Help Prevent Sexual Assault in Black Rock City

Sexual assault at Burning Man, while uncommon and unconscionable, does happen. Sexual assault is defined as any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient. Falling under the definition of sexual assault are sexual activities such as forced sexual intercourse, fondling, and attempted rape. While Black Rock City is a community of thousands of well-meaning people, there are some who look to take advantage of others. In some cases, their intent is criminal.

Nobody wants to think about crime in Black Rock City, but in many ways Black Rock City is a city like any other, and it faces many of the same public safety issues as any other urban area. In 2013, Pershing County Sheriff’s Office received five reports of domestic battery and 14 reports of sexual assault, leading to four arrests. In 2014, Pershing reported six reports of domestic battery and six reports of sexual assault, leading to three arrests.

While sexual assault and domestic battery are unfortunate realities in the world, we believe we should hold Black Rock City to a higher standard. BRC is a city built by its citizens — a community that strives to live by a set of principles. And our principles of Civic Responsibility and Communal Effort demand we all have a stake in the safety and security of our fellow Burners. We need everyone’s help to foster an educated, empowered and safe community.

This is the first in a series of pre-event blog posts addressing assault, survivor support services and resources available in Black Rock City, sexual harassment, and the importance of consent. This post is an update to one written in 2012 and provides some practical advice to help keep you safe in Black Rock City.

In addition to these blog posts, we’ll be sharing information via the Jackrabbit Speaks, social media, public service announcements on BMIR and GARS and via a handout to every vehicle coming through the Gate.

But to be successful, we need your help.

We’ve received reports over the years — including 2014 — of people being “dosed” at dance camps by a person or persons offering water or other beverages in the middle of the dance area. BLM and medical teams are quick to respond to these reports, but we can reduce the risk by encouraging participants to provide their own beverages and not to accept drinks from persons unknown to them. Everyone in BRC should always carry their own water. We’re a gifting society, but that’s not a reason to not practice self-reliance, awareness, and safe hydration.

Everyone needs to know that if they find themselves in an uncomfortable or threatening situation, they can always ask for help. While there are some ‘bad eggs,’ they are far outnumbered by well meaning Burners who are willing and able to lend a helping hand. We can empower one another to yell “HELP!”, “FIRE!” or “I NEED A RANGER!” if you’re experiencing an unintended mental state or if your physical well being is threatened in any way. Black Rock City is not so big or so anonymous that people will ignore a call for help.

We also recommend exploring Black Rock City with a buddy (aka “The Buddy System”), particularly if you are new to the event. If you see suspicious behaviour, immediately report it to a Black Rock Ranger and find help. We must each make every effort to educate one another and to speak up if we see or hear something that doesn’t look, sound or feel right. Report strange behavior to Rangers immediately so they can intervene before a situation gets out of hand or goes away from public view. If someone doesn’t look like they’re able to take care of themselves, check in with them. You just might prevent something terrible from happening.

As you’ll see in the next post in this series, Black Rock City provides support services for assault survivors, but ultimately we believe our focus should be on education and prevention. The best outcome is to stop assault from happening in the first place.

We invite you to join this important conversation by sharing your comments below and on future posts in this series. And we should note that while we normally give a lot of latitude regarding our comment policy in the spirit of self-expression, comments on these posts will be vigorously moderated to maintain civil discourse. If you want to be overtly offensive, sexist, or go about trolling sexual assault victims, there are plenty of rocks you can crawl out from under elsewhere on the internet — this isn’t one of them.

Top photo by Susan Becker

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51 Comments on “Help Prevent Sexual Assault in Black Rock City

  • Tracey TieF says:

    Sexual activity with someone who is drunk or high can be sex without consent, in other words, sexual assault, and illegal. You don’t have to be responsible for getting them drunk or high for it to be sexual assault. My 16 year old daughter was sexually assaulted by a man in his twenties when she was in an altered state. He knew how young she was, and took advantage of her trust. She spent the rest of her Burn looking for a private shower. I did not find out until this past month – 4 years later. I am heartbroken and angry. My daughter is still hurting from the experience.

