Trigger warning: This post discusses corrective rape.
Cleveland WMMS Radio personality Dominic Dieter lent his charming advice to a father who discovered his daughter kissing another girl, saying “You should get one of your friends to screw your daughter straight.”
A listener wrote an email to Dieter explaining he’d happened upon his teenage daughter kissing another girl. Dieter responded to the comments on air April 27, during Rover’s Morning Glory, a talk show on WMMS 100.7 “The Buzzard.”
I don’t listen to radio for this very reason: Most mainstream radio is clogged by annoying misogynistic music and/or assholes who say things that are reprehensible at the very least. Like what Dieter said. Or when these radio hosts spent more than 30 minutes explicitly promoting child abuse of and making dehumanizing comments about transgender children. And I already get enough bullshit like that, you know, from the entire rest of the world.
I think the reason people with some sort of media platform make rape jokes or suggest someone have someone else raped or say other terrible things like this is because they think it’s funny or it has a shock value. But what they say is usually also something they believe. There’s an awful lot of truth said in jest. So when a kneejerk apology is issued by a public figure to make the outcry go away (usually because someone behind the scenes is fielding complaints and forces them to), I can’t help but think it’s disingenuous and that the person making those comments has not actually changed the way they view the situation or seen the error of their ways. They’re just upset that people are upset.
Because oh muh Gawd everyone, rape is so funny! Don’t you know a hilarious joke about physically trying to take away a women’s autonomy to choose who she has sex with by brutalizing her and forcing her to have sex with someone she doesn’t want to have sex with just to reinforce the patriarchal norm that women’s bodies are for men’s consumption when you hear one? Gosh. Lighten up.
But seriously, you know what’s never funny? Rape jokes. They contribute to rape culture.
And can we talk about the logic behind Dieter’s comment for a second? A teenage girl was kissing another girl—therefore threatening to reject all men and all dicks, something she should be open to at all times because she is a woman—so he thinks that by brutally forcing some hetero sex on her she will see what she’s missing out on? What? (Who knows? Maybe the daughter could be bisexual or some variety of queer and may still be interested in men. Fuck it! Rape her just in case.)
And just so we’re clear, bodies aren’t for anyone’s consumption, and woman-on-woman attraction isn’t something to be fixed, especially with rape.
I just wanted to say that, I know on the show this past Friday I made some comments that people … considered to be offensive. And I just wanted to say, I understand why people are angry. I want to genuinely apologize to anyone who may have been offended by what I said. I regret what I did say. My comments were inappropriate. They were inexcusable, and just downright stupid. And I want to make it clear; there was absolutely no intention to promote physical or sexual violence. And I’m truly, truly sorry by my poor choice of words that led people to believe otherwise. Again, Rover, I just want to apologize for any pain I might have caused. (…) I ask people to find it in their hearts to forgive me. I am sorry for the words that I did say.
“I want to make it clear; there was absolutely no intention to promote physical or sexual violence.” Really? Because when you suggest to a father that he has a friend rape his daughter straight that’s exactly what you’re doing.
So, in addition to the apology, WMMS told GLAAD it is disciplining Dieter but hasn’t specified the punishment. The station says it will also run PSAs “about the dangers of parental rejection, and the importance of giving LGBT young people a safe learning environment.”