i’ve had this fantasy SO MANY TIMES
A good example of a rape joke that’s funny, in my opinion. Because the victim isn’t the butt of the joke, the ridiculous idea that our society makes it dangerous just to have a vagina is the butt of the joke.
emphasis mine because it’s WHAT I’VE BEEN SAYING ARUGHESIF
but fucking Wanda Sykes. What an awesome lady.
I still say we need a better way to describe this than a “rape joke” as if it’s the equivalent of the crap spewed by Tosh and his merry band of fools and supporters. Rape culture joke, maybe? I don’t know. I’m just kind of tired of saying “rape jokes aren’t okay unless they’re these rape jokes” and trying to explain, because it’s just too confusing to the ignorant.
(1) Wanda Sykes for President. (2) I had a hard time articulating it before now, but yeah, amaditalks hits it perfectly: Sykes told a rape culture joke. A clever one, at that. Because as emilie-rainbow pointed out, the butt of the joke was not rape victims, but society’s tendency to reduce women’s identities to being walking hypersexualized orifices.
And in that sense, this would be a great focus in a situation where you have to deal with anyone rationalizing Tosh.
I think that humor is a useful way to bridge uncomfortable topics. I think this joke does it brilliantly. It is still a rape joke. I don’t think we need to obfuscate terminology by making it into a rape culture joke. It is clearly addressing rape culture, but that still puts it under the category of a rape joke.
To me, the major problem seems to be that what generally comprises the majority of rape jokes is that they are essentially “rape threats made in jest,” which, at best (if you can even call it that), is a reminder of the possibility of coercion and intimidation. At worst, it’s traumatic, particularly when an individual is singled out as the target. It also lets the teller to basically go, “But it was clearly for the lulz,” allowing the teller to abdicate personal responsibility. That is, since the teller can dismiss the ramifications of what was said, they also dismiss any chance of genuine engagement in, or serious treatment of, a needed cultural dialogue.
I think it’s important to recognize how humor can be utilized to cope with and discuss topics, as well as discuss how different treatments of the same topic can have wildly different reactions and repercussions. I really think these discussions need to be held, instead of just immediately resorting to “___ jokes are never funny.” It’s absurd that anyone should think it’s okay to sexually assault another, and this absurdity should be pointed out and mocked (which, again, Sykes does wonderfully in the example above).