What the hell is this piece of shit from Bob Ellis: Why are heads rolling at the ADFA?
So women, it seems, are tough enough for service on any battlefront but not tough enough to be peeked at in the shower. For the latter they need compassionate leave, counselling in depth, back pay and five parliamentary enquiries.
This is just so offensive that my eyes are bulging out of my head and I’ve had to wipe the flecks of spit from the computer screen. The right to take a shower without some filthy pervert watching you has absolutely nothing to do with being “tough enough” to fight on the front line. I imagine a big part of army culture involves mateship and trust, and how the fuck can you trust your mates if they’re spying on you in the shower? Oh, sorry, “peeked”. Clearly a deliberate choice of word by Ellis to make it seem less creepy. Plus there’s the dig at women who can’t hack a bit of harmless peeking. Jeez, can’t they take a joke? Must be on the rag.
In M.A.S.H. the movie Hot Lips Houlihan is washing herself when a crane lifts the walls of the shower upward and men in uniform gaze at her fumbling nakedness through binoculars. Are these uniformed men thereafter court-martialled, their commanding general sacked, and Congress made to interrogate all participants? No. Extremely hard to see why. They are guilty, surely, as charged.
Personally, I make all my decisions about the treatment of women from a fictional US tv show that was made in the 1970s and based in the 1950s.
Most frat-house movies and all TV comedies at some time involve observed, or interrupted, or bungled, copulation. It is desolating for the copulants but judged good sport by audiences. Events like this occur in The Simpsons. They occur in Seinfeld, and Cheers, and Frazier and The Honeymooners and I Love Lucy. They occur in Shakespeare, Boccaccio, Chaucer, Suetonius and rather notably the Bible, where David gazed on Bathsheba bathing and upon her nude rounded body soon begot a dynasty which included Jesus of Nazareth. In no case do these incidents produce a Royal Commission or a bolt of lightning from heaven.
He’s using the Bible and some long-gone sitcoms to justify perving at women in the shower or having sex? Seriously? And someone at the ABC thought it was ok to publish this rubbish?
Let us consider a tiny variant on what probably happened, as a hypothesis; a hypothetical. Let us imagine the girl agreed to be filmed, and then, afterwards, being mocked for it, and flabbergasted by the number of leering hoons who saw the film, made the complaint. Would that then occasion the sacking of her commanding officer, the court-martial of fifteen or twenty of her fellow recruits, and the bastardising of her lover? Or something less than this? Think carefully about this question. If she were complicit in the filming, would that change everything? Or not?
Oh, we’re playing rape apologist bingo. (And no, I’m not suggesting that the woman was raped. The “she changed her mind afterwards so she wouldn’t feel like a slut” is a classic example of twisting the situation to pretend that the woman is the wrong-doer. Plus, it’s slut-shaming, which we don’t do here.)
Ellis runs his hypotheticals over two paragraphs and it’s completely meaningless. We don’t need “ifs”, we know what happened. Two people had sex, and one of those people secretly broadcast it to his mates in another room. Why is Ellis so keen to defend his right to secretly film people having sex?
It was to be expected, surely, that their fellow recruits would know soon that the couple were ‘at it’. What then was the grave wrong in seeing (if anything much could be seen from that one angle) how they went about it?
Really Bob? You can’t see the difference between knowing that two people are having sex and actually watching them do it without the knowledge of one of those people? Wow, that’s pretty embarrassing for you.
They, and we, should be careful when we attend too closely to what occurs in a bedroom consensually, and how we punish either participant.
And here he eliminates the breach of trust. Ah, it was just two people having sex, why should they be punished? One more time for the slow learners and yes, that means you Bob Ellis: one of those participants secretly broadcast the sex to his mates. That is what this is about.
Is the young man to be sacked from the army now, and ruined, or wounded, or bruised, perhaps, for life? Driven, perhaps, to suicide, as young army men so often are? Is his crime, of going along with an undergraduate prank, so great? Is the young woman, moreover, to be named, and acclaimed, and promoted, and hereafter entrusted with frontline command on some field of battle? Who would trust her in any high army position? Who would be sure she was truthful? Or sound of judgment? Or loyal? Or reliable under fire?
Bingo! We’ve got “oh, the poor man, his life is ruined” and “if he kills himself it will be all your fault” and “can’t you take a joke” and “women just use sex to get promoted” and “women make it up”. Ellis’s dishonesty here is breath-taking. He knows that the woman is the only cadet who is in trouble. And as for trust, who could trust a group of colleagues who thought there was nothing wrong with a premeditated plan to film you having sex?
And then he just goes on and on about how paparazzi shots of celebrities prove that it’s ok to film a colleague having sex (and he gets the Fergie bit completely wrong), and that people living in university colleges watch each other having sex all the time so clearly it’s ok and that it’s no different to seeing a photo of the roof of his house on Google. Oh my god, the rage balls are blinding.