Gun Culture is the privileging of violence and the tools of violence (particularly guns) over and above safety concerns, over and above evidence and research (and even the researching) that would allow us to live in a less fear- and violence-induced state with fewer unnecessary deaths.
Rape Culture can be described as the normalization of ideas that link and privilege notions that people (predominately women, but not exclusively) can deserve or subtly ask to be raped.
Boss Culture (a term and idea that I’ve started exploring here*) is the privileging in society of the boss and overclasses who determine the value of the underclasses, but also the notion that they can control the bodies, behaviors, and thoughts of the underclasses.
What happens when you mix them all together? You get this:
A Texas jury acquitted a man for the murder of a woman he hired as an escort, after his lawyers claimed he was authorized to use deadly force because she refused sex.
Ezekiel Gilbert shot Lenora Ivie Frago in the neck on Christmas Eve, after she denied his requests for sex and wouldn’t return the $150 he had paid her, according to the San Antonio Express-News. Under Texas law, an individual is authorized to use deadly force to “retrieve stolen property at night,” and Gilbert’s lawyers cited that provision as justification for Gilbert’s action, reasoning that Frago had stolen $150 from him by taking his money without delivering sex. In a police interview played for jurors, Gilbert “never mentioned anything about theft,” a detective told the San Antonio Express-News. Frago, who was 21, was critically injured and died several months later.
Gilbert, in hiring Frago for escort services, believed he was due her body. Believed he owned her body. In not getting her body for his purposes, he retaliates by shooting her in the neck, causing her critical injury which ultimately led to her death.
These kind of stories aren’t terribly unique, however. For more connections between Rape Culture, Male Dominance, Boss Culture and the Cult of Violence, we just need to look at the relationship between prostitutes and pimps. We can see everyday connections between the linkage of Male Supremacy, Rape Culture, and the Cult of Violence in domestic violence. These kinds of activities are endorsed (explicitly or implicitly) by Men’s Rights Activists, by Christian Patriarchy, by
But this is unique in this day and age because, again, a jury decided that he was not guilty. That he followed the law. And the law is a law of his rights to protect his “property.” The property in question wasn’t his $150. It was the rights to do what he wanted to her body – because she was under his employ and he could do with her body what he pleased. And that is what she refused to give him, her body. So he took it, by shooting her in the neck.
It is not as though she owed him the money for refusing to have sex. Being paid as an escort does not guarantee the rights to unquestioned sex, even as the rules of engagement for escorts are not as clear and delineated as other such paid services.
In any case, even if it wasn’t her body that he felt he was due – and thus the reasoning for his shooting of injuring her body – this unjust law should not have been upheld by the jury because it privileges property over human lives. Maybe if such a law were taken to its natural course every banker and lending institution should worry for their lives at nighttime. But they don’t need to worry. Because the law won’t be justified against them. Such laws are only justified when used against black teens or women who don’t give men exactly what they want, when they want it.
After all, white males who pay females for “services” means all services, right?
*Boss Culture is an outworking of some work that I’ve done here on Class Warfare, as well as some enlightening posts by Corey Robin on workplace feudalism and some of the work we’ve been highlighting at the Commie Pinkos Wrote My Bible Facebook page. It has been given a framing reference due in no small part to the work of Christian anti-patriarchal writers like Sarah Moon, Dianna Anderson, and Danielle from Two to One, to name a few, in discussing the lineage between Purity Culture and Rape Culture.