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Purdue ‘Sex Position’ comic causes outrage

The Purdue University’s student newspaper, The Exponent, has issue an apology for running a cartoon that many viewed as promoting rape. The comic feature, Sex Position of the Week, depicted a male character (all in silhouette) having sex with a female (from the rear), then allowing another male to also engage in the position without the female aware of the switch.

The Editor-in-Chief, Zoe Hayes wrote in her apology:

First things first: We made a mistake in printing Friday’s sex position of the week, and I, the editorial board, anOur apologies extend to the entire campus, both men and women; to alumni, parents, and current and former faculty and staff; and to anyone who saw the graphic and was offended or triggered by what was depicted. We?ve heard from many of you and understand your concerns.

For those of you who missed it, Friday?s sex position of the week depicted a man having sex with a woman, then switching out with a second man without the woman?s knowledge.

On Friday and over the weekend, we received a flood of e-mails and phone calls telling us that this sort of graphic is unacceptable. And as soon as we received the first one and looked at it again ? really looked at it ? we agreed. If someone engages in any sexual act with anyone without his or her explicit consent, it?s rape. The comic can easily be interpreted that way.

Community Comments

#1 Steve Walsh
September/27/2010
@ 1:31 pm

I must be a horribly insensitive person, because I actually thought the strip was pretty funny.

#2 Pete Tarkulich
September/27/2010
@ 2:14 pm

*sigh* Really? It’s a college newspaper for crying out loud. College kids are sick, twisted, and rarely PC.

I wish a group of honest-to-God swingers would write in and tell the paper how funny the comic is just to show the other side of the coin.

#3 Steve Walsh
September/27/2010
@ 2:52 pm

Pete,

Yeah, but “college” is also where the social groups that demand that “other people” adjust their existences to align with that group’s particular worldview have the most power. It’s a two edge sword, that academia.

The use of the term “triggered” is indicative. There are groups that believe that media (and society at general) should be sanitized so as to neither offend anyone nor remind any individual of bad things that happened to them in the past. An example that is not out of the question for such groups would be that producers of a Batman movie should be sensitive to those who have been victims of armed robbery, as seeing it portrayed in a realistic way could trigger their recollection of their own personal experience. I’m not kidding. It’s gotten to the point where certain words or phrases that are not explicitly racist or sexist are considered “trigger” words/phrase and are supposed to be avoided. At this stage, it has begun to clearly be an excuse to avoid dialog and critical thought.

But, these groups can have significant social power on some University campuses where journalists/etc aren’t given the power by their bosses to say, “Sorry something bad happened to you in the past, that sucks and I’m sad it happened to you. But society isn’t going to rearrange itself around your existence and neither are we, so you’ll need to learn to deal with non-PC humor.”

#4 Zoë Kirk-Robinson
September/27/2010
@ 4:22 pm

“The comic can easily be interpreted that way.”

Oh for goodness sake. If you admit you’re wrong to publish a comic about rape, have the decency to admit it properly, rather than trying to weasel out of it in the last sentence. Trying anything else is just plain stupidity.

#5 Stephanie McMillan
September/28/2010
@ 6:04 am

I pity any woman who makes the mistake of dating Steve, Pete, or any guy who thinks rape is funny.

#6 Ted Rall
September/28/2010
@ 6:46 am

“?The comic can easily be interpreted that way.?

Actually, it cannot be interpreted any other way.

#7 Ryan Sohmer
September/28/2010
@ 8:48 am

We get livid when we’re told we can’t draw the prophet Muhammad, and in the same breath we crucify these kids for making a rape joke.

Freedom of speech is all or nothing.

Or should censorship only apply when it suits your views and morality?

#8 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 8:53 am

This… this is a comic?

#9 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 9:24 am

We get livid when we?re told we can?t draw the prophet Muhammad, and in the same breath we crucify these kids for making a rape joke.

