On Saturday, more than 50,000 fans turned out for Rockfest 2014 in Kansas City, a concert headlined by KORN, Staind, and numerous other hard rock acts. The vast majority of those in attendance were not molesting pieces of shit. But, as Staind’s frontman Aaron Lewis pointed out, stopping midway through a song to scream at the crowd, more than a few were.
“Listen up you fucking assholes, that girl over right there is like 15 fucking years old and you pieces of shit are molesting her while she’s on the fucking crowd,” he said. “Your fucking mothers should be ashamed of themselves, you pieces of shit.”
While I’m sure it might be tempting to make some delightful jokes about the audience at a Staind concert, or Kansas City in general, in order to downplay this incident, the truth is, this sort of thing happens at every large concert across all genres, no matter where they’re held. As anyone who’s ever been in any sort of tightly packed concert can tell you, particularly women, the threat of being groped inappropriately is something one has to constantly be aware of.
While the majority of the reactions to the video have lauded Lewis for calling out this all too common behavior, you will in no way be surprised to know that many others have been quick to point out that the young woman in question basically had it coming. She shouldn’t have been crowd-surfing if she didn’t want to get molested, right?
Here’s one illustrative gem from the YouTube video, reacting to a woman’s explanation that she doesn’t crowd surf for this very reason: “Wait… so you know there is a risk of inappropriate touching while crowd surfing and chose not to do it? It’s almost like you are proactively taking responsibility for your own safety, which, as many people would like us to believe now days, is not the woman’s responsibility. I’m confused.”
Here are a couple more rape apologists from the Loudwire story where I first saw the video.
As we’ve seen recently with the rise of the #YesAllWomen hashtag, and in the wake of the Elliot Rodger shootings, the idea that it’s the women who are to blame for the abhorrent behavior of men persists across all spectrums of our culture. A woman, underage or otherwise, who wants to enjoy a concert just like any other male fan would, the thinking goes, is tacitly agreeing to the risks of having herself pawed at by dozens of strangers. You saw the way she was dressed, in other words. Then you saw the way she wasn’t dressed after the mob ripped her top off. You probably haven’t been to many shows if you’ve never seen that happen.
“It’s like playing with matches and hoping not to get burned,” another piece of shit molester explained. “If those girls were smart enough, they’d think twice before crowdsurfing in a crowd of drunken guys at a rock concert and excepting them all to be supreme gentlemans. Do the girls deserve to be harassed? I think not. But they did put themself in that situation, so I have no sympathy. It’s just another life lesson for them, I guess.”
Sadly, having your breasts and genitals groped by a heaving throng of perverts is a life lesson that many young women have to learn all to often. Here’s a lesson that many men could learn themselves: If a woman in the crowd at a concert comes close to you, whether through crowd surfing, or a mosh pit, or just the normal push and pull of the crowd, don’t molest her. Pretty cut and dry solution there. When a woman is molested, there is no one to blame but the man doing it. Not her parents, not her, just you, the guy with your hand up someone’s shirt who didn’t ask you to do it. Would you molest a woman on the subway? Would you randomly grope a stranger walking down the street? Probably not. Being at a concert doesn’t make it any more acceptable.
Next time you see a man doing this at a concert, try this move: punch him in the fucking beak. That sort of thing happens at rock concerts a lot. That’s a risk he has to be aware of.