Teaching sexual consent – Responsible men and vulnerable women

by Bettina Arndt (25 March 2022)
Sydney schoolgirl, Chanel Contos

Last month it was announced all Australian high school students are to be taught about sexual consent and coercion. Mandatory education programs are being rolled out across the country teaching boys not to rape.  

It’s mainly due to Sydney schoolgirl Chanel Contos (pictured above), who burst into the limelight last year when she announced that a school sex education course had led her to discover she’d been raped two years earlier. As a 13-year-old she’d been “forced” to go down on a boy at a party but it took a Year-10 school sex education course for her to realize what had happened to her. She started a website encouraging other girls to tell stories of similar sexual assaults and nearly 2000 obliged. Ever since she’s been out there calling out male misbehaviour and lobbying for school sexual consent courses.

This is just the latest front in the mighty feminist battle to rein in male sexuality and punish more rapists. I wrote recently about how the NSW parliament was misled by false statistics which were used to assist the smooth passage of enthusiastic consent regulations into law. At much the same time over 1500 school kids were signing a Contos petition calling for enthusiastic consent to be taught in schools.

Our compliant media dutifully pushed the fearmongering as Contos met with members of parliament and other power brokers to make it all happen. We heard shocking stories of drunk girls waking up to discover males taking advantage of them, boys behaving badly, circulating photos of their mates having sex, etc – some truly unacceptable male behaviour.

But gradually questions started appearing in online comments about why so many girls were finding themselves in these risky situations, why were so many vulnerable youngsters attending these alcohol and drug fueled parties? Naturally any suggestion that girls needed to take care of themselves were howled down. A principal of a Sydney girls school dared to suggest that along with more sex education in schools, parents need to be “having conversations regarding consent, the impact of alcohol, risk-taking behaviours and self-respect.” Her sensible suggestion was treated with disdain by journalists who lined up enlightened souls to put her straight. The problem is “not about girls” pronounced an executive from the Alliance of Girls’ Schools, but rather about the “underbelly of disrespect, privilege and callousness displayed by young men towards young women.”

“This is a systemic, centuries-old societal problem,” she explained. “Behaviour that endorses male sexual entitlement, lack of accountability and a power imbalance.”  

That’s it, you see. Feminism 101, all designed to tie in nicely with the “respect for women” ideological claptrap already rolled out in the “Respectful Relationships” programs allegedly tackling domestic violence, which are currently indoctrinating children in schools – teaching them about toxic males and helpless females.

Now sexual consent education will reinforce that message. I’ve just been sent snapshots taken from the brand-new curriculum being introduced in one South Australian school. Apparently, there’s flexibility in how the educators choose to address the topic but it seems most schools will take a similar approach.

It’s fascinating seeing how the educators twist themselves into knots to avoid any hint of victim blaming.  They’ve come up with a new slogan: “Vulnerability is not the same as responsibility.” Look at this little scenario featuring Kim.  Be warned, it’s pretty confusing because we aren’t given the gender of Kim, who uses the pronoun “they.”

Kim is out drinking, and a man “they” knows offers “them” a ride home but instead drives to a secluded spot, parks and wants to have sex. Our educators spell out the message very clearly: it’s the villain, the driver, who is 100% responsible for his actions and whether or not Kim is safe. Kim is simply “vulnerable” as a result of decisions “they” have made to get into this situation.

Neat, eh? In this particular scenario we don’t know the gender of the potential victim, but the bulk of the responsibility/vulnerability examples given in the curriculum involve males taking advantage of girls who arguably signal sexual interest in various ways by wearing low-cut dresses or inviting a boy to “snuggle” with them in a private room at a party. Here’s a classic example, featuring Jen and Luke. Note that it is taken from an American publication called “Men Stopping Rape” – which says it all….

The predominantly female teachers who will be guiding the students’ discussion of these scenes will no doubt work hard to convince the kids that the boy is inevitably 100% responsible while the innocent girl is simply vulnerable.

Very occasionally they do present a girl as the baddie. Like the sexually aggressive Mila who is all over her boyfriend Luke and gets very indignant when he says he wants to take his time. “I said it was time to be a real man and do the deed,” responds Mila. A rare toxic woman but overwhelmed by large numbers of pushy blokes who don’t take no for an answer, have sex with sleeping girls and boast about having sex to their mates.

The curriculum does include one scenario, Ali and Josh, describing the situation of a girl who has sex because she fears her boyfriend might dump her if she doesn’t. That’s true to life… a very good example of a girl giving consent she may later regret. The great pity is there is so little in this curriculum about the many reasons girls might be ambivalent about consent. The central myth of the “enthusiastic consent” dogma is the notion that girls/women know their own minds and clearly indicate their desires. The truth is males are forced to interpret the muddy waters of female sexual ambivalence, obfuscation, and confusion. The apparent “Yeses’’ that are really “Maybes’’ or secret “Nos’’.

