***This next post is going to deal with a few thoughts I had about sexual exploitation that I felt were important, but that didn’t fit in with the flow of the last deconstruction post.  It’s going to include references to the #MeToo movement and discussions of sexual exploitation both in the context of Douglas Bland’s Uprising as well as my own personal observations based on experience.  Because the context of Uprising is predominantly hetero-oriented (specifically older men exploiting younger women/girls), the terminology I’m going to be using will reflect it.  This is purely intended to keep the post on-topic and to avoid drifting into areas where I have less experience, and therefore am less qualified to speak.  It is not in any way meant to diminish the harsh reality of the sexual victimization of boys or men, or that of other non-binary genders and orientations.***

So I wrote the draft for the last deconstruction post #37 several years ago as a NaNoWriMo project, before the #MeToo movement happened. Back then, I figured that unless there was a marriage to wreck or the politician in question had made a name for themselves with the ‘family values’ crowd, the only way an extra-marital affair could sink a politician’s career would be if the partner in question was underage.

That was a bit of my own ignorance talking, although the ongoing survival of creepers like Woody Allen or Bill Clinton left me thinking that conventional misconduct was unlikely to sink a career automatically.  The election of Donald Trump would seem to confirm this.  Basically I figured unless the woman turned up in the hospital afterwards, it was unlikely that a rape allegation involving an adult partner was unlikely to serve as dependable leverage.

Today things have changed for the better (mostly, see below) so…maybe Bland was prescient enough to guess that we would one day care a lot more if a politician was a creep?

Yeah, I don’t think so either. This is why I’m still pretty confident in my assessment that Bill Whitefish was ‘conscripting‘ underage girls in his NPA blackmail operations.

So overall #MeToo has generally been a positive force.  A whole lot of sketchy individuals have been outed and long-overdue conversation has been re-started.  However we have recently seen a couple of real life examples of unscrupulous political operators ‘weaponizing’ #MeToo for their own ends.

During his Senate race, Republican candidate Roy Moore was accused of sexual misconduct involving teenage girls. In an effort to discredit his accusers, right-wing propagandist James O’Keefe attempted to plant a fabricated story of misconduct with the Washington Post in an attempt to discredit the dozen or so real accusers.[1] More recently, a Republican party operative named Jack Burkman has become the subject of an FBI probe after allegations that he was contacting women and offering them money to make false allegations against Special Counsel Robert Mueller III.[2]

Here in Ontario, we have our own case of weaponized #MeToo in the case of former Ontario PC party leader Patrick Brown, who found himself accused of two cases of sexual assault just months before the most recent Provincial elections. He was essentially run out of the party but now alleges that the accusations against him were fabricated in retaliation for his own investigation into the sexual misconduct of another Party member Vic Fideli.  At the time of this post it’s still not clear which set of allegations are true, but it’s pretty clear that someone’s using #MeToo in a political power play.  Brown continues to maintain his innocence, pointing to inconsistencies in his accusers stories as proof.[3]

So while the initial impact of the movement has been positive, the jury is still out on a final verdict for #MeToo.  It also seems to lend some credence to the notion of deliberate sexual exploitation as a tool of political blackmail, although the above examples do seem to indicate that fabricating such incidents entirely out of whole cloth isn’t a viable strategy.[4]  As much as some pundits may like to wail, we’re still a long way off from that grim gynocratic dystopia where a woman can have a man imprisoned with a word.

So the entrapment of politicians and bureaucrats would have to involve real live women/girls.  I’m still maintaining my stance that the girls would be more likely than women, since Bland describes this as an emergency option.  While it’s difficult to fabricate a adult sexual encounter that could later be passed off as rape on the fly, with an underage girl all you need to do is get the man in bed with her (or possibly just in the same room) in order to have your evidence.

The issue I have with Bland’s characterization of these blackmail schemes.  Bill Whitefish’s entrapment operations involve conscripting women(girls) but implies that the politicians/bureaucrats are ‘innocent.‘ That these were just regular guys going about their business until they got lured in with underage ‘bait.’

The passage seemed to imply that the ‘victims‘ of this blackmail were ‘tricked’ into sleeping with these women (who were later revealed to be underage) in order to compromise them. Since the age of consent in Canada is sixteen (yeah, I know) this would imply the girls in question were post-pubescent, but under the age of sixteen in order to be effective blackmail fodder.[5]

My big issue with Bland’s characterization has to do with the fact that he seems to be suggesting these men are innocent.  Like hell they are.

So…speaking as a forty year old Sergeant who has taught on dozens of recruit-level courses and who (as a 40 year old Sgt) has been invited to a number of Junior Ranks functions, I can say with a fair degree of confidence that you can tell the difference between a female who under eighteen, one who is under sixteen, and one who is over.