Ah, right, the classic “it was a joke” defense. In the real world, suggesting that you rape a person is, in fact, promoting something illegal. Go try that move out on your wife or girlfriend and let me know how funny they found it. You get one free phone call.

Freedom of speech is all or nothing.

Seriously, the wrap-yourself-in-the-First-Amendment kneejerk got tired yesterday and it weakens real First Amendment issues. No one is restricting anyone’s freedom of speech here. You don’t have a constitutional right to have your crappy cartoon printed in a newspaper, and you don’t have a constitutional right to not face criticism when you suggest that raping a person is a really fun sex act. The paper apologized because, rightly so, a lot of students appropriately exercised their OWN damn First Amendment rights.

Or should censorship only apply when it suits your views and morality?

Except that’s exactly what you’re doing. Your views and morality differ from mine, so you’re complaining that an editorial decision is “censorship.” It’s very often the term people use to complain about a decision made that they don’t personally like. That doesn’t make it true.

Like all of these stories, the key quote isn’t even the cartoon, it’s the editors’ lame response of “when we looked at it, we realized it was offensive.” Oh, so you didn’t look at it before you, you know, ran it in your paper? This isn’t a story about censorship; it’s a story about yet another editor being bad at their job.

#10 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 9:26 am

Interestingly enough, Cracked’s latest article this week is “6 so-called romantic acts in movies that land you in jail.” Rape by fraud is one of them.

http://www.cracked.com/article_18756_6-romantic-movie-gestures-that-can-get-you-prison-time.html

#11 Steve Walsh
September/28/2010
@ 9:42 am

There sure is a lot of “it should only be protected (or, for that matter, *permitted*) if *I* think it’s funny and it offends *no one*” in here.

@Stephanie: To say that finding this comic funny is the equivalent to endorsing rape is akin to saying that enjoying G.I. Joe means one endorses the idea that the military industrial complex is always virtuous and pure in its intentions and results.

As a parody of the Prestige, it is excellent. As an “example of how to live your life”, not so much. But I’m okay with that, because comics don’t need to be the latter to be good and/or funny.

#12 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 9:43 am

I mean really, if you are bothered by this cartoon then your skin is just too thin.

When did irreverence and cartooning become so distant from each other???

#13 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 9:47 am

I mean really, if you are bothered by this cartoon then your skin is just too thin.

If you’re bothered by people being offended at rape jokes your skin is even thinner.

#14 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 9:53 am

I don’t see rape here, August. Get off your soapbox. There are very few things that are off limits in cartooning, and sex will never be one of them. Actually, it is one of the most humorous components of human nature. There is no struggle pictured here. If you see rape in this cartoon, then you are seeing what you want to see. What you have been taught to fear. And all these years of political correctness has affected your ability to see sarcasm. It is a silly cartoon. Get off your soapbox.

#15 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 9:58 am

Oh and I just read The Duplex where McCoy makes a joke about baby seals being turned into grocery bags. Man, I am so offended. He is advocating killing baby seals.

#16 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 10:17 am

I don?t see rape here, August.

Yes. I know. Your ignorance isn’t me “being on a soapbox.” Sorry. Pretending to be someone else to have sex with someone who thinks it’s someone else is rape. This isn’t a political, moral or sense-or-humor argument. It’s what’s actually written down in the law.

You can play internet argument with me all day but saying that the act depicted in the comic isn’t rape means you’re the only person “choosing what he wants to see.”

#17 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 10:30 am

Oh and I just read The Duplex where McCoy makes a joke about baby seals being turned into grocery bags. Man, I am so offended. He is advocating killing baby seals.

Good, I guess then you won’t be offended about a joke involving straw men and a holocaust.

#18 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 10:30 am

I guess I am just an old timer, August. I grew up reading Kliban, Gahan Wilson and Crumb. Irreverence is one of the reasons I wanted to become a cartoonist. It is what we are, by nature. At least it is what we were.

