and even if they made local news, they probably didn't get any further. It's not that girls weren't gang-raped at parties, or even that it was never filmed in some cases, it was just it never got further than that because she didn't tell anyone and even if the VHS tape got passed around it never got out of the hands of people that the boys were sure wouldn't turn them in.

The easy access to mass communication makes that harder. The youtube diaries left by the kids that gradually get to the point of the "this might as well be a suicide note" are seen by people way, way out of the community, who give no fucks that the bullies are "good boys"; the rape-video gets copied out of control, and then when the girl kills herself and explicitly says THIS IS WHY, her last attempt to get people to pay attention works and gets all over the country.

And other attitudes have changed enough that instead of trying to hush everything up or being hushed up, her mom (appropriately) loses her rag and takes to that mass communication herself, and it becomes a ~*thing*~. Or like the case with that asshole swimmer from the one uni who got two months for his rape conviction or something like that - the NEW thing isn't that it happened, or even that he got a ludicrously light sentence, the NEW thing is that it blew up all over at least two countries on mass media and mass unmediated communication and people were pissed the fuck off and also felt like they weren't ALONE in being pissed the fuck off and used that to yell louder.

The fact that things on the internet never die . . . like it's frustrating to watch mainstream takes on this stuff a lot? Because it's not like teenage girls didn't have nude photos they gave to boyfriends who then did horrible shit like putting them in a file folder passed around their friends, it's that nobody ever found out about it except the kids and nobody did anything about it except blame the girls for being loose, and all the guys had to do was destroy the one single physical folder and poof!

As opposed to what's happening in a case in Eastern Canada now, in which a group of boys are discovering that no really bbs the internet is forever which means the RCMP can find the stuff that used to be on your server that you went "oh shit" and deleted and (after years and years of honing skills chasing child pornographers online) bring it back up and go " . . . yeah so you had that file and that's super illegal."

And frankly they've gotten so tired of watching people they CAN'T help for one reason or another get victimised by online shit that now that they have concrete chargeable crap on you they want to hit you with every metaphorical brick they can.

I mean, I don't agree with everything that's happening in that case (I think there's some attempts to apply laws that are a REALLY bad idea and precedent and I hope the trial judge/etc realise that), but it's not the Incident that's new and surprising, it's that it's becoming a case, and that honestly majority opinion is on the side of the girls. Not the VAST majority, maybe, but the majority.

But people who don't think carefully are like OH MY GOD THIS NEVER USED TO HAPPEN! ....yes it did. It was a slightly different format, it was secret, we blamed the victims and we tried to forget it, and apparently you succeeded.

(Plus, to be fair, a lot of people having the memories from high school but having done the thing where they took them for granted as normal; I have also had conversations where women particularly went "oh there was nothing that bad at my highschool, I mean the worst we had was that one time that- " and then usually in the middle of relating the incident there's a pause and the woman going "you know now that I tell someone that's . . . actually pretty awful isn't it." Yes, lady. Yes it is. But if one hasn't ever done that reconsideration, then it retains the glow/mental filing of "totes normal, no problems here" and so . . . )

. . . .SO WOW WAS THAT A TL;DR DUMP. Ahem. The point is that: yes, it is better, slowly, unevenly, with stumbles, and with the desperate need to keep pushing just as hard. But it is.
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