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    • Water-Bearer says:

      DAMN. I send you my empathy/sympathy. Unfortunately BRC doesn’t seem to be safe for the inexperienced any more…if ever but hings appear to have gotten much worse over this last decade. What ever happen to unity – taking care of one another. While bad things can happen during the day, night time is often the cloak of a bad person. Maybe this is crazy, but maybe we need a SVU camp that goes out with night vision, checking things out. Burning man is supposed to be free but just as regular society, how can it be when to many people are just SHIT. Again, so sorry.

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    • roissy says:

      This is one of the reasons why I do not like minors attending the event, but this is not the time to get into that. It is very unfortunate your daughter (or anyone) had to go through that. Burning Man is and always has been wild and wooly. My wife and her girlfriend first attended well over twenty years ago, her friend accepted a drink from someone she did not know, woke up the next day naked and with no memory as to what happened, she never returned.

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  • Ferdi says:

    I will definitely have my eyes WIDE open for this kind of behavior. It’s so easy not to notice it when 1) you’re a guy (privilege) and 2) you’re way to distracted by the music and the craziness going on. We can not ignore this any longer…

    Actually, let’s talk about this more in depth. How do you know for sure someone you never met before has been dosed or is being taken advantage of while intoxicated ? There are a lot of stoned people in BRC and 99.9% on their own will.

    Let’s say some girl seems really high, and other more sober people are around her. What do you do ? Ask her how she feels (she might not be able to asnwer) ? Ask her friends if she’s gonna be OK (but maybe they are the one taken advantage of her) ? How does that go exactly ? We can’t get a ranger for every stoned girl we encounter…

    I’d really like to help with this issue but it’s a tough one !

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    • Water-Bearer says:

      Best you can do in that situation is hang around and get a feel for it. Obviously harassing every sexual situation won’t work. You are right, it is tough. I think if you see a person incoherent…in general, it’s a no on the sexual stuff and you may want to confront the other party, politely to start. It’s too bad this is an issue. It is such a slippery slope too, because a person could say they were assaulted out of shame for doing something when they were messed but agreed to. Alcohol is usually the big one in this instance. If something seems heavy, I usually walk by and ask if things are going OK, If I get a good feel for it, I walk on. I personally have had to carry a girl away from a bad situation. Just use your best judgment…you can usually tell.

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  • Anon says:

    If someone initially says yes and then changes their mind, it is not okay to try to force them to continue. A guy asked me if I wanted to cuddle and I said yes. Then he kept trying to drag me off to a private place even though I repeatedly told him no. He wouldn’t leave me alone and he ruined my night. I Have no doubt that he would have raped me if he was successful in dragging me off. He ruined my weekend and I no longer feel safe or want to go Out at all. No means stop right now, even if came after an initial yes. It was a very bad trip and I’m still not over it. A bit of the dream died.

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    • roissy says:

      What needs to be understood (and rarely is) is that CONSENT CAN BE WITHDRAWN AT ANYTIME!!!

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      • Pat says:

        Yes, gentlemen, consent can be withdrawn at ANY time, even months or years later. There is such a thing called conditional consent, or rape by fraud. The women determines the terms of the conditions of her consent, so for example – if you tell her you’re a race car driver but she later finds out you work at Starbucks, that could be considered a violation of terms under which she consented to sex = rape. \

        If you tell her you’ll call her the next day and you don’t because she was lousy in bed and otherwise annoying, she could claim that she wouldn’t have had sex with you if she knew you weren’t going to call her or see her again, which would be a violation of her conditional consent = better have a good lawyer… The list goes on and on and on.

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      • Jason says:

        Response to Pat.

        Think I get your point. A kinda ‘Look out fellas…women have the power in this case. They can/will charge you with rape whenever they feel like it; for whatever reason they want.’