I get that you are offended by this cartoon. And I understand it. I certainly do not advocate rape or any other kind of sexual assault toward women.

I think what I am offended by is being on a cartoonist forum and having to explain sarcasm to someone who thinks that being offended by a cartoon is hurtful.

In all my years of doing Playboy cartoons, I never once did anything derogatory toward women. Most of them actually were derogatory toward men. The reason Playboy bought them was because they were irreverent and dealt with sex. Sex is actually pretty funny stuff. Loosen up.

#19 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 10:32 am

August, you are being a fool. I said very few things were off limits in cartooning, but one of them is the Holocaust.

#20 Tom Pappalardo
September/28/2010
@ 10:35 am

An aside to Pete T: I feel compelled to point out that ‘swingers’ can be raped, too. I’m not sure what the other side of a rape coin looks like, but that ain’t it.

#21 August J. Pollak
September/28/2010
@ 10:37 am

I think what I am offended by is being on a cartoonist forum and having to explain sarcasm to someone who thinks that being offended by a cartoon is hurtful.

Huh? I don’t even understand what this means. You’re the one who’s been whining about people being offended by a cartoon. You’re the one here who seems to think that being offended is hurtful, because you’ve written three or four comments about how people need to “loosen up” if they don’t have the same taste as you.

#22 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 10:43 am

Dontcha just love an internet forum argument!! Whooee!!

Again, more than whining, I am just surprised that I am defending irreverence on a cartoonists forum. Very surprised.

#23 Sandra Bell-Lundy
September/28/2010
@ 11:14 am

“I get that you are offended by this cartoon. And I understand it. I certainly do not advocate rape or any other kind of sexual assault toward women.”

So…just to be clear, here, Steve…a man having sex with a woman without her consent or knowledge is okay. There’s no punching or anything, right?…so there’s no assault going on here… have I got that right?

“In all my years of doing Playboy cartoons, I never once did anything derogatory toward women. Most of them actually were derogatory toward men. The reason Playboy bought them was because they were irreverent and dealt with sex. Sex is actually pretty funny stuff. Loosen up.”

Do you think Playboy would have published this cartoon if you had submitted it?

Irreverance and funny sex are not what this cartoon implies.

#24 Stephanie McMillan
September/28/2010
@ 11:25 am

Steve says, “I don?t see rape here”.

I can’t believe this needs to be explained, but for those who don’t know the difference between sex (with single or multiple partners), and rape:

One involves consent. The other involves coercion (or in the case of this example, lack of consent).

Anyone who doesn’t understand this really should have a warning label stamped on his forehead. Seriously.

#25 Alan Gardner
September/28/2010
@ 11:25 am

@scott and @August – you’re pretty close to taking this discussion too personal. Step back and debate the facts of the story without calling names.

Or exchange email addresses and take it offline.

Thanks.
Alan

#26 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 11:30 am

Well if that’s the case, you need to be concerned for baby seals.

#27 Steve Walsh
September/28/2010
@ 11:36 am

Strangely, it seems that two “Steve”s are enough to make following “who is talking to who” hard to follow.

#28 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 11:42 am

Okay, I will remember to make sure my wife never substitutes another woman while we are having sex. I am sure I wouldn’t notice and that would really offend me.

#29 Steve Skelton
September/28/2010
@ 12:23 pm

I think what is happening here is that this cartoon unleashes feelings of contempt for many centuries of women being mistreated by men, whhile I am having a conversation with myself about irreverence and sarcasm being the essence of cartooning.

I apologize to any I may have offended.

#30 Beth Cravens
September/28/2010
@ 2:45 pm

Typical “joke’s on the chick” approach to college humor. Found it gross actually.

#31 Anne Hambrock
September/28/2010
@ 3:44 pm

Well, that does it for me.

I’m officially done here for a while.

#32 Layne Myhre
September/28/2010
@ 4:43 pm

You people have obviously not looked at a college newspaper like, ever.

