Friday, February 18, 2011

Perspectives on the Logan Assault.

I have a rule for myself. Never enter a dangerous situation if I don’t know how to get out of it. I have used it when I was snowboarding, mountain biking, working from heights, large crowds and in volatile social situations such as bars. I learned it the hard way, in high school, when I ran my mouth off and wound up in physical confrontations with dangerous people. I learned to recognize danger and I learned that seemingly safe or manageable situations could turn dangerous almost instantly with one mistake or change in conditions. I also became fairly good at finding a way out of danger when things went astray, but, as experience grew, I realized that it was easier to stay out of a jam than to get out of one.
Any crowd has an element of danger. Sadly but realistically, crowds are more dangerous for women than they are for men due to their smaller size and possibility of becoming a sexual target.  This risk is obviously multiplied if the culture of the crowd is misogynistic. CBS and Logan seemed to make a serious misjudgment by assuming that a jubilant crowd is less dangerous than an angry one and judged the danger in terms of Western culture.

North American culture is not misogynistic, as much as feminists would love to have us believe it.  The culture doesn’t exist that could allow enough men to orchestrate and perform such an attack. North American and European men would not tolerate it. In any large crowd, there would be enough strong men to over power any group of men trying to assault a woman.

If you don’t believe me, then I dare you to perform an experiment in a large crowd – say a sporting event or concert. Have a man or group of men pretend to harass a woman and have her scream and complain loudly with some phrase like “Get off me you creep(s).” Immediately, every man within sight or earshot will stand up for her and in all likelihood, the man or men will find themselves pinned to the ground and pummeled or quickly removed from whatever venue. Men will be falling over themselves to get a punch in or to make sure the victim is ok.  Logan is likely used to this culture of chivalry and protection of women.
 Now a large concert or game is nothing like the crowds in Egypt.  I watched one Canadian reporter’s story about getting to his hotel. The cab would not take him all the way and he ended up walking several miles past burned out cars with his full crew to get there. He had several situations that appeared highly dangerous where the crowds were surrounding and jostling his crew. Clearly, this was a lawless situation.
Media everywhere is calling any of this risk analysis “blaming the victim”. Nothing I’ve said removes any of the blame from the men who perpetrated it.  However, their culture was definitely a factor and should have been taken into account. CBS, being vastly more knowledgeable about international situations than I am, should have been able to do a far better analysis. I know I'm speaking from hindsight, but from my perspective, it looks as though they were blinded by their thirst for sensational journalism. A beautiful damsel in the midst of chaos was too much to resist.  But, as we all know, it blew up in their faces and Logan paid the heavy price.

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