May 18, 2013

Raper Blood

I was listening to a Jamaican radio program the other day and they were talking about how rape was formerly part of the Jamaican culture. It was two male hosts and although I had no doubt they were serious there was playfulness about the way they approached the subject, being a Jamaican it made me sit up and listen but I did feel awkward. They laughed as they talked about when girls said no in Jamaica it meant nothing because men took it to mean yes and would basically force themselves onto the woman. Mostly men called in and one mentioned that when he came to America his mother made sure to tell him “no” meant no in America, and not the yes it implied in Jamaica. I gathered from listening that the point of the topic was to say that was then and this is now, back then men forced themselves and now they respect when the woman says no.  However, there was something that just didn’t feel right about the conversation.

Just then a particular party came to mind, was in Jamaica and I attended a local party on Negril beach where they played a song by a local DJ whose lyrics referred to having “raper blood”, you got it “rape-r blood”.  Raper blood was aggression towards women in a sexual way, about forcing oneself on a woman, in essence raping her. When that song came on the crowd went wild screaming and cheering, male and female.