Do a google search for Space Moose (used to appear in my college newspaper back in the early 90s) if you want to see something REALLY offensive.

Rape is always bad. Jokes about rape =/= rape. Therefore jokes about rape are not always bad (though many of them are, just as many jokes about ANY subject are bad). In this particular case, I didn’t find the joke funny… but only because it was a lame frat-boy joke, not because the subject was rape.

#33 Steve Walsh
September/28/2010
@ 9:52 pm

@Layne

Oh man, Space Moose. There’s a blast from the past. Yeah, if people found this strip offensive, their heads would explode from reading Space Moose. Only variably funny as a whole collection, though, but such is life.

#34 Steve Walsh
September/28/2010
@ 10:06 pm

While eating some late dinner I was thinking about what made me laugh at this one and other folks not.

I decided it was the title that makes the strip work for me.

Without it, indeed, it *would* be just a “lame, frat-boy joke”.

#35 Susan Camilleri Konar
September/28/2010
@ 11:19 pm

Ah, relating this to The Prestige: magic, trickery, threesome–okay, but really, is it funny? Why? Because there are three people: two men and one woman and they trick her by each getting it on with her but one without her consent? Funny? Why? Because two guys have pulled a prank? What if the prank was on one of their sisters or mother? Still funny? This comic would be less offensive (to me) if it were used as an illustration in some sort of context–perhaps to encourage dialog regarding non-consensual sex in post-secondary institutions or the use of free speech in humour. Just because it’s in a college newspaper doesn’t excuse it for its lame delivery and offensive-for-offensive-sake premise. Freedom of expression has been exercised as it’s been published–so grant others their freedom to express their offence. Oh, and by the way, I do respect Crumb for his artistic genius and can’t see any comparison to this juvenile humour and bad art. (Sometimes the artwork saves a bad joke but not in this case.)

#36 Susan Camilleri Konar
September/29/2010
@ 12:04 am

I meant to add: I have found brilliant humour in ‘ bawdy’ jokes that have had both men and women in compromising situations, however, this particular comic, to me, lacks both wit and irony, and, indeed, any sense of humour.

#37 Steve Walsh
September/29/2010
@ 12:12 am

For my part, it’s funny because it puts the known idea of how magic tricks can (and have) been done into a bizarre, unexpected situation. Full-stop. End of comic assessment. I place it in the same sort of category as Penny Arcade’s “raped by dickwolves” comic.

#38 Steve Walsh
September/29/2010
@ 1:09 am

Ah, here’s a final thought that may best demonstrate my position.

I do not find that the comic in question is an endorsement of male-on-female rape anymore than I find this comic:

http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2010/9/24/

endorses physical/sexual abuse as an acceptable response polyamory, bigamy, or infidelity (or the suggestion of engaging in similar).

#39 Sandra Bell-Lundy
September/29/2010
@ 10:17 am

“Rape is always bad. Jokes about rape =/= rape. Therefore jokes about rape are not always bad”

That’s an incredible distinction, Layne.

“While eating some late dinner I was thinking about what made me laugh at this one and other folks not.

I decided it was the title that makes the strip work for me.

Without it, indeed, it *would* be just a ?lame, frat-boy joke?.”

Steve, I wasn’t familiar with the movie, Prestige. I took the title to mean the dictionary definition…”reputation or influence arising from success, achievement, rank, or other favorable attributes”. -but what a clever double entendre, eh?

This is a lame, frat-boy joke but there’s a much larger issue here and it doesn’t have anything to do with freedom of expression or political correctness or censorship.

A person must agree to have sex. If they don’t, it’s rape.

Cartoons don’t have a right to be published just because they are created. Publishing this cartoon in a college campus newspaper was an error in judgement on the editor’s part. It’s not funny (beyond the sensibilities of the frat-boy mentality) and it’s irresponsible. It does nothing other than foster a negative attitude and unsafe environment for women.