        Yeah? If not…please explain your post in more detail.

        If so….

        Not cool…..and kinda creepy.

        When is it ever a good idea to lie to someone in order to appear more sexually appealing to them? “People do it all the time”…Don’t buy it. Gross.

        Let us go basic. Some simple ways to ensure your safety and others:

        Be Honest.
        Be Present.
        Be Real.
        Be Kind.

        Don’t be an asshole. When in doubt..ask. If anyone responds “Yeah…you’re kinda being an asshole”….stop being an asshole.

        Please please please…try not to lie. 3 deep inhales if you feel the urge coming on. It’s ok to say “Hey wait a second…I totally just lied about that.” Good people respect it. No one really cares what you’ve done..they care about what you’re doing.

        And finally…don’t tie your personal self worth to a reflection of someone you convinced to have sex with you by lying to them. It’s icky.

        Good luck friend.

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  • Krystal says:

    Let’s not forget that men also get assaulted and can often feel more stigmatized by our cultural shaming and blaming. This is a very important topic, glad it is being addressed!

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    • Anon says:

      This where BED education is great, but somehow, people who have been going to burns for years still don’t GET IT. Fuck yeah or fuck no people, if he/she doesn’t seem psyched about the opportunity for intimacy with you, STOP!!!! Sex isn’t about getting your rocks/clit off, it’s about two people connecting and if either one isn’t into it, it’s not a good idea, whether or not it’s officially assault or not. Better safe than sorry, not just in terms of getting in trouble with the law but in terms of causing someone else to feel violated and used and having long term trauma because you were so into getting what YOU wanted with THEIR body that you ignored what THEY wanted with THEIR body.

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  • Buttercup says:

    Couple of things always happen in comments about these kinds of posts: 1) The direct and or nuanced suggestion of false accusations (or the so called not being able to read the muddy waters of situations/girls just be regrettin) or 2) Oh dear god, what about the men?! (happens to men too – yeah, no shit)

    Burning man was the first place I ever really heard genuine dialogue about consent. Thank you B.E.D.! Burning Man is also the only place on earth I have ever seen dudes seriously put the hammer down, real hard, on other dudes for not having consent – in small ways and major ways. What I wouldn’t give for that in the default. What a peaceful place the world might be.

    I applaud the sincere efforts here and everywhere to appeal to the community to care for each other and keep each other safe. No matter what, we all know some folks are just gonna try and be all touchy and grabby and creepy and rapey. So, for the love of baby Jesus, let’s help each other out. And not blame the stoned girls – because that just makes you awful (no matter how you try and shroud it).

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    • givemeabreak says:

      not everything is an MRA conspiracy, don’t be such an insta-rude bucket of scum. believe me, we’re more tired of that.

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      • Buttercup says:

        Insta-rude comes in such an attractive little bottle that I couldn’t resist it. Also, believe it or not, this is not about what you are tired of. This is about preventing sexual assault.

        Burning man is one of the places I feel most free as woman. The community is one I adore so deeply, try and contribute to, and miss the whole rest of the year because of how good people generally are to each other. But we know sexual assault happens there and men intervening to stop other men makes a tremendous difference. I know it isn’t the only factor, but it’s a major one.

        This bucket of scum (that’s me, Buttercup) is just trying to appeal to folks to not derail this important conversation with the usual BS and focus on what makes a real difference so that the stories above don’t happen again.

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  • Katiebell says:

    Great to be able to contribute to this conversation, thank you!

    I have not been to Burning Man (I live in Oz) but I think there is a really important angle here, which is to make positive suggestions and take positive action – especially if you want to create and keep a really positive focused culture for the long term.

    I would like to suggest that Burning Man organisers takes a few steps in this, though I dont know how it would fit with your processes, as well as asking for more personal and collective responsibility to be taken.