So this has the potential to veer off into sketchy territory, but I think it’s important so bear with me.  To keep this post under five thousand word, I’m going to break it down into bullet points:

  • First off, the age of consent in Canada is sixteen, but the age at which point you’re legally an adult is eighteen, and in many Provinces the drinking age is nineteen.  So a girl can technically consent to sex even if she’s not allowed to vote or enter a bar.  Here’s the thing: If you’re in your thirties or forties and you’re chasing a sixteen year old, you’re a pervert and you’re exploiting her.  Even if it’s technically legal.  There is enough of a age gap and power imbalance that, even if you’re not officially in a position of authority over her (be it a teacher, boss, or [shudder] school bus driver, etc…) there’s enough of a power differential that it ain’t right, whatever the law says.
  • Are there under-sixteen year old girls who can pass themselves off as 18+ under the right circumstances?  Yes.  Some of them are very good at it too.  They’ll even have a fake ID so they can get into the club. Do you know what shatters the illusion?  Talking to them.  You don’t talk to a girl who’s still in High School for more than five minutes before you realize she’s still in High School.  The difference between 18 and 19 may only be a year, but the act of leaving High School and either going on to post-secondary education or else getting a job and moving out of your parents’ house changes a person.  A few minutes’ worth of conversation (provided you’re actually listening) is enough to reveal these changes.
    • The same goes for a girl just off the bus from the Rez. There is a huge leap in life experience that happens around the 16-20 range that is unmistakable if you’re paying attention.
    • If there’s a girl you want to fuck, and you pay so little attention to what she is saying that you end up on a sex offender registry, then not only are you a creep, but you’re also stupid.
  • Thos girls who are fourteen and fifteen, who can pass for sixteen?  They don’t want to fuck a forty year old.  Not really.  In some cases they may want something from you, and sometimes they already got damage from other abusive relationships.  But in most cases if they say yes it’s because the older man is taking advantage of them.  Social pressure is a thing, and there’s probably thousands of women who’ve had sex they didn’t want just because they felt they had to. That pressure becomes exponentially stronger for every decade in the age gap.
  • Some guys will talk about how a hot young girl has this power over them, that they’re helpless to resist.  Bullshit.  It’s the girl’s helplessness that they’re seeing. That’s exactly what those guys are looking for.
    • As a sub point to this: If you’re an older guy in a position of power and a hot girl (or young woman) is flirting with you because she wants something?  It’s not that hard to resist.  I’m saying this from experience.  If you’re a professional and you actually care enough about your job to do it right, you’ll find it’s not that hard to turn her down politely (or impolitely, if necessary) and move on with life.
  • The guys that hook up with younger girls (or even the young women who are eighteen)?  They do this all the time.  I mean, ALL the time.  If there’s a bunch of guys at the bar and a bunch of girls comes in and you all start hanging out together, these guys will zero in on the youngest, least experienced, most naive girl in the group.  I don’t have statistics, but I’ve seen it happen with enough people to know it’s not rare.  It’s not that she has some kind of hold over him, he’s attracted by the hold he can have over her.

Now let’s look at social dynamics.  There are all kinds of venues and situations that, intentionally or not, are set up for these guys to find these girls.

So in most reasonably large towns, you’re going to have a bar or club that caters to underage people.  Not formally of course, but it’s the place where everyone knows the doorman won’t be looking too hard at people’s IDs, so underage people who can act adult for five minutes can get in.  Back when I was in University[6], the club for underage kids in Ottawa was a place called (I kid you not) Liquor Dome.  It had no real attraction other than lax scrutiny, cheap booze, and really basic dance music.  I wasn’t a fan of the place (back then I was more into live music and karaoke) but there was no escaping its effect.  If you were on the last bus leaving downtown a the end of the night, there was a good chance that a bunch of the kids onboard were coming from Liquor Dome.  And if that was the case, there was a pretty good chance there would be a fight or someone would puke before you got home.

Here’s the thing: If you’re old enough to have a mortgage and you go to a place like Liquor Dome, you’re a creep who’s trying to nail a sixteen year old.  An older man in that kind of venue does not get to act surprised at the age of the girl he takes home.

On a darker note, in a lot of towns in the north, there’s a bar near where the Greyhound bus stop is.[7] What makes this place significant is that this town is often the first stop (or transfer) for anyone coming in from the FAR north. In places like this, Far North means Reserves, which means now and then you got some freaked out young person stepping off that bus, who has never experienced anything outside of a really closed community. Often this person is a young girl. And there is a type of individual in these towns who is very adept at spotting these girls, and knows to be at the bar exactly when her bus will arrive.

So fuck this notion of ‘innocent victims‘ who just somehow managed to end up in bed with a fourteen year old.  They knew.  There is a whole class of exploiters who are good at finding these girls, and in society there are all sorts of venues that inadvertently cater to their plans.  They may legitimately be victims of blackmail, but they knew they were doing something wrong in the first place.

 

_____________________________________

[1] For those not familiar, James O’Keefe is a not particularly bright “investigative journalist” whose reports have frequently been proven to be dishonestly edited or otherwise created by false pretences. In this particular case, the woman he’d employed to make the false allegations hadn’t scrubbed her social media profile, and this was discovered by the Washington Post reporters she contacted.

[2] In this case, one of the women proved to be more ethical than Burkman anticipated, and immediately alerted the FBI when she was contacted. At the time of this post, the investigation is ongoing.

[3] To be absolutely clear, the best case scenario here still has Patrick Brown engaging in some highly inappropriate relationships with much younger women, a few of whom he were his subordinates in the Party. Among these was eighteen-year old Tamara McGregor, the daughter of the PC candidate for Ottawa West-Nepean (the aptly named Karma McGregor).

[4] For a good summary of my feelings on the subject of fabricated #MeToo allegations, see this post by John Cole over at the Balloon Juice Blog.  He’s a blogger who’s very articulate in his outrage.

[5] As the show Toddlers & Tiaras has taught us, you can dress a little girl up all you want, but the effect’s still going to be that of a model’s head on a popsicle stick.

[6] Carleton University!  Last Chance U!

[7] In towns like this, the bus stop, post office, gas station, store, and resto-bar pretty much ARE the town and in some cases are located within the same building.

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