#40 Woodrow Barlettani
September/29/2010
@ 10:21 am

I think you all missed the thing, the cartoon was about three men…. Rape is not about “Sex”,it is overpowering another against their will.

#41 Layne Myhre
September/29/2010
@ 11:40 am

“That?s an incredible distinction, Layne”

Really? You find it incredible to distinguish between actual rape, the crime of sexual assault, and a drawing depicting (or alluding to) rape? I find it hard to believe that you consider the two equatable.

Do you also support the banning of books in which one of the characters is raped? Where is the line drawn?

The law is pretty clear… the line is drawn at the ACT. Rape is illegal. Murder is illegal. Drawing, joking, or writing about these things is NOT. And that is as it should be.

#42 Sandra Bell-Lundy
September/29/2010
@ 12:25 pm

@Layne

I find it incredible that you find jokes about rape funny.

Jokes about rape and a book with a character who has been raped are two entirely different things.

It’s likely that the creators of this comic didn’t intend the cartoon to be some kind of statement regarding rape…I’d give them the benefit of the doubt and suggest they were probably just yukking it up amongst themselves and had in mind that they were doing a sexual parody on the movie Prestige.

The editor is the person who failed to do her job and use an objective eye when she allowed this cartoon to be published. The cartoon has broader implications within the context of our society.

The Director of Women’s Studies at Purdue wrote to the Exponent and is far more eloquent than I could ever be.

http://www.purdueexponent.org/?module=article&story_id=22705

#43 Ryan Sohmer
September/29/2010
@ 1:30 pm

Layne nails it on the head.

#44 Layne Myhre
September/29/2010
@ 1:42 pm

I very rarely find jokes about rape funny. You’re putting words in my mouth.

I rarely find jokes about rape funny because most of them simply aren’t. “It’s funny because it’s shocking” is a pretty tired comedy trope, as is “it’s funny because it’s irreverent”. There needs to be more substance to a joke to make it funny… but I recognize the humor when it exists, and I don’t accept that a joke MUST be delineated by its offensive capacity. A good delivery, in the case of stand-up comedy, can make a lot of things funny that wouldn’t or shouldn’t be otherwise, just like good artwork can save a bad joke to an extent in comics (as Susan noted above).

It’s not a good idea to label any given subject as “off limits” to humor. Some subjects are more difficult to achieve humorous effect with than others, certainly, and just because you CAN make a joke about a given topic doesn’t mean that you SHOULD. I absolutely agree with that. But making judgmental pronouncements about people who find off-color jokes funny, implying (for example) that these people are somehow damaged or even evil/immoral, comes across as rather pretentious, or at least naive. Similar statements could be made about people who enjoy Warner Brothers cartoons because of the violence… and it’s simply not a productive use of your time.

#45 Susan Camilleri Konar
September/29/2010
@ 2:15 pm

It’s not a question of whether this comic is the actual act of rape–it is not. No person has been physically violated without her/his consent. In addition, this comic is legal and the ‘artist’ has been allowed his/her free speech. Nevertheless, what it depicts particularly in the context of how it has been presented demeans a very serious subject. The fear is that simply dismissing it as a funny joke without addressing the seriousness of its content is what many may find offensive. To me, it’s the fact that this comic was published for the simple reason of a cheap gag. I don’t think this subject should be off-limits in comics, painting, novels etc. But no one can deny the seriousness of rape and thus if it’s going to be depicted without some kind of context then it serves as gratuitous violence.

#46 Sandra Bell-Lundy
September/29/2010
@ 3:07 pm

“The law is pretty clear? the line is drawn at the ACT. Rape is illegal. Murder is illegal. Drawing, joking, or writing about these things is NOT.”

My comments are directed to the fact that the act taking place within the cartoon actually is rape…even though there is no physical violence taking place…it shows sex without consent or knowledge. I have not made the comment that the cartoon itself is illegal.

“I don?t accept that a joke MUST be delineated by its offensive capacity”

I don’t disagree.