    My first thought is asking people to read and agree to the principles of burning man upon entering. I dont mean buy signing a contact, I mean by looking someone in the eye and being held personally accountable. They could be very simple agreements, perhaps: “To act with respect, kindness and consciousness. To be responsible for my actions and at all times to be mindful and respectful of people and place. To be mindful of other peoples boundaries, appreciative of their generosity, respectful of the sacred land and the people we are sharing this place with. I agree to behave in a peaceful, respectful and responsible way at all times regardless of my state of mind. I wish to respect others rights to be equal, safe, accepted, heard, cared for and treated in a fair, supportive, kind and gentle way. We all here agree to live this way. By doing so, we will uphold that which unites us in a vision for a peaceful future for humanity, all living creatures and the earth itself”. … I dont know, sounds longwinded, but you get the idea (I think it might put off a few who would go against these concepts). Whatever words work for you all, but they would have to be really considered.

    It could just be five principles printed really large on a sign that everyone reads upon entering that says “By entering this space you are agreeing to these principles: Peace, Equality, Respect, Acceptance and Responsibility” with an explanation below about consent, etc. I have always though that these positive rules should be the guiding principles of all schools, work places, institutions and society itself. Much better then ‘Rules’.

    Also I would like to suggest that people (Perhaps volunteers through the organisers?) sign up to be ‘sober’ or ‘safe’ (at least some days/times) and keep a eye on behavior and alert Rangers or check on people if they do not seem OK.

    I have always tended to take on this role, it comes quite naturally to me as I dont like getting out of control and I have helped a lot of people out in party situations. Perhaps they good wear badges to identify themselves and have a few hundred ideally, so that where ever you are there is someone keeping an eye on things.

    Everyone needs a safe person to go to.

    This is a really important issue for festivals and I am glad you are addressing it. A friends young son was just assaulted and managed to fight off an attempted kidnap in a similar festival here. So, please find a way to address this that is a model fr all society – if anyone can do it, it is you guys. <3 Peace.

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  • Ferdi says:

    Wow, are you really going for this ?

    Paranoid would mean that the danger is non existing or that the women are inventing/exagerating it. I feel different : women at BM might be more conscious about the risks of going to large parties / raves on their own, more empowered, maybe stronger that women of the “default” world. And that’s a good thing.

    It’s sad that such defense mechanisms are ruining immediacy and potential connections with random nice people, but I’d say it’s a lesser evil. Better keep people safe even if it makes them sometimes overly suspicious.

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  • crazydaze says:

    I cannot imagine seeing a passed-out or incoherent girl surrounded by male(s) who appear to have bad intentions without my physically intervening and putting a stop to it. It’s basic humanity. You help others when they need help. Period. Even if it’s your “bros.”

    Respect for others is a primary vibe at BM, and anyone who participates also MUST participate in protecting our brothers and sisters on the playa.

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    • Itsbee says:

      Chivalry is dead, women killed it. If women are going to get blacked-out drunk out there and expect men to white knight for the poor darlings, they’re mistaken. It’s called ‘radical self-reliance’ and part of that is knowing when to stop throwing drinks down your throat and forcing everyone to take care of you.

      Ladies, if you can’t control your drinking, don’t go.

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      • Spirulina says:

        I should be able to get as intoxicated as I want without fear that someone is going to take advantage of me. Not asking anyone to take care of me. While I also agree I shouldn’t be taking drinks from strangers, I would also like to believe that not everyone who is generous enough to offer me a free drink, especially water of all things, isn’t dosed.

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      • Jake says:

        @Spirulina

        I agree. And I should be able to walk through the worst part of NYC with hundred dollar bills hanging out of my pockets without fear of being robbed.

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      • Lytyl says:

        @Jake… Your argument is so bad I don’t even know where to begin. You’re basically saying that if a woman doesn’t want to get raped she shouldn’t get drunk. People, men and women, should be allowed to get as intoxicated as they want without fear that some asshole is going to hurt them. I guess now we know that you are unable to be around drunk women without the urge to rape them. I am sorry I breathe the same playa dust as you.