This week I had a live chat on thinkspot with a famous YouTuber, Steve Bonnell – also known as “Destiny.” I hope you enjoy our interesting conversation and will “like” the video and share it.

Bonnell has made big bucks as a video game “twitch streamer” but this clever, articulate young man is also a political commentator, debating all manner of issues usually from a leftist perspective. Funnily enough, just after our conversation Bonnell was banned from Twitch for “hateful conduct” which might just have included our chat about sexual consent, which certainly would have got up the nose of the woke folk running social media.

Bonnell regularly challenges the new dogma on this issue, throwing down the gauntlet by declaring that women no longer have bad sexual experiences – if was bad, it was rape and the man’s fault. His argument is that men are being forced into a parental role – treating women like infants with no agency of their own. Bonnell also declares that if you invite someone to your house, you must expect them to see that as a sexual invitation. And that when it comes to stealthing, women shouldn’t have sex with anyone whom they wouldn’t be comfortable telling not to remove a condom.

Naturally I agreed with him on these points, but amusingly Bonnell was very careful not to align too strongly with what he sees as my overly protective pro-male stance. I was intrigued to hear him talk about young women today, whom he claims enter every sexual encounter with some element of fear. As I pointed out, I’ve never felt like that and see this as a total failure of modern feminism. Whatever happened to feminism’s celebration of women’s female strength and independence? Remember Helen Reddy’s triumphant song – I am woman, hear me roar?

Many of you will know Camille Paglia’s famous story about being in college in the 1960s when girls were still chaperoned and locked safely away from boys at night. She describes their fight to rid themselves of this protectionism, the fight for the freedom to risk rape. “I think it is discouraging to see the surrender of young women of their personal autonomy,” she says, amazed that women are welcoming “the intrusion and surveillance of authority figures over their private lives.”

That’s the bottom line here. The sexual consent courses being introduced in our schools are simply the latest effort to convince young women that they are all potential victims, needing protection from dangerous males. Another step to creating a divided society.

Meanwhile another campus fizzer

Five years ago, I wrote about the huge let down for feminists when they persuaded the Australian Human Rights Commission to conduct a million-dollar survey to prove there was a rape crisis on campus. All they found was a lot of unwanted staring and tiny rates of sexual assault. Not that we heard the good news from mainstream media which beat up a new narrative about widespread campus “sexual violence” which activists used to bully universities into setting up the kangaroo courts, implementing sexual consent courses and the like.

Now they’ve tried again, and the results are even worse for them. The latest survey published this week was even more of a dud, with sexual harassment rates less than a third of those reported in 2015-16 (8% compared to 26%), and minimal rates of assault (1.1% for the year surveyed compared to the earlier figure of 0.8 %).

What a joke, given that they’d done everything they could to expand the definitions of sexual misconduct, as I explained in this blog last year. The latest survey included as harassment such items as staring, making comments about your private life or physical appearance, and repeated requests to go on a date.

Enthusiastic consent featured in defining sexual assault, with all sexual acts including kissing deemed assault if your partner “made no effort to check whether you agreed or not” and including all sexual acts as assault if you were “affected by drugs or alcohol.”

The response rate for the survey was just 11.6%  – 43,819 self-selected responses from those  invited to participate, who were in turn just part of the 1.6 million university students  in this country. So the new report is based on a piddling 2.7% of the student population. 

Not that the statistics matter two hoots when our blinkered media remains determined to sing from the feminist songbook. They carefully shifted the goal posts, highlighting such critical matters as the newly discovered peak sexual assault rates for pansexual students and claiming one in three students experienced sexual assault over their lifetimes, a figure which no doubt includes all the drunken schoolkid gropes that feature in Contos’s testimonials – nothing to do with the supposed campus rape crisis.

Not a single one of the so-called reporters bothered to look at official sexual assault rates for this age group. The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Personal Safety Survey shows sexual harassment rates for 18-24-year-olds of 27.3% and sexual assault at 3.4% – making it very clear that our universities are extremely safe compared to the general community.

For the last two days my loyal followers have been sending in groveling emails graduates are now receiving from Vice Chancellors apologising for the ongoing crisis and promising to do better.

It’s inspired me to put a call out to all you Australian graduates – asking you to spend a few minutes telling these sniveling leaders of your former institute of higher learning that we’ve had enough. Call out their lack of integrity in participating in this farcical misrepresentation of the important issue of the safety of our universities. And urge them to put a stop to this ongoing, contrived campaign to demonise the next generation of vulnerable young men.

Please consider supporting the ongoing excellent work of the author of this paper, Bettina Arndt, by becoming one of her paying subscribers. © 2022 Bettina Arndt 

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