“It?s not a good idea to label any given subject as ?off limits? to humor”

I don’t disagree here either…it can’t be done. (although I stand by my comment that it shouldn’t have been published in the student paper…I realize that there are places it would be published…Hustler, maybe?)

“…and just because you CAN make a joke about a given topic doesn?t mean that you SHOULD.”

Yes. I am in full agreement with you here as well. My point (if you refer back to my comments in #39 #42) is that the editor should not have published this cartoon in the campus newspaper because of the content. The “high-five” when the men change…it celebrates male misogynistic behaviour. This is supposed to foster a comfortable environment for the women on campus? As I said above, the cartoon has broader implications in context of society…and it was inappropriate to print in the campus paper.

#47 Pete Tarkulich
September/29/2010
@ 3:41 pm

Late in returning to the game, but in response to Stephanie in post #5, I’m happily married (just celebrated 6 years) to a woman who shares my twisted sense of humor. Don’t make assumptions when you don’t know the score.

My original comment was meant more tongue-in-cheek than it was taken, but I’m not going to apologize for it. I believe anything is up for grabs when it comes to humor. Whether or not you find it funny is personal choice, but people should be allowed to make that choice for themselves. Censorship is ridiculous because it’s basically telling me what’s funny and what’s not.

#48 Mike Cope
September/29/2010
@ 4:34 pm

“Whether or not you find it funny is personal choice, but people should be allowed to make that choice for themselves.”

@ Pete Tarkulich:

This isn’t about finding something funny or not. It’s about rejecting this “cartoon” based on moral principles.

A university newspaper’s editor has the responsibility to screen all submissions prior to publishing them. This “cartoon” is no different than one detailing how to physically abuse a child.

The contents of a school paper not only reflects the attitudes and ideas of its student population, but also defines the school’s image beyond the ivy covered buildings and in the surrounding community. I highly doubt that any institution for progressive learning would want to associate itself with the ideas being promoted in this “cartoon.”

Purdue’s editor made a poor decision.

#49 Layne Myhre
September/29/2010
@ 5:40 pm

@Sandra

I get it, and I mostly agree with you. I think we’re generally on the same page. I guess the main point is that, although I see where you’re coming from, I feel that student newspapers ARE an appropriate place to publish such things… mainly because student newspapers are a place where this sort of discussion (either frank open discussion, discussion through mockery/comedy, etc) takes place, and MUST take place. Student newspapers are unique in that they tend to be almost completely without censorship of any kind, and that’s a good thing… even when the result is offensive. In my experience, this sort of comic or article just leads to articles/comments/letters/comics addressing the offense in the NEXT week’s paper.

#50 Bryan Senka
September/29/2010
@ 6:02 pm

I think it’s odd that on a site full of cartoonists, some people don’t seem to understand that outrageous situations that would not be funny in real life are prime material for comedy.

#51 Ted Rall
September/29/2010
@ 6:34 pm

I assume that it is possible to make comics with rape as their subject that are funny. I don’t remember reading any, but that doesn’t mean they can’t exist.

This isn’t a funny comic.

The problem here is the deadpan tone. If there were some indication that the cartoonist was winking at you, that sarcasm or sardonicism or ridiculousness was at play, something over-the-top to let you know that hey, we’re not being serious here, then just maybe it could be read as not condoning rape.

As things stand, however, there’s no other way to look at it.

#52 Dave Stephens
September/29/2010
@ 8:22 pm

Clearly it is a ridiculous situation.
Is this sort of awful behavior “normal?” Hardly.
The “wink” is visible to me.

However, ridiculous or not, the behavior could certainly be categorized as a type of rape and is therefore absolutely OFFENSIVE to vast numbers of people, surely the majority of any audience, juvenile or not.

#53 Steve Walsh
September/29/2010
@ 10:11 pm

@Ted

I don’t know about you, but I’ve personally never been with a woman who I think could not tell if their guy had been switched out “mid-process”.