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    • Trex says:

      @crazydaze

      While you’re saving the damsel in distress from the potential rapists surrounding her, how would anyone else know that you’re not part of the rape gang, just trying to steal her away for your very own?

      When another white knight like yourself comes on the scene, he or she or them will lump you together with the others in the rape gang. Do you think they’re going to believe you when you say that you were just trying to help? That’s what all rapists say…. Congratulations, white knight – you’ve just become a suspect!

      Gents, if you see a passed-out or otherwise incapacitated female, do NOT intervene – for your own legal safety. In this rape paranoid culture, if you really want to help – find a female and get her to save her. I’d stay away from LEOs on the matter because they will be viewing you as possibly the man to blame for her condition. Be safe out there – don’t white knight.

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      • Will Chase says:

        Your attitude is what’s wrong with the world, frankly. A real man — or a decent human being, even — wouldn’t think twice about helping somebody in harm’s way. You go ahead and scurry off and protect yourself, I’ll do whatever I can to help. Dunno about you, but I’ll be able to look myself in the mirror in the morning.

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      • Trex says:

        @Will Chase

        The world is not in short supply of white knights, and neither are the jails.

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      • Lytyl says:

        If I see someone trying to assault YOU should I intervene or do you want me to just let you lay there suffering on the playa? YOu should always help people who are being hurt by others when you see it happening… if I hear “Damsel in distress” one more time I”m going to throw up.

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      • crazydaze says:

        @trex

        Really depressing, your reply. I would do the same for a grandma whose purse is being stolen, or if you were being beaten up. Common human decency. Your reasoning is the reason why men are maligned more and more and why fewer and fewer of us can be trusted = gang blame.

        Why the fuck anyone would take pleasure in having sex with someone who is passed out is beyond me. Just the self-loathing that requires alone is puzzling, much less the pain you’re inflicting on others. Oh yeah and then there’s the 10 years in prison. Sounds fun.

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    • Wingman says:

      That’s exactly the situation I walked in on at one of the more “In” famous male oriented theme camps. Guy passed out, obviously not capable of consent in any form and other guys lined up waiting to take “turns.” I caught some flack and had to back a couple of guys off. But I got out of there and over to medical. For me it was a no-brainer, I HAD to intervene. Do guys get raped? Yeah… They do!

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  • Spirulina says:

    I am very grateful this is being addressed. As someone who was sexually assaulted on the playa last year, my guard is up this year. I think it is important to mention however that for many victims/survivors of sexual assault it not always as easy as it may seem to simply scream ‘FIRE!’ when the assault is occurring. When a sexual assault is occurring many people freeze/become paralyzed, especially those that have been in similar situations before. From personal experience it isn’t until after the assault that they start thinking of what they should of done, etc. I know for me when some of these things occurred on playa (namely unconsented groping/fondling) it wasn’t until I sobered up or was off playa that it hit me how not cool that was, that it was not consensual, and that it was sexual assault.

    Everyone needs to be more aware of getting/needing/wanting enthusiastic consent.

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    • Simon says:

      Screaming ‘FIRE!’ at Burning Man… You might want to come up with some other word to trigger the white knights to come and rescue you, Damsel.

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      • brittany says:

        I was referring to the blog post’s suggestions about what one should yell in an emergency, not to mention what most people off playa suggests you should yell in the event of an assault. My point isn’t even about what a victim may yell, but that many victims are unable to yell anything at all due to what is happening to them.

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      • Will Chase says:

        Enough with the demeaning “Damsel” name-calling.

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  • Spirulina says:

    For those of you that are interested here is an article on why many victims/survivors of sexual assault react-or don’t react- the way they do.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2015/06/23/why-many-rape-victims-dont-fight-or-yell/

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  • elizabeth says:

    B.E.D is not just about helping prevent sexual assault, it’s about better sex.

    Consent is Sexy!

