too early to be awake

once again traffic has waken me too early. so after 1 1/2 hours of wakefulness in bed, i decided to get up and write, check emails, let dogs out, make a coffee, listen to info-mercials on to) to drown out the freakin traffic!).

Probably thinking too much again. so much to think about. Such as: a debate I had with a friend about free speech and rape "games"; the radio show i have on Wednesday; my CV; and the upcoming election and spending time with my sister and her family (so relieved that she and the kids have arrived safe and sound and have a home and are trying to settle in); not restricted to only these topics and not in that order.

Rape in the Form of A Game:

I posted the info below on my facebook and this generated much discussion regarding rape games and fantasy, freedom of speech, violence against women, parental controls, and free speech.

******* NB Women’s News*******


Battle Raper - a 3D fighting game in which the objective is to strip, grope, and sometimes rape the female characters.
RapeLay - players stalk and rape a mother and her 2 young daughters. The youngest is about 10 and she is seen crying during the rape. Once the player has completed the rapes, he enters the freeform phase of the game where the settings can change. The player must avoid the victim becoming pregnant; if she does, the player is supposed to force her to get an abortion. One reviewer said “There are many lessons to be learned from RapeLay, about the need to equip your daughters with suicide pills, etc but the lesson foremost in this game is that rape is easy.
Grand Theft Auto - players accrue points for the rape and murder of prostitutes.


Many of my friends weighed in on this topic--mothers, feminists, dads, women, men, students--between a couple friends, a debate developed. so this past weekend, a friend of mine was over and having mentioned this issue the previous week, he had thought about it and wanted to weigh in on the topic. He is a gamer, he believes in free speech, freedom of the press, ect. I tried to listen to his reasons on this topic, I understand the debate well, in fact, on the facebook debate I tried to be clear, this is a topic where i do not believe in free speech or press or whatever, there is enough violence against women in the world, perpetuating this violence in a game is abhorrent to me. My visiting friend brought up all the great issues about the need for freedom, the differences between gaming and real life, the importance of not restricting game designers who are artists. He feels that just because something is created, does not mean society will support it and that the measure of a society is by what becomes important to that society. I understand well meant arguments and defences of "art" for the sake of "art".

My answer on this topic--the one good thing about publishing a game like this (as far as I can see) is that as long as that game developer's name is released, I can identify a woman hater. I believe that some things should not exist, that yes they need to be controlled, because there are enough horrible, violent hateful people out there who do not care about the rights of certain groups. These include (but are not limited to) child pornography and rape. I understand that in telling a story, movies might depict a rape, but i judge these movies very critically and have written about this in university. the way, the sensitivity a filmmaker (or writer, or artist) shows in how they depict rape is everything. The reaction of the audience, the gaze, is set up by the manner in which rape is discussed, approached, repelled or accepted. There are right this minute countries trying to pass laws to allow the legalization of rape within marriage. There are countries where only women are punished for being raped--men are not. I cannot condone or support so called "free speech" that glorifies raping women. It makes my skin crawl to think there are men out there playing "games" where the object of the "game" is to rape and mutilate women.

Just as I do not and cannot condone child pornography whether visual or written when it is set up to be titillating (I do support art therapy that is created to heal and that explores personal experience and is not set up to be titillating, I do support personal memoirs that tell a story and i believe these two examples are very different than actual child porn and yes it is a very fine line at times) I do not support simulated or real violence against women.

so this is one of those things that keeps me awake at night.

The upcoming Election in BC:

So there is an election in BC. May 12th. everyone who is living in BC should get out and vote. There has been many ongoing issues in BC that need to be addressed during this election, the most important being that BC needs a new Premier. Badly. Further, the way that votes are counted needs to be address and I support the BC-STV. I also do not support many of the actions of the present government including their restriction on pre-election advertising. (this is in the courts right now). I will write more on this entire topic in the future.

right now i have to go and get my younger son ready for the day...