It’s clearly a ridiculous, absurd situation. Therein lay the “wink”.

#54 Sandra Bell-Lundy
September/30/2010
@ 8:13 am

“If there were some indication that the cartoonist was winking at you, that sarcasm or sardonicism or ridiculousness was at play, something over-the-top to let you know that hey, we?re not being serious here,”

Ted, I have to disagree with you here. The “wink” is the big part of the problem. The wink says the males’ sexual misconduct is harmless fun…it’s that old “boys will be boys”.

A 16 year-old girl in British Columbia was gang-raped recently. Reportedly, there were 12 witnesses to the attack and none of them intervened. One did have the wherewithall to record the rape on his cellphone. From there, it was posted on Facebook. Like that genie will ever be put back in the bottle. Some students and Facebook commenters don’t see the problem…feel the attack was what she wanted…and other ridiculous drivel. Where does this attitude come from?That girl has been violated on so many levels, I can’t begin to count.

This news item is probably why I have posted on this thread as many times as I have. I normally wouldn’t.

I agree that college is a place for debate, critical thought and analysis. I agree that this cartoon could be used as a springboard for discussion. However, I would concur with Susan’s comment…

“But no one can deny the seriousness of rape and thus if it?s going to be depicted without some kind of context then it serves as gratuitous violence.”

I won’t post anymore on this thread as I think anything else I say will be just be repetitious.

#55 Pete Tarkulich
September/30/2010
@ 10:56 am

I know I’m digging myself a deeper grave here, but I’m apparently a glutton for punishment.

The inherent meaning of the strip is not one of rape, it’s one of pulling a prank. Granted, it’s an extreme prank, but a prank none-the-less. The meaning of rape is being applied to it post-creation. It’s the same thing that happens when someone applies a meaning to the lyrics of a song that was never the artist’s intent. It wasn’t the strip’s intent to indicate rape or even promote it. It was detailing a ridiculous and (obviously subjective) humorous situation.

I’m sorry if anyone here feels that I’m a monster for thinking this way. I don’t condone rape in any way, shape, or form. But then again I don’t condone racism or sexism and I laugh at jokes that stereotype. I believe that humor is the best way of dealing with the horrors that happen in real life.

And for the record, before anyone else blindly calls me on this, I shared all of this with my wife and she’s on my side. So if I’m a monster, at least I’m lucky enough to have another monster’s company.

#56 Bryan Senka
October/1/2010
@ 9:44 am

Ted Rall says:

“This isn?t a funny comic.”

Yes it is, very much so.

“The problem here is the deadpan tone. If there were some indication that the cartoonist was winking at you, that sarcasm or sardonicism or ridiculousness was at play, something over-the-top to let you know that hey, we?re not being serious here, then just maybe it could be read as not condoning rape.”

The entire scenario could not be MORE over the top. The sheer outrageousness of it is why it’s funny.

#57 Steve Skelton
October/1/2010
@ 10:21 am

Well Ted says it isn’t a very funny comic, but what he should be saying is “I don’t think this is a very funny comic.” Ted doesn’t get to be the end all authority on what is funny.

I kind of think it is funny, but in a low frat boy way of looking at it. This is a comic that should never have appeared in a college paper.

It reminds me of Cyanide and Happiness. Twisted and wrong, and irreverent. There I used that word again. And I agree with Sandra that this celebrates male misogynistic behavior. That is what makes it twisted and wrong.

I think we need to remember that it is okay to dislike something, even be offended by it, and then just move on. Race, religion, sex, and political ideologies are all very delicate subjects, but I hope that cartoonists will continue to expose ourselves and our society through cartoons that spotlight these subjects.

#58 Mike Peterson
October/1/2010
@ 10:43 am

“I?ve personally never been with a woman ”

I think that pretty much sums up the “it’s funny!” side of this discussion.

#59 ali
July/9/2013
@ 8:35 am

hi good

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