Brute Reason

A collection of thoughts about psychology, social justice, and anything else I give a shit about.

Topics: feminism / psychology / lgbtq / sex / politics / abortion / health / mental illness / language / depression / sexism / sexual assault / fashion / racism / education / social justice

my actual writing, if you're curious

According to common Christian doctrine, the girl who was victimized and the pastor are both guilty of sexual sin because the girl “tempted” the pastor and “allowed” this so-called relationship to take place. Because she wasn’t physically forced (at least not by the perpetrator’s account), she is equally or at least partially culpable. Additionally, instead of casting this man as a predator who manipulates and abuses, Christianity* conveniently plays along with this manipulative tale of how anyone can “fall into sexual sin”, thus absolving the perpetrator of any real responsibility for his behavior or acknowledgement of what his actions truly constitute.

Growing up in fundamentalist Christianity I witnessed this attitude continually. Sin was something anyone could fall into or commit, and all sins were equal in the eyes of God - therefore, sexual abuse was just one more sin and victims were closely scrutinized to see if their actions had led someone to sin. As long as the sinner asked for forgiveness, all was well again and it was the victim’s responsibility to forgive their abuser or else they were sinning as well (along with the not infrequent insinuation that the victim was also somehow at fault for tempting the perpetrator). There was no difference in their eyes between two teenagers “falling into sin” by having a consensual sexual relationship and one person sexually assaulting another - both were simply sexual sin.

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