    Seems obvious but I needed to be convinced. One of the arguments that you hear against affirmative consent laws is that it’s not fun or sexy to ask for permission every step of the way. That it ruins the mood. I used to agree.

    Then I found my boyfriend who attended one of B.E.D’s courses. It was a revelation. It is amazingly hot to talk during sex. Fevered, slightly drunken groping is okay, but adding in words is fun and sexy and amazing. Totally transformed my idea of what good sex is.

    Thanks guys!

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    • Suzie says:

      >Consent is Sexy!

      There’s nothing sexier than a guy asking if he can hold your hand. Then asks again if he can touch your knee. Then asks again if he can apply the palm of his hand to your left breast for a period of 1 to 2 minutes. Then asks if he may proceed to squeeze your nipple. It’s sexy as hell when this goes on for about an hour or two before he finally asks to penetrate your vagina with his penis and if it would be okay to continue thrusting in and out. The sexiest thing is when he asks if it would be okay to ejaculate his semen inside or outside of your vagina, and would it be okay if some of it lands in your belly button.

      I actually prefer to have men sign a full contract that lists all of these items up front, as it saves time. And I can always say that he pressured me into signing it, and still go to the police if he doesn’t give me the presents I want.

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    • Leo says:

      Affirmative Consent, which now applies on many campuses, turns almost all sex into rape. When it rolls out nationwide, and it eventually will (campuses are the testing grounds), women will find that they have made themselves toxic and effectively illegal.

      So when women wonder ‘Where have all the good men gone?’, they should know – these men are intentionally away, protecting themselves from liability.

      The unintended consequence will be that the only men willing to have sex with women will be men who don’t give a shit about consent laws.

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  • Yolan says:

    It’s good to see you guys are being serious about this. At my first Burning Man last year I was not only sexually assaulted on the first night I had my drink dosed and landed in the medical tent on the 3rd night I was there. Wound up in Zeno psychologically shattered by the 5th and by then it was too late to find either offender. After that I stuck with a buddy for the rest of the festival and there were no more issues (although the two that occurred were bad enough). This does happen, and unfortunately the airy fairy burning man videos are misleading in this regard and there’s not enough material out there warning people about how it really is for women. Keep it up!

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  • Psychler says:

    Very glad to have this resource to be able to share with others. I will be working with the Crisis Intervention Team to respond to sexual assault, and am a male albeit with a couple of decades of experience working with women and sexual trauma/sexual assault. PLEASE reach out to CIT or the nearest Ranger, ESD person, etc. Let’s make the Playa a better and safer place for all as we grow.

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  • Jules says:

    Jake, Itsby, Leo– rape is caused by one thing: rapists. It’s not caused by drunk women, or skimpy outfits, or people making “bad choices” by being in dangerous places or drinking beverages offered by strangers. It’s caused by rapists. That’s not to say that it wouldn’t behoove folks to be careful about whom they accept drinks from, but to suggest that “radical self-reliance” translates into “its your fault you got raped because you got drunk late at night with a strange guy” is a disgusting warp of the 10 principles. And Trex — the idea that prisons are full of innocent would-be rescuers is simply false. Not to say that you could not find anecdotal situations of folks wrongly accused or imprisoned, but it’s hard enough to get an *actual* rapist convicted, much less someone who isn’t, and most if not all states (including Nevada) have Good Samaritan laws to protect people who intervene in a situation in good faith. And I agree with elizabeth — affirmative consent is very, very sexy indeed . . . .a man looking into my eyes and asking if can please me in this or that way? Bring it on!

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    • Jon says:

      You’re right, rape is only caused by rapists, it’s true, but it’s also a tautology. It’s true simply by definition. It’s like saying murder is caused by one thing: murderers. It adds nothing to the discussion which is how do we address this issue.

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  • tygerlily of the north says:

    Thank you for your dedication to safety for everyone. This is an important issue. I would like to add psa announcements to 89.9 radio Electra when I am on air. So expect some conversations about consent and healthy communication on the airwaves permeating black rock city.

