Please Jill! Cast the jaundiced spinster eye apon the recent IMF rapist? I need your unique perspective.
What luck! I just happen to have handy just such a perspective on the IMF rapist. However, you might not interpret it as particularly unique. It goes like this:
That guy is a fucken tool.
Sure, I’ve got a little more, but that’s pretty much the gist. So if you’ve got something else to do, go on ahead. I won’t mind.
Meanwhile, if, unlike blamer redpeachmoon, you serenely abide in your cloister under a self-imposed news blackout, you may not have heard of the IMF rapist. No great loss. If you’ve heard of one IMF rapist, you’ve heard of’em all.
This particular IMF rapist is Dominique Strauss-Kahn, 62, pink-faced captain of industry and managing director of the International Monetary Fund. Dominique Strauss-Kahn went on a little spree in Manhattan last weekend and assaulted a hotel employee. According to the first link I clicked on Google, this is how it went down: Strauss-Kahn “emerged from the bathroom naked and dragged [the hotel employee] through the suite from room to room in a violent sex attack.” He then high-tailed it to JFK, licketty-split, but was yanked off his flight to Paris just before takeoff, brought back to “a police cell in Harlem,” and denied bail as a flight risk. [cite]
The woman Strauss-Kahn attacked is being referred to as a “maid” or “chambermaid.”
Maid is a creepy-ass word. No matter what, a maid is not a good thing to be. In days of yore the term was used to denote a mythical female who had so far escaped — but would soon be forced into — getting pronged by some entitled prick. Denoting females thusly was of vital importance back in yore; owing to a lot of macho-religious nonsense that equated women with sex, as-yet-unpronged ladies were worth more than pronged ones. Intact virtue could make or break your career.
Nowadays maid still refers most commonly to a member of the sex class, but with less emphasis on purity, and more emphasis on the flipside of the misogyny nickel — suitability for interaction with other people’s filth. It means “low-status servant who cleans up after high-status assholes.”
Some high-status assholes make themselves feel like magnanimous benefactors by calling their maids “housekeepers,” paying them “more” than the maids would make back in the Dominican Republic, and treating them “like” family. Oh please. The job is fucking cruddy. It’s so cruddy that dudes are never, ever maids. If maids were actually paid what the work is actually worth, dudes would get all the maid jobs.
Also, your maid already has a family, Your Highness.
Anyway, in the narrative of IMF rapist Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the victim’s status as a sub-human hotel cleaner is an important detail. Apparently this Strauss-Kahn shitsack is a celebrated rapscallion, rake, and ladies’ man. Boys will be boys! His nickname in the classy world of international finance is reportedly “the great seducer.” So it makes titillating how-the-mighty-have-fallen news copy to depict him, not as a suave Casanova jetsetting around with supermodel heiresses, but as a privileged fiend predating a powerless, lower-caste menial. In a world where it’s generally considered OK to use women according to their universally-acknowledged purpose (sex), it is sometimes permissible to use them, as long as patriarchal prurience is served, for other stuff, such as, in this case, leverage in toppling a poobah. As for the actual woman herself, nobody gives a rat’s ass about her. She is merely a symbol of a towering potentate’s descent into ignominy, frothily recounted by patriarchal media. Like the virginal maids of yore, hotel maids are also receptacles for male disdain.
Anyone who goes around calling himself “the great seducer” is undoubtedly a serial rapist, so naturally other women are beginning to turn up with accounts of Strauss-Kahn’s abuses. One of them, a young journalist who had previously publicly recounted her assault (with Strauss-Kahn’s name redacted), now describes his behavior during her attempted rape as that of a “rutting chimp.” Not surprisingly, the woman didn’t press charges at the time. She didn’t want her career to be permanently stained with “she’s the girl who accused Strauss-Kahn of rape.” Which is exactly how rapists get away with it: fear, humiliation, and shame are superb silencers.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn will undoubtedly get away with it, too. He has retained Michael Jackson’s lawyer.
Speaking of entitled white patriarchs who use domestic employees as toilets, California ex-governator Arnold Schwarzenegger has apparently fathered a child with “a longtime member of their household staff.” Wife Maria Shriver, an original member of the long-suffering-stand-by-your-political-man wives’ club back in aught-three while candidate Arnie was at the center of a groping scandal, has finally left the schmuck.
Internationally powerful, white, rich, successful, married to heiresses they famously cheat on at every opportunity — these dudes are patriarchy’s poster-boys. You don’t become a global financier or a steroid-poppin’ muscleman California grope-ulator by being an enlightened sweetheart of a guy who doesn’t rape the maid.