Watch out, America! Cool dude on campus! Nothing says "higher learning" like a pro-rape, anti-woman, slut-shaming, violently xenophobic religious fundamentalist taking it upon himself to "preach" to women about how their sinful bodies are the true cause of rape. During Sexual Assault Awareness Month, of course, because what better time to make people aware of the fact that "please do not sexually assault me" is just whore-speak for "YOLO"?
Fortunately for sopping wet vaginas everywhere, that's exactly what University of Arizona junior Dean Saxton brings to the table. A self-ordained "street preacher," Saxton responded to Take Back the Night by Taking Back the Afternoon (From Whores)—standing on campus with a hand-scrawled sign that read "YOU DESERVE RAPE." A little hubristic, perhaps (don't we already have a guy whose job it is to decide what people "deserve"?), but bold! It certainly is bold.
A student holding a sign that read “You deserve rape” ignited outrage across campus Tuesday, on the same day of a sexual assault awareness event, but administrators declined requests to remove him or his sign.
...Saxton, a junior studying classics and religious studies, said his sermon was meant to convey that “if you dress like a whore, act like a whore, you’re probably going to get raped.”
“I think that girls that dress and act like it,” Saxton said, “they should realize that they do have partial responsibility, because I believe that they’re pretty much asking for it.”
Saxton’s sermon came ahead of the “Take Back the Night” event held Tuesday night, which aims to unite people against sexual violence. He said his decision to create the sign and display it was tied to the event and to the fact that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
You know, it's just like Jesus always said: "Love one another. Also, rape whores."
Here are some greatest hits from a brief glance at Brother Saxton's Twitter feed, which reveals rampant homophobia, transphobia, hatred of Muslims, and garden-variety aggrieved-young-male misogyny.
Oh, child. Sit down.
While it's alarming to see such hardened hate spewing from such a young person, the transparency of dumb, unformed minds is oddly reassuring. Hatred like this is always self-hatred. Adulthood is scary, change is scary, women are scary, sex is scary, life is scary, our inner narratives and feelings and desires are scary. And a lot of people—especially when they're raised in bigoted, shame-based pressure cookers like radical evangelical Christianity—choose to take their hatred and anxiety out on others rather than deal with their own shit. It's a genuine shame that Brother Saxton can't fixate on something worthwhile or at least imperturbable (like, I don't know, sod? Go nuts on sod!) rather than on society's most vulnerable groups. It's downright tragic that people so obsessed with living life "correctly" can't perceive that victimization isn't a game; that helping is more helpful than hurting; and that bolstering your own defense mechanisms at the expense of others' physical sanctity is profoundly incorrect.
I'm sure Jesus would be proud, bro.