ba·nal: / beyn-nahl  / adjective
1. devoid of freshness or originality; hackneyed; trite

a·nal·o·gy: /uh-nal-uh-jee / noun
1. a similarity between like features of two things, on which a comparison may be based 2. similarity or comparability

banalogy: / beyn-nal-uh-jee / noun
1. A hackneyed and stupid comparison made between two things that bear absolutely no similarity or comparability to each other 2. A word I just made up

In an upcoming interview in Vanity Fair, Johnny Depp compares photo shoots to rape:

“Well, you just feel like you’re being raped somehow. Raped … It feels like a kind of weird — just weird, man.”


While I understand the point Depp is trying to make, he could have used another word – “violated”­, for example.

Is it just me or are people increasingly using the word “raped” as an analogy to describe feelings of frustration and annoyance? For example, I once heard someone say they were “raped” by their cellphone provider. Really? Getting overcharge­d on your phone bill is analogous to a violent sexual assault?


I can’t imagine the psychologi­cal, emotional and physical turmoil that a rape victim goes through. Rape is a tool used to wield power, dominance and fear over a person. It is meant to diminish a person’s dignity and self-worth, to reduce them to something less than human. To have the word “rape” used in such a way as Depp has takes away its impact and its brutality, and trivialize­s the experience­s of those who have been victimized by it.

Before you use the word “rape” to describe something you’ve gone through, ask yourself this: would a victim of rape describe her or his experience in the same way? Would they say something like, “As my vagina was being torn apart, I thought, ‘Now I know how Johnny Depp feels being in a photo shoot.'”? Or, “Getting punched in the face felt like getting hit with data roaming charges.”?

Yeah, didn’t think so.

UPDATE: Shortly after I hit the “Publish” button, I saw this:

Hank Williams Jr. pulled from ESPN after comparing Obama to Hitler



Leave a Reply