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  • Synnamon Buns says:

    GREAT topic. I have had both male and female friends dosed and assaulted, so yes, it can happen to anyone! Helping someone in need is the right thing to do, just like giving someone CPR, even if you’re no longer certified. :)

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  • Driver says:

    Considering how many people are sharing their own stories here, it’s almost more staggering that there were only 14 assaults reported in 2014. I have my own story of being assaulted on the playa (there were witnesses, but I was frozen in shock. Yelling wasn’t on the menu). I know at least 4 other women in my camp who’ve been assaulted. It lead me to take a few years off, and I’ve stopped going to deep playa alone.

    Yes, it’s great to encourage bystanders to step in when something bad is going on, but it’s also incredibly important to educate all Burners about what informed and enthusiastic consent is. Many men wouldn’t consider themselves rapists, even if they’ve coerced sex or had sex with someone too incapacitated to speak.

    I appreciate the efforts in this post, but the truth is much assault isn’t committed by “Bad Seeds” who are actively predatory. It’s instead “going with the flow” even if the girl is too drunk to verbalize consent. It’s putting emotional pressure on someone to “repay” your earlier kindness. It’s “taking things to the next level” even when she pushes you away.

    The BED does great work on the playa. I’d love to see more active conversations about how guys can be more compassionate, ask better questions, and be willing to check in when signs are ambiguous.

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  • flux says:

    This article implies stranger danger, which is rare. In fact >80% of people are sexually assaulted by someone they know including partners. And it happens on playa – at least one friend of mine was raped by a partner there. And yes, it happens to women, men, genderqueer, and agender people.

    I have been working in the trauma field for 15 years… teaching people not to accept drinks from strangers or to yell for help has not been shown to be effective prevention. Focusing on what potential victims can do to “prevent” rape is also part of victim-blaming culture which assumes that (primarily) women should curtail their lives in ways that (primarily) men should not have to – by not getting drunk, wearing more clothes, or never walking around alone. What HAS been shown to prevent sexual assault is EVERYONE making sure to get and maintain consent. That, and for ALL of US to be active bystanders and not ignore behavior that is coercive or non-consensual (sexual or otherwise.)

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  • Annonymous says:

    I am a sober girl and feel quite comfortable that I can prevent any unwanted sexual advances. My concern is the friend I am going with. A drinker, very social, liberal dresser, will take drinks from people, has blackouts. We are both virgin burners, but do have some veteran friends we will be camping with. I know the buddy system will not always work because she will party all night and I tend to be the opposite. Any suggestions?

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  • Daniel says:

    Part company with her when she gets too crazy.

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  • Curious Guy says:

    I’m curious and confused … I love the idea of consent because it takes so much of the guessing out … however I’ve also heard a LOT of women in the default world say that asking shows lack of confidence and that’s the key turnoff, lack of confidence.

    And then there’s apparent snark like this:
    ” Suzie says:
    August 10, 2015 at 3:30 pm

    >Consent is Sexy!

    There’s nothing sexier than a guy asking if he can hold your hand. Then asks again if he can touch your knee. Then asks again if he can apply the palm of his hand to your left breast for a period of 1 to 2 minutes. …

    I actually prefer to have men sign a full contract that lists all of these items up front, as it saves time. And I can always say that he pressured me into signing it, and still go to the police if he doesn’t give me the presents I want.”

    So … if a guy doesn’t just pretty much give up on having much sex if at all because he doesn’t want to be “that guy” ( I was assaulted as a boy of 12 to 17years old three times so I have that experience of what being targeted is like) … and can SEE that many women still buy into the old paradigm … other than perhaps just give up a normal life and go from burner event to burner event …

    What’s the happy middle ground?

    Currently I have defaulted to waiting on the woman to initiate … then I’m SURE she has enthusiasm … but I can tell you that this tactic results in a lot of lonely in the default world for both parties!

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